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Who Is The Father In Doubting Thomas?

When "Doubting Thomas" begins, Jen (Sarah Butler) is close to giving birth. To the surprise of her and her husband Tom (Will McFadden, also the film's writer and director), their baby turns out to be Black, in spite of both parents being white.

Initially, after discussing how this might have happened, Tom and Jen arrive at the conclusion that there may be a Black ancestor within one of their respective family trees. The trait that determined their baby's skin color, then, may have simply been passed on through a recessive gene — a scientifically sound solution in line with pioneering work by scientist Gregor Mendel.

Soon after, however, Tom gets word that Jen met privately with his good friend Ron (Jamie Hector). He starts to wonder if their dalliance might have been romantic in nature. In turn, he suspects that their baby may be the child of an affair between Jen and Ron, a Black man, thus potentially explaining their baby's appearance.

Ideologically, the true identity of the father in "Doubting Thomas" is unimportant. Through this story, Tom (and the film's audience) must confront some uncomfortable truths about societal perceptions of race, lending the film its dramatic weight. That said, for those left questioning who might have fathered Tom and Jen's child, the film does gesture toward an answer.

Tom is most likely the father, but that's beside the point

Beginning early on in "Doubting Thomas," Tom exhibits some racist behavior. This culminates as the film nears its end, when Tom bluntly tells Jen that he doesn't want to raise "a Black kid." Jen decides to spend some time away from Tom as a result of his outburst toward their son.

Jen's mother Kate (Melora Walters) invites Tom over soon after to help clear the air. Kate reveals that Jen's biological father was a Black man, absent in Jen's life because he was murdered by a police officer after being wrongfully accused of a robbery. Thematically, this additional insight into Jen's family tree broadens the scope of the impact of racism in America. Plot-wise, this moment explains the appearance of Tom and Jen's baby.

Soon after that, Tom and Jen reconcile. Jen even reveals to Tom that she's taken a paternity test in order to put Tom's lingering doubt to rest. However, Tom burns the printed-out results of the paternity test, recommitting himself to raising their child. The film, then, is clearly telling audiences that the identity of the baby's parentage is far less important than Tom's growth and willingness to father his child. That said, Kate's revelation about Jen's fatherhood seems to suggest that Tom is, in fact, the baby's real father.