Doreen I first met my husband when he came here to propose marriage. I was 13 when I got married. My husband was 30 years old.
Text over moving imagery Zambia
Doreen My name is Doreen, I am 14 years old. My mother died in 2000. She just dropped dead. My Father also died in 2012. He was killed. That’s when we moved here with grandmother.
We remained five so I thought I could look after my four siblings if I agreed to get married as my grandmother had planned. I was supposed to be in school. I was not mature enough, I still had the mind of a child. I was very scared. When I got married, I couldn’t continue with school. I spent most of my time doing chores around the house, such as sweeping, washing, washing dishes.
The biggest challenge I’ve found being married at a young age is that my husband makes all the decisions. Life is always difficult if my husband doesn’t find work. We don’t have food and we go to sleep on an empty stomach. We are just suffering. I used to admire my friends going to school when I was at home sweeping. They used to pass my home, going to school wearing their uniforms.
I got pregnant last year in October. What I was experiencing – people were pointing at me: ‘That one is pregnant, walking around pregnant.’ It was because I was so young. I couldn’t have a normal delivery because my birth canal was too small. In the doctor’s opinion I was too young. That was the main reason why they advised an operation. I don’t feel good.
My life would have taken a better turn had I gone to school. I would have completed and become a teacher. I would have been earning my own salary. And I wouldn’t like anyone who is 14 to go through what I have been through.
Text over white screen Since this film was made, with CAMFED’s support Doreen has returned to school. So many other girls are still waiting…