Early Marriage is common all over the globe and has inflicted dangerous and devastating effects on young children who are compelled to tie the knot in most cases. In many parts of the world, one and top of the main cause of Early Marriage is a gratification for overcoming the family’s financial and social needs. Most Early Marriages are considered to be forced which is true but children entering into an Early Marriage out of choice should also be warned of various personal and health issues that can complicate their lives forever.
Early marriage before the age of 18 years is a violation of a number of international human rights conventions. However, for many young girls in developing countries marriage is perceived as a means of securing their future and protecting them. Girls are forced into marriage by their families while they are still children in the hope that marriage will benefit them both financially and socially. On the contrary, early marriages violate the rights of children with often more negative consequences for girls. This compromises their overall development, leaving them socially isolated with little education, skills and opportunities for employment and self-realization. These conditions ultimately make married girls vulnerable to poverty.
While there is widespread agreement that early marriage, early pregnancy and motherhood adversely affects general development and education, the links with poverty and the wider consequences on families and the community have not been adequately explored. This is partly due to the “invisibility” of married girls in most communities, and the fact that marriage confers adult status to girls and boys. More importantly, the limited focus on consumption and income in poverty reduction policies and programmes may make it impossible to identify married girls as a vulnerable group within households.
There are statements that Early Marriage has its Benefits and Disadvantages. It is...