Study Guide

Lulabelle Bates in The Help

By Kathryn Stockett

Lulabelle Bates

Lulabelle is Constantine's daughter and she's about Skeeter's age. While Lulabelle's father was black, Constantine's father was not. As a result, Lulabelle happened to be born with an appearance that allowed her to pass for white. But, white-looking black children were not acceptable in 1940s Mississippi (when Lulabelle was born), so Constantine gave her up for adoption, in part so she could work for the Phelans' and care for Skeeter, another woman's child. Luckily, Constantine sees in Skeeter a chance to make things better for the next generation, like Aibileen does with Mae Mobley. She cares for Skeeter as if she was her own, never revealing the heartbreak of separating from her own daughter.

We don't get much of Lulabelle's story, but we know she is fiery and proud, and that she knows full well the crimes committed against her mother and herself. Although Lula and Constantine reunite while Skeeter is finishing her senior year of college, Lula offends Skeeter's mother Charlotte by passing herself off as a white woman and attending a DAR meeting. Constantine is subsequently forced to move with Lula to Chicago, but doesn't even make it through one brutal winter.