The young bride allegedly said, "I am learning how to cook because I'm not good at it now."
A man who has been married four times chose a 13-year-old girl to become his fifth bride and the stepmother to his children from his previous marriages.
A day-long ceremony was held to commemorate the marriage between 48-year-old Abdulrzak Ampatuan and the child bride on October 22 in the town of Mamasapano in the Philippines, according to The Sun.
The ceremony began with Abdulrzak being given the traditional sermon, where grooms are told what the ideal husband should be like. Then, a festive procession saw the groom walking towards the house of his underage bride while drum bands and the wedding guests followed his lead, as reported by the Daily Mail.
Pictures from the wedding showed the child wearing a white gown, the kind that is traditionally worn in the region, as she sat beside the middle-aged man who was moments away from becoming her husband. Around them were guests, smiling away as they witnessed the adult man tying the knot with a child.
At the young age of 13, the teenager is already burdened with the thought of pleasing her husband, as she allegedly said about her groom, "I am not afraid of him because he is nice to me. I am learning how to cook because I'm not good at it now. I want to make my husband happy."
The newlyweds reportedly stay in a small house that Abdulzrak built for himself and his young bride. While the husband works as a farmer, his 13-year-old wife is meant to take care of the household chores as well as look after Abdulzrak's children from his previous marriages. Some of his children are around the same age as his child bride.
The man also claimed that he would be waiting for the girl to turn 20 years old before they have children, and until then, she would be sent to school.
"I will pay for her school because I want her to get an education while waiting for the right time to have children," the man reportedly said.
A similar incident that took place in the Indonesian province of East Java saw a 12-year-old girl being married off to a 45-year-old man. The girl was being raised by her uncle and aunt, who were reportedly her adoptive parents, according to VICE.
As a way of thanking the 45-year-old man for helping them raise the girl, the adoptive parents returned the favor by letting the child be the man's bride.
"Her adoptive mother said [the girl] gets sick easily, so the man gave them money to cover her medical bills," Imam Ghozali, who is representing the child, told local media.
Indonesian Family Forces 12-Year-Old Girl to Marry 45-Year-Old Man to ‘Repay a Favor’ https://t.co/7EnGXtyIMa— WWWizzards (@wwwizards) July 15, 2020
It later came to light that the girl's biological parents had no idea about the uncle and aunt letting their daughter become a child bride.
Banyuwangi Police Chief Arman Syarifudin said at the time, according to the report from July, 2020, "Her parents reported that their underage daughter was married off to an old man. We’re still interrogating the victim and her witness, including one from the accused."