According to the World Health Organization, Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting comprises all surgical procedures and involving partial or total removal of the external genitalia or other injuries to the female genitalia organs for cultural or non-therapeutic reasons. The brutality is graphically documented and the excision is normally done under secrecy to girls aged 5 to 18 in unhygienic conditions using crude instruments...a knife, broken glass, razor blade or any sharp cutting item. Sterilization and anesthesia are seldom used. Pain, injury to adjacent tissue, severe bleeding, infection, acute urine retention, fractures (due to a struggling girl being restrained), fever, potential HIV infection, and possible infertility occur. In some cases the result is death. The WHO also states FGM/Cutting increases the risk of stillbirth, cerebral palsy, and epilepsy due to the difficulty in childbirth delivery. The results are often severe and heartrending.
Forced Early Marriage occurs immediately following Female Genital Mutilation, many times to an older man as a second or third wife. The girls are sold for a dowry of cows or goats at a very young age, and leave their home for an empty marriage and a life of slavery. Their education is ended. Understandably, girls are running away to escape this demeaning and cruel process which leads to physiological and psychological damage.
Social implications are also severe for community and national development. The ability of girls undergoing FGM and FEM to contribute to the community is extremely limited. Married off at an early age, these girls live a life of gender discrimination and inequalities with little or no participation at family, community and national decision making. They do not even participate in deciding whom or when to marry.
For more information please view the two videos below.
WARNING: The videos below contain mature content and are not recommended for younger audiences. Parental guidance is recommended.