Imagine being a dad, trying to navigate the challenging path of fatherhood while being separated from your family due to life’s circumstances. That's been my reality for the past few years.

You see, I've been away on the journey to acquire higher education in the white man's land, while also ‘hustling’ to ensure that my family’s needs are catered to. It hasn't been easy. I've missed precious moments with my kids, but I've always tried to be a part of their lives whenever I can.

Yet, I understand the pain of being temporarily denied seeing your children, as they can become pawns in the battle between two adult parents.

Denying a kid access to either of their parent is dangerous. As they are mostly with the mother, they can easily be influenced and manipulated to turn against a father who has done everything to stay connected in their lives.

They may even start being nonchalant. It's heartbreaking, and that can leave a man with lifelong enemies from his blood.

Our elders say a team is as good as its weakest link. They also say that only a mother truly knows the father of her kids.

Yvonne Nelson’s story reveals the good, the bad and the ugly of a family situation where a father was intentionally cut out of his daughter’s life by the mother.  Research suggests that girls who grew up without a father figure tend to engage in risky behaviours as they mature (Flirty, Promiscuous if you like).

Also, women who lack a father figure often struggle with self-esteem and confidence issues. They are easily swayed and manipulated by others. For some, the absence of a father figure fuels a deep longing for the family they never had while growing up. I am not here to debate the validity of these studies, but I encourage you to ponder on them and come to your conclusion.

 If it's proven that a father’s presence and responsibility in the home impact the life of their children, then intentionally denying a child access to their father is an incredible act of selfishness.

It is a desire for one person to showcase manipulative power over innocent children who have been deprived of love. The ability to spend time with both parents is mostly about the child's rights. In the instance that it is impossible to have that, due to domestic quarrels or challenges between the parents, there are avenues to ensure everyone gets the time needed to interact with the child.

Of course, if it is proven that the father is a danger to the child due to ill health or a medical condition, that becomes a legitimate concern.  Have you ever wondered why children are placed in foster homes when their parents cannot care for them?

Now let's delve into Yvonne Nelson’s story. If you haven’t read the book, I am not Yvonne Nelson, here is a short introduction. Yvonne is a Ghanaian movie star, almost reaching her forties. Through her exceptional craft, she has successfully carved an idol out of herself in the minds of movie lovers. However, she has never known her biological father, despite her mother telling her that Nelson was her dad.  All of her life, she had self-doubt about her mother's claim.

As a child, she usually scanned Nelson's physical features and found little resemblance. As if that was not enough, her mother filled her head with horrible lies about Nelson, fueling her hatred of him just like patrol does to fire.  As it happened, Nelson’s outrage at having to take responsibility for Yvonne, even when they lived apart, made him mistreat her. On his deathbed, burdened by guilt, he called her to apologize for how he treated her.

As the frail Nelson was about to breathe his last, Yvonne's mother finally succumbed to her question, “Mum, are you sure Mr. Nelson is my father?” Her mother’s response was negative. The surname of the man she carried was not her father.

Yvonne's mother reveals the name of another man (Mr. Peter Ala Adjetey, a former Speaker of Parliament in Ghana’s parliament), now deceased. Yvonne goes out of her way to connect with the children of her supposed father, only to be met with a negative DNA test.

Once again, her quest to discover her true father hits a dead end! Yvonne's daughter may never know her maternal grandfather. Yvonne may never know her father, even if her mother has the answers. It may also be that the mother doesn’t know the father, but surely, a simple head count of her relationship should have the potential father somewhere, in there, somehow.

The lesson here is simple yet profound.  Many of us take for granted the blessing of having grown up with both of our parents. We take the love and the knowledge they have spent and shared with us in our formative years for granted.

We must be grateful for those experiences. At the same time, Yvonne’s story serves as a warning to mothers or women who manufacture monsters out of the fathers of their children-fabricating lies, stories, and hatred towards them because of past grievances.

If you are a young woman and have not had the opportunity to grow with your father, I encourage you to speak with them and have all your doubts cleared while they are alive.

I congratulate Yvonne for boldly asserting her right to know her true father and calling out her mother's lack of forthrightness on her burning quest. The topics she discussed in her book are mostly seen as taboo, not to be spoken in public, only to be discussed in the corner of our bedrooms.  In a society where parents cannot even discuss sexual topics with their children, many see Yvonne's narration as out of line. I say it isn’t!  

If you are a man or a potential father, I call on you to stand up for Yvonne Nelson. Her decision to ensure that the father of her daughter does not miss out on his daughter's life even as they are not together is commendable. On behalf of good fathers everywhere, I wish Yvonne Nelson all the best of luck as she continues to search for her real and true father.

But wait! The book has so many other interesting themes.  Part two of my critical review of I not Yvonne Nelson, follows soon.

Larry Ibrahim Mohammed is a PhD Research Fellow in Norway. He views himself as a global citizen and has a deep love for books. In his spare time, Larry likes to connect with and inspire other young people. You can reach IMF Larry via email

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DISCLAIMER: The Views, Comments, Opinions, Contributions and Statements made by Readers and Contributors on this platform do not necessarily represent the views or policy of Multimedia Group Limited.