Parenting the Father

What are the qualities that show a good parent? To be a good parent you must be loving, considerate, and responsible, you have to pay attention to your child’s need. Unfortunately John Purcell from “The Father” by Hugh Garner shows none of these qualities. Mr. Purcell is neglective, shameless and proud. One trait that clearly shows John is an unsatisfactory father is that he is neglective. This trait describes Mr. Purcell very accurately. An example of how John is neglective is when he had a meeting with the principal at Johnny’s school, regarding his grades.
John had agreed to keep Johnny back a grade just so the meeting would end sooner “When the teacher had suggested keeping the boy in the same grade for a second year, he had acquiesced willingly, wanting only to get away from the place. ” page 43. Another example of Johns neglect is how he does not even know what position his own son played or which team he played for “He realized that he didn’t even know what position his own son played, or even the name of the team. ” page 46.
Lastly when Johnny was talking about his friends and their fathers, John had no clue who he was talking about because he pays no attention to his children what so ever, nor does he play a role in either of his children’s lives “He didn’t know on boy or girl who came to the house from another. ” page 48. These are three of many examples that show Mr. Purcell is a neglective father. In addition to be neglective John Purcell is also shameless. In almost every event throughout Johnny’s life that involved both father and son, John would always bring shame upon Johnny and himself.

In the story on page 1 it says “… a strange shame and embarrassment coloured every event that brought them into contact. ” A second example that shows how John is shameless is when he was talking to the curate and scout master about the entry fee for the Boy Scout Meeting “Three Dollars! Why I could’ve taken Jonny to a burlesque show for less than that. ” He felt no shame at all after making the remark. The final example I have that shows Mr. Purcell is shameless is when he was outside the church drinking with a man he had just known for less than an hour or so. They had three good drinks apiece before Murdoch said, ‘Maybe we’d better go back inside. If we don’t get in there soon that kid of mine will tell his mother for sure. ’” This shows John felt no shame because even though he was with his son at a very important meeting, with the Johnny’s friends and their parents there, he was outside drinking paying no regard towards the circumstances. Also if it wasn’t for Charley Murdoch suggesting that they should go back inside, John would’ve just sat outside drinking the whole night. If you don’t call a man like that shameless then I wouldn’t know what you’d call him.

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