[LMB] Ranking Dads

Gwynne Powell gwynnepowell at hotmail.com
Sat Oct 30 06:03:37 BST 2021

From: Elizabeth Holden <alzurite at gmail.com>

Eric Oppen asked:
> How would Bothari rate as a father?

Not well, I would say. He lied to her about her mother and himself,
protected her to the point of being smothering, seems to have never
listened to her opinions (let alone her hopes and dreams), and it's hard to
imagine him being affectionate or understanding.  I'm sure his intentions
were good, inside his own mind, but he treated her like an object which he

Gwynne: Judging from our viewpoint, and with the advantage of hindsight,
all that you say is true. But within his own society, he was doing the best he
could. Bastards are usually abandoned or disowned on Barrayar; Bothari didn't
do that. He saved every mark for his daughter. He supported her, gave her a
good home, he made plans for her future. He wanted the highest he could get
for her, which in his society and in his eyes was to marry an officer. This wasn't
her dream (although she sort of did do that, in the end). But he was dedicated
to giving her a good future, even if his choice - by our standards - wasn't the
right one. And you're right that he may not have been affectionate, by our
standards, but you can't give what you don't have.

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