(#) Max 2007-01-18
Totally agree with you on the abuse there, in reality, if Harry had grown up like that, totally devoid of love and affection and starved and abused like he was, IF (and that's a big if) Harry managed to survive all that, he would be psychotic. One thing to point out is something called the "Rule of Three" - an average, HEALTHY, person under moderate conditions (temperature, humidity and such) can survive three minutes without air, three DAYS without water and three weeks without food - that's a rough average - it would be much shorter with a child like Harry in those conditions since he would have practically no body fat and little muscle given the long term starvation.
I didn't know about the 'three' thing. When I was 23, I went without eating for 19 days during a training exercize. I was in the military at the time, and although I only had water, I was required to maintain the normal workload for my job.
A child Harry's age, on the other hand, wouldn't last long. The long-term abuse, and starvation, or near starvation, when combined with the violent beating, could easily kill a child. I never understood why Dumbledore would disregard the advise of his closest advisor, and leave a magical baby with a family that he had to know despised magic. His excuse in HPSS, was so the boy didn't grow a big head. sigh Alorkin