Northern Nigerian Breaking News

‘How sickle cell disorder contributes to high rates of broken marriages’

Mrs Aisha Edward-Maduagwu, National Co-ordinator, Association of People Living with Sickle Cell Disorder says sickle cell disorder is responsible for 80 per cent of broken marriages.

Edward-Maduagwu told on Saturday in Awka, that the term irreconcilable differences, commonly used during the divorce process, meant genotype incompatible.

She said many couples were ashamed to spell out sickle cell disorder as the reason for their broken marriages because they recognised it was a dangerous mistake they could have avoided.

According to her, sickle cell is a red blood disease or disorder inherited from couples or parents with unmatched genotypes.

Edward-Maduagwu said it was not medically advisable for couples with unmatched genotypes to get married.

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She lamented that many couples with unmatched genotypes allow faith, spirituality, ignorance, wickedness, desperation to get married and emotions cloud their reasoning.

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According to her, such couples would eventually have children with sickle cell disorder where there will be no enough healthy red blood cells to transport adequate oxygen throughout the body.

“This disorder can lead to many complications such as stroke, pulmonary hypertension, organ damage, blindness, leg ulcers and regular pain crisis which make the child visit the hospital often.

“Such couples will spend so much to care and keep the child alive and most parents are not ready to go through that pain and stress. This is causing problems in homes.

“Family life is affected psychologically, financially, and spiritually. Even such child will question why he or she was born and the couple might, later on, regret their decision to get married.

“This has ended 80 percent of marriages in Nigeria but they are ashamed to say it out, because it was an avoidable mistake they made, therefore, they term it Irreconcilable differences,” she said.

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Edward-Maduagwu advised intending couples to go for a genotype compatibility test to avoid having children with sickle cell disorder.

She urged religious organisations to go the extra mile to verify the medical results of prospective couples, saying that people forge their genotype compatibility results out of desperation to marry.

“Prevention is better than cure. Why run the risk of having children with sickle cell disorder and make such children go through the pain that could have been avoided?

“Ending a relationship is better than having heartache in the future because you might not be able to withstand the pressure that comes with having a child with sickle cell disorder,” she said.



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