My paternal uncle was only 18 when he got married. It was the same year when he got admission in medical science. His parents did’nt mind getting him married. He completed his MBBS and still lives happily with his family and also he is a better doctor than many of his batch mates.
Islamic shariah commands young men to get married when they reach the age of puberty, and the guardians are commanded to get their daughters married when they reach the age of puberty. My country India permits a girl to get married after she completes 18, and boys upon completing 21.
I don’t know about other Muslim countries but in Sweden the age of consent is 14 years and many other European Nations offer the ages between 14 -16 to females as the age of consent. I can’t say if the age of consent is also the age of marriage, because age of consent means permission to have an affair.The net result, many girls in US get pregnant while in school itself and the news of such teen parenting are not taken as big news. In Memphis last January 15,2011 20 girls were reported to be pregnant only in one school
One of the widest misconception about marriage in the Muslim minds is that it hampers your studies and diverts your attention from building a career. A student may not find partying till midnight an obstacle to studies nor hanging out with friends for hours or getting engaged in sports prevent them from getting ahead in studies. Infact if you look around you will find many girls and boys having affairs and still getting good grades in studies even if they are in high profiled degree course like Medicine or Engineering.
Some females are ashamed to declare in college that they are married. The reason being that every one gets married only after their studies is complete. What is happening to every one around us should not be a ruling for us if we are adhering to Qur’an and Sunnah. Consider this, girls as young as 11 years old are getting pregnant in the West and they are not ashamed to declare it but proudly display their motherhood and many do not even regret it. Number of births to 15-19 year olds in the US is: 434,758 , almost half a million. (http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/fastats/teenbrth.htm).
Many girls studying in Oxford University prefer to get settled instead of pursuing careers. Check this News from the Independant UK http://www.independent.co.uk/news/education/higher/mums-the-word-why-oxford-students-are-putting-motherhood-before-career-457755.html
The concept of waiting till one finishes his graduation is being borrowed from the morally corrupt West. They don’t have to supress their sexual desires because they are allowed to have sexual fun through radical liberation that they are into. Islam forbids fornication and encourages marriages. Some scholars rightly quote : Make Nikah easy and let fornication be difficult.
If we look into the example of the generation of Sahaba we will find that they got married when they reached the age of puberty, and yet they performed their duties properly. Ayesha r.a. got married to the Prophet (pbuh) at a young age yet she became a scholar of par excellence in her field of Religious Knowledge. After all : Allah intends easiness upon you, and he does not want to put you into difficulties… says Surah Baqarah ch, 2 verse 185.
Author : Nisaar Nadiadwala speaks and writes on socio-educational issues from Islamic perspective. He can be reached at email@example.com