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The Girl in His Shadow


The story of one woman who believed in scientific medicine before the world ...
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Can the respect of a mentor and care of a devoted housekeeper supplant parental affection?

Created: 04/30/21

Replies: 21

Posted Apr. 30, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
davinamw

Join Date: 10/15/10

Posts: 2541

Can the respect of a mentor and care of a devoted housekeeper supplant parental affection?

Nora is the last surviving member of her family, but Dr. Croft and Mrs. Phipps function as her de facto father and mother. To what degree do you feel they are successful in those roles? Can the respect of a mentor and care of a devoted housekeeper supplant parental affection?


Posted Apr. 30, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
jos

Join Date: 03/14/21

Posts: 12

RE: Can the respect of a mentor and care...

Absolutely, over and over I observe in life that family dose t always have to be blood related and in Nora’s case I think her mentor and house keeper really did become her adopted family.


Posted Apr. 30, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
Maggie

Join Date: 01/01/16

Posts: 281

RE: Can the respect of a mentor and care...

I agree with jos that they were her adopted family and they did an excellent job and both loved her and she loved them. I am sure that we all have friends that were adopted or have adopted children you do not have to be blood related to be family. Nora certainly learned from Dr Croft. A great education for her that then led her to be able to study in Italy.


Posted Apr. 30, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
melissa c.

Join Date: 01/10/21

Posts: 39

RE: Can the respect of a mentor and care...

I absolutely agree that Dr. Croft and Mrs. Phipps were Nora's parents and family.
They no doubt provided emotional, financial, educational support to Nora as any biological parent would have, and maybe even more so. It was wonderful to see Nora and Dr. Croft bond over their mutual love of medicine and science.


Posted Apr. 30, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
dianac

Join Date: 04/02/13

Posts: 66

RE: Can the respect of a mentor and care...

Of course. If the last half century has taught us anything it's that "parental" roles can be provided by any willing and capable adult, whether they be biological parents or not.


Posted Apr. 30, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
PKH

Join Date: 01/29/21

Posts: 34

RE: Can the respect of a mentor and care...

I also agree that the doctor and housekeeper were her family. They played their roles very effectively even if sometimes Dr Croft seemed remote, he was not uncaring. And he provided very generously for her.


Posted Apr. 30, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
Laura C

Join Date: 04/30/21

Posts: 7

RE: Can the respect of a mentor and care...

Without Croft and Phipps, Nora could have been totally abandoned and may not even have survived. Having two people who truly care about her as they do is totally responsible for her chance at success. Family is where you find it.


Posted Apr. 30, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
catherynez

Join Date: 01/27/18

Posts: 56

RE: Can the respect of a mentor and care...

Yes. They truly cared for Nora and were her family.


Posted May. 01, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
laurap

Join Date: 06/19/12

Posts: 319

RE: Can the respect of a mentor and care...

Dr.Croft and Mrs. Phipps are, functionally, Nora's family. She has no other. Adoptive families successfully fill the role of natural parents every day.


Posted May. 01, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
Jessica F

Join Date: 05/23/20

Posts: 80

RE: Can the respect of a mentor and care...

Agree with everyone above! They created a very nice family for each other.


Posted May. 01, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
carriem

Join Date: 10/19/20

Posts: 42

RE: Can the respect of a mentor and care...

Absolutely, Dr. Croft and Mrs. Phipps were her family and made her believe in herself and insured that she would succeed in the path she chose in her life. When emotional issues surrounded Nora Mrs. Phipps was the one who stepped-in for support and encouragement.


Posted May. 01, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
vivianh

Join Date: 11/14/11

Posts: 94

RE: Can the respect of a mentor and care...

There is no question that Dr. Croft & Mrs. Phipps provided Nora with the love, comfort and tools to live a fulfilled life. Often the family we choose or the family that chooses us provides better parenting than those to whom we are born.


Posted May. 01, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
elisabethc

Join Date: 07/16/19

Posts: 42

RE: Can the respect of a mentor and care...

I think this is a simpler question when looked at in terms of this story but a more complicated question when looked at generally. In Nora's case, she lost her birth parents, but knew of their existence, and found the care and support she needed in Dr. Croft and Mrs. Phipps to grow securely into adulthood. This is actually a highly specific scenario and a very different one from children who are adopted from birth, many of whom struggle in the situations they're placed in for a variety of reasons. But I think maybe the larger point is that children and people in general have various needs depending on their stage of life and circumstances, and that there are different ways those needs can be filled.


Posted May. 02, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
paulak

Join Date: 04/21/11

Posts: 187

RE: Can the respect of a mentor and care...

I think Nora will always ache for her family, especially since she was the sole survivor, but the impact of Dr. Croft and Mrs. Phipps has been enormous. Often positive adult role models and affection can compensate for less-than-optimal or non-existent parenting.


Posted May. 02, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
katherinep

Join Date: 07/16/14

Posts: 298

RE: Can the respect of a mentor and care...

Obviously, it did


Posted May. 03, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
terriej

Join Date: 07/28/11

Posts: 318

RE: Can the respect of a mentor and care...

Absolutely - they cared for her like parents.


Posted May. 03, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
kate

Join Date: 01/22/11

Posts: 73

RE: Can the respect of a mentor and care...

Not only did they care for her like a mother and father; I think Nora looked at them as parents as well.


Posted May. 06, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
Loveslife

Join Date: 08/01/15

Posts: 41

RE: Can the respect of a mentor and care...

Yes-the care and love of a devoted mentor and housekeeper can supplant parental affection. There have been may cases where parents have chosen though necessity or choice to abdicate their parental role and into that void stepped someone to care for the child. It reminds me of the movie "The Help" where the young child is raised virtually by the housekeeper. The housekeeper becomes the beloved care giver of the child.


Posted May. 08, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
kdowney25

Join Date: 01/25/16

Posts: 135

RE: Can the respect of a mentor and care...

Yes, absolutely they can. Nora was raised by Mrs. Phipps and Dr. Croft, and encouraged to follow her interests. Neither of them, however, was affectionate the way a parent might be, such as hugs. Mrs. Phipps always looked out for her emotional welfare, and Dr. Craft was aloof and neither ever really spoke openly of the fact that they loved Nora, but Nora always felt cared for. In contrast, Daniel had both parents, but did not feel supported in his ambitions or in his personal life. He was always being judged and held to societal expectations. Who was better off here? I vote Nora.


Posted May. 09, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
ankev

Join Date: 03/07/21

Posts: 4

RE: Can the respect of a mentor and care...

I absolutely agree that the Dr Croft and Mrs Phipps were her family in several ways that count: took her in, loved her, taught her, accepted her dreams and encouraged them...


Posted May. 11, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
beckys

Join Date: 08/12/16

Posts: 103

RE: Can the respect of a mentor and care...

Absolutely! Family comes in many different forms and biology doesn't make you a good parent just because you share blood. I have so many people in my life that have poured into me...loved me, encouraged me, believed in me, and their love is just as important as the love I have for my parents.


Posted May. 12, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
ssh

Join Date: 02/04/14

Posts: 24

RE: Can the respect of a mentor and care...

I agree - this was family for Nora. It was touching to see the way the family love and support was present.


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