“At eight years old my parents sat me down for a serious talk,” said Noushin, during the interview. “I can still remember the tremble in my mother’s voice. She told me that in two days I would be part of an Islamic religious blessing. My father insisted that I behave, and not cause a scene. I was confused, but I trusted them, that they were telling me the truth. I trusted them right up to the moment that the wedding ring went onto my finger and I became the bride of a 43 year old man.” Noushin, now 19, is the mother of three.
You might assume that her parents, who so willingly gave their child to this man, were not educated or had never been exposed to modern ways of thinking. In fact, Noushin’s father had been educated in Europe, and then came back to his country to work for the regime.
Noushin said the wedding was “a nightmare I could not wake up from. I understood that I was married, but I did not understand what that meant.” She said was forced to have sexual intercourse before she reached puberty. “Each day was filled with new confusion, and new horrors,” she said, as she tried to become accustomed to the role she was forced to endure.
“I thought the move into my husband’s house was a punishment by my parents because I had not listened when they told me to stop playing a week before. I hoped that after that, it was torture, they would bring me back to my parents the next day. But it soon became clear that this was not a temporary punishment, it would last a lifetime.”