Is Hiram McDowell a bad father?

Use this forum to discuss the October Book of the Month "McDowell" by William H. Coles.
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Re: Is Hiram McDowell a bad father?

Post by Disneyland » 05 Dec 2018, 18:34

The fact of McDowell's daughter Sophie thriving in life at the end of the story fighting all odds, leads me to think of McDowell as an overshadowing father figure. His concern for son Billie (in whatever possible ways) and daughter Anne in life is reflected in the story too!

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Post by Nusrat_Shabnam_ » 06 Dec 2018, 02:07

Sushan wrote:
03 Oct 2018, 12:19
As a person his personality is corrupted. So his fatherhood is also affected by that. This influenced his children a lot and when it is seen in that angle, yes he is a bad father
I completely agree with you. He's an worse father in my opinion.

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Post by booklysis » 06 Dec 2018, 02:14

LaurenHaupt wrote:
05 Oct 2018, 08:30
He's not a bad father but he could be a better one. He has spent time with his kids even though he should take more part in their lives at times. He also wasn't much of a role model either. It is probably good his kids didn't spend a lot of time with him.
Yup! You are so right on this!

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Post by Shrabastee » 07 Dec 2018, 05:31

I cannot at all say he was a good father. He was absent for the most part. Even when present, he seemed disinterested in an odd way. His behaviour towards hia stepdaughters was nothing short of disgusting. Among his own children, he probably cared a little for Billie. He even thinks of Sophie and Ann as high-maintenance. All in all, I am bound to say his parenting skills were a complete failure (not that he will mind).

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Post by Ekta Kumari » 08 Dec 2018, 09:02

I do not think he was a bad father. He did cared for his children in his own way. Only thing he didn't understand was how his children wanted his presence more than his money. He had no understanding of how his children wanted him to love them and be there for them; there was definitely huge lack of communication.
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Post by Shalu1707 » 10 Dec 2018, 12:44

He was not a perfect father but he was not totally bad at it. He did progressed in this field with time.

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Post by Theresam » 17 Dec 2018, 12:53

HollandBlue wrote:
02 Oct 2018, 10:36
I think in the beginning of the book he's too self-centered to be a good father.
I agree - he was most selfish in the beginning as the book progressed he seemed to show more concern for the children and tried to help them financially at least

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Post by Ehartl » 19 Dec 2018, 08:04

Hiram McDowell, by the end of the book, has the potential to be a good father. However, in the beginning, he is too selfish to be considered a good parent. I never had any doubt that he loved his children, but he cared more about himself than his family. A selfish man was his first impression on the reader and, for me at least, that view of him never really changed.

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Post by KRay93 » 20 Dec 2018, 17:53

It is very difficult to consider him a good father since he is a very selfish man, but I do not know if I can call him a "bad father". Still, throughout the book, one can see the negative consequences of his children's uprising, especially Ann, although Billie and Sophie are more or less able to get ahead in the end in spite of Hiram's mistakes.

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Post by Moray_001 » 24 Dec 2018, 07:21

He seemed a bit nonchalant at the beginning. I also didn’t understand why he didn’t lay more emphasis to discourage Billie from showing interest in his stepsisters. I feel he was too lenient. He showed some parental authority when Sophie was to travel with Ivana and he supported her and Billie but I feel most of his support was financial and not really moral and in other aspects.

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Post by Highly Favoured One » 25 Dec 2018, 16:52

Where is the leadership? Where is the role model in him? Where is the aspect of protecting his family? Where is the aspect of being emotionally present? I think that to be labelled a "good father" the bar is set pretty high and he does not come near. There is hope towards the end though where he considers mending his ways.

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Post by Jessacardinal » 06 Jan 2019, 00:01

Hiram has spotty moments of successful fathering throughout the first half of this book. He is financially supportive when he can be. He helps Sophie, in his own my-way-or-the-highway-way, get her life back on track after June leaves her in shambles. He seems to have moments of caring about what goes on in Billie's life. Nonetheless, regardless of a few out-of-character fathering moments from Hiram, he is not a father I would want for myself.
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