The Orphan father paradox

This critique has been something I have been thinking about for a long time and it will be good to get this out in literary form. Many protagonists in stories are heroes who seek grandeur are orphans. In many ways this effects how they grow up and develop. However, it isn;t too often that we delve into what it means for the orphan to become a parent. The two characters I will contrasting are Harry Potter and Uzumaki Naruto. Both were children of well loved people who died when they were babies. Both faced hardship and loneliness due to difficult environments growing up and had to make a name for themselves. Both didn’t have the support of parents and therefore could only see parents and families from outside. This isn;t to say they didn’t have surrogate families but that the direct family structure was always foreign to them. This of course, meant that they always had to look after themselves and be self-sufficient. This gave them independence and made things challenging for them when they had to deal with outside pressures. For example, Harry Potter had the issue of learning he was famous after being raised in a horrendous environment. His confidence, if you could call it that, wasn’t necessarily from the fame but from just personal experience taking care of himself. This might have looked different to outside observers and even Ron Weasly, his best friend, occassionally thought Harry was attention seeking and ungrateful. He was jealous because he wanted the kind of independence and prestige Harry had just naturally. But Harry hated the fame that he didn’t earn. He found it suffocating and annoying. He was flabbergasted that anyone would even want it. He also was annoyed that Ron, who had the one thing Harry most wanted, had the nerve to be jealous. Ron had a family and support, he was poor sure, but he had something Harry wanted badly. Even the person who was most like a brother to him, had lapses in judgement when it came to his best mate. The fact is that being a parent isn’t normally something you just naturally know how to do. You might see others doing it but it is difficult to imagine how you parents until you are one. But I imagine that it must be very hard for an orphan to be a parent, especially, if your children have different needs. Naruto grew up ostracized and hated which in many ways was the exact opposite of Harry. However, the moment he got support from a mentor he sought to improve himself. He relied on others sure, but he had to  be just as self-sufficient as Harry. Nothing came easy to him, but he did seem to make a difference slowly. His parents died on the night he was born and were actively involved in the decision that would condemn him to his life as a pariah. This of course, is soemthing he had to learn. Emotional maturity and spiritual calm were both essential to his journey. However, when both of these men became fathers they also had the cache of being legends. Harry Potter had defeated the most powerful wizard in history and was world famous. Uzumaki Naruto was the seventh Hokage and one of the heroes of the 4th great Ninja War. Both men had earned their positions and took it seriously. Both men were self-sufficient and used to getting by with minimal support. One could argue that both needed the support of their loved ones and community but both had learned to live both with that support and without it. However, both men had children whom needed a very different kind of support and who, had a very different outlook. Albus Severus Potter is very different than Harry’s other children and in many ways doesn’t connect to his father very well. This combines with resentment for his father’s prestige meant that he was the rebellious child. Harry’s lack of understanding of the important of being a good mentor and misunderstanding the different ways of being supportive gives him his new arc. He has trouble understanding his son because he sees it as just childish complaints. he feels he is giving his son a better life but doesn’t understand that this by itself, may not be reaching what Albus needs.

Part 1 end

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