A young girl saw her future too close when she met a guy who looked cheerful and innocent. They instinctively fell in love with each other and started hanging out together. Although both of them were far from securing a stable future, the gravity of love and trust which bound them together gave them the assurance that they were made for each other. But after several months of intimate relationship, they began to discover their differences. Misunderstandings crept in and started to tear them apart. Finally, they decided to end their relationship. The girl painfully let her boy-friend walk away from her life. But soon afterwards, she realized she was pregnant. She kept this secret to herself for five months until her family noticed it. Despite several negotiation attempts, the boy refused to own the paternal responsibility saying he was not convinced that he was the biological father of the baby. However, he at least agreed to give a copy of his Citizenship Identity Card to enable the girl to carry out her medical check-ups and to process her medical documents in the hospital. The girl had her first medical check-up after five months of pregnancy and got her health documents processed. Then in March 2017, she gave birth to a healthy baby son despite those traumatic experiences she had to endure during her pregnancy. This is the story of a young single mother in whose house I and my colleagues went for a baby shower yesterday evening.
Human beings are the only creature blest with the biggest brain and because of this, we are far more advanced than other animals in terms of our capacity to think, judge and act. We have moved carefully and consciously through every stage of human civilization and our experiences have made us a perfect social animal in the world today. We are the only animal capable of understanding and respecting others’ emotions. We are biologically wired to show compassion and love to those who are near and dear to us. Indeed, great masters say that when we are born, we all are born with Buddha nature in us. But as we grow up with modernization, it seems some of us are losing those human values we have been born and brought up with.
In the absence of clearly defined provisions in the penal code of Bhutan on the issue of consensual sex coupled with inadequate public education on the subject, many innocent men have been robbed of nine precious years of their life in Bhutan over the past years. While the penal code defines the age of consent for marriage as 18, there is no enough public awareness especially in the rural communities on the existence of such laws in the country. As a result, many people still believe that it is alright to engage in consensual sex or get married before they are 18 years of age. If the concerned authorities look into the marriage records of the entire Bhutanese population, I am sure that so many fathers and husbands would go to prison for nine years on charges of rape although they have married with consent from their partners and their families.