Fathers shape part of the dynamics of family life.
Although these two daddys both admit to not having their desired set ups to raise their children, they share great love and a deep commitment to the children they have brought into this world.
At the centre of their popularity and celebrity status, Kgotla Ntsima and Thato Matlhabaphiri are young fathers drawing from their own experiences to navigate the important role of fatherhood.
KGOTLA NTSIMA – JUJUMONSTER
I’ve had my daughter in my life for nine years now, and to this day it still gives me goose bumps when I hear her say “my father”.
To me that is profound because I never really had a father, a man who truly embodied the meaning of the word, hence Kgotla Ntsima is first of all Bella’s father, and then my mommy’s boy, and a man addicted to self improvement and the pursuit of the best version of himself.
Ntsima says fatherhood to him is simply an extension of who he is.
“It comes naturally and requires no more effort than it does to breathe. It is also my most proudest responsibility, the most important thing I have to do with my time here on earth.” Says Ntsima
He goes on to describe his relationship with his daughter as “open and loving.”
Though he does not recall any specific parenting advise he has received, he proudly says he emulates his mother’s parenting style.
“I don’t treat my daughter like she’s less intelligent than a grown up. I treat her like a small inexperienced human being, and understand that the more information and exposure I give her, the better her decisions will be. I understand that at her core she’s a good person and I have to nurture that goodness, and protect her from anything that could break her spirit.”
He goes on further to say; “I teach her to be respectful all the time and encourage her to discover who she is and what her passions are at her own pace. I teach her to be happy for others instead of being jealous and the importance of hard work and sacrifice. I never had to teach her to be empathetic and caring because she was born with that 🙂
Reflecting on his own childhood, Ntsima shares; “I have never had a relationship with my father though we lived in the same town untill I was 18. He is still at the core of many of the issues I deal with now as an adult trying to build meaningful relationships but I do my best. I tell my Bella that everything I do is for her. All my hard work is so she can have a great life. She understands that, and she’s very supportive. She gets what we’re trying to achieve as a team. In an ideal world I would be able to provide my daughter with the best of everything, but I think the journey to that point will serve as a great character building experience for both of us. The greatest gift God gave to both of us is each other.
Nothing else could ever compare to the gift of being able to experience each other’s love.
THATO MATLHABAPHIRI – SCAR
Widely known as Scar to his legions of fans, 31 -year- old Thato Matlhabaphiri is an award winning hip hop artist who has had a hand in the growth of the genre both locally and regionally.
His exposure got a huge nod as part of the judging panel for the continentaly acclaimed Idols franchise judging Idols Africa alongside celebrated personalities across Africa.
His talents expand to radio presenting, song writer, marketer and currently Managing Director for Loapi Events, which has staged works under the banner; All Day Inc.
Matlhabaphiri credits his growth from the wild and often destructive lifestyle of artists to being a father.
“Fatherhood means everything to me. My son is the reason I continue to better myself as a human being and as a professional. Without him, this lifestyle would’ve probably killed me by now. Being a father means being able to provide and to protect my boy above any selfish interests I might have.
Although he has a close relationship with his son, Matlhabaphiri says, “If you are not married, you pretty much work with what you are given. If I had my way, I would raise him in a family where both his mom and dad lived under the same roof. I see how not being able to hang out with both me and his mother at the same time affects him. There is no time in my day when I don’t wonder what he might be doing.”
However Matlhabaphiri makes time to spend time with his son exploring his interests and imparting valuable lessons to him. I teach him to be courteous to others and not be rude.
These are lessons Matlhabaphiri and his sister Bonolo were taught by their parents.
“Humility is important; it goes a long way in shaping one’s life journey.”
Through age appropriate activities and conversations that include music, movies and games Matlhabaphiri grounds his son.
His observation is that; “It’s really painful that fathers play second fiddle to their co-parent just because they are the primary care giver. No man should ever give up on being a part of their child’s life, no matter the circumstances.
With a chuckle; Matlhabaphiri describes his own father as a quiet man whose voice would be heard mostly when he’s fed up with something.
Hee admires him greatly and to some extent models his teachings to his young son from lessons from his own father. Typically, Matlhabaphiri as a youngster got up to mischief.
“My father values education and my dropping my Economics major, in my third year at varsity angered him. He was livid and still is. However I followed my passion and completed other courses that fed to my creative side.”
Now as a father himself, Matlhabaphiri strives to nurture the interests of his six- year -old -young son and have a positive influence in his choices.
“My son is observant and quickly absorbs information so I am careful to surround him with positivity. I try to shield him from danger. He enjoys riding his bike and my biggest fright is cars on the road.”
Matlhabaphiri says he gets a lot of help raising his son and is thankful for the advice to love and pay attention to his son always.
“My mother has always encouraged honesty. Truth is better to explain and one should never be caught out in a lie by their child.
He is also close to his maternal grandmother who has great influence on him.
As a bright boy, a lot of attention is given to his education and the toys he plays with.
Ntsima and Matlhabaphiri have both penned and released tracks that speak to fatherhood.
In relation to that Matlhabaphiri says, “I wanted to leave something of quality behind in case anything ever happened to me before Adrian grew up.
I wanted him to know how much I love him and how him coming into this world was the happiest day for me and his mother. Happy Fathers Day!