Though Merida loves her family, she is, at times, deeply upset with her parents for their apathy. Her father is jovial, and her mother is regal, but both of them tend to talk about doing things without actually getting anything done. Merida has come to recognize that the DunBroch way of dealing with problems is sweeping them under the rug with a kind attitude and hoping they just fade away.
This mentality provides some tension between Merida and her parents, as Merida knows that if they don’t change, they’ll die. At one point, Merida lashes out at her mother for being unwilling to travel with her, telling her that clan DunBroch is only pretending to be a kingdom.
“I’m disappointed that’s how you see me, is all,” Merida’s mother tells her.
“I’m disappointed this is how you are!” Merida says.
But as Merida journeys onward to find ways to change her family and save the kingdom, she discovers that she doesn’t actually know the full story of her mother—and when she finds it out, the two of them grow closer.
Merida deeply cares for her family throughout the book, even if she doesn’t always get along with them. At one point, she begins to cry in front of her mother at the thought of her family being killed, and her mother comforts her. She also grows closer with her father, who shows occasional moments of tenderness when he, Merida and one of Merida’s brothers are thrust into a dangerous situation.
An orphanage is set up to take care of orphaned girls. Feradach, despite his destructive job, doesn’t enjoy hurting people.