Early Marriage, Child Spouses: What Roles For Counselling Psychology


Throughout the world marriage is, regarded as a moment of celebration and amilestone in adult life. Sadly, as this study makes it clear, the practice of earlymarriage gives no such case for celebration. All too often, the imposition of marriagepatter upon a child means that a girl or boy’s childhood is cut short and theirfundamental rights are compromised. The participants were two thousand andseventy two early-married young boys and girls randomly drawn from five clans inUyo Local Government of Akwa-Ibom State. This study looks at the reasons for theperpetuation of early marriage and its possible increase in population under stress. Akey factor is poverty with the marriage of children often seen as the strategy foreconomic survival. Besides, it is, perceived as a way to protect girls and to providesome stability in situation where societies are under extreme pressure; this study alsoexamines the harmful impact of the practice. There are facts on complications andeven death in pregnancy and childbirth of wives too young to, safely bear children.Education statistics reveals that the large members of children particularly girls whodrop out of school because of early marriage and majority of them, that is, manyyoung married women lament the fact that they cannot even read hence they have toleave school early for marriage. The study adopted a three stage stratified samplinganalysis was used. The results show that early marriage at the end leads to domesticchild servitude and divorce cumiminigration of young divorced married women, theyconsequently become sex workers. The result equally identifies the need forcounseling intervention to be able to gain the already lost personality realization inearly marriage. Based on the finding it was recommended that the federalgovernment of Nigeria should revisit the extents to which counts are implementingthe existing relevant marriage laws regularly, infact she should similarly modernizethese laws to suit the modern civilization. Besides, her compulsory free educationshould be extended to all cities and border villages and her law enforcements shouldbe much more vigilant than ever before so as to keep the young ones (especiallygirls)at school for a better future mission.


A. A. Agbaje, A. O. Agbaje



Contact Details

Department of Educational Foundations, Guidance and Counsellingn, University of Uyo, Union Bank Branch, Amuwo Odofinn, Festac Town, Lagos, NIGERIA

Year Of Publication