->''The century before you never could turn 21\\
Years and years he waited, just watching for a son\\
For someone to go ahead, "Take the name" he said\\
Years and years he waited, but a daughter came instead.''
-->-- '''Music/TheFray''', "Enough for Now"

Genetics is a highly unpredictable thing. Sometimes it seems to seek to endow offspring with all the best or worst traits available. Hence the characteristic lament of parents who discover that instead of their dream girl, they have a rough-and-tumble boy, or that their [[HeirClubForMen long-awaited manly heir]] is actually a doe-eyed female. Or the kid simply is the opposite of what they want in talent or personality. Needless to say, this usually does not result in happy-go-lucky familial relations.

If the parents are ''really'' unhappy about this situation, they might raise the child to conform to their imagined ideal spawn. If the kid has powers, they'll be forbidden to use them. If they have the wrong gender, they'll have to [[WholesomeCrossdresser imitate their desired gender]] (even giving them an [[EmbarrassingMiddleName appropriate name]]). This always has, at best, mixed success. Often said child catches on to their wish fulfillment and rebels.

That's assuming, of course, they can [[OffingTheOffspring make it out of]] [[DrivenToSuicide that house alive]] at all... [[InadequateInheritor Inheriting the family fortune]] is usually likewise out of the question, though chance and irony may well have them get it.

Compare AllOfTheOtherReindeer, HaveYouTriedNotBeingAMonster, TheUnFavorite, WhereDidWeGoWrong



[[folder:Anime & Manga]]
* ''Manga/UruseiYatsura'':
** You have Ataru Moroboshi whose mother is constantly going "I wish I never had him." There's also a scene where both parents are away reminiscing about their life, and when they start talking about Ataru, both say that they had wanted a girl at the time.
** Ryuunosuke is the version where her father wish she was a boy... so he deludes himself into thinking she is one. Ryuunosuke does '''not''' appreciate this, being fully aware that she's really a girl and wanting nothing more than to be cute and frilly instead of rough and masculine (so much so that even girls who know she's really a girl try to get her to date them... although that might be because all of the real boys in schools are freaks, losers or lechers).
* An unfunny example would be in ''Anime/DotHackSign'', where [[spoiler: Tsukasa]]'s [[AbusiveParent father was abusive]] about wanting a different gendered child. We only explicitly find this out in the end, though it's implied earlier, with, for instance, [[spoiler:scenes of him throwing away a bra she had stolen for herself.]]
** He even goes so far as [[spoiler:trying to pull the plug on Tsukasa's life support which ends up getting him arrested.]]
* ''Manga/RoseOfVersailles'' has as its central character Lady Oscar, a French noblewoman raised as a boy by her father (who couldn't manage to produce a male heir). Unlike most characters forced to crossdress, Lady Oscar seems to have no problems dressing and acting like a boy -- at least most of the time. (This could be due to the people around her being oddly accepting of her in her role as a woman pretending to be a man -- to the point where they even allow her to be a military leader. To be fair, she ''does'' have to crack some heads to get some of her subordinates to fully accept her.) At one point it's even ''inverted'': seeing the French Revolution approaching, Oscar's father tries and get her into an ArrangedMarriage so that she would have to StayInTheKitchen and away from the fighting, but Oscar ruins the party in which she was supposed to choose her husband and makes clear she ''wants'' to act as a man and a military leader because she considers the life of a noblewoman as empty and meaningless.
* There's a hentai doujin (part of the ''Secret Plot: Deep'' series) where a boy who looked like his twin sister was mistaken for her by his parents after her death and started pretending to be his sister while at home, but himself while at school. It all works out in the end, as it turns out the tomboyish gym teacher and his childhood friend both have learn they have fetishes for guys in skirts. One of the few examples (or only) where it works in the end. Of course, one has to wonder how healthy it is for his parents to live a lie, or how long he can keep it up. But then again, BellisariosMaxim...
* There's also a Korean series (''I.N.V.U.'') with the same story for one of the characters, except it was the daughter pretending to be the brother, and only the mother had mistaken her for the son (the son and mother were in an accident, and the son died while the mother forgot the daughter's existence)
* Yuuri's mother in ''LightNovel/KyoKaraMaoh'' laments that she never had a "cute" girl and is permanently berating him for it. She even dressed him up in dresses when he was younger. (The fact that both her children are [[spoiler:demon kings]] doesn't seem to rate on her list of things to be proud of either. Weirdo.) She's actually extremely proud of them both. Very much including the kingship, although the calm with which she's taken that (and [[{{Cloudcuckoolander}} her idea of preparing him for it]]) is downright bizarre. She just ''really'' wanted a girl.
* Done somewhat humourously in an episode of ''LightNovel/{{Slayers}}'' (next, I believe), where there's supposedly a church town consisting completely of girls, and men were not allowed, causing some very amusing cross-dressing on the male characters' parts. Once it's found that one girl that Zelgadiss is getting a crush on is a boy, pretty much the rest of the village strips to their underwear to reveal the same. [[http://www.tv.com/slayers/theyre-talking-about-a-girl-named-zelgadis!/episode/240045/summary.html Read the summary here if you don't believe it.]]
* In ''Boy Soprano'', though Akira is technically an adopted son, his mother raised him as a girl since early childhood, and even made him attend the girls' high school she's the principal of. This is sort of a subversion: Not only does she already have a biological daughter, she doesn't actually wish Akira was a girl, either, and frequently takes advantage of him sexually. In fact, she made him go to the girls' school so she could keep an eye on him (and so that he could get to know his boy-crazy classmates. Even if it is [[DoubleStandardRapeFemaleOnMale often explicitly against his will]].)
* Kujira Etorofu from ''Manga/PenguinMusumeHeart'' is raised as a boy by her father, who adamantly keeps denying she is a girl, despite her noticeable large breasts. As another result of this, she is being chased by her childhood friend Cha Chi, who wants her for her "husband". She even was confused about it herself as a kid and at one point confessed to a girl (and not just ''any'' girl either). Then again, she might just [[SchoolgirlLesbians swing that way]]--and of course there is [[LesYay nothing wrong with that]].
* Ruki Makino of ''Anime/DigimonTamers'' is essentially in the same boat. Her dad wanted a boy, and her mother tried to make her a model. Eventually, mother and daughter reconcile.
* ''Manga/AssassinationClassroom'': [[spoiler: Nagisa's mother puts him in dresses, forces him to wear his hair long, and sees him as her 'second chance' to live the life she wanted, plotting out every aspect of his life. She gets violent when he tries to deny her.]] Turns out there's a good reason for his prodigious KillerInstinct.
* ''Manga/DescendantsOfDarkness'''s Hisoka is named after his dead sister, whom his father loved. To make matters worse, he has the ability to sense people's emotions, which caused his parents to label him as a demon and lock him away in a cage.
* ''Manga/{{Karin}}'''s parents really wish she was a normal vampire. [[spoiler:Of course, the fact that she isn't is a major plot point later on.]]
* ''Manga/FruitsBasket'':
** Akito from the manga. [[spoiler:Akito's mother Ren raised Akito as a male because she was jealous of the attention Akito received for being born the zodiac God.]]
** And then there's Momiji, whose mother said that her "greatest regret was giving birth to ''that creature''" and actually [[spoiler:had her memories of her own son ''removed'']].
* ''Manga/OnePiece'': Monkey D. Garp really, really wanted his grandsons to be Marines like him instead of going into piracy. Granted, rather than a simple matter of carrying on the legacy, Garp just wanted to be loved by his grandsons and not have to arrest them when they inevitably became highly wanted criminals. [[spoiler:The fact that his only son, Dragon, is the worst criminal in the world probably has something to do with this as well.]] In spite of all that, he has always been proud of them, because regardless of the fact that they are pirates, he still raised them to be good people. Unfortunately for him, Ace [[spoiler:is the son of Gold Roger, so he'd never be allowed to join the Marines ([[SinsOfOurFathers let alone live]]),]] and Luffy is [[IdiotHero just kind of an idiot]]. [[spoiler:Though it can be argued that even though Garp was his biological grandfather, Luffy wouldn't have been allowed to join the Marines as well, because of his parentage, similar to that of Ace's.]]
* Kyouya of ''Manga/OuranHighSchoolHostClub'' is the youngest of three brothers and therefore is believed to have no chance at running the Ootori family empire. His father pushes him all the time to do better ("being top of your class is something your brothers have already done...") and is never satisfied despite the fact that most non-family think Kyouya is the most striking and has the most potential of the three brothers, and Tamaki's father even scolds Kyouya's father for having four wonderful children (including his daughter) and being completely unsatisfied. Kyouya actually ends up [[spoiler: earning enough money through the Host Club to not only buy his father's company but to throw it right back.]]
* In ''Manga/TheSecretAgreement'', Yuuichi is initially abandoned by his clan for appearing to be a {{muggle}} but then assigned an unrelated guardian to watch over him in case he starts showing signs of change. In perhaps an inversion, despite his uncle's congratulations when his supernatural side finally awakens, Yuuichi is [[AwfulTruth horrified at becoming "normal"]].
* ''Manga/TheWallflower'' (or Yamato Nadeshiko Shiche Henge) is based on this trope, as Sunako, a girl traumatized by her first crush telling her she's ugly, grows up to become obsessed with horror movies and darkness, unable to even look at anything "bright" - or pretty. Oddly enough, her actual parents seem okay with it, defending her at school, but her aunt finds it unacceptable. The entire series is based on her aunt trying to get her four tenants (the most handsome boys in school) to turn her niece into a perfect girl - a YamatoNadeshiko. In fact the Japanese name roughly translates to Perfect Girl Evolution in English.
* Nono and Yuuta from the manga ''Manga/{{Nononono}}'' both get this from their father, but in different ways and for different reasons. Yuuta is subject to borderline abuse for not being good enough at ski jumping, and Nono is ignored because, as a girl, she can't compete in the Olympics for the sport. The premise of the story is that, after Yuuta's accidental death, Nono [[GenderBender assumes his identity]] in hopes of making it to the Olympics and winning the gold medal to restore their father's honor.
* Played with in ''Anime/MagicalGirlLyricalNanoha'': [[spoiler:Precia Testarossa hates her daughter Fate so much because Fate is an imperfect clone of her real (deceased) daughter Alicia. At the end of TheMovie version, though, she realizes, just before she dies, that Alicia had always wanted a sister, and that Fate could have been that sister had Precia not been so fixated on Alicia.]]
* ''Webcomic/AxisPowersHetalia:'' [[TheGunslinger Switzerland]] created [[PrincelyYoungMan Austria]], whose name means "Eastern Division," to fight, and though they were [[ChildhoodFriends close as children]], Switzerland was highly disappointed when fighting proved not to be the young Austria's strong suit, and he had to bail him out after wars. From then on, Austria went through life making alliances instead of waging wars, and in the present, he's become a clear NonActionGuy.

[[folder:Comic Books]]
* While the family was together, ''ComicBook/{{Finder}}'s'' Brigham Grosvenor adored his daughters Rachel and Marcie, but didn't have much use for the middle child, his son Lynne, who ends up being raised as a girl. As if he wasn't confused enough, [[spoiler:he develops breasts, just like all the males of his mother's clan.]]
* Fanny of ''ComicBook/TheInvisibles'' was born into a tribal society where only women could receive the blessings of the spirits; in order to fool the spirits into accepting the young boy as a shaman, his grandmother cut a slash in his upper thigh to fake a menstrual period. By the time the series takes place, Fanny is a transvestite call-girl.
* Tyler Marlocke is sent to ''ComicBook/PS238'' despite his lack of powers, because his parents (both superheroes) refuse to believe that he's a normal human and insist that his abilities will manifest if he's just exposed to the right trigger. Of course, they may be right, broadly speaking, as a normal boy going to a super-school results in the Franchise/{{Batman}}-[[CaptainErsatz like]] Revenant taking an interest in the kid's future and well-being, which ends up turning him into a BadassNormal-in-training. Which is more or less the opposite of what his parents want to happen. [[spoiler: When Tyler's clone Toby starts manifesting RealityWarper superpowers, Tyler's parents are so ecstatic that they seem to wind up forgetting that Tyler even exists]].
** When [[spoiler:Zodon]] discovered his parents thought this way about him, he took it poorly. [[spoiler:'Give them LaserGuidedAmnesia [[SelfMadeOrphan and transport them to a parallel dimension free of superpowers]]' badly. Even more twisted is that [[PetTheDog he only did it because he thought it was what they wanted]], and things *did* turn out better for them in Alternate Omaha.]]
* In ''ComicBook/StrontiumDog'', Johnny's father was the leader of a National Front-like party that seeks to purge New Britain of all mutants. Naturally, he's mortified that his own son is a mutant. When Johnny was a kid, he was forces to wear sunglasses at all times to hide his mutant eyes, and was told they were too sensitive to ever be exposed.
* In ''Franchise/{{Superman}}'', General Sam Lane was always more than vocal about the fact that he wanted a boy, but instead had Lois and Lucy. He even went so far as to treat them as such. While it did lead to Lois' tough-as-nails demeanor, it also caused her to have a very bitter resentment towards her father.
* This is part of ComicBook/{{Cyborg}}'s backstory, going back to his time with the ''New Comicbook/TeenTitans''; he was an extremely gifted athlete with genius scientist parents who saw no value in his athletic accomplishments and successes. They refused to attend his meets and games, and often simply ignored him at home.
* Chase of ''Comicbook/{{Runaways}}'' has a similar backstory, though unlike Cyborg he's not actually very intelligent. ''ComicBook/AvengersArena'' established that, for instance, his father flipped his lid when he failed out of AP Science, but didn't care one bit that he broke a middle school receiving record just a few days later.
* All Comicbook/RasAlGhul wants is a competent [[HeirClubForMen male heir]].[[note]]Well, that, immortality and the destruction of 90% of humanity.[[/note]] Unfortunately, he keeps getting daughters and incompetent sons. For a long time he hoped to accomplish this by having his WorthyOpponent, Comicbook/{{Batman}}, [[FaceHeelTurn change sides]] and marry his [[MadScientistsBeautifulDaughter beautiful daughter Talia]]; eventually, he gets his wish when Talia and Bruce have a son, [[EnfantTerrible Damian]], instead. Then [[HeelFaceTurn Damian switches sides]] and becomes the new Comicbook/{{Robin}}. Never mind.
* ''Comicbook/XMen'' villain Graydon Creed has a FreudianExcuse for hating mutants--he's the [[MuggleBornOfMages non-mutant]] son of Comicbook/{{Mystique}} and Comicbook/{{Sabretooth}}, who gave him up for adoption because neither wanted a human child.

[[folder:Films -- Animation]]
* ''WesternAnimation/MyLittlePonyTheMovie'': WickedWitch EvilMatriarch Hydia is thoroughly upset about her daughters Reeka and Draggle's ineptitude as wicked witches. "Why can't you be evil like I taught you?"
* Hiccup from ''WesternAnimation/HowToTrainYourDragon'' is well aware that his father is not pleased with how his son turned out.
-->'''Hiccup:''' He never listens. And when he does, it's with this disappointed scowl, like someone skimped on the meat in his sandwich. 'Excuse me, barmaid. I'm afraid you brought me the wrong offspring! I ordered an extra-large boy with beefy arms, extra guts and glory on the side. This here, this is a talking fishbone!'\\
'''Gobber:''' You're thinking about this all wrong. It's not so much what you look like -- it's what's ''inside'' that he can't stand!\\
'''Hiccup:''' ...Thank you for summing that up.
* Parodied in ''Disney/{{Frozen}}'', where, as she trudges through knee-deep snow, Anna gripes for once that she wishes Elsa had ''tropical''-related powers instead of ice-related powers:
-->'''Anna:''' [[WhyDidItHaveToBeSnakes Snow! It had to be snow!]] She couldn't have had tropical magic that covered the f-fjords in white sand and warm...[''sees the smoke coming from the chimney on Wandering Oaken's Trading Post and Sauna'']...[[AstonishinglyAppropriateInterruption fire]]!
** [[spoiler:In ''Literature/AFrozenHeart'', Prince Hans is well-aware that his father, the king of the Southern Isles, holds a dim view of him, repeatedly claiming that Hans should "learn a thing or two" from his twelve older brothers. To him, if any of his 13 sons began to show a softer side, they must be forcibly molded back into the Westergaard way of doing things, that is, to be [[TykeBomb forcibly indoctrinated in the view]] that [[TheSocialDarwinist the strong have a right to pick on the weak]]. His father and brothers often berate and emotionally abuse him for being too docile and [[EvenEvilHasStandards not approving of their methods of harshly treating their subjects]]. And their opinion of Hans hasn't changed much even after causing an international scandal and tarnishing the family name.]]

[[folder:Films -- Live-Action]]
* The very thing that put [[spoiler:Angela]] off the deep end in ''Film/SleepawayCamp''.
* Faramir in ''[[Film/TheLordOfTheRings Return of the King]]'' - especially the movie version, when he asks Denethor if he would have preferred Faramir to have died and Boromir to have lived. Denethor, master of tact, [[BluntYes says "Yes."]]
* In ''Film/StandByMe'' Gordy's parents paid much more attention to his older brother, who was a football star and had many friends in school. When he died in a car accident at his funeral, Gordy's father may have said to him "It should have been you, Gordon."
** Since that occurs in a dream, it's more likely that Gordy's parents acted in a way that made him feel they would have preferred that ''he'' had died, instead.
* In ''Film/DeadPoetsSociety'', Neil's father just CAN'T accept what his son wants to do in life.
* ''Film/EasternPromises'': Mob boss Semyon isn't too impressed with his son and heir.
* In ''Literature/OrdinaryPeople'', older son Buck is killed in a sailing accident. Mother Beth (Mary Tyler Moore) admits to father Calvin (Donald Sutherland) that she would have preferred that her other son, Conrad (Timothy Hutton), had died instead.
* ''Film/WalkHardTheDeweyCoxStory'', being a parody of ''Film/WalkTheLine'', has Dewey's more talented brother dying young. The RunningGag of the film is Dewey's father regularly appearing and stating, "the wrong kid died!"
* Live-action ''Film/SpiderMan1'' played up how much EvilGenius Norman Osborn would have preferred to have Peter Parker as a son to Harry, who is thoroughly unremarkable and defined by the wealth Norman built up and then reared him in. It's in the dialogue and called back in the climax. [[spoiler:Ironically, Norman only starts to show more interest in Harry when the Goblin Serum starts to drive him mad.]] Of course, in this version, Norman is simply a neglectful parent who is not that bad a guy. The comic-book Norman...
* In ''Film/SkyHigh2005'', this is the unfortunate reaction from his superhero parents to the news that their son Will Stronghold has no powers. (He does gain them later in the movie...)
-->'''Josie "Jetstream" Stronghold:''' We can't change who he is... not without dropping him in a vat of toxic waste.\\
'''Steve "The Commander" Stronghold:''' ''[beat; obviously thinking it over]'' ...\\
'''Josie:''' Steve!\\
'''Steve:''' Where would we even find a vat of...\\
'''Josie:''' STEVE!
* In the 1956 film ''Film/TeaAndSympathy'', Tom Lee's parents are disappointed in his lack of athletic acumen, but that's nothing compared to their horror when he declares his intention to become--gasp!--a ''folk singer''.

* In ''Literature/OutOfTheDust'', Billie Jo's father, Bayard, wanted a boy, which is why he gave her a [[TomboyishName masculine name]] and forced her to work on the farm.
* The mother of the savant-autistic main protagonist Christopher Boone in ''Literature/TheCuriousIncidentOfTheDogInTheNighttime'' leaves her husband and moves to London with her next-door neighbour, telling Christopher via letter that [[ItsAllAboutMe she might not have done if he had been different]].
** She says she felt like she wasn't a good enough mother to him, and that, as his father was so much more capable, it would be better for her son if she just left. In her letters, and later when Christopher goes to London to see her, she's very sorry about it.
* Conina, daughter of Cohen the Barbarian, the ''Literature/{{Discworld}}'''s oldest and most successful barbarian warrior, inherited her father's skills as a fighter, making sure she lived a life of high adventure. Too bad what she ''really'' wants to do is be a hairdresser. Although this is not so much parental disapproval as a career forced by destiny. Due to the rather strange laws of genetics in ''Literature/{{Discworld}}'', she has inherited not only father's skills but also his barbarian instincts. Turns out some people should ''really'' not spend their days holding a razor blade against people's throats.
* The parents of Ida in ''Literature/ShamanOfTheUndead'' are both powerful wizards with great political connections and plans already made for their daughter's entire future: she'll go to magical university, marry a Council-important wizard, give birth to magical children and generally be an obedient daughter and wife. Ida, however, turns out to have no magic at all, a rebellious streak and the ambition to study psychology at a Muggle university. Her parents are convinced she's actually hiding her magic from them, so they set multiple magical traps in their house, hoping to force her to use it. Even after finding out she really ''doesn't'' have magic talents, they still want to make a politically expedient marriage for her, so she finally runs away from home.
* ''Split Heirs'' has a quite a bit on this. See, the queen has triplets, two boys and a girl, in a land where multiple births are supposed to be a sign of infidelity. She has one son and her daughter smuggled out in secret and sends word of the birth of a son... only to find out that the boys were smuggled out and she was left with her daughter. And the one she trusted to do the smuggling has a heart attack after dropping off the kids. Flash forward years later to the queen ''still'' having to fake to the kingdom and her daughter that there's only the one crown prince. HilarityEnsues.
* Georg Weiler in ''Stones from the River'' spends most of his early life in girls' clothes because of his mother's issues with men.
* Jaenelle Angelline from the ''Literature/BlackJewels'' series by Creator/AnneBishop is neglected all through her childhood because her role as Witch, the ChosenOne, means she's [[UncannyValley not entirely human]] and her family, unable to reconcile their fear/horror of her with her relatively innocuous outside, decide she's insane. Consequently she is [[spoiler:repeatedly sent to an institution where she is terribly abused.]]
* Played with somewhat in the first book of Creator/RobinHobb's ''[[Literature/{{Farseer}} The Farseer]]'' trilogy, where the wife of [[HeroicBastard Fitz's]] father finds she likes Fitz just as he is -- except for the fact that he's her dead husband's bastard child, the son she [[LawOfInverseFertility never could give him due to her own frailty]]. The "Why couldn't you be different?" complaint isn't that he's the wrong sex or impaired, but is instead summed up in her lament to Fitz that, "You should have been mine!"
* ''Literature/HeraldsOfValdemar'': Vanyel Ashkevron has this in spades. Being a slight, delicate fellow whose main interest was music was bad enough in the eldest son of a provincial nobleman; but his interest in the opposite gender was also lacking.
* ''Literature/HarryPotter'':
** The Dursleys absolutely detest the fact that their nephew Harry comes from magical stock. So much so that they hide him under a spider-filled cupboard under the stairs, until they have a reason to bribe him and move him into Dudley's room of old broken junk.
** Despite the fact that he comes from a very loving family, Ron Weasley seems to believe that his mother values him less because he was the last of a series of sons born before Molly finally had the daughter she "craved".
** The closest that Molly ever gets to this is wishing that Fred and George put more effort into their schoolwork and less effort into their pranks. This attitude vanishes since the twins start a successful business based on pranks and Voldemort's return means there are much more important things to worry about than grades.
* In Creator/RobertLudlum's novel ''The Janson Directive'', Jessica Kincaid, a sniper hired to kill the protagonist who ultimately befriends him, explains that her single father effectively raised her as a boy, teaching her how to fix cars and hunt.
* Sue Townsend's ''The Growing Pains of Literature/AdrianMole'':
** Adrian's father and mother talk about Adrian, making him "sound like Damian in the film of ''Film/{{The Omen|1976}}'', and then proceed to describe their respective ideal sons at length. They then say that if Adrian "turned out like he was," it's because they called him Adrian rather than Brett... which is what his father ends up calling his second son.
** Adrian, in turn, continually despairs over his oldest son Glenn's utter lack of intellectualism, obsession with football, and determinedly bad grammar.
* ''Literature/ASongOfIceAndFire'':
** Tyrion Lannister gets a rather harsh version of this from his father Tywin, due to his being a dwarf.
** Randyll Tarly, likewise, does almost exactly the same thing to his fat, [[{{Bookworm}} bookish]] son, Sam. As soon as little brother Dickon shows signs of the warrior Randyll desires, he [[ReassignedToAntarctica sends Sam as far away as he can]].
** When we get a look into her head in ''Literature/AFeastForCrows'', it's revealed that Cersei laments that Tommen is not as willful and "strong" as his older brother Joffrey. Of course, when Tommen finally does start to show some inner strength, [[{{Hypocrite}} Cersei]] punishes him for it by [[KickTheDog forcing Tommen to beat his whipping boy]].
* Dr. Austin Sloper in ''Literature/WashingtonSquare'' not-so-secretly despises his daughter Catherine--she's not even a shadow of her beautiful clever mother (also named Catherine) in his eyes. While the elder Catherine was fair, witty, and extroverted, the younger Catherine is dark, "unclever" and a ShrinkingViolet.
* In the book ''Boot Camp'' by Todd Strasser, children are sent to an extremely dangerous and abusive boot camp called Lake Harmony to be "reprogrammed" into the children their parents want them to be. The main character, Garret, is sent because he embarrassed his parent by having a relationship with his [[HotForTeacher teacher]]. His friend Pualy was sent there because his dad wanted a manly football player for a son and his parents [[MistakenForGay thought he was gay]] because he wasn't tough.
* In Helen Cresswell's ''Ordinary Jack'' the title character is so upset at being the only "normal" person in a family of overachieving self-declared geniuses that his Uncle Parker comes up with a scheme which involves pretending he's a prophet.
* In Jasmine Cresswell's ''Love for Hire'' the main character's doctor and nurse parents can't understand why she became a baker instead of going into medicine like the rest of the family.
* In the ''Literature/DrakeMaijstral'' series by Creator/WalterJonWilliams, Drake's parents are ''not'' pleased with his chosen line of work, feeling that it's totally beneath someone of his social class. Of course, if they hadn't blown the family fortune on futile attempts to end human independence and put the alien Khosali back in charge, Drake might not have ''needed'' a job.

[[folder:Live-Action TV]]
* ''Series/GameOfThrones'':
** Sam Tarly was forced to join the Night's Watch because his father thought this of him.
** Tyrion Lannister gets told this time and again because his dwarfism and whore-mongering wound his father's pride and prestige.
** {{Deconstructed}} by Balon and Yara Greyjoy. After losing all his sons to death or captivity, Balon raises his daughter like a son, which Yara completely embraces.
* In ''Series/{{Skins}}'', Sid's dad makes it perfectly clear that he would prefer Tony to be his son instead of Sid. He actually breaks down in one scene after seeing Sid and Tony together, and says to Sid, "Why couldn't you... why did I...?" Which is ironic given that Sid, despite being a rather [[UnluckyEverydude ineffectual loser]] and a ''tiny'' bit dim, is a genuinely sweet and well-meaning guy, whereas Tony (prior to his CharacterDevelopment) is a cruel, manipulative jerkass who constantly taunts and undermines his ''own'' father. This is made even more ironic when it is revealed that Sid's dad's dad despises him more than Sid's dad despises Sid.
* Dr. Forrester, the mad scientist from ''Series/MysteryScienceTheater3000'' has, as his full name, Doctor Clayton Deborah Susan Forrester. (He was so named by his overbearing mother, who had really wanted a girl.)
* ''Series/{{Scrubs}}'': Elliot Reid's father wanted a son. Which is sort of weird, considering how he already had four by the time his daughter was born.
* In a similar vein, Robin Scherbatsky's dad in ''Series/HowIMetYourMother'' also wanted a son - and didn't let the fact that she was his only child get in the way of that. Her full name is actually ''Robin Charles Scherbatsky Junior''.
* On ''Series/TheBigBangTheory'', Penny's dad wanted a son so badly that he forced her to play all sorts of sports so he could pretend she was a boy. It was so bad that she actually does everything she can to make him proud, but it doesn't work because she's a girl.
* Joyce uses one of these in ''Series/BuffyTheVampireSlayer''. "Have you tried ''not'' being a Slayer?" [[DoesThisRemindYouOfAnything Seems vaguely familiar...]]
* ''Series/HigherGround'': Peter's father: "I just want a son I can be proud of!"
* ''Series/{{Frasier}}'' has a man's man cop with two sons who hate sports and love the opera. The situation recurses when Frasier himself narrowly avoids buying his son an educational toy as a Christmas present, of the sort that he never got as a kid, when all his son wanted was an RC monster robot.
* Shawn Spencer of ''Series/{{Psych}}'' also has a cop for a dad, who may also qualify based on their strained relationship. In this particular case, however, it's implied to be a more self-fulfilling example than anything else, since Shawn's primary motive for rebelling against his dad was Henry's obsessive and overbearing determination to have Shawn FollowInMyFootsteps; had Henry been just a bit less pushy about the whole thing, it's likely their relationship wouldn't have deteriorated nearly as bad as it did.
* Even ''Series/{{House}}'' got this treatment from his father, who found his son a disappointment (to be clear, his father was disappointed in his son's abrasive personality and generally jerkass-ness, not for being a brilliant and renowned doctor). It was later said that the two were never related in the first place, the man was not House's biological father, so that probably didn't help ease any tension. Him abusing House as a boy didn't do a lot for bonding either, come to think of it. Made all the more poignant with the actor used to portray him: Creator/RLeeErmey.
* The parents on ''Series/{{Roseanne}}'' might not be really proud of their kids, but don't make an effort to force them to change since they recognize it would do more harm than good. One episode does give a brief nod to the desire for a child with a different gender though, and it's portrayed as something you really wouldn't do if you wanted what's best for your kids.
-->'''Crystal:''' Y'know, sometimes I wish my Lonny was a little girl. Then I could get to dress him up in all sorts of dresses and bows and ribbons and put his hair in pigtails and... ''(She stops, seeing Jackie and Roseanne looking at her in a disturbed manner)'' I-I don't ''really do'' it, obviously.
* Interestingly averted in ''Series/{{Glee}}'', where Burt Hummel admits that he didn't remotely anticipate having a son like Kurt, but still loves him deeply and would never want him to change. The aversion is seriously underscored when Burt orders his new girlfriend's son Finn - who is exactly the sort of boy Burt might be expected to want as a son - out of the Hummel house after overhearing him use the word "faggy" to describe Kurt's furniture (though later Burt calls out on Kurt's dishonesty about his crush on Finn and is shown to have forgiven and reconcile with his new stepson Finn months later).
* Saffron from ''Series/AbsolutelyFabulous'' is an intelligent, ethical, and hard working daughter who would be a joy to most parents. Shame her mother wants her to be a drunken, trampy, drug using party girl. Or at least ''gay'' so she'd be interesting. Edina is actually overjoyed to learn that her estranged son Serge ''is'' gay...but unfortunately he's a StraightGay, and every bit as bookish and straitlaced as Saffron. Edina actually tries to officially adopt Serge's CampGay partner as her son instead.
* ''Series/MontyPythonsFlyingCircus'': PlayedForLaughs in the [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YPSzPGrazPo Northern Playwright sketch]], in which the father is disgusted that his son would choose a radically different career. [[spoiler: The father is the playwright, and the son is in the mining business.]]
* ''Series/{{Supernatural}}'': John Winchester practically disowned Sam when the latter was more interested in school than in hunting.
* Taken to rather horrifying extremes by Doctor Bashir's parents on ''Series/StarTrekDeepSpaceNine'', who [[spoiler: had him genetically enhanced at the age of six because they were ashamed of him for having what sounds like some kind of learning disorder]]. Note: this is not only illegal under Federation law, but literally ''every other example'' of a [[spoiler: post-eugenics augment]] we meet in the canon is either evil or suffers from some form of extreme dysfunction. Even having done so, his father seems disappointed that Julian has not chosen to take a more comfortable posting on Earth, rather than working as a FrontierDoctor on Deep Space Nine.
* ''Series/TheOrville'': Heavily implied in the case of Alara. On the one call she makes to her parents, they spend the entire time asking when she's going to come home and get a "real" education, calling her intellectually "slow," referring to humans (the majority of the crew) as the galaxy's "hillbillies," and saying a military career is beneath her. Turns out that, despite her people being HeavyWorlder types with SuperStrength in Earth-like conditions, they true [[PlanetOfHats species hat]] is that of intellectuals and philosophers. Alara, being a security officer in a mostly-human military is [[KlingonScientistsGetNoRespect considered a distasteful career choice.]]

* "I'm a Boy," ''Music/TheWho.''
-->''"I'm a boy, I'm a boy, but my ma wont admit it / I'm a boy, I'm a boy, but if I say I am I get it."''
* Paul & Storm's "[[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aAP3TEE2MDs Better Version of You]]," (song starts at 1:30) wherein a young boy is treated to a list of all the ways his new sibling will be better and more loved than he is. [[RefugeInAudacity It is]] ''[[CrossesTheLineTwice hilarious]]''.
* Simple Plan's song "Perfect" is essentially about this.
* "She should've stayed away from friends / she should've had more time to spend / she should've died when she was born / she should've worn a crown of thorns / she should've / been a son" - "Been A Son", Music/{{Nirvana}}
* Music/LinkinPark's song, "Numb."

* Strauss and Von Hofmannsthal's final operatic collaboration, ''Arabella'', has the titular character's younger sister Zdenka go through life as "Zdenko" instead, to save money.
* Moira Buffini's ''Silence'' takes place around the year 1000, and its title character is a girl who was raised to think s/he was a boy, so that s/he could inherit his/her father's lands and position.
* Frex Thropp in ''Theatre/{{Wicked}}'' hates his daughter Elphaba for several different reasons, including being green, [[InsaneTrollLogic supposedly causing her mother's death and her sister's disability by being green]], [[HaveYouTriedNotBeingAMonster having magical powers]], [[NoSocialSkills generally coming off as strange]], and possibly [[spoiler: being a HeroicBastard.]] [[AlternateCharacterInterpretation Not entirely unjustified]] if he figured Elphaba was [[spoiler:fathered by a passing stranger]], and was twisted and cursed as a result. Though it's 'extremely' unlikely he would have guessed the Wizard of Oz was involved, it's not like that would have made her much more popular in this setting.

[[folder:Video Games]]
* Sophia Lamb from ''VideoGame/BioShock2'' proceeded with her plan for utopia by attempting to brainwash her daughter Eleanor in various recorded-lessons and mathematics studies, in order to 'properly' derange her so that she could become a fusion core for all of Rapture's insanity-induced genius. The result is based on what Eleanor's "father", Subject Delta, does to the people he encounters on his way to rescue her. If Delta saves as many people as possible, [[spoiler: Eleanor becomes a perfectly normal teen with a strong moral fiber, despite the brainwashing]]. If Delta is an unrepentant child-killer, [[spoiler: Eleanor becomes a living, breathing weapon of mass destruction]]. Either way, Sophia doesn't take kindly to the fact that her plan for saving the world from decay and subsequent nuclear Armageddon is ruined.
* ''VideoGame/GuiltyGear'' has [[WholesomeCrossdresser Bridget]], with the slight difference that the parents weren't trying to correct for any perceived defect in their child. They were trying to prevent the neighbors from realizing that they were raising twins of the same sex, which is considered an omen where they come from.
* When Beat was alive in ''VideoGame/TheWorldEndsWithYou'', his parents had started voicing their desire that he be be more like his sister, [[spoiler:Rhyme]]. This resulted in him starting to push her away.
* ''VideoGame/TalesOfTheAbyss'' has a variation: [[ShelteredAristocrat Luke fon Fabre]] has a strong case of IdentityAmnesia due to a kidnapping seven years ago and everyone wants him to regain his memories; especially his fiancee and ChildhoodFriend Princess Natalia. [[spoiler: It turns out to have been fully this trope the whole time with the reveal that [[BlankSlate Luke]] is the ''replica'' of the original Luke.]]
* The Demoman in ''VideoGame/TeamFortress2'' [[http://www.teamfortress.com/war/demo/ parodies]] this trope with his mother, who insists that he's wasting his talents and disgracing the family name... because he's only lost ''one'' eye to explosives and holds down only ''three'' jobs. Keep in mind that he has a seven-figure salary.
* A ''justified'' case with Mr. Aishi and his daughter in ''VideoGame/YandereSimulator'': [[spoiler: he's afraid she'll turn out just like her mother, a {{Yandere}} who murdered a rival (and got away with it), kidnapped him and forced him to marry her, and the other females in the Aishi line.]] Whether she does or not is ultimately up to the player.

[[folder:Visual Novels]]
* Minagi in ''VisualNovel/{{AIR}}'' doesn't crossdress, but she ''does'' [[spoiler:take on the role of her dead younger sister for her mentally ill mother, who not only rejected the older sister but denied her existence.]]
* Leads to explosive bouts of violent parenting in ''VisualNovel/UminekoWhenTheyCry''.
* In ''VisualNovel/MysticMessenger'', this pretty much summarizes [[spoiler:Zen's childhood. His parents hated how handsome he was because they feared he'd prefer to become a singer or actor rather than a doctor or some other "respectable" job, so they kept telling him he was ugly. His older brother feels enough pity to tell Zen he is actually beautiful, but once he actually wants to become an actor, his brother sides with their parents, too.]]

[[folder:Web Comics]]
* In ''Webcomic/DorkTower'', Kayleigh occasionally angsts about being overshadowed by her siblings and their numerous accomplishments, while she's reduced to being a journalist for a local newspaper.
* Used in ''Webcomic/ElGoonishShive'' when Justin (who is gay) calls his parents to alert them he won't be coming home that night. We hear his half of the conversation: "Hello, dad... I might be sleeping over at a friend's house tonight... Uh, you've never met her, but her name is Susan and there's a girl named Ellen here along with Nanase... Yes, I am spending the night with three girls... No, I don't plan on sleeping with any of them... You know, most parents would be happy about their son answering no to that last question."
** Later in that arc, Susan (who is not) has her mother lament her being straight; the former Mrs Pompoms's ex-husband cheated on her, and left Susan with a bit of emotional baggage regarding men in the process.
* The Barbarian warrior maiden [[PunnyName Jillian Zamussels]] in ''Webcomic/{{Erfworld}}'', commander of the aerial cavalry of Prince Ansom, originally from the tiny utopian peaceful mountain kingdom Faq. Her "father", the king Banhammer, needed an heir, but ''"instead of a perfect little philosopher-prince like he wanted? ...[[http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0091.html He got a sword-swinging madwoman]], who knows exactly which fork to use to pluck out an eyeball... but not for the salad".'' She delights in blood and guts mercenary work. She doesn't even look vaguely Asian as the other characters from her home kingdom, but has short blonde hair and a Scandinavian appearance.
* In ''Webcomic/SluggyFreelance'', Zoe's mother is one of these. It's bad enough that she's got ridiculously puritan values (she thinks lingerie is a sexually transmitted disease), but she also has a strong WeirdnessCensor, while Zoe is a WeirdnessMagnet.
-->'''Zoe:''' ''[on the phone with her mom]'' All right, I'll tell you! I'm trapped in a room where an alien and a rabbit with high explosives are trying to kill each other! ...No rehab Mom! I AM NOT on DRUGS!
* In ''Webcomic/TheLawOfPurple'', Blue's father made no secret of the fact that he would have been much happier if Blue, the only one of his family to be born as 2nd Kind, had been "normal" instead. Blue's mother seems to have been more okay with Blue being 2nd Kind, but she was also a known eccentric.
* Helen of ''Webcomic/VenusEnvy'' frets that she may have inadvertently caused Zoe to become transgender by having always wanted a daughter.
* ''Webcomic/TheOrderOfTheStick'':
** Roy Greenhilt of has a bad relationship with his father. Eugene wanted a wizard for a son, but Roy's a fighter.
** Bonus points to the fact that Eugene's father wanted a fighter son who would enjoy manly things like fishing and sports. Instead he got a son who was more interested in academics and becoming a wizard. Although in that case, Eugene still comes off worse, since he apparently [[InsufferableGenius spent a lot of time telling his father he was stupid]], which kind of makes this the son wondering why the ''parent'' couldn't be different.

[[folder:Western Animation]]
* ''WesternAnimation/AvatarTheLastAirbender'':
** Toph is an [[ExtraordinarilyEmpoweredGirl Extraordinarily Empowered]] ActionGirl whose extraordinarily rich parents kept her locked up and treated her like a fragile China doll because she's blind and they don't know her powers. And then when they ''do'' know about her powers, their reaction is to do an even more thorough job of locking her up.
** As seen in flashbacks, Fire Lord Ozai ''clearly'' favored his daughter Azula over Zuko, which took a toll on Zuko's self-esteem and development. EpilepticTrees theories abound as to where Ozai's indifference to and hatred of his son stemmed from, but a simple explanation is probably that Azula had TheGift and Zuko apparently did not. Also very probably because he was very clearly not a psychopath like him, and Azula equally clearly ''was''.
*** One large reason was that Ozai's own father, Azulon, favored his older brother Iroh than him. This complex might have added to this, resulting in ended up favoring his younger child, Azula.
*** ComicBook/AvatarTheLastAirbenderTheSearch reveals that Ozai's hatred of Zuko was possibly caused by [[spoiler: Ozai wanting revenge on Ursa for wishing Zuko was not his son]].
*** Ozai's [[AbusiveParents wholesale]] [[TheExile rejection]] of Zuko drove [[WellDoneSonGuy his entire character]] in season one, even as he arced from BigBad to QuirkyMinibossSquad to AntiVillain, and formed a major part of it even in season two, while he and Iroh were WalkingTheEarth and finally getting him metaphorically out of the man's shadow a bit. His section of the first half of season three is him realizing that he finally has his father's approval, but [[HeelRealization it isn't worth being the person he has to be to earn it]]. [[CallingTheOldManOut Then]] he {{Heel Face Turn}}ed for good.
** Mai's parents pushed this so early it was hard to tell how and in what ways she would even have ''been'' different -- she has completely blunted affect from overtraining in all the qualities of a proper lady. The [[KnifeNut knife]] [[ImprobableAimingSkills thing]] appears to have been her awesome private rebellion, though given this ''is'' the Fire Nation it ''could'' have been part of the regimen.
* In the later seasons of ''WesternAnimation/DextersLaboratory'', it is revealed that the parents of Dexter's EvilCounterpart Mandark were in fact nature-loving hippies who didn't much approve of their son's obsession with science. Oh wait, did I say "Mandark?" I meant ''Susan''.
* ''WesternAnimation/KingOfTheHill'':
** Doughy, laid-back comedian Bobby is anything but the son Hank Hill envisioned he'd have in . Hank loves his son, but still openly pines for one who's more masculine. Hank might have a FreudianExcuse as his own father views him as a hugely unmasculine disappointment, although the older Hill seems to approve of Bobby by showing him the affection he'd never show Hank. Though this does make it all the more [[CrowningMomentOfHeartwarming heartwarming]] on the occasions when Hank finds a reason to be proud of Bobby.
** Similarly the Hills' neighbor Khan introduces his kid as "Khan Jr." She normally goes by "Connie".
** Subverted by Dale Gribble, who could never be disappointed by his son who is an alien.
** Peggy Hill suffered/suffers this as well from her mother. Peggy's mother spent her entire childhood criticizing and belittling her, and spends her adulthood expressing how Peggy was a disappointment after twenty years of ignoring her. Her mother has said she wishes Peggy had married someone she had no feelings for, believed it to be her daughter's fault they almost lost the ranch at one point (it wasn't; she actually had nothing to do with it), and even favors Peggy's brother--a ''jailbird.''
* In the 1954 Disney short "Casey Bats Again," Casey is devastated that his new baby son is actually a daughter who cannot carry on his baseball legacy. He and Mrs. Casey try for a boy, but end up with nine daughters--which, he realizes, is enough to make up a girls' baseball team. They don't disappoint.
* In an odd variant, ''WesternAnimation/TheSpectacularSpiderMan'''s Norman Osborn wishes his son Harry was more like Peter, who is Harry's best friend.
* On ''WesternAnimation/JimmyTwoShoes'', Lucius wants his son Beezy to drop his LazyBum lifestyle and become a [[KickTheDog dog-kicking]] CorruptCorporateExecutive like him.
* In ''WesternAnimation/TheFairlyOddParents'', Timmy travels back in time a few months before he was born. It reveals both his parents wanted him to be a girl, and his dad even got him many girl toys and said "I'd be crushed if we had a son!" And if that didn't already fit this trope, we get this exchange...
-->'''Timmy:''' That explains the pink hat.\\
'''Cosmo:''' And all these baby pictures of [[WholesomeCrossdresser you in dresses]].
* In ''WesternAnimation/MoralOrel'', Clay Puppington grows to resent his son for being a sensitive and innocent child, claiming that he's been corrupted by everyone else.
* In ''WesternAnimation/JonnyQuestTheRealAdventures'', Jonny is trapped in a YourWorstNightmare situation by Jeremiah Surd where he is confronted by a doppelganger of his father Doctor Quest who calls Jonny a disappointment for not trying harder to be a scientist like him. Jonny falls to his knees and covers his ears as he tries to block out the fake Doctor Quest saying that he wishes the more academically oriented Jessie Bannon was his child instead of Jonny. The ''real'' Doctor Quest averts this trope and [[PapaWolf punches out the doppelganger]] for mocking his son.
* Sam's parents in ''WesternAnimation/DannyPhantom'' are practically yanked out of a 50s public service announcement, not a good match for a hard goth daughter who enjoys video games, environmentalism and hanging out with a kid whose parents are obsessed with ghosts. Her grandmother is more understanding though.

[[folder:Real Life]]
* After a lifetime spent with one wife and a daughter - and a bastard son - he doted on, Henry VIII famously went off the rails in the last third of his life and went through multiple wives in an attempt to father a (legitimate) male heir. His first daughter, Mary, was a big example of this. Elizabeth, his daughter by his second marriage, was such a child as well. The (financial and social) circumstances of both were in constant flux during this period, dependent as they were on their father's goodwill, but Elizabeth generally fared a little better than Mary.
* A real life example of this trope would be the ''Sworn Virgins'' of Albania -- women who dress and act like men and who take up male roles in the community. (They are often encouraged to do so if a family produces no male heirs, since it's only men who can inherit property.)
* Creator/EdWood, the infamous "Worst Director of All Time" and maker of the cult classic, ''Film/Plan9FromOuterSpace'', was routinely dressed as a girl by his mother (who had wanted him to be female). Ed never grew out of the habit of dressing in women's clothing, and for the rest of his life, lived as a non-sexually oriented transvestite; his film, ''Film/GlenOrGlenda'', was based on his experience. (It is rumored he even participated in the Battle of Guadalcanal while secretly wearing a bra and panties beneath his uniform.)
** Ed personally put forth these rumors, though, so take it with a grain of salt.
** Same thing was true about Creator/ErnestHemingway.
** And Creator/RainerMariaRilke.
* The sad TruthInTelevision of many households with children with learning disabilities, and God help you if your parents prize things like [[EducationMama high grades]] or how well others view the family.
** If any of your parents can't help but desire that you were different, and can't resist the urge to force you in whatever direction they believe is better for you, you are probably screwed (bonus screwing points, when both parents want you to be different in ways that are not only incompatible with your nature but also - in some subtle way that they prefer to ignore - to the desires of each other). This goes beyond the sole gender identity issues: if you hate with all your guts a work they see as the embodiment of human perfection, they are gonna do all they can to force you into it anyway. This is really a mainstay of AbusiveParents of every kind.
* UsefulNotes/BarackObama's mother was born with the name of Stanley Anne Dunham because--you guessed it--her father wanted a son. She eventually managed to drop the "Stanley."
* Creator/TinaFey has spent years humorously noting in interviews her annoyance that her daughter Alice has turned out to be such a princess-obsessed girly girl.