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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Jgideon
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Re: Is Hiram McDowell a bad father?

Post by Jgideon » 25 Oct 2018, 03:42

In Part 1, he is definitely not a good father. He is irresponsible and his quest for money and power consumes much of his time and energy. Towards the end, he makes efforts to become a good father. He is just a work in progress.

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Post by Onyinye Excel » 26 Oct 2018, 10:14

Many parents are like that - never present in theIr children's lives but that doesnt mean they don't love them.I feel he was just a man who didn't know better. He loved them the way he could by providing and cleaning up their messes. A little bit of his hIstory would have helped us understand him better.

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Post by Sirajuddin » 26 Oct 2018, 12:43

No, Hiram is not a bad father as he proves himself by always taking a greater interest in his children. Recall the case of Sophie, how he tries to help Sophie to come out of the lesbian relationship, and for his son Billie also he is protective and supports the passion of Billie. But every human has his own flaws.

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Post by Theresam » 26 Oct 2018, 12:44

I think he is as good a father in his own way. Even though not physically present he provides for them financially and helps them socially and with employment.

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Post by asere_maryanne » 27 Oct 2018, 11:40

McDowell is not a bad father, he gives the best to his children. Even though he is not always there for them, he provides for them when he can, when he was on the run he took his time to communicate with them and find out how they were doing.

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Post by sonya01 » 27 Oct 2018, 14:18

I don't think he was a terrible father - bearing in mind that when we are introduced to Hiram, his kids are pretty grown up. The older two are well beyond being influenced by him and just Billie, at seventeen, is still living at home. Admittedly, he is a distant parent, but I do believe he does care for them, particularly the two from his second wife. He provides for them financially and appears concerned for their well-being and safety. He is by no means a doting parent, but I cannot call him neglectful or say he was completely bad.

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Post by Supergirl1 » 27 Oct 2018, 14:30

Not entirely, however neglecting your children emotionally is not an example of good parenting. He merely provided for his children, he didn’t raise them
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Post by Radiant3 » 27 Oct 2018, 16:38

No, Hiram is not a bad father. He may not have been overly emotional or there all the time but he ensured that his children were provided for financially.

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Post by Rosemary Khathibe » 27 Oct 2018, 17:22

Let me just say in the beginning, he was indeed a bad father. His reckless actions had negative impacts on his children's lives so much that each of them lived to tell a story. However, prison eventually turned him into a better man. Had it not being going to jail, will he have changed? I don't think so.

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Post by Dael Reader » 28 Oct 2018, 12:36

McDowell is a good example of a man who should never be allowed to be a father. He cares about no one but himself and his primary involvement in their lives seems to be to "fix" their problems so he doesn't have to worry about them himself.

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Post by A_Wolfe » 28 Oct 2018, 15:13

Hiram may not think he is a bad father, but he doesn't dedicate a great deal of time trying to become a good father, or finding opportunities within the assessment of his character development to become better. He gives Billie what he needs to be on his own, but he's happy that his sister takes him away to Nepal with him so that he doesn't have to worry about his negative behaviors popping up. His blood-children have a negative view on Hiram's relationship with their mother, and he puts up barriers to preserve his understanding on their personal relationship, leaving his kids to still feel the effects of a dysfunctional childhood. His careers presents a natural strain on his time, and his family all voice their frustration with being placed second behind anything related to work or his personal enjoyment. So if he isn't a bad father, he has a long road out of the gray zone back to good.

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Post by Radiant3 » 30 Oct 2018, 00:21

He is not a bad father. If taken in the context of his character at the beginning of the story, his relationship with his children was not in keeping with the person he seemed to be.

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Post by writer808 » 30 Oct 2018, 02:47

Its a transitional character, irresponsible in the start but gradually changes.

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Post by A G Darr » 31 Oct 2018, 17:50

I felt like he was a terrible father. He instructed Billie to pursue a sexual relationship with his sister, judged Sophia about her lesbianism, and did little to help Ann aside from throwing money at her. *Spoiler*








When he killed his grandson, I don't believe it was sympathy for his daughter Ann or for his now deformed grandson. It was probably more likely anger and shame that made him end his grandson's life. Ashamed that his family was in the news, ashamed his daughter was maimed, and angry he could not throw money at the problem to fix it.

Even when Hiram went on his journey of self-discovery, I do not feel he became a good father. I do feel like he tried to be a friend to his children. Tried to confide in them and seek their assistance in getting his memoire created, and tried to get them to understand him. But he did not act in a way that I felt was fatherly after his escape from incarceration. But, he was to them as a friend than he'd ever been as a father.

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Post by Enattah » 31 Oct 2018, 21:10

He wasn't a good father or model for his kids but towards the end he tried mending his ways and be there for them.

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