The Northern Territory news Mon 19 Sep 2016
The Northern Territory news; NewspaperNT
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Community newspapers -- Northern Territory -- Darwin; Australian newspapers -- Northern Territory -- Darwin
News Corp Australia
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News Corp Australia
MONDAY SEPTEMBER 19 2016 EXCLUSIVE BOOK EXTRACT 07 V1 - NTNE01Z01MA with her now but probably not for the same reasons as she had. Mum had had enough trouble trying to bring us up. It wouldnt have been fair to do that to any poor unsuspecting baby. Kims mum was the next to come up with a plan. The way I see fings, this baby, God bless its little heart, should be adopted out. Give the little fing a chance in life. What have you got to offer it? Nuffin. And it would be too hard on you two young ones if the baby is around. Something about the English accent makes me suspicious. Its genetic I think. But it all sounded reasonable at the time. Without telling any of my family, Kims mum adopted the baby. This was completely the opposite to what she had said was the best thing to do. She decided the child was never to know who his real parents were. Just for his own good. I should have been ready to the hardest day of my life but it wasnt really. My parents and Kims had both come from poor backgrounds. Wild kids regularly got themselves into trouble where we came from. They werent as shocked as we were. But I could see that same look on (my stepfather) Regs face that Id seen a lot of times before. I had let him down again. Instead we listened to what everybody was telling us: Youre too young to have a baby. Youll never be able to look after a child. Youre still kids yourselves. The baby will suffer. My mum immediatelywanted to adopt thebaby. Let me lookafter the wean. Illgive it a good home and you can still see it whenever you like, she said in her warmest Glaswegian mum voice. I hadnt heard this voice since I was two. But Kims mum thought that would be wrong. I agree change and become a man and start to deal with the consequences of my actions but instead I returned to life as if it had never happened. Learning nothing and not growing at all. This was one more thing that I would try to shove to the back of my head, knowing full well that I knew better. The guilt brought another layer of darkness into my life. I had done the wrong thing again. I dont know if Kims mum did the right thing at the time or not, but one thing I do know. The world seems to have a way of making things work out. As frightening as it was at the time, it was one of Working Class Boy by Jimmy Barnes, RRP $45, published September 19 by HarperCollins. Barnes will appear at bookshop events in September and October. His live show, Working Class Boy: An Evening Of Stories And Songs, tours nationally in November and December. Details: jimmybarnes.com family. Why dont you go and spend the day with him and get to know him a bit. It must have been very strange for the young lad. One minute hes playing around the house, next hes going off for the day with his bleary-eyed, leather jacketwearing uncle. He probably couldnt work out what side of the family I was connected to. Must be the distant Scottish relatives that no one ever spoke about. As he got older we even started to spend weekends together. This was hard for us. We didnt really know what to say to each other. I tried to make things as easy for him as I could. David was always a gentle boy. He was soft and caring. He made it easy for both of us. make it up to him. I was allowed to pop in occasionally to see him playing. But I could never get too close. The situation, Kims mum, and my own fear stopped me getting close to my son. I know now how great that loss was. He needed a dad. If I could go back in time I would spend every minute I could with him. But you cant go back. You cant live life regretting what was or wasnt. All I can do is go forward and make things right now. It was only once I became famous that suddenly it appeared to others and myself that I had something to offer him. I would go over to Kims mums house and be introduced: David, this is Jim. Hes a good friend of the the most important moments in my life. My son David came into the world on August 6, 1973. It was a time of confusion and fear for me, but from the moment he arrived, he was a beautiful human being and he brought nothing but joy to everyone around him. I watched his progress from a distance. He wasnt allowed to know who I was. And I tried to pretend not to care. I didnt have a lot to offer him at that time when I look back on things. Apart from Reg who maybe came along a bit late my parental role models hadnt really been the best so I have no idea what I would have done had things ended up differently. David spent his childhood without a father. I can never change that or Pi ct ur e: S TE VE C H EE
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