She got her divorce papers!
“I hated nights because they usually meant that my husband would come to my bed. I used to run from him and he would chase me and beat me and do his thing. I pray that my younger sisters do not face the same fate,” said Nojoud. Now the 8-year-old is living with her uncle and his family in relative safety.”
According to research on early marriage in Yemen from Oxfam and the United Nations Population Fund, there are severe physical consequences that result from early marriage and subsequent early childbirth such as nutritional anemia, post-partum hemorrhages, obstetric fistula (a disorder that affects the bladder and causes leaking of urine or feces), plus mother and infant mortality. Additionally, many girls like Nojoud develop irreparable psychological complexes from early marriage and the forced sexual encounters that accompany it. Early marriage also contributes to divorce and family problems.
“On April 15, with support from her lawyer Shatha Mohammed Nasser and Judge Abud Al-Khaleaq Ghowber, Nojoud paid her way out of marriage with YR 100,000 from an anonymous donor in the Emirates and happily became an 8-year-old divorcee.” “Although Nojoud does not know her real birthday, I believe this day she was born again and it would be apt to celebrate this day as the first day of her new life,” said Nasser.
“I am so happy to be free and I will go back to school and will never think of getting married again,” Nojoud said joyfully. “It is a good feeling to be rid of my husband and his bad treatment.”
According to the International Center for Research on Women’s 2007 statistics, Yemen is one of 20 developing countries where early marriage is common. Nearly half of all Yemeni girls are married before the age of 18. Most women have their first child immediately after their first menstruation cycle and are likely to have a child every 12 months during their reproductive lifespan. Yemen’s fertility rate is extremely high, with an average 6.3 children per each woman, and the country also has some of the highest mother and infant mortality rates worldwide.
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