Helmer is a successful bank lawyer in the drama “A Doll House” written by Henrik Ibsen. His wife’s name is Nora. She is a housewife with three children and gets help raising them from her maid Helen. Nora and Helmer are both busy people within their lives. Little do they know that their marriage is not safe due to the fact that it is not given first priority in the lives they led. The action takes place in their home. Helmer is very protective when it comes to the family image that is portrayed to the public. This is because his career, as a lawyer, depends on it.
He feels that he should have a perfect public image for the sake of his career and not his family, since that is what comes first in his life. This is seen when he discovers a letter from a bank that his wife, Nora, gets a loan from. He finds out that the loan was acquired illegally through forgery. She uses her father’s signature. Helmer immediately strips her of all her rights to him as his wife and to the children as their mother. He does not ask for divorce since this will not be a good public image for his career, instead he asks her to have a separate room from his and limits her time with the children.
Helmer is the rule maker of his house. He meticulously gives details on how he wants his house run. He has set time for everything, when the meals are prepared, when the children should go to sleep, when they should wake up, what to eat, when to check the mail etc. This is probably the reason why he is successful in his career. He is again putting his career as first priority and uses the principal that he applies to it in the family. Helmer has an office in the house of with he gives limited accesses to his wife, Nora. He treats her as if she was one of his children instead of “his wife”.
He entertains his official friends in the office in closed-door sessions and usually doesn’t fill in his wife on his business. Career comes first for Hemler. The key to the mailbox is in the hands of Hemler. It looks like he does not take his wife as an equal by not giving her a spare key. He wants to be the first one to handle all the mail, scans the letters in the box and then distributes them to the appropriate people. His wife again is placed second to his business. Nora, Helmer’s wife is also very protective when it comes how her husband views her.
I see this when she hides the fact that she is having chocolate, which is forbidden in the household. She would rather let Dr. Rank, a family friend, know about the chocolate and not her husband. The doctor actually helps her to hide the package when Helmer walks into the living room. She also puts him in second place in her life. Nora also tells her friend Mrs. Linde about the money that she squeezes out of her house hold budget to pay for the loan she took from the bank. She does not tell her husband about the loan because she knows how he will react towards her and the issue.
She protects herself instead of their relationship, putting their marriage in second place. The family friend doctor tells Nora how he has been in love with her for a long time. She reacts negatively letting Dr. Rank know that she will not tolerate his behavior. She keeps it from her husband since she wants to maintain an innocent view from him. The hiding of such issues from Helmer is first priority instead of her marriage. Nora is caught red-handed lying about the visit of Nis Krogstad, the banker. Nis is responsible for the Nora’s loan.
Helmer asks about the banker’s visit and she denies the fact that he had come the their house. She is constantly lying just to save herself from changing her husbands view towards her. The blow to their marriage happens when Helmer discovers that his wife forged a bank document to get a loan. He gets angry and strips her of all her motherly and wife rights. Another letter shows up and clears them form the forgary He changes immediately and reinstats Nora back to her postion in their home. This clearly shows that he loves his career more than anything else.
Nora on the other hand expects her husband to show her a sacrificial love and take the blame for the forgary. At the end of the drama Helmer and Nora end up living separtae lives. They have both contributed to their marriage’s downfall. Nora with her obsetion of wanting to always please her husband by using pretence, lies, undermining strategies and fear and Helmer with the love for his career, hunger for power, control and his fear of un unplesant public image help to destroy one another. The most perfect family is no more since Nora loved herself excesivly and Helmer loved his career extremly.