I don't know my father and my mother doesn't want me around!
Published: Wednesday 03 November 2021 at 18:09 | Updated: Wednesday 03 November 2021 at 20:14
The affection that parents must give to their children is a fundamental element for the growth and harmonious development of the latter. If we observe society and analyse the ways in which people behave, we would be led to believe that these behaviours depend to a large extent on the level of affection received in childhood.
We were contacted by a 13-year-old teenager. It was through the telephone of one of his friends that he told us about the situation of rejection and abandonment that he was experiencing. He gave us the telephone number of one of his aunts. We spoke to her on the phone and she corroborated what the boy had said and gave us a few more details.
This young man, whom we will call J.T., is in the 6th grade in a town in Cameroon. He has never had the honour and happiness of pronouncing the word "DAD" and even less of savouring the affection of his sire.
From his birth to this day, J.T. has lived with his maternal grandparents. His mother had the pregnancy that led to his birth at the age of 16 during a very difficult period. The child's grandfather, who supported the family, became seriously ill. Livelihoods were almost non-existent. His mother, aunts and uncles even stopped going to school for two years. It was during this difficult time that her mother met a young man who promised her the best. But as soon as her mother got pregnant, the good man fiercely denied paternity and took off.
It should be noted that J.T. was weaned from breast milk at 6 months. His mother was regularly in tears when she saw him. She left the family home and left J.T. with his grandparents. She went to rent a room in the same town and managed to make ends meet by running a small business and working as a cleaner.
About two years later, J.T.'s mother met another young man with whom she has been living for 10 years. The couple already has two children, a boy aged 9 and a girl aged 6.
What we understand from the information received is that J.T. has rarely spent enough time with his foster mother. He has never seen his progenitor father. He currently lives with his grandmother, as his grandfather has been dead for three years.
When he goes to visit his mother, he feels excluded. His mother's other children (his brother and sister) do not want to play with him. He has never spent a single night in the house where his mother lives with her husband and the other children.
For 4 years, his father has been able to contact J.T.'s mother through a social network. He asks to be forgiven, to recognize his child and to take care of him. But J.T.'s mother does not want to hear from him anymore.
According to J.T.'s aunt, J.T.'s father consulted "fortune tellers" who revealed to him that his life "wasn't working" because he had made a child with a girl he had abandoned. As long as she was angry with him, he could not do anything good in his life.
For J.T.'s mother, to this day, when she only hears someone say the name of the man who impregnated and abandoned her, she is in a state of confusion.
According to those around him, J.T. often has a pensive attitude when he sees a father carrying or playing with his child in the neighbourhood.
According to his aunt, J.T. was at one time regularly ill. At the hospital, despite all the tests, the illness could not be diagnosed. And the doctors prescribed medication to treat the symptoms J.T. was experiencing. After one of his bouts of undiagnosed illness, one of his aunts had the idea to promise him to go and see his father. She went with J.T. to show him the house of his father's family who lived in the same town. And according to his aunt, that day, although he only saw his father's parents' house and didn't meet anyone, he was very happy. And so it went for several weeks. More than a year later, J.T. was no longer sick as he was regularly.
J.T. has never seen his father, let alone spoken to him. He has a strong desire to see his father. J.T.'s mother does not want to hear about her son's father who has abandoned her. Nor does she want to live with her son, J.T., in the same house. J.T.'s mother's family does not seem to consider it a priority that J.T. wants to know his father.
In this situation, what advice can you give to each other? What to tell J.T.? What attitude should J.T.'s mother adopt? How should J.T.'s mother's family go about bringing some light into J.T.'s life?
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