Honorary Mention: Cinderella's Father
Okay so I basically grew up without parents in a large sense. That being said, I always yearned for a loving, stable and consistent mother and father to teach morals, values, effective and constructive communication, consequences for actions, real love, respect, trust, honor, etc. Since Walt Disney founded the company under those family and character-based values, I have always been very attached to the Disney brand. That being said, I was thinking about the Disney Princesses' parents and if I could have traded my childhood situation with one of them, which would it be? Since I also love lists and ranking systems, I thought I'd rank all of the home situations/parents in terms of which I'd like to have had most instead of what I had. I know that children statistically have the best chances when they have a mother and father in the home and I have too often seen the effects of being raised by single parents. So for those reasons, I tend to prefer two-parent households to one and that will no doubt be reflected in my countdown. This doesn't mean that I don't have respect and adoration for the widowed parents but rather that I already did the 1 parent thing and frankly, it sucked and I'd much rather have been raised with 2 parents in the home as it would've benefitted me immensely. Anyways, I hope you guys enjoy the read:
Honorary Mention: Cinderella's Father (Top Right):
We don't get to see much of him other than this one picture but by all accounts it seems that he was an honorable and decent man. He reminds me a lot of my own father: A hardworking and respectful man with older values who gets manipulated and deceived by atrocious women who use their "assets" to exploit, abuse and delude good men so they can take advantage of them.
13. Snow White's Evil Stepmother: Queen Grimhilde:
It sucks to have to clean all the time but you get used to it. Unfortunately, that wasn't the worse of this case. The Evil Queen would stop at nothing to kill Snow simply for her looks. I could not live with someone constantly trying to kill me all the time, especially if running away isn't enough to make them leave me alone. Although she wanted to kill Snow, she really tortured her a lot. It's torture to have someone constantly trying to murder you and I think that is a horribly torturous life, always waiting for the next assault on your life. As bad as my childhood was growing up, my parent wasn't trying to kill me all the time. This might not be as horrible now in places with services like "child protection" agencies but in Snow's time, there was no such protection.
12. Rapunzel's Evil Adopted Mother: Mother Gothel
Evil Always Trying to Kill Me or Torture Me
This was significantly close to my real mother so it wouldn't be much of a trade off here. Actually, I'd have more stability and security with Mother Gothel and the tower than I did with my actual mother. The way Mother Gothel tries to rob Rapunzel of her innocence is exactly similar to the way my mother wanted to rob me of my innocence. She wanted me to not have morals so I would "not judge" her for her lack of morals or make her feel bad. My situation was a little worse than Rapunzel though, because my mom was more proactive in trying to make me lose my morals than Mother Gothel was with Rapunzel. Also my mother is my real mother, not adopted like Rapunzel. Whether real or adopted though, being raised like this from one's own mother is incredibly torturous and awful. So while this would still be better in a lot of ways, it's the trade off I would like to make the very least other than Snow's.
11. Cinderella's Evil Stepmother: Lady Tremaine
Evil Always Trying to Use Me or Ignore Me
Much like Rapunzel/Mother Gothel, I've already lived this situation so I definitely wouldn't want to trade places here. That being said, this wasn't as bad as the torture from my own mother since she was actually my mother. At least with a stepmother, a child can think of a semi-logical reason for the abuse whereas there is no logic coming from a birth parent. (Obviously I condone neither, just speaking from experience trying to rationalize such behavior as a child.) This situation sucks because it robs you of everything good in life. Even maids and servants get paid somewhat and had little freedom but Cinderella was paid nothing but housing and had no freedom but which tasks to begin first. She never got to experience the benefit of such hard work and labor other than lack of punishment. This is a most exhausting and draining life and everyday feels like it will be the last one you can stand. All you can do is dream of a better future one day. That being said, I did survive this and it wasn't all bad because it taught me a lot about character. While I don't appreciate abuse like this, I can say that it humbles someone so that they never really get self-centered or ungrateful and you learn to appreciate the better things in life that much more. I suppose this is also a big part of why character, morals and values have always been such a big deal to me; As well as I hate to see "good" or "innocent" people belittled or accused without established and convincing evidence. Because I have lived with those who were so spoiled, rarely punished, never judged and given every excuse to avoid self-responsibility and accountability, I know I never want to be like that. The stepsisters ironically make the abuse not so bad because you get a mirror image of what the complete opposite would've been and it's easier to recognize what that "balance" should be.
10. Elsa & Anna's Parents: K & Q of Arendelle
Evil Always Trying to Break Me or Punish Me
I don't know what the heck these parents were thinking! It's no wonder to me that there's a family/genetic relation between these folks and Rapunzel's parents. It seemed clear to me that the trolls were advising that Elsa learn to control
her powers rather than try to ignore them. It's also a mature decision to control the problem before it controls you! It's fine if they wanted to try ignoring it at first but that obviously was not working. Isolation was clearly not the answer either. It also bothered me how quick these parents were to blame Elsa for the incident in the beginning of the film though it was clearly partly Anna's fault, and I love Anna! Anna got all excited and she wouldn't slow down, forcing Elsa to have no choice but try to keep up with her younger sister's energy so she wouldn't fall and get seriously hurt. While Elsa is the older one, she's still just a child and deserved more patience and understanding from her parents. I just think a lot of the issues Elsa & Anna had, especially younger, were classic effects of bad parenting. I think the way they handled Elsa's powers was the way they handled parenting, "quick fixes" and "neglect". They went to the trolls for a quick fix then decided to neglect Elsa's powers instead of digging down deep as parents to help her control it so it wouldn't be her downfall later in life. This also caused Elsa to grow up in a cold environment where she wasn't really hugging her parents and expressing love often like Anna so no wonder Elsa later isolates herself to the degree she does. Her parents messed up her life.
9. Rapunzel's Parents: K & Q of Corona
Bad Advice Parents
I truly do not believe that Rapunzel's parents did enough to find Rapunzel. Frankly, I have no idea how the lantern show every year was supposed to help them get their daughter back and it bothered me immensely that some random criminal, Eugene Fitzherbert, was able to find Rapunzel but all of the Corona soldiers/knights couldn't find the tower. I believe that if they really loved their daughter, they should've never stopped proactively searching for her instead of just doing a light show hoping that she'd miraculously know they were for her and introduce herself to the King and Queen. It just seemed like really bad parenting to me. If my daughter was stolen in the night, I would not have stopped searching everywhere around until I found her and it didn't seem like the parents here did much searching at all. Minors shouldn't be expected to fend for or rescue themselves. I believe the moment people decide to become parents is the moment they make a vow to always put that child first, much like a marital vow, and do everything they can to keep the child safe and provided for. I wouldn't feel very safe with them as my parents. They couldn't even keep a balcony door locked so I wouldn't get kidnapped.
8. Jasmine's Father: The Sultan
He really seems like a decent guy despite his faults. Though he is not very open-minded and doesn't really listen to Jasmine's concerns, he did make it clear that his concerns went beyond the law and were actually self-less parental concerns. He wasn't trying to force her into marriage because he was cruel or had an ego trip, he just didn't want to die before he saw her married and taken care of. As a father, he wanted to know that his daughter would be married to a man who could provide for her and protect her in his absence. I admire this even if I don't respect the way he handled this problem. I think he should've taken Jasmine out on a tour to see the people, himself. He could even have taken Jafar if he wanted to but there was no reason not to accompany his daughter to see the city. In the presence of the king, no one would harm her and she would get what she was asking for, to see the city "beyond the palace walls". It could've been that simple. I kind of understand why Jafar was so frustrated being lesser than someone who severely lacked common sense yet was a king and ruler of many.
7. Pocahontas' Father: Chief Powhatan
Cute Little Father
He seemed also like a decent guy and I think it was obvious that he loved and cared about his daughter. Unfortunately, he comes from a society that has a completely different way of thinking then I do. In his society, his daughter was given to a great warrior as a gift because she was a female and I am thankful I am not in that situation. However, if I did grow up in that culture, I would want it to be with such a loving and protecting father as he is. You can often tell a lot about a person's parents by their actions and perspectives. Not always but often. Pocahontas is wise and mature and her father is too, albeit not as wise and mature as his own daughter who is above average. Overall I really like him a lot as a parent and I think he does right by Pocahontas, I just don't agree with his culture and wouldn't want to be raised in it if I had the choice.
Now we start getting to the parents I LOVE and would actually have loved to have had; not just as a replacement, but in general, ideally. <3 :D
6. Ariel's Father: King Triton (& Queen Athena)
Strong "Busy Leading" Father
Similar to Chief Powhatan though more understandable and respectable to me, King Triton was also leery of the "other group of people" that he encountered. The biggest differences to me between Triton & Powhatan are: A) Triton lost his wife to the "strangers" and actually witnessed their barbaric nature whereas Powhatan had not. B) Triton comes from a much more female-friendly(equal) environment than Powhatan and therefore has more respect for women and I'm a woman so that's a huge factor for me. I love Triton a lot. I think he is so caring and protective and loving and concerned for his daughter. If you pay attention to him in the film, he doesn't really like punishing Ariel and he feels sort of lost on what to do without his wife. I can understand where he is coming from, the poor guy is stuck with 7 daughters as a man who doesn't have the help of his wife or other women in the kingdom! His closest advisor, Sebastian, is another man who has no
children. The first time we see Triton, he is excited for his daughter to showcase her gorgeous voice to all, not knowing she is skipping class to go against his requests and rules. When he finds out she has been repeatedly disobeying him, he doesn't overreact at all. He lets her get off very easily by just condoning her actions, trying to reason with her and telling her to start listening like she is supposed to. Immediately after this "punishing" of Ariel (if you can even call it that), he immediately asks Sebastian "Was I too hard on her?" and Sebastian's response is like "Of course not. You've got to be hard on these teenagers." So Triton really is trying to do his best with Ariel. Also whenever he is talking to her, he does try to give her his reasoning for everything instead of just saying something like "Because I'm your father and I said so." (which my mom always used to say because she didn't really have any good reasons). He definitely has his mistakes with the humans but aside from that one issue, Ariel has full range of freedom and seems to have a very nice and easy life. When her father first finds out that she is in love, his response is "Who could the lucky
merman be?" This is because he loves his daughter so much and just doesn't want to lose her the way he lost his wife. He wants his daughter to be happy and find love though. He also risks everything, including his life, power and kingdom just to save Ariel's life which is true self-less love. I adore and respect that he knew he'd most likely never really see her again if he gave her legs but he was selfless and he loved her and wanted her to have true love and happiness the most so he made it happen for her. I would really have loved to have had him as a father and probably Athena as a mother though I know a lot less about her. If Ariel were an only child then Triton would be higher on my list but I wouldn't want to share him with 6 other siblings. <3
Protective & Considerate...
5. Belle's Father: Maurice
Maurice is such a sweet guy. If only he had more backbone and able to protect Belle better would I be able to put him higher. This is of course, made up by his spunk and tenacity to never give up trying to do what he can for his daughter though... Even if it means venturing out into the cold forest alone to find her! He obviously listens to Belle and never neglects her which I adore! I was always ignored by my mother so I would've loved to have had a parent who was always willing to talk to me about my problems, even if he was working, like he was when Belle was talking to him. He also sincerely has the best interests in mind for Belle as he never pushes anything on her that she doesn't like, just merely makes suggestions. I think he really trusts the job he (and his wife for however long she was around) did on Belle, and rightfully so. Also when the beast released him and he found his way home, he really did try to do everything he could to get Belle rescued but the poor guy couldn't really get anyone to take him seriously and/or help him. Another thing I really love about him is how incredibly smart he is and revolutionary in the best way! I love that he is an inventor which shows where Belle most likely got her open-mind and curiosity from. I also imagine Belle's mother was probably quite beautiful, sweet and smart herself. I would've loved to have had a chance with parents like Belle's, even if I only got Maurice. :D
4. Tiana's Parents: James & Eudora
Smart Loyal & Devoted Father
Humble, sharing, caring, loving, devoted, balanced and wonderful people. These were such great parents. As a user on here has cleverly put it, "How did Tiana end up the way she did when she had such wonderful parents?" (Hope you don't mind my quoting you but I thought you were spot on! :D) I don't think Tiana is that nasty all the time but I think she can certainly get nasty. I personally think her character in the script was just badly written. She seems like a sweet and humble gal in the beginning all until she meets Naveen as a frog. Then it's like she magically takes on his personality. Anyways, this isn't about her but her parents. I think her parents are wonderful people! They don't have a lot but they don't ask for a lot and that is incredibly similar to how I grew up. I love how James tried to teach Tiana to share with his community. I also commend him as it was heavily implied he died serving his country. I also like that he tried to teach Tiana about balance. Balance, to me, is the key to life. I don't know exactly when he died and Eudora became a single mother which is why these two aren't any higher. Eudora also seemed like a balanced woman and I loved how she read to the children in the beginning and helped Tiana clean the inside of the place she bought for her restaurant. That was super nice and involved. There is one thing about Eudora I don't appreciate though. I don't like a mother who tells me "I want some grandkids" long before I'm ready to have any or even dating. (Since this is more modern-era with Tiana. I take every set of parents in their time, place and culture as I believe that is only fair to each.) I don't have children for someone else other than me and my husband and I wouldn't appreciate my mom pushing me for that. I believe that children are the #1 thing in the world that should never be rushed or forced on people. I truly don't because of the way I grew up. I believe children should only be born if both parents consent and are ready for the children as that is only fair to the child who has no say in being born.
3. Merida's Parents: King Fergus & Queen Elinor
...Hardworking and Balanced
I think both of these parents are at different extremes and therefore balance each other out in a lot of ways. I also think both of these parents deeply love their children and would do anything for them, despite their extremities. King Fergus, I think would be a good father but definitely not my favorite. I think he lacks some key manners and I don't think I'd much enjoy seeing him at the table when eating the way he does. That being said, I'm just being picky now because I have to be with this part of the list since I adore all of these parents! (I don't mean to be insulting to any of them, please know that!) I think Fergus really loves his daughter and wants her to have the freedom and joy that comes with being a child. I also think he's a bit unrealistic with giving her a bow at such a young age and I would prefer a father who is a bit more conscientious than that. I don't want my father to put me in situations where I could really injure myself! I love archery and fencing though, it might seem odd, but I honestly do wholeheartedly! (I've shot a bow and arrow and played swordfight with Jedi Lightsabers.) So I would have LOVED to have had a dad that I could do those things with and learn from! I think he'd be a most fun dad. He's also very protective, the way he always puts himself in between Merida and any bear. I would love to have a father there for me all the time who loved me and wanted to protect me so much, and actually could on top of it. <3 Elinor has the exact goals I think every parent should have, "to give their children a better life then they had for themselves". If you cannot do that for your children then I honestly don't know why anyone would have children just to suffer or have harder lives, I honestly think that's cruel. I love that Elinor tries to do everything she can to help her daughter be as cultured as possible. Even though there is a law of forced and arranged marriages, I love the fact that Elinor does everything she can to educate Merida and give her all kinds of different experiences with music, history, art, etc. I think it's so awesome how much Elinor is involved in Merida's life and trying to help her get as much as she can out of it (despite their communication issues)! I think if I were in Merida's shoes, I could've easily gotten my mother Elinor to go out horseback riding with me earlier because I would not have been resisting her. Elinor has so much love for her daughter and I see that in all of the activities that she tries to come up with for her. I admire her greatly as a mother and I think it would've gotten on my nerves to constantly be corrected as well but A) I wouldn't have needed as much correcting as Merida did because I'm not so rebellious though I was very much a tomboy growing up and B) I would eventually see it maturely the way I do now and thank her for it.
2. Mulan's Parents: The Fa Family - Fa Zhou (Father), Fa Li (Mother) & Grandmother Fa
...Devoted & Protective Parents
I have to include the grandmother here because it is important in Asian culture to show ancestors respect so if the grandmother is living in the household then she will be shown almost as much respect as the parents will. I love this family! For such a conservative and traditional culture, Zhou is completely understanding and pretty progressive! I love that he teaches his daughter about respect, responsibility and accountability but that he also truly deep down respects her and is patient with her as he wants her to "blossom" in her own time. He hopes that things will work out for her and that she will do well but when she doesn't, he is one of the most understanding parents ever! I love the talk he gives her under the tree and I also love that he is stern with her when he needs to be. I love his sense of honor, duty and respect as well as love, family and loyalty. He is very calm, smart and wise which I think Mulan taps into later when in the army. :D I also LOVE her mother and would have loved to have had her as my mother growing up! I love how honest she is with Mulan and how much she really cares about her to tell her the truth. I love that overall in Asian culture. She is also incredibly balanced with it (as I believe her husband is incredibly balanced as well!). I love how when Mulan complains the water "is cold", her mother tells her "it would've been warm if you got here on time". It was such a perfect line. Honest and constructively critical, alerting her of her part but not overdoing it at all or belittling her or insulting her or anything for it. I love that she simply tells her what she could've done instead, offering up a solution, instead of just scolding her. I absolutely LOVE, adore and respect that in a parent so much! I think both of these parents are so wonderfully balanced and I would have loved to have had them teach me all about duty, respect, honor, self-control, wisdom, maturity, patience, and all of their other values as I have always valued all of those things on my own even when my primary parent (mother) did not. The grandmother is somewhat cute! Sometimes she can be a bit much, the line "can you stay forever?" to shang shouted across the garden comes to mind. I like her though, as she has good intentions, but I would've been very upset with her about the cricket thing even though he ended up balancing out Mushu somewhat. Because of the attachment of Grandmother Fa, since she obviously comes with these parents, is why the Fa family is my #2.
Completely Understanding & Devoted...
Therefore, my #1 absolute favorite parents that I wish I could've traded places with the DPs is:
1. Aurora's Parents: King Stefan & Queen Leah (+ 3 Good Fairies: Flora, Fauna & Merryweather)
...And Overall Balanced Parents
So I understand the plot was a bit... unconventional, with having the 3 good fairies raise Aurora but my gosh did they do a wonderful job or what? I see Aurora as being an absolutely divine human being. I love everything about her! I think she got some of the best genes of all of the DPs when it comes to all-around. I will break this into 2 to separate the fairies and parents:
A) Flora, Fauna & Merryweather:
I think these 3 women did a wonderful job with Aurora and they seemed to spoil her with LOVE! The one thing I believe every parent (or in parental position) should spoil their child with! :D I have seen this movie probably 100x and let me say that I believe it's heavily implied that Merryweather did all of the cooking and was good at it. I know some people speculate because of the bday cake with Fauna but as Flora said, it was Fauna's "last chance" to bake a cake and since Merryweather was so personally upset and Flora didn't take on the task herself, it seemed heavily implied that Merryweather used to do the cooking and probably Fauna did the cleaning. Either way, 3 women who all want nothing but the very best for you? Yes, please! Aurora was so calm and pleasant that I have to believe the fairies gave her the kind of environment that allowed her to be that way and I would have loved to have been raised in that environment! (Plus: Let's be honest! They were as much a part of saving Aurora's life as Phillip was! <3)
Sweetest & Kindest Caretakers....
B) King Stefan & Queen Leah:
...Loyal & Protective to the Core
I LOVE these two as parents! All they ever wanted was a child their whole lives and all I ever wanted in my childhood was parents like them! We would've been a match made in heaven! I love how much Stefan really loves and cares for his daughter, even after all of these years away he is only thinking of her and her comfortability etc. When King Hubert (Phillip's dad) tells Stefan that he has already built a castle for Phillip & Aurora to move into, Stefan immediately stands up for his daughter! <3 He even risks going to war over it though Hubert calms down and later realizes he was being extreme. I love how Stefan was thinking of his daughter and he says "this may all be a bit much for her, she may need time to adjust" before moving in with Phillip (not knowing she was already in love with him at this point). I love how his fatherly instincts were always there even after how much it must have disappointed him to not be able to raise her throughout her child the way he wanted to. We don't hear much from Queen Leah but that's okay because I can tell by her personality and quietness that it is where Aurora gets her grace and demeanor from. Also the way she quickly grabs baby Aurora when Maleficent comes in shows her strong maternal senses. (And her tears when reuniting with Aurora also show how much she had missed her!) I think part of why Aurora came out so nicely with the fairies was that she had such good genetics from such wonderful parents! <3 Parents who had a child because they were in love and they wanted to raise a baby together. Although Maleficent robbed them of that, she never robbed them of being good parents and giving their daughter whatever they could whenever they could. I absolutely love and admire and respect these parents and wish I could've had them growing up! <3
Loving, Longing, Protective...
...Absolutely Dream Parents<3