Bow Wow has admitted he has become a father.

The 24-year-old rapper - who real name is Shad Moss - had blasted claims he had a child, but has now confirmed his ex-girlfriend has given Joie Chavis has given birth to a daughter, Shai.

In an open letter to his fans, Bow Wow also admitted the baby - believed to have been born a month ago - has given him a new purpose in life and stopped his thoughts of suicide.

He wrote: "Let me start off by saying i love my fans. With out yall i wudda beenleft The Game. For the past 3 years i been batteling life.

"Even thought about taking my own. I felt like as a kid i did everything and saw everything too fast which spoiled my adult years. I felt as if i had no purpose to live ... until god gave me the illest gift of my life."

Bow Wow also admitted he is struggling to cope with being separated from his daughter and dreams of having her live with him, but knows it is difficult to separate a baby from its mother.

He added: "I want her to live with me so bad. Just us 2. Thats my dream man but fellas yall know how it go. Baby gotta stay with they momma and all dat bull. I hate that! So i have to fly 5 hrs away to see her. I find myself going into my i phone book jus lookn at pix of her. Sometimes i tear up cuz i just cant believe it...

"The bs that comes with having a baby momma is expected ... Jus gotta suck it up keep chin high and try not let her get the best of my feelings by playin them stupid games. (sic)"

Bow Wow shot to fame aged just 13 and revealed he has no plans to post pictures of his daughter online because he doesn't want her childhood to be blighted by too much attention.

He explained: "Reason is because i want my boo boo to have everything i didnt. Want her to be able to cheerlead with her lil friends without some a****** sticking his camera all in my lil girl face. (sic)"