DJ Jimmy Jatt openly talks about personal life for the first time, tells his love story

Popular Nigerian disc jockey, DJ Jimmy Jatt, has granted an interview where he opened up his personal life.

Popular disc jockey, Adewale Amu, popularly called Jimmy Jatt, shares what fatherhood has taught him with OLUSHOLA RICKETTS. Read interview excerpts below:

How would you describe fatherhood?

For me, it is a thing of joy. I don’t even have the right words to express how it feels, but the most viable thing I have with anyone in this world is the relationship with my two girls.

Did you nurse any fears when you wanted to start a family?

At every stage in life, especially when you are getting into something new, you will be apprehensive. But it was a life I looked forward to experience. Though I was not financially stable then, I knew people who were not financially strong as me and they were happily married. That gave me the confidence that I would be fine. Also, I have always believed that starting a family comes with its own blessings and it did.

At what age did you marry?

I was in my late 20s when I got married and I think I was ready for it. I don’t think there is a particular time or age for marriage, though I am not in support of early marriage. I feel people need time to explore and enjoy their youthfulness; but there is no later time to get married as God’s time is the best.

Do you still wish to have a male child?

To be honest with you, I was indifferent when my wife was pregnant with our two children. I have always had a preference for the girl child than the male child. Everyone knows in my family that I get along easily with women.

As a soft person, if I have had a son, I would have spoilt him silly. It is okay to spoil women but I don’t think it is okay to spoil men. I feel God gave me what is right for me. I am happy that I have only girls. With two kids, we are done having babies. My prayer is for God to bless other people looking for children. With the population of the country, the number of children I have is fair. You know in today’s Nigeria, you cannot get anything free and all the things you need to train kids don’t come cheap. For parents, it is only wise to have a number of children you can give the best care and education.

When was the last time you used the cane on your children?

I have never whipped my children, but my wife does and it is allowed. I feel it is wrong for a man to beat a woman. I am not the type who beats women, unfortunately, I have female daughters. Though some people might say spare the rod and spoil the child, one can discipline people with love too.

While growing up, my parents didn’t use the cane on me and I didn’t turn out to be a mess to society. When kids are used to being tortured, they don’t get scared any longer. I did the right things as a child because I didn’t want to offend my parents, who had shown me love from the day I was born. One can discipline with love and that is the way I have trained my daughters.

Did you witness the birth of any of your children?

I was in labour room during the birth of my two children. Since I heard a lot about women being in pains during labour, I was prepared for it.

My wife had my two children through caesarean section. I know most people don’t like to talk about it. When the labour becomes impossible and the doctor gives you the option, you don’t need to panic because it saves everyone a lot of stress. People make it look like it is scary, but I have gone through the experience twice and everyone it is okay.

What is your biggest challenge as a father?

It is simply the fear of the unknown, but my kids are grown now. My youngest child is now 17. I am not worried any longer as they were well brought up. But while they were little, it was a different ball game. I worried a lot; I didn’t know if my approach in raising them was the best.

There will always be a constant fear until one crosses the bridge. When one has crossed the bridge, one will be assured that they have imbibed one’s principles and ready to be on their own.

Jimmy Jatt and his wife

Can you encourage your girls to have boyfriends?

It depends on the conversation and communication level of parents and their kids. Having a boyfriend at a very young age doesn’t mean you will do things you should not do. I had a girlfriend when I was 14 but what we understood as a girlfriend then was a girl we were fond of.

It is allowed for her to say she is fond of a particular boy, but you must let your kid know that until a particular time, there are certain things she cannot do. If there is understanding and it is cleared, one cannot stop her from keeping a friend. We are in an enlightened world and one cannot be with them every day even if you try to protect them from certain things, but the explanation one gives them will direct their path in life. The truth is that curiosity makes children do certain things. If you don’t explain why they should stay away from something, they will try it at some point. Most African parents are guilty of not letting children understand many things; we think we can use force in every situation.

Communication is vital and it has been an important fixture in relating to my kids. I am more of a friend to my kids than a father and it has worked for me.

How do you reward your children when they impress you?

Firstly, I try to make them understand that they should be the best at everything they do. I don’t like putting too much pressure on my kids, but most people like to compare their children with other children. Children have different strengths. Once they give their best, whatever the outcome is, you should always support and encourage them. I celebrate and I appreciate their efforts, but I don’t try to impress them with material things. To the glory of God, however, my kids have made me proud and they have everything I can afford. But it has never been about their performances in school.

Do they follow you to parties and clubs?

I do take them along a few times, but my second daughter is still young to be in most of the environments I play. Most of the places are for 18 and above. However, I go out with my first daughter and most times, people think she is my girlfriend because they see us having fun together.

How have you managed your career with your role as a father?

My kids know what their father does and its nature, but I don’t take it for granted. They understand that I must do what I need to do. But when I am available, we try to have the best of time together. Presently, I live in Nigeria while my kids are based in the United States of America. As long as you can communicate and constantly relate with people, there will never be a gap.

How do you monitor your children in the US?

That is why having a good upbringing is important. Earlier, I said I have crossed the bridge of worries. There is a point you get to and you feel your children now understand what they need to do at the right time. They now understand the implication of their actions. I am convinced that whether I am there or not, they will always do the right thing since I have instilled good morals in them at an early stage.

Even though my parents couldn’t monitor me as a child, I did things my parents were proud of. I always remembered “the son of whom I am.” Once you love your parents, you will never disappoint them or break their hearts.

What do your children tease you about?

The most common thing they tease me about is my celebrity status. They will draw a side of my ears and tell me to stop thinking I am a celebrity at home. It is funny to me and I like it because they are real to me. They don’t also behave like daughters of a celebrity. I don’t even see myself as one.

Once in a while, when I try to ‘show myself’ at home, they ‘call me to order’, saying “Jimmy Jatt, you want to be feeling like a celebrity.”

What did you learn from your parents which has helped you as a father?

I learnt family values from my father. Like I said, my parents never used the cane on me and I learnt that from them.

In my neighbourhood, I knew parents that flogged their kids a lot and they didn’t turn out better than me. They are now hard people who are ready to do anything regardless of the pains that come with it. But I cannot stand pains. I am scared of getting involved in terrible things. I don’t know how it feels to be flogged or locked up. These friends, however, had tasted pains many times and know the worst that could happen once they get caught doing something bad.

How did you convince your wife to marry you?

It was a progression. I dated my wife for six years before we got married. We never planned to get married from the start. When we met, I was very young. I was 22. I thought she was pretty and she thought I was sociable. Before we knew it, we had spent years together.

For her parents to even accept her to marry a DJ, I must commend them. The truth is that no one would like his or her daughter to marry a DJ at the time I got married to my wife. But this made me determined because I knew people expected me to disappoint and I wanted to make a point that being a DJ didn’t mean one would be wayward. People thought a DJ was unserious, unreliable and irresponsible. I needed to show that I was not all they thought of me. I feel I have done well in that direction. We have been married for 22 years.

How did you meet your wife?

We met at a party. Where else should a DJ meet a lady? Also, don’t mind the Yoruba who say “a wife you meet in a dance house will later dance away.” It is a big lie. My friend met his wife in the church and she is gone. I met mine at a party, we danced and we are still dancing.

When you tell people you met a girl in the club, they would have a wrong impression of her. But the club is not the devil’s place of hangout; it is just a fun place.

Was your wife into entertainment at a time?

No, she wasn’t. My wife is a very private person; so, I wouldn’t like to disclose things about her.

Source: The Punch

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