Home News ‘Sickle cell disorder contributes to high rates of broken marriages’

‘Sickle cell disorder contributes to high rates of broken marriages’

by Haruna Gimba
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By Muhammad Amaan

The National Coordinator of the Association of People Living with Sickle Cell Disorder, Mrs Aisha Edward-Maduagwu said sickle cell disorder is responsible for 80 per cent of broken marriages.

She told newsmen at the weekend in Awka, Anambra State that the term irreconcilable differences, commonly used during divorce process, meant genotype incompatible.

She said many couple 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.

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

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

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 couple 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.

“The 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 per cent 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.

Edward-Maduagwu advised intending couples to go for 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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