Perhaps if Bruce Ismay had learned how to stand up to his tyrannical father instead of cowering in his shadow, he might have taken a different course the night the Titanic sank. We'll never know. This is not a negative judgment of the man, but an observation that he had not developed a strong spine to be bold when push came to shove. Under those circumstances, it's no wonder he chose the lifeboat. He may have been fearful of meeting his father on the other side.