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Thesis, Project Topic: A Study to Determine the Perception of Men (25-65 Years) towards Childlessness in Ogbete, Enugu



It is often observed that the accepted purpose of marriage in African traditional society is to procreate; whether in Christian on non-Christian homes. A childless marriage is therefore regarded as a failed marriage. The problem of childlessness in most African communities is compounded by the fact that it is believed to be inheritable, and always from male source. Therefore male infertility is a big problem in most African community including Nigeria.

Traditionally child bearing is one of the important marks of manhood/womanhood in African setting. It is regarded as an ultimate blessing in marriage. So, without children marriage is not stable. Infact to a point a man with 7 female children is regarded as infertile (medical, Journal Nov. 1977), since he has not reproduce himself. In Igbo in Nigeria culture a high premium is placed on this blessing in marriage.

In advanced countries like, U.S.A, Britain, some couples believe that the intimacy of marriage need not necessarily centres on raising of a child. Couples may be married for many years without considering the issue of child bearing, yet mutual understanding and harmony still exist in such homes.

World Health Organization (WHO) estimated that 8-12% of couples experience some form of infertility (childlessness) during their reproductive life and this involves about 50-80 million people world wide and 2 million new infertile couples per year, worldwide. In Nigeria according to WHO, the prevalence of infertility is said to vary from 20-30% which makes it a public health concern.

In African and Nigeria, this problem of childlessness is often blamed on the woman who passively accepts the verdicts and spends the rest of her life in seeking for cure from native and orthodox mechicine. Why is the woman blamed for childlessness of a couple? Why does she accept the blame?

From observation is the clinical settings in Nigeria and Enugu, it is the woman that reports first to the clinic to complain of childlessness. The husband only comes an invitation. (Med. Journal Nov. 1977).


Childlessness is a psycho-social problem that affects all segment of the society globally but with more serious effect on couples in developing countries is seen as the having children is seen as the basis for marriage, so a childless marriage has no basis to continue. More importantly is that there must be a male issue among the children; without which the marriage will be under serious threat. The stability or disintegration of marriage depends to a large extent on how the man perceives this problem of childlessness hence the interest to assess their perception.

From human biology point of view reproduction needs inputs from two-male and female. Why are woman blamed for childlessness in the society? The Ogbete market community are predominantly business men and woman, and they contribute a high percentage of Enugu population. Their pre-occupation is to make money and they do not care much about new knowledge which will help them to change some beliefs and attitudes that negatively affect family life.


The following objectives have been set:

  1. To determine cultural factors that influence mens perception.
  2. To determine the influence of religions in men’s perception.
  3. To Identity remedies used in solving this problems.
  4. To identify the influence of extended family members to men’s perception of infertility.


Marriage being regarded by some people as an institution of procreation is regarded as a means of family continuity. It is attested that for a family to be completed there must be children and one with earthly possessions is poor and unhappy and incomplete. A childless marriage is considered a bad men for couples’ future. Unfortunately women are always held responsible.

In spite of being a public health problem, little work has been done on infertility in our society and these are the reasons for our study.


From this study, the community will be aware of the causes of childlessness, its socio cultural implication in marriage. Also that the problem of childlessness is not mens wrong doing, or past life’s action nor punishment from a god, and then they will modify their dealings with childless families.

Moreover it will help health personnel to educate the public on the consequences of certain actions in life which may bring about childlessness. This too will make people change from archaic, primitative, ignorant believe that the fault of couples to produce children is the fault of women.


The study will cover the perception of men within 25-65 years of age, irrespective of their rank, whether literate or illiterate, marriage or single towards childlessness in Ogbete market. All the men who have stalls in the market are included in the study. Traditionally some people still believe the condition is perculiar to women only. And also the line of treatment is in some way unnatural.

The success of treatment depends on their perception of childlessness, early detection of cause and level of understanding of an individual. Unless local study is made, it will still be difficult for one to really know the estimate of men’s perception of childlessness.

Suggestions and recommendations made with final summary of the research study

—This article is incomplete———–This article is incomplete———— It was extracted from a well articulated quality Project, Research Work/Material

Topic: A Study to Determine the Perception of Men (25-65 Years) towards Childlessness (Infertility) in Ogbete, Enugu

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