“What is the worst thing that people have said to you since he made those comments?,” I asked Sylvia Campbell as she poured her heart out about the rocky relationship she has with her fourth-born, Dalton Harris.
Silence was the response. Dead silence!
And the sniffles interrupted.
Sylvia, 52, could hold it no more. Tears streamed down her face, and not long after she began sobbing. She said nothing. She just sat on a chair on her veranda in Sanguinetti, Clarendon, and cried.
“If nobody did tell me seh Javon (the name she calls Dalton) woulda do me this, me woulda fight dem. Mi think Javon woulda run to me rescue. Me never think Javon woulda disgrace me, but it all right,” she moaned.
“It feel bad fi know the same person when yuh a shout fah, him a bash yuh. It hard,” added Sylvia.
She told THE WEEKEND STAR that persons have called her names such as ‘dutty b**ch’ and ‘miserable madwoman’ as a result of Dalton’s claims that he was severely ill-treated as a child.
Chyrell Freeman, Sylvia’s friend, said the X Factor singer’s mother has been depressed all week. She had read in the media about alleged abuse that her son experienced as a child, and was crestfallen. Sylvia was drinking tea made from turmeric when THE WEEKEND STAR visited the two-room rented house, which she occupies along with her two youngest children.
The tea, Sylvia said, is to help control her blood pressure, which she said has shot through the roof.
Dalton, 24, is tipped to win this year’s X Factor UK, but instead of anxiously awaiting his crowning moment, Sylvia is a wreck.
“Me caah eat, me caah sleep, me caah walk on the streets because people a bash me,” the mother said.
Dalton recently told the UK Mirror newspaper that he was abused as a child.
“There are more on my chest, arm, shoulder, back, thighs, legs and feet. I was punched so hard by a guy dating my mum, I crashed through a window.”
“I was told that I should walk into the road and kill myself,” said Dalton.
Public relations ploy
Sylvia insists that her son has been speaking half truths and may have decided to employ them as a means of deflecting attention from the homophobic fury which came after a photo of him sitting in a fellow contestant’s lap went viral.
“Him a nuh gay nor nutten,” she said, while insisting that the comments are part of a public relations ploy being employed by Dalton.
Still, she loves her son to death, she says.
“My son was my everything and still is. The way me hurt last week, me nuh watch the competition. Me proud a me son because each time me a seh: ‘God, look which part me a come from with Dalton and look weh him reach.’ But me cut up over the things weh him a talk seh,” she said.
With tears streaming down her face and her voice cracking, Sylvia wailed: “Javon, bring disgrace pon me, oh God!”
“After how him daddy treat me and mi siddung wid dem same way. Only time me left dem a when me go work.”
Stomping her feet, the inconsolable Sylvia got up from her chair and dashed inside the house, closely followed by Chyrell, who sought to calm her.
When calm returned, the mother of seven admitted that her ex-boyfriend did punch Dalton.
She said that the matter was reported to the police, but, no charges were brought against him. She also said that she was responsible for the cut behind his ears. She has an explanation.
“Dalton did rude, enuh. Me put down me light bill. It come to $850, and me put $800 under sup’m inna the house. Me look for it, and me nuh see it. Me hear sup’m under the bed and a Dalton, and me start lick him. Den mi hear him say: ‘Me head buss, me head buss’,” she said.
Sylvia said that she was moved to beat Dalton with a pair of slippers because she was a stressed out single mother with no help and her electricity was disconnected.
The other scars, she said, came as a result of him falling off a bicycle or being a rude child. And as for the statement about being run over by a truck, she pleads guilty with explanation.
“Him jus deh pon social media a kill me and mek it look like me a di worst human being that God ever create. Me tell him bout the truck fi true, and me tell him.”
She said he had been giving trouble all day, and, in her frustrations, she told him: “Javon, yuh see when Critton [a local driver] truck a pass, go in front a it and stand up right deh mek it run over yuh because yuh give me too much problem.”
“People parents tell dem worse dan dat, and dem move past it,” she said.
“Him deh a England, and me can’t go no weh in peace. People bash me here, people bash me there over me owna pickney. If sup’m hurt yuh dat much, all yuh coulda do a talk bout it.”