Women confess: Under what circumstances would you give a man a 'jacket'?

Sunday, August 31, 2014

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VIEWERS of the popular Maury show will be all too familiar with its controversial paternity tests, which, more often than not, show men women claim are their children's fathers being proven otherwise.

Sometimes the women are apologetic, as they genuinely didn't know they had pinned their babies on the wrong men, other times they admit that it was all a deception, done for reasons ranging from wanting to extend the life of a relationship, to wanting child support.

In Jamaica the act is called giving a man a 'jacket', with statistics out of the Family Court a few years ago showing that some 34.5 per cent of Jamaican men tested during court proceedings turned out not to be the fathers of children that they were told were theirs.

This figure is independent of those tested privately.

The situation is so widespread that some persons have described Jamaica as the 'jacket capital of the world', and some women relish this title, saying there are indeed times when giving a man a jacket is justified. They explain below.

Theresa A, mother of one:

If he is a violent person and I know that if he finds out that I am pregnant for someone else he would kill me, then I would let him believe the child is his. But even that would be a big risk because somewhere down the line he would more than likely find out and the end result would be the same - he would kill! So even though that is the only way I would give a man a jacket, it is still very dangerous.

Curlene B, mother of two:

Well, to give a man a jacket means you would have to be cheating on him, so if I get pregnant for one man who can't afford to take care of me and the child and the other man who is not the father is financially stable, then I would go with the stability. Because without money we can't take care of that child.

Celine B, mother of two:

I strongly believe a man must get his child. I don't believe in jacket. But the only reason I see where you could give a man a jacket is if he's unstable and is one of those who would kill you, kill the child and then kill himself.

Francine B, no children:

I have a friend who was living with this man and they had a big fight and he put her out. She went to the country and met another guy and got pregnant. The man who put her out called her and apologised and told her he wanted her to come back home. She went back and then she told her man that she was pregnant for him. All now him don't know that is jacket him get!

Shanique J, mother of one:

The only way is if he's always talking about killing any woman who would cheat on him and get pregnant for another man and I know he is serious. Rather than make him kill me, I would give him jacket.

Gail S, no children:

If I am married to him for about 10 years or so and he is a good husband and good father to our children, so even though I got involved with someone else I wouldn't want to give up my family so I would let my husband believe the child is his.

Helen D, mother of four:

If I was a pastor's wife and he was too righteous or too busy for me and I find comfort with another man and accidentally get pregnant! I couldn't disgrace the church or my husband like that, so I would let him and everyone else believe the child is his. So he would have to hold a jacket!

Latoya G, no children:

If I was happily married, cheated and didn't want him to leave me, especially if having a child would make him happy and he has been having difficulty doing so.

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