It has long been known that in African countries there are completely different ideas about how a woman’s life should develop. There, girls often do not get an education, get married early and give birth to many children at a very young age. About the record holder, who has 44 children.
The heroine of this story is called Mariam Nabatans. Now the woman is 40 years old. Mariam Nabatansi had to get married at the age of 12, because her father decided so. Children have no right to go against the will of the parent, even though Mariam had not lived with him for a long time at that time.
For a long time, her grandmother was engaged in her upbringing, the girl’s mother died. But all the same, only her father could manage her fate. Mariam was never his favorite child, so he literally sold the teenager to a forty-year-old man. The girl was not even told anything, they just took her to a new house.
Mariam never loved her husband. She often suffered beatings and rough treatment, but divorce was simply impossible for a teenager. She gave birth to her first children, twins, when she was 13 years old.
Contraception contradicts the local religion and is simply not available, but after the girl gave birth to three pairs of twins in a row, she realized that she was no longer ready for childbirth.
Then she went to the doctor to somehow solve her problem with multiple pregnancies. However, for some reason, the specialist did not want to help her. He convinced the young mother that she was suffering from hyperovulation, so refusing to procreate could lead to her death.
Unhappy and intimidated by the doctor, the girl continued to give birth to children. Five times she gave birth to twins, four times she gave birth to triplets and five more times to quadruplets. Only once has the pregnancy been singleton. In just 15 years of marriage, the woman became the mother of 44 children.
The husband was not ready for fatherhood. He abandoned his wife and refused to participate in the children’s lives in any way. The couple finally divorced. The girl turned to another doctor and achieved tubal ligation, and now she can’t get pregnant. This did not affect her health in any way, unlike numerous births.
However, Mariam’s life has not improved in any way. She lives in her grandmother’s house and constantly works so that her 16 daughters and 28 sons have the opportunity to get an education.
She regretfully admits: “My whole life has been spent taking care of my children and working to support them.” To feed so many children, she makes tinctures, works as a hairdresser in the village, sews clothes and creates decorations for local holidays.
The woman says that she does not see herself happy, but she is sure that she can give a chance for a prosperous future for her children. She puts all her strength into them, this is clear even from her appearance: she cuts her hair short, does not use makeup, although she knows how to do it and earns it…
Mariam’s story proves how much women can suffer from archaic traditions. But it is worth noting that other girls from Uganda, who are now at the “optimal” age for marriage, are less likely to find themselves in such hopeless situations.