PETALING JAYA: A doctor has shared her anguish over encounters with child-mothers, some as young as 12 years old.
"It is sick," said Dr Najdah Othman, citing a recent one of a patient who was about to give birth.
In a TikTok video, the doctor pointed out that any sexual contact with a girl who is under 16 is classified as statutory rape, despite the girl's "consent" to it.
"Malaysia has the Child Act, do you know that? Whether she is willing or not, it is still an offence. The offender can be jailed up to 20 years and caned," she said.
Dr Najdah spoke of rape cases and situations involving "consensual sex" with a minor.
The youngest victim she had handled was a six-year-old girl who was raped by her 13-year-old brother.
"I feel heartbroken whenever I see cases like these. I think these children were exposed too early to pornographic materials," she said.
They could also have been influenced by siblings or friends, said the doctor who once served at Johor's Hospital Sultanah Aminah Emergency Department.
Dr Najdah, who is now working at a private hospital in Johor Baru, noted that cases of consensual sex among youngsters would be investigated as rape, regardless of the girl getting pregnant or not.
Sex with a minor has its consequences whether or not consent has been given, she told mStar Online , which is the Star Media Group's Malay portal.
"Children in all underage rape cases are victims because a majority of them are naive and have no idea the acts are wrong and that they could get pregnant.
"Some were victims of sexual grooming, or were coerced by their boyfriends' coaxing. Some victims were mentally or physically disabled," she said, adding that some were victimised by their own family members.
"That is why children should be taught sex education, so that they become aware of such situations," said Dr Najdah.
"Children must know the parts of their bodies that can and cannot be touched or seen by anyone, and what the consequences could be."
She said parents must monitor their children's mobile devices, as well as movements.
Dr Najdah, who is an adviser at Baitus Solehah, a halfway home for women, noted that the small pelvis in pregnant children could lead to difficulties in delivery and a higher possibility of birth complications.
"Pregnancy changes a woman's physique.
"If a child's body is too small, it can adversely affect the baby and delivery process.
"Always refer to a specialist to review a patient's situation. If the pregnancy is life-threatening or psychologically affects the mother in the long term, a specialist would advise ending the pregnancy.
"Imagine the stress the young mother has to go through in caring for her baby emotionally," she said.
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