According to the World Health Organization (WHO), female genital mutilation (FGM) or cutting comprises all surgical procedures and involves 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 increases the risk of stillbirth, cerebral palsy, and epilepsy due to the difficulty in childbirth delivery. The results are often severe and heartrending.
In the Maasai culture, forced early marriage (FEM) occurs immediately following cutting, many times to an older man as a second or third wife. The girls are sold for a dowry of cows or goats often at a very young age. They typically 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 physical and psychological damage.
Social implications are also severe for community and national development. The ability of girls who have undergone 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 in family, community, or national decision making. They do not even participate in deciding when or to whom they marry.
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WARNING: The videos contain mature content and are not recommended for younger audiences. Parental guidance is recommended.