Hell of Early Marriage with her Husband's Suspicious Relationships

Name: M.N, age: 16, status: married, a secondary school girl from governorate of Sana’a.

"M" is a 16-year old girl in her second year of secondary school, who lives with her parents and two younger sisters. She had big dreams of being a teacher in her school and her educational attainment was excellent. One day, her cousin, who lives with his family in Sana’a city, proposed her for marriage. Everyone knows nothing about that cousin or his ethics and behaviour but that he did not complete his secondary school. Despite the hard attempts of the girl with all means to reject this marriage, the whole family insisted and forced her on it. Her only condition was to complete her education and the groom accepted it and they got married. The moment the bride arrived at her house she was completely shocked; there was no food in the house not even a crumb and the husband does not have a job so he takes his house expenses from his father. He was too cruel to her that every time she asked for household money, he became furious and screamed at her that she has to endure and manage it. Eventually, he prevented her from completing her study and going out due to his jealousy. Yet, she was always patient and bore all her suffering until she noticed him, in so many days, go to the other room leaving her alone all the night to cheat on her with other girls over the phone. When she opened his phone, she found it full of explicit erotic messages and pictures. The thing that she could not bear and decided to confront him with it so he beat her and told her that he was free to do what he likes and that was none of her business. One day, she pegged him to let her go to the clinic near the house for pregnancy test and she was surprised by his approval. When she returned home, she was shocked by seeing him having sexual affair in her house. She broke down, cried and screamed at him and he beat her severely until she lost the baby for which she was about to congratulate him. He also threatened to kill her if she spoke to anyone about what she saw that day.

The poor girl lived terrible days; the husband locked her in a dark room and deprived her from any source of communication with external world, in addition to continuous beatings and constant verbal violence. She started to suffer from fear and extreme distress and cried non-stop. She was unable to sleep and if she felt asleep for minutes, she woke up scared out of nightmares. Whenever she heard her husband’s voice, she had a panic attack. She was praying to God, day and night, to relieve her and send her one of her family to visit her and see her suffering. She lived in this horror for three consecutive months, until God’s will sent her father, who lives far from Sana’a. The father was shocked by his daughter’s condition, as she is not the same like when he left her; she became weakling and pale. The father asked the daughter what happened to her and once he saw the husband he beat him severely and asked him to divorce her. He took his daughter with him back home, crying for what was going with her without his knowledge during a 5-month marriage on which he forced her. Although the girl was back to her father’s home, her health was not back. She was always anxious, scared, crying and remembering all painful moments and situations with her husband. Every time, she tried to sleep, she woke up frightened because she believed her husband would come to hurt her again. One day, a friend visited her and told her about the free help line "136" for psychological help. She called the number when she was in her worst condition and started to cry and complain about all what she went through. The psychological counsellor listened to her carefully and explained to her that she suffers from anxiety depression as a result of cruel treatment of her husband; the condition that is curable. The case cannot visit the psychological clinic because of the far distance and the psychological health service is not provided in her area. Therefore, she was referred to phone psychological treatment service through which she can have therapy sessions over the phone on weekly basis and according to specific schedule of set plan. She was also referred to FCDF psychiatric counsellor who supported her and prescribed her medicines she needs to relieve her anxiety and depression. The psychiatrist also advised her to continue her phone psychological sessions with the psychological counsellor who welcomed her for the first time and assessed her condition.

The survivor followed the treatment plan and confirmed that she purchased the medicines and started taking them two days ago. She needed two months of treatment sessions; three sessions a week in the first two weeks then one session a week until the end of term. She was provided with help on how to vent out and was trained on recognizing negative thoughts and changing them. She was also advised to continue her former activities. Her skills of raising self-esteem and assertiveness were enhanced and she was taught decision-making methods and problem solving techniques.

After the treatment programme, she made her most important decision, which is divorce. When the husband declined the divorce, she was referred to Yamen Women Union because they provide legal service to help battered women. The Union hired a lawyer for her to help her in divorce. Her psychological condition improved and she back to school and the lawyer is still working on her case.