[[quoteright:330:[[Film/LifeAsWeKnowIt http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/LAWKIlawki_1108.jpg]]]][[caption-width-right:330:{{Am I right}}, target audience?]]

->''"If you love something, set it free. If it comes back, it's yours. If it doesn't come back, it was never yours to begin with. But if it just sits on your couch, eats your food, watches your TV, and uses your phone, and doesn't seem to realize or care that you set it free, you either married it or gave birth to it."''
-->-- '''A parodic twist on a well-known proverb'''

A modern, less "offensive" variation of the HenpeckedHusband, where in a married couple, the husband is quite a [[ManChild child-like]], slobbish {{jerk|ass}}, and the wife is like a parent to him except that she can quite easily provide him sex. Sometimes, the wife may talk about feeling like she really does have one more child than the number of children they have, and guess who the extra is? Ironically, her job of child care may be made easier by the husband being able to connect to their children more effectively.

Sometimes, though, the husband is perfectly angelic or a hard worker, or a mixture of the two, and the wife is simply motherly with no shallow motives, with him being most of all a BumblingDad with a penchant for causing [[HilarityEnsues wacky hijinks]] that she must resolve, this being part of a CloserToEarth setup.

A rather awful DoubleStandard; the notion of a girlish wife in need of control and protection by a fatherly husband [[DeadHorseTrope rarely appears today and]] [[ValuesDissonance is largely perceived]] [[MostWritersAreMale as overtly sexist]], (similarly, the HenpeckedHusband scenario is considered nowadays to be a big TakeThat against the sole idea of a woman pulling the weight on the family --see the description above--) but this one persists. There are UnfortunateImplications on both sides - men are told that they're useless and incompetent, at least in the realm of family life, and should really just let their wives take charge; women are told that they [[MenAreChildish can't expect their husbands to act like grownups]] and should just resign themselves to having to carry their husband's weight responsibility-wise and being regarded as the boring killjoy of the family for it.
----
!!Examples:

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[[folder: Anime and Manga ]]

* In ''Manga/DragonBall'', [[{{Tsundere}} Chi-Chi]] treats her husband [[IdiotHero Son Goku]] very much like this. However, it could be subverted, as the fact that Goku is a phenomenally powerful alien Martial Artist makes this relationship look more equitable than most other examples -- Chi-Chi "takes care" [[{{Housewife}} of Goku at home]], Goku "takes care of her in return"... [[ChronicHeroSyndrome by saving the world on a regular basis]]. To say nothing of when Goku actually does get de-aged to a child.

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[[folder: Fan Works ]]

* In ''Fanfic/AllYouNeedIsLove'' Naomi Penber ends up parenting her AxeCrazy StalkerWithACrush:
-->'''Naomi:''' Light, wait up! You're going to put someone's eye out with that gun.
-->'''Light:''' That's sort of the idea.

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[[folder: Film ]]

* Baron and Baroness Bomburst in ''Film/ChittyChittyBangBang''. She buys the man ''toys'', for God's sake, and coos over him as if he were a precocious, temperamental infant. (Which, admittedly, he totally acts like.)
** Though she's not really an adult in many ways either. Given that they seem to be de facto monarchs, perhaps neither of them has to be.
* This is one of the issues at hand in the film ''Film/TheStoryOfUs''.
* Taken to a rather {{Squick}}y extreme in ''Film/MerlinsShopOfMysticalWonders'': The JerkAss critic in the first story, as a result of a spell gone wrong, turns into a baby, giving his infertile wife the son she could never conceive. Needless to say, when this movie was featured on ''MST3K'', this did ''not'' go un-mocked.
-->'''Mike:''' Oh, good, now she has to raise her horrible husband!
-->'''Crow:''' That's what most wives think they do, anyway.
* When the doctor in ''Film/{{Blindness}}'' goes blind, his wife ends up treating him more like an infant than a spouse anymore, and it repulses him.

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[[folder: Literature ]]

* A gender-reversed version of this occurs in Charles Dickens' ''Literature/DavidCopperfield'', in which David's first wife is childlike and asks him to think of her as his "child-wife."
* In Diana Wynne Jones' ''Literature/HouseOfManyWays'', sequel to ''Literature/HowlsMovingCastle'', Howl actually turns himself into a DeliberatelyCuteChild, and poor Sophie has to deal with both him and their son. While trying to do her job.
* In the [[Literature/TheMoomins Moomin books]], Moominmamma to Moominpapa. In the comics she openly laments how hard it is to have a husband that never grows up.

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[[folder: Live Action TV ]]

* Most modern sitcoms. (50 or 60 years ago, however, you were more likely to see the reverse.)
* ''DesperateHousewives'' has Tom and Lynette Scavos. Lynette often has to play the bad guy and suffer through being the disciplinarian while Tom is the cool dad.
* ''{{Friends}}'': There was an in-universe joke that Monica was the adult and Chandler the child, but the truth was that Chandler was equally likely to be the adult to Monica's child. It usually depended on what joke the episode was going for, and they actually had a very balanced relationship most of the time.
* ''Series/HowIMetYourMother'' has Lily and Marshall. There's even one scene where Ted and Marshall are standing in front of Lily with their heads bowed like little children getting punished and saying "Sorry, [[strike:Mom]] Lily" together.
** This one goes back and forth and around, though, as Lily is often shown to be immature and occasionally infantile as well as the others. Taken to an extreme in one particular episode where Lily is convinced that Marshall is ready to raise a child because he was able to take care of her when she was drunk and acting like a child. The same episode was also one of many to point out that Ted is basically already a dad without kids (or a wife, for that matter).
** It even expands to include Ted in an epsiode where he briefly moves in with Robin and Marshall and Lily realizes he owned all the useful stuff like towels and he bought all the food.
* In BritCom ''Series/TwoPointFourChildren'', the husband was rather needy, although emotionally rather than practically.
* ''TheCosbyShow'', though Cliff Huxtable is not a BumblingDad, and this one possibly isn't an example of CloserToEarth; Clair Huxtable was more practical but not really morally superior, and in fact was sometimes *indrawn breath* wrong.
* Debra and Ray Barone in ''EverybodyLovesRaymond'' fit this to a tee in the mid-to-later seasons of the show. Ray is actually more of a nebbish. In the earlier seasons of the show, Raymond was portrayed as being rather clever and witty, at one point even winning a national award for his writing skills. In the later seasons, he was seemingly dumbed down to make Debra look better by comparison, all so that the show could more easily shill Debra and use this trope.
* ''HomeImprovement'': Tim Taylor, although he ''could'' be competent when he wasn't trying so hard (especially when it came to taking home improvement projects UpToEleven).
* Turk and Carla on ''Series/{{Scrubs}}''. When Carla first meets Turk's mom, she's creeped out by how similar they are.
* ''ModernFamily'' has Phil and Claire.
* Lily and Rufus on ''GossipGirl''.
* ''Series/MadMen'': [[spoiler: Because she's infertile,]] Trudy is more a parent than a wife to her impulsive, impatient husband, Pete.
** They Get Better. Actually end up being the most healthy couple on screen.
*** Until season 6.
* The TropeMaker: TheHoneymooners.
* ''TwoAndAHalfMen'': Being fed up with this sort of situation is what causes Bridget to split up with Walden.

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[[folder: Music ]]

* Inverted in LadyGaga's ''Alejandro'':
-->''She's not broken/She's just a baby/But her boyfriend's like a dad, just like a dad''

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[[folder: Video Games ]]

* Believe it or not, the parents of the Toad family in Westmost house in Toad Town of ''VideoGame/PaperMario'' manages to fit this trope. The wife mentions in one of her conversations that she feels like she has three children.
* Matsu to her somewhat slow but endearing hubby Toshiie in ''VideoGame/SengokuBasara''.
* Lilly and Keith in ''VideoGame/DeadlyPremonition.'' Lilly often refers to Keith as her third son, and notes how some of his childish ways can be troublesome to deal with. However, she explains that her husband's sense of childlike joy and fun is actually [[HappilyMarried part of what she loves most about him, and Keith, likewise, is very appreciative of the way she keeps him on the right track.]] They're also NotSoDifferent, since Lilly is mischievous and fun-loving beneath her motherly exterior, and Keith is a business owner and devoted family man.

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[[folder: Web Comics ]]

* Despite not being married, in {{Dumbing of Age}} Walky [[http://www.dumbingofage.com/2012/comic/book-2/05-saturdays-all-right-for-slighting/moms/ invokes this trope when he temporarily breaks up with Dorothy]]. Although it's clear that despite resenting how patronizing her behavior was, Walky [[ManChild doesn't really want to "grow up"]] and likes how dominant Dorothy is in the relationship. Likewise, while she has been embarrassed by him occasionally Dorothy definitely [[WeaknessTurnsHerOn enjoys Walky's juvenile and submissive personality on some level.]]

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[[folder: Web Original ]]

* The mandatory take by ''TheOnion'': [[http://www.theonion.com/articles/area-girlfriend-boyfriend-achieve-perfect-motherso,2714/ Area Girlfriend, Boyfriend Achieve Perfect Mother-Son Relationship]].
* [[http://noseriouslywhatabouttehmenz.wordpress.com/2012/02/22/the-domestication-narrative/ This Blog]] discusses the topic more seriously, calling it the "Domestication Narrative"

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[[folder: Western Animation ]]

* ''FamilyGuy'': Lois and Peter Griffin. One episode even had a scene where he was refusing to brush his teeth and she would've had to do it for him if they hadn't heard burglars breaking in at that moment.
* Wilma and Fred from ''TheFlintstones''.
* ''TheSimpsons'': Homer Simpson:
-->'''Announcer:''' Attention, Marge Simpson: your son has been arrested.\\
'''Announcer:''' Attention, Marge Simpson: we've also arrested your older, balder, fatter son.
* Nicole and Richard from ''WesternAnimation/TheAmazingWorldOfGumball''
* ''WesternAnimation/KingOfTheHill'': MAJOR inversion with Hank and Peggy Hill. Peggy's [[SmallNameBigEgo huge ego]] makes her act ridiculously childish, forcing Hank to clean up the inevitable mess.
* Un married example in ''WesternAnimation/SonicSatAM'' with Sonic and Sally. Though often depicted as [[NotSoDifferent rivaling egos]], Sonic is usually far more childish and arrogant than Sally, who often needs to guide Sonic so he doesn't endanger himself (and at times [[NiceJobBreakingItHero the entire team by extention]]) with his recklessness. This chemistry is mostly kept in the [[ComicBook/SonicTheHedgehog comic adaptation]].
* ''WesternAnimation/{{Daria}}'': Helen often has to do this to Jake.