DHS Further Analysis Reports No. 99

Type Report
Title DHS Further Analysis Reports No. 99
Publisher International Center for Diarrhoeal Disease Research
City Dhaka
Country/State Bangladesh
URL https://dhsprogram.com/pubs/pdf/FA99/FA99.pdf
This study on the social context of early childbearing is one of three qualitative studies emanating from
the 2014 Bangladesh Demographic and Health Survey (BDHS). The qualitative study adopted a nested
design and drew its sample from among eligible respondents to the BDHS. This study conducted indepth
interviews with 30 women age 15-22 who had married before age 18 in Khulna division,
Bangladesh. The study was motivated to investigate why young, married women bear a first child at a
young age. We find that women enter into marriage suddenly and without knowledge of contraception.
Young women want to delay a first pregnancy, but still want a birth within adolescence. Spousal
communication and women’s decision-making are low and young women defer decisions on
childbearing and contraception to others. Women’s fertility desires are frequently discordant with those
of their husbands, their in-law family, or both. Women, their husbands, and their family members are
all concerned with the health consequences of early childbearing. However, concerns about the health
effects of contraception promote early pregnancies. Thus, women’s abilities to meet their fertility
aspirations are challenged by discordant childbearing aims, limited options for contraceptive methods,
and discontinuation of contraception due to side effects and concerns about infertility.

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