This is not a topic that is discussed too often – marrying one’s own first cousin; yet there are dozens of scientific studies that point to the fact that babies born from the union of first cousins are far more likely to be born with birth defects.
Babies born from first cousin marriages are 10 times more likely to have birth defects, learning difficulties, hearing or seeing impairment, metabolic disorders and even infant mortality.
The risk of infertility, miscarriage and genetic birth defects goes up dramatically in the case of those who marry their first cousins.
The investigation was carried out with specific regard to the expat Pakistani community in Britain and it was found that about 700 Pakistani children are born in Britain each year which have associated genetic disorders.
As per Tazeen Ahmad, there are many reasons for this phenomenon, the fact that this customs keeps family networks close and that the family’s assets are kept within the family and kept from being fragmented.
Also these unions supposedly result in better support, understanding and love, according to many. Also community bonds are strengthened in this way, which can be particularly important for expat communities.