“I was really surprised. I showed it to my parents, and they were surprised, as well. I remember when I was 13, getting into puberty and all those changes. I just couldn’t imagine putting marriage on top of that. I always thought when someone got married they’re, like, much older than 13 — like 30s.”
In New Hampshire, girls can legally wed as young as 13, provided they get permission from their parents and a judge.
“I contacted my local representative, Jackie Cilley, and we set up a meeting. I talked about my project, told her what I found out, showed her some of my research. Then her team did some research about child marriage, and realized [addressing the issue was] much bigger than we thought — it’s actually dealing with judges and all this other stuff.”
“That it is difficult to create a bill, especially if you aren’t a representative or a lawyer. Jackie Cilley made me a copy of the [draft] bill. I read it over, and I understood maybe, like, 50% of it. You need a lawyer to understand it, or someone to decode it! Testifying [at the bill's hearing] was really interesting because it’s not like I pictured, which was the committee as, like, a huge group of people. Actually, it’s just a small group of representatives that focus on that subject. They definitely were polite and they let everybody be heard, and it definitely was a lot different than I thought it was going to be.”
“I used to be really quiet. I was the quietest person in the troop and so I learned to have a voice and be the loudest girl in my troop. I’ve become more comfortable.”
I’m sorry, but if someone still believes in Santa and the tooth fairy and all those other things, they shouldn’t be able to get married.
“We do need the law because it protects the children. I was a child, a month ago! Around my age, 16 through 18, we’re taught you’re going to be an adult soon, but when we try to do something that is adult we’re told, ‘Oh no, you can’t do that.’ But yet here we are allowing 13 year olds who are just starting puberty and are still in middle school and still have posters and stuffed animals in their room to get married. And I’m sorry, but if someone still believes in Santa and the tooth fairy and all those other things, they shouldn’t be able to get married.”
“I was there, and when I heard they were going to kill the bill, I was a little upset. I was angry, just trying to figure out why would they kill it. I met up with Jackie, and she asked me, ‘Do you want to keep fighting? If you don’t that’s fine.’ And I said I want to keep fighting this.”
“There are going to be some people who will go against you and who will say, 'Oh no, you shouldn’t be doing that.’ [Don’t] listen to them. They’re just a small group of people. Listen to those saying, ‘Do it, keep fighting for it, keep going for it.’”