Child marriage can be explained as it is the informal marriage or formal union in which one or both of the individuals are in the earlier age of 18. Certainly, it is a truth for both girls and boys, though girls are extremely more affected. It can be said that one kind of child marriage is the wedding of two persons before the age of 18. On the other hand, it would be the practice of child marriage where parents decide the future marriage of the two parties. In this case, both parties that are girl and boy do not see each other but meet at the time of wedding ceremony. Both children meet until they are wed. As well as, the law allows the age 18 for girls as well as 21 for boys to get married. There are several reasons behind child marriage practices. Social norms, gender inequality, safety things about children, control over sexual activities as well as poverty are reasons for the occurrence of child marriage. Other than, cultural pressure, the anxiety of remaining single or unmarried, dowry and illiteracy are also the causes of marriages of the child. Sometimes, it might be a reason for child marriage that the lack of ability of women to effort for money. In some cultures, it is considered that marriage is the solely choice for a girl to be socially highly regarded.
It is considered a social problem where two individuals are getting married before 18. It is a common perception that it will help to protect the rights of girls but the case is different. It is a violation and destruction of human rights (Parsons et al., 2015, pp. 14). Mostly child brides become widowed in early age for the reason that their partners are matured enough than girls. When the two individuals get married at an early age, their chances of divorce and separation become greater. For the reason that children have no idea about marriage at this, age and they do not know about their responsibilities and duties to make successful this marriage. Furthermore, it would be difficult for girls when she became pregnant at an early age and gave birth a baby. At an early age, the girl doesn’t know the exact method how to manage with the children. As well as, she does not sound familiar with childcare and how to care for the child. At this age, they also need a mentor to guide and direct them in early step to be successful. In this practice, boys are not wise or capable enough to become a father. He also feels the burden of child marriage. At this moment, he is not willing to take responsibilities and additional duties. Differences in age and poor communication put both partners in a troubling situation. As a result failure of marriage leads to early separation of both partners. After separation, the girl faces the various problems of discrimination using society. In addition to, she also suffers due to the financial problem as well as disowning basic rights.
On the other hand, child marriage promotes the sexuality. In this situation, girls do not know well about their reproductive and sexual health. They have not awareness about complications related to sexuality. Girls who want to go for family planning may confront the pressure from the side of their husbands or maybe not aware of these facilities even exist. Husband pressure will not permit her to take the step for her good. Due to pressure, she will be unable to raise her voice for her right. As a result, they experience some pregnancies that cause long-term complications related to health or even death (Psaki, 2016, pp. 115).
The chances of girl to die in giving birth are much when she gives birth a child at an early age. Childbirth, as well as complications in pregnancies, are the main reasons of death in girls. The life of girls is also at risk when she bears a child while they are still developing. There are the high rates of maternal deaths in countries where child marriage is widespread. They are not able to make decisions about health care, nutrition, and house management. If girls have many children at an early age, then it will expose the life of both mother and child to mental as well as other health problems. If girls have awareness about reproductive and sexual health facilities that include family planning as well as education, then they can decide in a better way about having children. As a result, they will be able to decide on what is the right time to have children. On the other hand, girls are like to face violence in their marital life. They are not in a position to negotiate about their moralities.
Furthermore, it can also be seen that children whose parents were wedded at an early age prefer to get married early. As a result, it creates some generations’ young wives. Most of the girls left school before primary education or never go to school. It makes them dependent or at the mercy of their husbands. Thus, they feel the need of their husbands for doing any task in daily life. They will fully depend on their husbands for every little decision. They are not able to independent due to limited education and child marriage.
Moreover, brides at an early age are both emotionally nor physically willing to become mothers and wives. At this moment, they are not prepared to bear this phase of life. As a result, their children will also feel the deficiency of love from mother side. They experience and feel the pain of domestic violence in this way. They are more likely to face the poverty due to little availability of economic and education opportunities. Child wife is not able to use safer practices for sexual activities to make happy with both family and husband. As a result, the risk of getting sexually transferred diseases as well as AIDS/ HIV increases. In this way, there are more chances for girls to have health risks related to childbearing as well as early sexual activity containing obstetric fistula and HIV. Girls who are wed at an early stage may lack power, status, and maturity. Consequently, it will lead them to sexual abuse, social isolation as well as domestic violence. When the individuals are wed at an early age, they also miss out the enjoyable as well as fun moments of teen life. Also, the chores and responsibilities of marital life can advance to the immature minds. The burden of additional responsibilities as well as household tasks will retard the mental conditions of children. It will affect the overall development of individuals as well as create the stress and tension for both partners.
Also, most of the young girls do not attend school even for getting basic knowledge. It is necessary even for girls to educate themselves to get awareness about their rights. Education will provide the opportunity to raise voice about their rights. In addition to, Education helps to empower the girls through which they can contribute to economic activities as well as can earn money (McCleary-Sills et al., 2015, pp. 70). Being married at an early phase in life, there will be fewer work opportunities for the young people. As a result, they will not be able to get good jobs due to limited education. In the end, it will affect the career of young boys also.
Child marriage is not merely the case of social but also have economic importance. It causes intense consequences for young brides as well as for their early childhood. It also affects the competence of countries economically to develop as well as cut poverty. Child marriage can be prohibited by keeping girls in educational institutes. There must be proper laws and policies to control this practice. Community programs should provide significant support against marriages of the child. It can be controlled by providing economic opportunities to young girls. If there is greater access to education, then it will be a good step to delay marriage at an early stage. Authoritative parties should take steps by addressing the requirements as well as needs of young brides. As well as, Child marriage stops the learning and education of girls that ultimately cut the overall development of them at an early phase. It also affects their advancement in a career as well as social isolation. Because of child marriage, they may face a threat and fear of domestic violence. The common perception of being wed at an early age to protect the children. It should be forbidden by providing the rights to children. They are also a human being and have right to enjoy their freedom. Being a human, they also have right to develop mentally, physically as well as socially. In this way, they can develop and be able to improve the quality of life.
Parsons, Jennifer, et al. “Economic impacts of child marriage: a review of the literature.” The Review of Faith & International Affairs 13.3 (2015): 12-22.
McCleary-Sills, Jennifer, et al. “Child marriage: a critical barrier to girls’ schooling and gender equality in education.” The Review of Faith & International Affairs 13.3 (2015): 69-80.
Psaki, Stephanie. “Addressing child marriage and adolescent pregnancy as barriers to gender parity and equality in education.” Prospects 46.1 (2016): 109-129.