This is part of the reason I'm doing my current job (thank you for the reminder of why the heck I'm here
). The problems facing young girls here aren't as dire as in some parts of the world, but they still exist and they are still worth fighting. My host family during training had a 16-year-old girl, and as the oldest girl she was expected to basically do everything - she did most of the cooking and cleaning for the family of eight, the toddler spent more time with her than with his mother, and she was beaten for being seen talking to a boy after school (as a Muslim girl, she is a holder of the family honor and here, that means talking to a boy could ruin that). In the 10 weeks I lived with them, I only saw her leave the house (besides school, for which she also got all the other kids ready while mom and dad slept in) a handful of times - while her younger brothers and sisters roamed around, playing with their friends at all hours.
In general, girls here are judged on their ability to produce children, especially sons. It doesn't really matter how many children they want, because if they don't have a son they have to keep going. And two children? Forget it. You're lazy. You're stupid. Get over it and have more kids. Nobody cares what you want. Yes, we love your adorable little daughters, what sweethearts. But you've got three daughters. Why can't you give us a son? Never mind that it's the man's sperm that decides that.
I guess my point is that even is more developed countries like where I'm living, girls have a hard time of it. And yet so many studies have shown, as was pointed out in this video, that improvements for girls and women mean improvements for everybody.
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