First off, let me just say this: I am a blessed daughter a child who grew up with a dedicated father in our home, who, to this day, takes care of me in ways both tangible and immeasurable. For sure, my father Jimmy is an amazing dad who showed me first-hand the beauty and importance of father/daughter relationships what it means to have in my corner a man who truly loves and wants nothing but the best for his baby girl. His is an example that set the bar for the kind of mate I sought the kind of husband and father that would be best for me.
That said, I’m really torn on this whole Kelly Rowland story floating across the internet the one in which Rowland’s birth father, who disappeared from his daughter’s life almost 30 years ago, is begging for his daughter’s forgiveness and asking her to “let me be your dad again.” Christopher Lovett, 65, admitted to the Sunday Mirror this past weekend that he did Kelly and her mom all-the-way wrong when he lost his job, sank into depression and subjected his wife and daughter to drunken, angry tirades. Said Lovett:
“The failure to provide for my family fuelled an anger that I will be ashamed of until my dying day… No parent should scream and shout in front of their child, and I am sorry to say there were too many times to mention that Kelly heard me screaming abuse at her mother. Sometimes she would run to her bedroom screaming, others she would cling to my trouser leg begging me to stop.
When the family lost its home, Kelly’s mother, Doris, took her daughter and moved in with her sister; Lovett says his lack of a job, money and a car kept him from making it to where Doris and Kelly were staying 20 miles away. And by the time he was able to bum a ride, his wife and daughter had moved to Texas. Doris’ aunt refused, Lovett claims, to tell him where they’d moved.
Of course, as the story goes, Kelly moved to Texas, her mom and she fell on extremely hard times, and Matthew and Tina Knowles, Beyonce’s mama and daddy, took Kelly in while the young ‘uns put in work to form, with two other members, the first incarnation of Destiny’s Child. Lovett claims in the Sunday Mail story that he’s been trying to contact Kelly all these years, and that he even tried passing a note to a security guard at a Destiny’s Child concert in North Carolina.
“It said, ‘Darling I have been looking for you. I am so proud of you and I love you so much and I just long to tell you that in person. Love Dad.’ But no matter how much I begged the guard he would not believe I was her father. Christopher who has framed Destiny's Child posters on the walls of the Atlanta home he shares with his second wife, Gracie says he wants nothing from his daughter.
“I really hoped I would get to make it up to her. Sadly I am still waiting for that day. But I can’t give up hope. That’s why there is a room in my house which I have decorated especially for Kelly, just in case she comes through the front door.”
Of course, the entertainment industry is littered with deep-pocketed celebs whose estranged relatives are constantly using the press to dip their grubby paws in the till. And really, there’s no reason to believe that Rowland’s birth dad, who hasn’t seen his child since she was seven, is any different. I mean, the girl isn’t Beyonce, but she does have some things going for herself, including a new album (I’m not going to get into my disappointment over her single with the
pedophile acquitted child molester R. Kelly; that’s another post) and a gig as the host of “The X Factor UK.” All you need is a little teeny, weeny spotlight for folk to try to take advantage trust.
But the daughter in me knows what it means to have a father in your life and the adult in me knows how important second chances are. I can’t even pretend to put myself in Kelly Rowland’s shoes to know what it must feel like to have your birth father reaching out through a random newspaper to get the attention of the child whose life he walked out of almost three decades ago. What I can say, though, is that this much be a mind-blowing experience for the singer, and an extremely difficult choice to have to make. Should she talk to him and forge a relationship anew? Or ignore him and go on with her life, just like he did 30 years ago?
What would you do?
Mom. NY Times bestselling author. Pop culture ninja. Unapologetic lover of shoes, bacon and babies. Nice with the verbs. Founder of the top black parenting website, MyBrownBaby.