So I know we all hate on Larry Murphy for being a horrible dad, and I definitely agree he should have done more to help Connor. But after seeing the play yesterday, I don’t think he hated his son. At the part when Evan goes to the principal’s office and the Murphys tells Evan about Connor, Larry was crying. And it broke my heart because even though Larry didn’t do everything he should have, I think he still loved Connor and wanted what was best.
I think Larry didn’t understand his son’s struggles - which isn’t an excuse for him not helping more, it’s more of an explanation as to why he didn’t. I think many parents of kids with mental illnesses don’t understand why their child is “acting up”, and it makes them angry instead of inciting them to help. Again, that doesn’t make it okay - but it definitely happens in the real world. But again, I don’t think it always means the parents don’t care.
I have been blessed with very caring parents, but it took a long time for them to understand what was going on with me and why I was acting the way I was - and sometimes they still struggle to get it. I’m beyond grateful that they have put the time and effort into helping me and working to understand. But I know not every parent does that - not necessarily because they don’t care, but because they don’t know what to do. I think that’s what happened with Larry. I don’t think he hated Connor - I think he just didn’t know what to do, and so he gave up a little. Again, this does NOT excuse him not helping his son. But I just feel like he is more than the one-dimensional, unloving father he’s sometimes seen as.