->''"I guess I'm just trying to say… my parents aren't perfect, but they tried their best. I guess that just makes them human, in the end."''
-->-- '''[[VisualNovel/KatawaShoujo Hisao]]''', ''[[Fanfic/WeekendAtHisaos Weekend at Hisao's]]''

Alice and Bob are nice. You'd like them if you met them. Bob's the boss of the big advertising company down the street, and Alice's a physics teacher at the nearby high school. They were HighSchoolSweethearts, and are still [[HappilyMarried clearly in love]]. They play tennis together on a Saturday, but on Sunday Bob goes fishing while Alice goes white water rafting. They're always busy, but always friendly. Nice folks.

Oh, and they have a 13-year-old son named Charlie. When they ''remember'' him, they're {{Doting Parent}}s… it's just that they keep forgetting he exists.

Unlike the all-powerful but under-characterised ParentExMachina, the reader/viewer knows about {{The Protagonist}}'s parents. They have friends outside the home, hobbies that take them out of the house and full time jobs. The audience will also be able to discern what kind of relationship the two have as a couple--whether they're still as starry-eyed over each other as they were when they started dating, or on the brink of divorce. They will have quirks, character strengths and character failings.

They'll also be hopeless as parents.

This couple are not usually nasty--or, if they are, we'll be told all about their FreudianExcuse. They're probably at least sympathetic, if not downright likable. We'd probably like to have them as friends, but definitely wouldn't want them as parents.

If you're a protagonist, and your parents are given lots of witty one liners, lots of characterisation and inhabit the CompetenceZone to some degree, expect to suffer ParentalAbandonment as they pursue their hobbies and relationships at your expense. If mum and dad are still together, you'll be a living example of the phrase "the children of lovers are orphans," as the parental units will be too wrapped up in each other to spend much time with you. On the other hand, if they're fighting constantly, they'll be too busy yelling at each other to notice that you haven't eaten in three days.

One particular type of this parent is one, usually-single parent that is firmly in the CompetenceZone, and probably a part of their child's [[ZanyScheme zany schemes.]] Their friends will think these parents are "cool" and they will probably agree… he just wishes his dad would occasionally show up to parents' night, and that mum remembered to cook dinner every so often.

The "golfing dad" is an old trope, and if dad's the only absent parent the child probably won't suffer too badly (until the plot calls for it). However, if ''mum'' has a hobby that takes her out of the house, works at a demanding job or has a problem that makes her borderline unfit as a parent, parental neglect will almost certainly be a plot point. How it's approached varies from show to show, from the mother realising she'd go mad without her career, to an enormous guilt trip about abandoning her child.

If this happens in a family of sufficiently high social standing, particularly in a medieval setting (being a king requires a lot of work, you know), there is a chance that the protagonist and/or one or more of his siblings may become RoyallyScrewedUp as a result.

Unlike ParentExMachina, these parents aren't infallible, and they can't solve all of their kids' problems because they can barely handle their own. Their son or daughter can't blithely assume that "dad will take care of it," because he won't. Or he'll try to and fail spectacularly.

To compensate, there's usually an alternative [[{{Mentors}} mentor]] who fills in for the absent or ineffective parent. If not, the child will be an adult long before his time as being the OnlySaneMan in a crazy family will force them to take care of themselves. If they're the oldest sibling, they'll probably ''be'' the "[[PromotionToParent alternative parent]]."


[[folder:Anime & Manga]]
* The Hirasawa parents in ''Manga/KOn'' are usually away on romantic hijinks, leaving younger sister Ui to serve as a surrogate parent for {{Cloudcuckoolander}} Yui. In the manga, the rest of the main cast finally meet them ''on the day of Yui's entrance exam to college'', and only because they came over because they were worried she might sleep too late.
* Prof. Yumi from ''Anime/MazingerZ'' sincerely loved and cared for his daughter Sayaka, but he was too MarriedToTheJob and busy trying to save the world to take care of her properly, and often Sayaka missed her father.
* Momomiya Ichigo's parents in ''Manga/TokyoMewMew'' are completely wrapped up in each other. Her mother is quick to squeal over whichever boy she's seen her daughter with, and her father is overprotective and goes off on a RantInducingSlight. However, they're shuffled off to ParentalAbandonment-land when she has to save the world, only to come back and punish her for being late to get home. They're seen as good people, they just… don't get it.
* Izumi's mother from ''Manga/FullmoonOSagashite'' is eventually depicted as this, though she was originally more portrayed as an abusive woman. [[spoiler: Her husband's apparently sudden and early death had her stricken with grief, to the point that she wasn't capable of giving comfort to her son, Izumi/Leo, and caring well for him, needing comfort herself. She got her comfort by continuously dating and sleeping with men, but their rejection because she had a child was too much for her and she, wrongly, blamed him for it. When Izumi/Leo runs off and commits suicide in front of her, she realizes the mistakes she has made and that she was not and could not be a good mother to him, even crying when she sees that her son prefers death than to live with her any longer…]]
* Part of the {{Deconstruction}} in ''Anime/NeonGenesisEvangelion'' revolves around this trope. Many SuperRobot shows have a teenage mecha pilot and a long-absent father who designed the mecha, so ''Evangelion'' shows how traumatizing it would be for a real teen to fight in a giant robot--and what kind of father would be long-absent to design the robot.
** If one were to account parental guardians in this, Misato definitely counts. She tries as hard as she can to be nurturing and protective to Shinji and Asuka, but due to her own pressing emotional baggage, she has trouble getting close to them.
** In fact Super Robot series very, very often show the teenagers being traumatized due to the absence of their parents. ''Anime/MazingerZ''? Dr. Kabuto was a MadScientist in the original manga, Sayaka missed her father constantly and it took a long while for Shiro to forgive his and Kouji's father for letting them believe he was dead FOR YEARS. ''Anime/GreatMazinger''? Tetsuya Tsurugi is EXACTLY the same character Asuka is ([[UnbuiltTrope but created]] [[OlderThanTheyThink twenty years before]]) due to being an orphan and his adoptive father Kenzou being more concerned with saving humanity than being a good father and helping him with his inferiority complex, lack of self-steem and jealousy (since Kenzou is coincidentally Kouji and Shiro's father, as mentioned above). ''Anime/KotetsuJeeg''? Hiroshi Shiba stated in the FIRST episode that he thought his father could not care less about his family and therefore he could not care less about him, only realizing that this wasn't true when Dr. Shiba [[DiedInYourArmsTonight passed away in his arms]] (and later it was shown that, no matter what his father's [[BrainUploading computer-mind]] told him, Hiroshi was still hurt). ''Anime/{{Zambot3}}''? His father being missing right when he needed him was one of the many traumas Kappei Jin was forced to endure throughout the series. ''Anime/MobileSuitGundam''? Amuro's {{workaholic}} father hardly Tem Ray had time for his family [[spoiler: and later was killed off [[DeathByFallingOver ignominiously]]]], while his mother Kamaria chose to stay behind on Earth and is heavily implied to have been having an affair. And so on.
* ''Franchise/{{Digimon}}'' loves this trope:
** [[Anime/DigimonAdventure02 Ken Ichijouji's]] parents ignored him in [[ParentalFavoritism favor of his genius older brother]], Osamu. When Osamu was hit by a car and died, they were too grieved to pay any attention to him and missed a lot of things that could have prevented his StartOfDarkness, such as the creepy e-mails he was getting from one of Mr. Ichijouji's coworkers. They did not seem to give their younger child the time of day until ''he'' started showing signs of genius tendencies and it was like Osamu reborn. They were understandably repentant when Ken, to all appearances, ran away from home and came back with EasyAmnesia, culminating in him acknowledging them as his parents again, and ever since then their relationship is more normal.
** [[Anime/DigimonTamers Juri Katou's]] father was simply not prepared to deal with his wife's early death and was a serious believer in {{tough love}}, and so he inadvertently warped his little girl into a StepfordSmiler who believed it's her destiny to be unhappy. When he realized his mistake, [[MyGodWhatHaveIDone it was almost too late.]]
*** Ruki's mother Rumiko cares for her kid but due to having her [[TeenPregnancy when she was 17]], takes quite a while to really assume her motherly role.
** What about Mr. Lee? The man has a good heart and ''does'' try to help, but he completely neglects to inform Jian that Terriermon would be used to defeat [[EldritchAbomination the D-Reaper]] at the cost of all the kids losing their Digimon. And boy, does it hurt not just Jian, but ''everyone''.
*** Note that he did not tell them deliberately, since there was the very real risk of the kids refusing to go through with the plan [[spoiler: And allowing the D-Reaper to fuse Mother D-Reaper and Cable Reaper to complete it's plan, i.e, the end of all life]]. In a way, it's also part of a deconstruction of what it would mean for the parents to have to rely on their children to fight.
** [[Anime/DigimonSavers Touma Norstein's]] father Franz, who couldn't stand up to his mother when she told his half-Japanese son that he wasn't good enough to be a Norstein, ''days'' after his mother's funeral and being transplanted to Austria, and nearly sold out the planet to a MadScientist because he promised to cure his IllGirl daughter by fusing her with a Digimon. [[CallingTheOldManOut Touma, logically, was PISSED at that.]]
** [[Anime/DigimonAdventure Yamato Ishida's]] dad Hiroaki is the "one foot in the CompetenceZone" variety--he's probably the fourth most plot-involved parent in the franchise (losing to guys who significantly influenced the back stories of their canons) and basically treats his son like a HouseWife sometimes. His ex-wife Natsuko fares somewhat better in regards to Takeru, but she's still unable to drive him to school on his first day there.
*** Sora's parents, Toshiko and Haruhiko. Toshiko was a traditional YamatoNadeshiko who [[AlmightyMom tended to be bossy and disapprove of Sora's more hotheaded nature]] (she scolds young Sora for talking to her when not properly seated once, and barring her from going to a soccer match [[spoiler: when she was injured]]), whereas Haruhiko was too absorbed in his work outside of Tokyo. They do much better in the second season.
*** Koushirou's parents, Masami and Yoshie. They're technically GoodParents, genuinely loving and even doting a little on him… [[spoiler: but didn't tell Koushirou that he was actually the son of a distant cousin of Masami's, and they adopted him as a baby after his parents died in a car crash. Which also coincided with the death of their own biological child.]] Koushirou learned this "little secret" while overhearing a talk between them, and it caused him lots of angst. But then, they talk about it openly and get better.
** Try Kouji and Kouichi's parents in Anime/DigimonFrontier. Both boys were raised on the story that their DisappearedDad (Kouichi)/MissingMom (Kouji) was dead and until the death of their maternal grandmother, neither knew the other existed. On the other hand, Kouichi's mother is technically [[GoodParents a good mother]] if a bit of an adult IllGirl from the two flashbacks we see of her and Kouji's father at least seems to be a decent enough dad.
* [[FragileFlower Nazuna]]'s parents in ''Manga/HidamariSketch.'' When they first appear to help Nazuna moving in, the other Hidamari residents instantly like them, since they're friendly and apparently doting. However, a few comics later it's clear that they have basically [[ParentalAbandonment abandoned their child]], as Nazuna's dad was transferred and her mother decided that ''her teenage daughter'' was better suited to living alone than her husband, a ''grown man.'' So she decided to go with him, and left Nazuna to fend for herself. [[TrueCompanions Good thing the Hidamari residents are so close-knit.]]
** To a lesser extent, Yuno's parents. They can be a little oddball and embarrassing, but did at least worry about their daughter's decision to live alone. Her dad is also the classic OverprotectiveDad, so they haven't completely abandoned their parental roles, even if they do like to recapture their youth by visiting amusement parks.
* ''Manga/FromEroicaWithLove'' briefly examined the repercussions of this--an unusually serious take for a comedy manga. Dorian's dad was a gay aristocrat, who was presumably pressured into marrying. After three daughters (who he doesn't seem to have concerned himself with), he is delighted with his son, who he sees as "an ally in a house full of women." He no longer bothers pretending to be respectable, and fills the house with his assorted friends, including thieves and criminals of various types, introducing his son into this social sphere. Dorian takes to thievery like a duck to water, and his father encourages this. That's the last straw for Dorian's mother, who packs up her daughters and leaves the family home, which eventually has to be sold to pay for the divorce settlement.
* In ''Manga/SakendeYaruze'', meeting for the first time at the ages of 17 and 33 respectively, Nakaya and Shino both have trouble sorting out their father-son relationship precisely because at this point in their lives they are inclined to see each other as people first and don't know where to draw lines or how they should act once Nakaya comes to live with Shino. Ultimately, Shino does fail as an ''ideal'' parent and chooses not centre his life around Nakaya, but [[WiseBeyondTheirYears Nakaya]] also chooses not to ask him to.
* ''Manga/FruitsBasket'': if the Sohma parents don't abuse their cursed children, they're likely to end up as this. I.e., Ritsu's mom Meshou is a FragileFlower who ApologisesALot, and Kisa's mother almost gives up raising her because she's too stressed and sad upon not being able to help Kisa with her school troubles.
* ''Franchise/SailorMoon'': While Kenji and Ikuko Tsukino are GoodParents and Minako's dad and mom are also hinted to be that way, Ami's mother Saeko falls into this squarely. She has good intentions, yes, but is simply too absorbed by her job as a doctor to spend time with Ami, and for worse she's also a single mom since her ex-husband is an artist who lives and works abroads. In the manga, Saeko is even seen apologizing to Ami for not being able to be with her.
* Natsue from ''Manga/{{Pretear}}'', especially in the anime. Though she ''does'' care for her family, she simply doesn't seem to be cut out for motherhood, and at times she and Kaoru are just too wrapped up in each other to notice the problems between Himeno, Mayune and Mawata. [[spoiler: ''Specially'' in the case of Mawata.]]
** Kaoru, too. It's clear he loves Himeno, but he himself is a very irresponsible ManChild until almost the end of the story.
* In ''Anime/MobileSuitGundamWing'', Relena is shown to be somewhat resentful of her father's job keeping him away from his family; in fact, one of her first lines of dialog has her admonishing him to take some more time for himself. This isn't helped by the fact that he brings her along on business trips so they can spend time together but keeps getting called away. However, there's no question that her father loves her, and that she loves him and understands that he's a very important man (being the Vice Foreign Minister to ''the entire planet''). Later in the series, she admits that she was selfish for not seeing just how important his work was. [[spoiler:Even the revelation that she's adopted does nothing to change how she feels, and in TheMovie she takes up the Darlian surname once more.]]
* ''Anime/{{Hamtaro}}'' mostly has GoodParents, but Mimi's family falls squarely into this. It's understandable if we consider that the Iwata family is ''very'' large by Japanese standards (four children, [[spoiler: including their newborn baby]]), and they ''do'' try to aid her, but one can't help feeling bad for poor Mimi when she spends a lot of her time alone at home.
* [[CrusadingWidower Kotetsu]] from ''Anime/TigerAndBunny'' is a single father who struggles with the fact that his dream job as a superhero means that he can't really spend much time with his daughter, Kaede, who lives with her grandmother and uncle.
* Satoshi and Eriko Oginome from ''Anime/MawaruPenguindrum'' do love their daughter Ringo, but [[spoiler: the death of their eldest daughter Momoka in a strange incident completely trashed the family dynamics, since Satoshi insisted that they should move on and Eriko couldn't let go.]] Now they're divorced and the teenaged Ringo lives with Eriko, while Satoshi takes her out in periodic outings. [[spoiler: But Satoshi neglects to tell Ringo [[ParentWithNewParamour that he is dating again…]] [[UnwittingInstigatorOfDoom which unintentionally]] makes Ringo despair and speed up her "Project M", causing the infamous AttemptedRape incident of episode 8 and all that came up next.]]
* Mariko Shinobu's parents in ''Manga/OniisamaE'' are not not bad persons per se, but they have ''very'' serious issues, which really don't contribute to [[BrokenBird Mariko's]] convoluted emotional state.
* ''Manga/KoreWaKoiNoHanashi''
** Haruka's parents. Her mother has become mentally instable after her son's death. Incapable of accepting reality, and his death, she flees into a sort of fantasy world, where Kazuma is simply 'not at home' and becomes worried when he's late. This kept going, until she started to see her daughter as her deceased son, calling her Kazuma and is implied to have simply forgotten that she had a daughter. And talking back to her, reminding her of her son's death, causes Haruka's mother to lash out violently. As horrible of a person she is, one cannot help but feel sorry for her.
*** Haruka's father fares a bit better. He's [[{{Workaholic}} often overseas on business]] and never took a great deal of influence in the house, before or after his son's death, since he figured his wife had everything under control. After he has to cart his wife off to a hospital and continue to work himself, he gets a housekeeper to drop in a few times a week, to cook for Haruka and take care of the household. He just overall lacks the contact he initially needed with Haruka and has difficulty creating some now.
** Shinichi's parents, if one looks at them from a certain angle. Both were hardworking people, trying to keep their family afloat, but the father was an alcoholic, who also was verbally and physically abusive to his wife. And his wife took the beatings, with Shinichi realizing years later that she might have stayed with him, simply to give Shinichi two parents to grow up with. [[spoiler: Ultimately results in his mother burning down their apartment to create a family suicide, started to choke her son, but he was the only one out of the three to survive the suicide. At the age of ''eight''.]]
* Ed and Al's dad in ''Manga/FullmetalAlchemist'' is a DisappearedDad for most of their lives, but when he lived with them while their mother was alive, he's implied to have been this trope--spending most of his time holed up in his study working on his alchemy researches. [[spoiler: He was mainly researching a way to cure his near-immortality so he wouldn't outlive his wife and children, but discovered the sinister plot his former friend had with the entire country.]]
* Yusuke's mom in ''Manga/YuYuHakusho''. She genuinely loves him but gave birth to him when she was 15 and has a lot of associated problems with being a HardDrinkingPartyGirl.
** Turns out his father is also somewhat like this, though not much is known due to being a LastEpisodeNewCharacter, but what is known is that he actually tried to instill discipline into Yusuke, i.e. spanked him, but it only led to fights between him and Atsuko resulting in their divorce. Both are also AmicableExes who tend to have one night stands on occasion but realize it's too late to get back together.
* Spirit Alburn in ''Manga/SoulEater'' tries to be a loving father but is a ''terrible'' husband, as evident by his wife divorcing him due to his womanizing, which in turn, causes tension between his daughter who loses her respect for him.
** Maka's mother could be considered one. In the manga, next to nothing is known about her and even her name was a result of a mistranslation. While she did leave Spirit, we don't even see her return to try [[spoiler: and stop Asura with driving the whole world mad.]] There appears to be no confirmation on her even being dead and alive (albeit since she's such a strong meister, we'd hear if she was dead.)
* In ''Manga/OnePiece'', Bellemere is this to her adopted daughters Nojiko and Nami. She tries to care for them, but does not make much money from her tangerines, and occasionally acts immaturely (for example, Nami claiming that Nojiko's not her sister because they're not related is a BerserkButton for her). However, she cares for them more than anything [[spoiler:and when Arlong attacks the island, she pays their fee instead of her own, ''dying for them'']].
* In ''Manga/SakiShinohayuDawnOfAge'', Kousuke, Shino's uncle, is this after he takes her in following the disappearance of her mother, who is his sister. He does his best to care for her, but is also busy with his job and searching for his sister. As a result, he makes the mistake of thinking that mahjong does nothing but remind Shino of her MissingMom, and tries to sell it, much to Shino's displeasure. Thankfully, he was unable to sell it due to missing a tile, and after he sees her having fun at a tournament (partly in hopes of getting her mother to find her), he apologizes and returns the set.
* Hana's mother, Yuri, in ''Anime/GirlsUndPanzer''. While she orders Hana out of the house after learning that she's doing tankery, it's implied that she's otherwise warm and caring for Hana, and her initial reaction to hearing that Hana is doing tankery is to worry that something is bothering her, and to respond to her belief that flower arrangement is no longer enough for her by saying that she's done well so far. She also eventually reconciles with her daughter.
* ''Manga/{{Naruto}}'':
** Gaara had every right to hate his father, the Fourth Kazekage. The man all but killed his mother to make him the Jinchuriki for Shukaku, and then drove him to his insanity by making him believe that he was never loved and that no one would ever love him. Then the man had to gall to try and assassinate him, ''several times''. Ultimately, however, he came to understand that his cruelty was in the name of the village they both held dear, through his own burdens as the Fifth Kazekage. [[spoiler:When the Fourth, resurrected by the Edo Tensei, is finally sealed, he has already made his peace with his son and leaves the village in his hands.]]
** [[spoiler:The epilogue shows Naruto as Hokage, which strains his time with his family. When his and Hinata's son Boruto starts acting out in order to get his attention (very much how Naruto was at the start of the series), Naruto tells him that his job means he can't be his dad all the time, so he must learn to endure it, because he's a ninja as well. He is also shown to try and balance his time better after this, though it is clear that this is a hard balance to make.]]
** [[spoiler:Fugaku and Mikoto Uchiha were GoodParents, but they were still people who plotted a coup against their home village in retaliation for perceived isolation after the Kyuubi attack. Every single tragedy that their sons had to endure, including the brothers' own broken relationship because Itachi refused to tell Sasuke the truth about the Massacre, can be traced back to their parents' actions. For what it's worth, both understood the consequences of their actions for not only the clan but also their children, which is partially why they refused to fight back when Itachi came to kill them]].
* Menma's mother Irene in ''Anime/AnoHanaTheFlowerWeSawThatDay'' had neglected her remaining child, Satoshi, in her grief over her daughter's death to the point she refused to leave the house and see others. Thankfully, she got better by the end of the series.
* In ''Manga/PokemonSpecial'', Grace and her daughter Y don't see eye to eye as Y dropped Rhyhorn racing in favor of Sky Training. That said, it's clear that Grace isn't a cruel person and Y does worry when Grace goes missing.
* ''LightNovel/KyoKaraMaoh'' has a couple examples:
** First, there's Lady Cecilia, the mother of three of the main characters, a beautiful, flirtatious and extremely flighty woman eternally on a quest for 'free love'. She loves her sons very much, and they love her, but all of them acknowledge her as being an unreliable and often irritating wild card in social and political situations. She is shown to have a deeper side occasionally: Conrad's father was human, and given the [[WeAreAsMayflies longer lifespan of Mazoku]], this relationship [[MayflyDecemberRomance ended predictably]] and tragically, and she seems to still mourn him. She also regrets that her weakness contributed to so much strife and sorrow during her reign as Maou.
** Secondly was Conrad's father Dan Hiri himself. Although he seems to have been a pretty good parent to Conrad and ParentalSubstitute to Jozak, to Gwendal he was [[ParentWithNewParamour his endlessly irritating new stepfather]], and [[FantasticRacism a human]], to boot. Dan Hiri seemed to find Gwendal's childish wrath amusing (while his mother appears to have simply been oblivious, as is her wont, to something she didn't want to see). This only worsened when Dan Hiri decided to [[ParentalAbandonment leave his family behind]] and continue traveling the world in search of an immortal legacy he could leave, feeling the weight of [[WeAreAsMayflies his human lifespan]]. They eventually get some sort of closure [[spoiler:when Dan Hiri dies in Gwendal's arms and Gwendal begins to understand how short and frail human lives really are]], but the validity of his choices is left ambiguous by the story.
* Tsuna's parents in ''Manga/KatekyoHitmanReborn''. Although they do care for him, his mother constantly belittles him and cares very little for his future. His father, a DisappearedDad most of Tsuna's life, who without even talking to Tsuna about it, decided to force him to become a Mafia crime lord that made him a target for countless assassins.
* In ''Manga/KoeNoKatachi'', Shouko's mother was well-meaning but harsh to her daughters to toughen them up, resulting in friction between her and her daughters, especially the youngest one.
** Shouya's mother is too busy at work and oblivious that her son wanted to commit suicide and when [[spoiler: Shouya fell into a coma]], she was so overwhelmed by the situation that she doesn't know what to do.
* In ''Manga/OuranHighSchoolHostClub'', Haruhi's father loves her dearly but tends to overwork himself a lot for her sake and Haruhi herself would rather have her dad stay home and rest than go see her at school events.
* ''Franchise/LyricalNanoha'':
** This is an important part of Fate's characterization from ''[[Anime/MagicalGirlLyricalNanohaStrikers StrikerS]]'' onward. Despite her desire to be the best mother possible for her adopted children, her position as an [[SpacePolice enforcer]] means that she's often away on missions for long stretches of time (which is part of the reason why Erio and Caro never lived with her). Vivio even teases her about it in ''[[Manga/MagicalGirlLyricalNanohaVivid ViVid]]''.
** The movie adaptation of the first season shows that [[GenerationXerox Precia]] was also like this prior to her descent into insanity.
* ''Manga/MissKobayashisDragonMaid'': Kobayashi's parents were like this while she was growing up, and she ends up as one when she becomes Kanna's ParentalSubstitute.
-->'''Kobayashi:''' Parents day... my parents never came. They were busy with work. It was to support the family, and I understood that.
* In ''Manga/MyHeroAcademia'' Izuku Midoriya's mother Inko is a positive example of this, which made her quite popular with the series' fanbase. She's essentially a single mother[[note]]Her husband is alive, but works overseas to provide for the family and hasn't appeared in person in the entire series to date[[/note]] who clearly loves her son and does her best to take care of him, but she doesn't magically know the best course of action to take and is generally hampered by being LockedOutOfTheLoop. When young Izuku was told that he would never develop superpowers, crushing his dream of becoming a hero, she did her best to comfort him without realizing that what he really needed at the time was to be told "Don't give up hope". When he spontaneously develops powers and gets into the #1 SuperheroSchool in Japan, Inko is naturally surprised but does what she can to support him. However, the fact that he repeatedly gets badly injured ''because'' of those powers (including shattering his bones multiple times) horrifies her, and [[spoiler:she initially refuses the school's request to move the students into a dorm, citing the fact that the students were attacked by supervillains on three separate occasions and even telling the #1 hero All Might (Izuku's mentor and the person who gave him his powers) that she can't trust him to keep her son safe. Rather than trying to shut him down outright, Inko proposes that Izuku transfer to a lower-profile hero school so she won't have to constantly worry about him getting killed by villains.]]
** Katsuki Bakugou's parents only realized late in the game that their son's bad attitude and massive ego had gotten to the point of his being a complete jerk. They're trying to rein him in now, but his mother clearly regrets not having done more sooner.
** Shouto Todoroki's mother was forced into a marriage with the JerkAss hero Endeavor because he wanted a child who would become a more powerful hero than All Might. She did her best to be a good mother to all her children and tried to raise Shouto right while protecting him from Endeavor's abuse, but one person could only do so much. The strain of all the abuse wore on her until she had a FreakOut that resulted in her scarring her son with boiling water, at which point Endeavor had her put into protective custody at a hospital. Years later Shouto refuses to blame her for what happened, viewing it as his father's fault for his horrendous attitude, and when he visits her in the hospital to try and patch up their relationship she's clearly very happy to see him.
* ''Manga/DetectiveConan'':
** Kogoro Mouri is an irresponsible gambler who spends much of his time drinking, while his teenage daughter Ran takes care of most of the housework. Plus he also has a tendency to yell at Ran and Conan and, in the latter's case, sometimes give smacks to the head for getting in the way. However, when either of them is in ''real'' danger, [[ActionDad he risks his life and limb for them]], and is strongly implied [[SadClown to actually be very depressed and self-deprecating]] under his borderline ManChild facade. Plus he stops smacking Conan around as time passes, and starts treating him more like an actual son than as just a kid who happens to be under his watch.
** While both of Shinichi's parents love their son, they've been rather irresponsible regarding him. They have no qualms about leaving their teenage boy to look after himself for years on end, while they work together in America. Shinichi himself loves his parents and is clearly inspired by his father's detective skills, but is well aware that they're far too irresponsible to be proper parents and thus feels no guilt about doing things like telling his dad's editor where he's hiding while skipping deadlines, or using their credit cards to pay for expensive dinners. The fact that ''Kogoro'' is shown in flashbacks to not be happy with the Kudos' FreeRangeChildren tendences says a lot.
*** ... On the other hand, directly witnessing Conan's situation seems to have been at least a mild Reality Check for them. Yukiko turns up fairly frequently to help in various schemes with her disguise skills (and Conan doesn't seem to have any doubt that she'll come when he calls for aid), and in at least one mini-arc Yusaku was lurking as back-up the whole time. They also came up with a convoluted scheme ([[IdiotBall which was kind of stupid and deserved to fail]]) in the early stages of the manga, to try and convince Conan that he's in over his head and to come with them to the US so that the three of them could try and unravel things together. It's implied that Professor Agasa reports to them regularly to keep them up to date.
* ''LightNovel/AccelWorld'' : this describes the parents of ''nearly everyone in the Accelerated World''. One of the requirements is that the player has had a Neurolinker since shortly after birth; the most common reason for that is as an [[ParentalNeglect advanced baby monitor]], so that the [[ParentalAbandonment parents don't have to spend much actual time with the baby]] - Kuroyukihime hypothesizes this is pretty much the core trauma for almost all Burst Linkers. In fact, it's one of the reasons that Burst Linkers are so passionate about the game; they're usually closer to the TrueCompanions and FoundFamily they have in the game to the people they live with in real life. To be more specific: Takumi's parents ignored his being bullied, and put so much pressure on him to succeed that he's now a StepfordSmiler with a major inferiority complex teamed with a Martyr compulsion. Kuroyukihime is living by herself while in ''middle school'' [[spoiler: not to mention the TraumaCongaLine with her elder sister and Burst Link Parent, who it's implied is a MadScientist sociopath during the Chrome Disaster arc - and their parents haven't noticed]], and has been for roughly a year when the story opens. Haruyuki himself never mentions his father; he doesn't seem to have even been in contact with him since his parent's divorce, and has some kind of trauma from that time frame that he seems to have repressed the memory of (it's hinted in one of the 'extra' episodes of the anime that this is at least partially responsible for his weight issues). Because his mother works for an international bank, he only sees her for about five minutes every morning when she's half-asleep (one of the reasons his apartment seems to be the main Team Gathering point for their Guild). The only reason he hasn't gone completely off the rails by the time the story starts is Chiyuri's parents, who "raised them like twins" until fairly recently (Chiyu's mother caters for pretty much every Guild meeting because she's so glad Haru has so many friends now, and Chiyu's always urging Haru to come by and visit with her parents). This trope is averted in the case of Chiyu herself, who is the only confirmed exception to this hands-off parenting rule - she was given a neurolinker shortly after birth because her father had damaged vocal chords from cancer, and the Neurolinker was the only way she could hear her father's voice.
* King Viktor in ''Manga/TheRoyalTutor'' genuinely loves his children but his duties as king often causes him to spend far less time with them than he would like. There are also times when he has to act harsh and stern to the younger princes as their king instead of their father because they are potential king candidates that he knows are not ready yet to be king.
* Mr. Jigokumeguri in ''Manga/{{Ojojojo}}'' does want to be a good parent to his daughters and respects their decisions if they clash with his own, but the choices he makes end up having disastrous consequences, whether it be setting Haru up for an ArrangedMarriage, set her up as heiress when she's only a child, or letting Aki compete for the position.
* Lusamine is portrayed in [[AdaptationalHeroism a considerably more sympathetic light]] in the ''Anime/{{Pokemon}}'' anime than in ''VideoGame/PokemonSunAndMoon'' and, to a lesser extent, [[VideoGame/PokemonUltraSunAndUltraMoon their companion releases]]. Here she's a DotingParent who never means any harm to Lillie and Gladion, but would easily go from [[AmazinglyEmbarrassingParents embarrassing her daughter in front of her friends]] one second to [[{{Workaholic}} ignoring her to take a business call]] the next, which makes her kids [[WhenYouComingHomeDad question how much she actually cares about them]]. That's not even getting into her obsessive fascination with the inter-dimensional [[EldritchAbomination Ultra Beasts]], which is hinted to be about as unhealthy as it is in the games. [[spoiler:When Gladion finally [[CallingTheOldManOut calls her out]] for never even noticing the terribly traumatic experience her daughter went through that caused her crippling fear of Pokémon--caused by one of the very [=UBs=] she dedicated her life to meeting, no less--Lusamine is [[MyGodWhatHaveIDone downright horrified]] at how out of touch she's been and pulls a HeroicSacrifice against that same [=UB=] [[MamaBear when it threatened her children again]].]]
* ''Manga/SkipBeat''
** Lory Takarada is a grandparent variant of this. His granddaughter Maria was left him with from a very early age onward, as both parents were busy with their jobs overseas. When her fifth birthday approached, she gave in to her selfish desire and asked her mom to come home for it an celebrate with her. The mother got onto a plane to be with her daughter, only for the plane to crash and kill her. Maria has become convinced that her mother's death was her fault and that her father hates her for this. Lory wants for her to realize that it isn't the case, but nothing he says works. She's heard all of the arguments before, so she sees them as nothing but empty words... until Kyoko uses a play's words to 'switch roles' with Maria, and makes Maria use those 'empty words' as her own argument to prove that her father ''does'' love her.
** Her father has his own share of problems. He did blame Maria for his wife's death at the funeral, but he was too stricken with his own grief at the time to care about how harsh his words were. However, he nonetheless has tried to keep in contact with her by sending her daily e-mails and asking her about how her life is going. The e-mails always have the same lines, but Maria realizes that he never send her anything new because she never dared to answer his e-mails. Both have the problem of not knowing much about the other because they never communicated. [[spoiler:And when Lory manages to get Maria's father to appear for her Gratitude/Christmas party, despite Maria having been too terrified that being 'selfish' again will cause more harm and didn't dare to invite him, the two hug for the first time in years.]]
** Saena Mogami turns out be one herself. She was emotionally abusive towards Kyoko and reprimanded her for getting [[EducationMama bad grades]], leading to Kyoko having some severe trust issues and an urge to prove herself. Saena eventually left Kyoko at Sho's parents' house for good. [[spoiler:It turns out that Saena used to be in a relationship with a man, but he turned out to be a company spy and only got close to her to get his hands on vital information for a big case going on. When he gained the data, he disappeared into the night, and Saena was left to deal with the mess her mistake had made. She eventually realized she was pregnant by this man, but circumstances prevented her from getting an abortion and she had no choice left but to give birth. Since Kyoko feels like a physical reminder of her biggest mistake she made in her life, Saena has been incapable of seeing her as a separate being from it and decided that leaving her with Sho's parents was the kindest thing she could do.]] When she and Kyoko clear the air, Saena admits to a colleague that she did have times where she considered Kyoko 'cute' as a child. But she felt that she wasn't allowed to admit that, given her attitude.
* ''Manga/{{Bleach}}'' has Ichigo's father Isshin and Uryuu's father Ryuuken. On one hand Isshin seems to be a ditzy doctor that constantly embarrasses his three kids while also keeping many, '''many''' secrets from them ([[spoiler: like him being a powerful Shinigami]]), whereas Ryuuken's relationship with Uryuu became strained after the death of Ryuuken's father Souken [[spoiler: and ''especially'' the demise of Uryuu's mother Kanae]]). Both are aware of their parental failures and not exactly happy about it.
* ''Manga/AttackOnTitan'' has [[spoiler:Grisha Yeager's]] father, who does his best to keep his children, [[spoiler:Grisha]] and Faye, safe in a society in which his entire family is a persecuted minority, and any suspicion of treason could be disastrous to the entire family. Unfortunately, his point doesn't get across very well to [[spoiler:Grisha]], who (perhaps justifiably) sees his father as almost completely indifferent to Faye's death, and is angered when his father condemns their Eldian ancestors' atrocities while calling their Marleyan oppressors "merciful" for not wiping out the Eldians. As such, [[spoiler:Grisha]] does not understand his father's advice until he's much older.
* Kimba/Leo of ''Manga/KimbaTheWhiteLion'' is [[TheGoodKing a kind-hearted and beloved jungle ruler]] who's always ready to defend his subjects, lend a helping paw to those who need it, bridge the gap between mankind and animal, and is forgiving towards those who wronged him and are seeking redemption. He's far less impressive as a father concerning his son Rune as he constantly berates him for his failings and often pushes him too much, at one point [[SinkOrSwimMentor trying to toughen him up by abandoning him in the cliffs far from home and forcing him to make it back himself]]. This can be pinned on [[DarkAndTroubledPast Kimba's less-than-stellar upbringing]] in which he lost his parents at a very early age, never even meeting his own father. While [[MiseryBuildsCharacter Kimba became stronger and more moral through enduring those ordeals]], [[RealityEnsues he grew up with no role model for what a father should be]], so his idea of parenting a future king is throwing the hardships he went through at Rune, hoping that he will come out stronger like he did.

[[folder:Comic Books]]
* In the ComicBook/BlueDevil comics, Kid Devil aka Eddie Bloomberg's parents were this to him, with his aunt Marla Bloom being the alternative parent and Blue Devil being a kind of surrogate uncle. His parents' neglect ended up having some effects on Eddie later in life when he joined the Teen Titans, making him very desperate to have a family.
* [[ComicBook/RedHulk General Ross]] has been presented chiefly as this sort of parent since the mid-80s in ''[[Comicbook/IncredibleHulk Hulk]]'' comics (as he is in the films, below). He loves Betty, but he's not equipped to get emotionally close to her, particularly not since the death of his wife, and his obsessions have often gotten between them. He's trying to reconnect with her these days, but it's not proving easy.
** It's shown to be generational, as Ross's own father was a career officer who was rarely around.
* ''ComicBook/{{PS238}}'': Atlas is pretty much as you'd expect [[CaptainErsatz classic Superman]] [[TheCape to be as a father]]: Somewhat bumbling, well-intentioned and eager to show his superpowered son [[WithGreatPowerComesGreatResponsibility how to take part in the 'family business']], but also [[WhenYouComingHomeDad chronically busy saving the world]] and somewhat uncomprehending of the fact that his son, Ron, is a slight ShrinkingViolet who'd prefer to become a musician. Then [[spoiler:he [[DaddyHadAGoodReasonForAbandoningYou has to leave Ron behind]] to try and reform his still-existent, EvilEmpire of a home world]].
** That said, he's ''way'' better than [[ParentalNeglect Tyler's parents]]…

[[folder:Fan Works]]
* A major recurring theme of the ''FanFic/AlexandraQuick'' series. None of the parents in the story have been shown to be outright AbusiveParents yet, but they all have significant flaws. The only parental figure that is close to ideal is Thalia King.
* In ''Franchise/{{Superman}}'' story ''Fanfic/SupermanOf2499TheGreatConfrontation'', Klar Kent clearly cares and does his best, but his failure to discipline Adam properly when his son brutalized a crook and reach him out afterwards leads to Adam becoming more twisted.
* In the VisualNovel/KatawaShoujo fic [[http://ks.renai.us/viewtopic.php?f=52&t=5361 Weekend at Hisao's]], Shizune's father and Hisao's parents are seen in this light. Shizune is frustrated with her father's persistent attempts to get her to speak (in the fic, it's indicated that she can speak but sounds terrible), but sees that he wants her to succeed and appreciates that he doesn't treat her any differently from her non-disabled brother. Hisao says he didn't like his parents' frequent absences from his life due to working, but realizes that they worked so hard so that he could grow up in a nice house that they never had in their childhoods, and were willing to sell that house if it was necessary to cure his condition.
* In the MegaCrossover FanFic/UltimateReImaginings, ''Tony Stark'' is portrayed like this, even though Blair thinks he's neglectful and has made it more than clear if it wasn't for her adoptive mother she wouldn't have anything to do with him despite him ''trying'' to be a father; he's just not very good at it.
* In ''Fanfic/XMenTheEarlyYears'', ComicBook/JeanGrey's folks are devoted parents who truly love their daughter, but their way to deal with the issues stemming from Jean's mutation is to foist her on Xavier so they don't have to think about it.
* In ''Fanfic/MarieDSuesseAndTheMysteryNewPirateAge'', Mar's parents have a troubled marriage at the start, before the Suesse family falls into the Manga/OnePiece world. Her father, Garreth, often spends time at work to avoid having to come home, and Mar, at one point, believes that he has no serious desire to rescue her mother. Mar's mother, Blake, is strict with her, putting expectations on her that are difficult for her to meet. And yet, when Mar is separated from both of them after falling into the One Piece world, she can't help but miss them, in spite of their flaws.
* The WesternAnimation/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagic fanfic Fanfic/TheTwilightChild depicts Twilight Sparkle, of all people, as this. While she does care about her daughter, she also frequently fails to understand her interests and desires are different from Twilight's, causing the two to become increasingly distant as time goes on, eventually resulting in a very nasty argument between them. [[spoiler:It doesn't help that Discord has caused some LaserGuidedAmnesia behind the scenes.]]
* ''{{Film/Tron}}: [[PatchworkFic Endgame Scenario]]'': Alan and Lora were this to Jet. Lora was stuck in Washington DC, trying to rebuild the Shiva laser while Alan was trying to put out all the fires Flynn left behind at Encom, run the Flynn Lives project, try to keep Sam in line, arrange the boys' futures, and so forth - which left little time and energy for Jet. As a result, Jet rebelled hard against his father's wishes until the [[TronTwoPointOh F-Con incident]]
* The Potters in ''Fanfic/PrincessOfTheBlacks'' truly want to reconcile with their daughter [[GenderFlip Jenny]] after learning they were wrong and she wasn't a squib. Unfortunately for them, Jen wants nothing to do with them at all and they can't seem to realize that. James in particular reacts poorly to anyone telling him Jen doesn't want to reconcile, even if it's Jen herself saying so.
* Rumple is very much aware of how much he screwed up with his firstborn son Baelfire, and discovering he fathered another son in ''[[https://www.fanfiction.net/s/10964874/1/Dark-Dynasty Dark Dynasty]]'' makes him fear he will repeat the same mistakes with Harry. Belle assures him he can be a good father, and even if he's really far from perfection, Rumple really does try.
* Amanda's parents are a very negative case of this in ''FanFic/NeverHadAFriendLikeMe''. They clearly never wanted a child, and continue to maintain a lifestyle as young professionals, with their daughter tacked on as an afterthought and only given the necessities of life out of a sense of obligation.
* The Potters in ''[[https://www.fanfiction.net/s/9976928/32/The-Bloody-Ashikabi The Bloody Ashikabi]]'' never checked once on their eldest child after abandoning him with [[AbusiveParents the Dursleys]] and outright became estranged from their daughter Ivy when she was sorted in Slytherin. However, they [[WhatTheHellHero call out Dumbledore]] for entrusting Harry to a magic-hating couple when his abused past comes to light and when Ivy is almost raped at Hogwarts, [[PapaWolf James Potter refuses to be placated by Dumbledore's decision to lightly punish the culprits and announces he will go to the Aurors and the Board of Governors]]. [[CrowningMomentOfAwesome Oh, and if Dumbledore isn't happy with it, James will take his children out of the school and let the old man explain WHY one of Britain's most respected families decided to quit]].
* In contrast to their portrayal in canon, Tommy AKA the Kangaskhan Kid's parents (known as Mr. and Mrs. Marshall) in ''Fanfic/PokemonResetBloodlines'' are not perfect, but clearly care for their son's wellbeing and try their best. In fact, the incident that led to Tommy getting stuck in the Safari Zone was not because of neglect, but all a result of Mr. Marshall's attempts to make Tommy ''happy''.
* ''Fanfic/TheOutside'' has Ragyo and, to a lesser extent, Satsuki (who's an older sister). Ragyo really cares about her daughters but, due to Satsuki's poor health, she coddled her a bit too much to the point of being doting and overprotective, leaving after a fight with her husband, which, after her husband's death, left her daughters to fend for themselves while she was unaware (until much later), while Satsuki genuinely cares for Ryuuko, it's made clear that she has a slew of issues that hasn't left her able to care for herself properly, let alone her sister.
* ''FanFic/BattleFantasiaProject'': Yuuki Yamaguchi dumped poor Akiko into juvenile hall, and basically forgot about her. But he was a [[{{Salaryman}} consummate professional]] who wanted to [[WellDoneSonGuy live up to his father's reputation]], and Akiko would not reveal the [[MagicalGirl reason for all her fights and bruises]], which were shredding his family's good name.
* ''Fanfic/TheStalkingZukoSeries'' has Hakoda. Having been separated from his children, Katara and Sokka, for most of the series, he's trying to make up for lost time, which often involves fairly embarrassing attempts to be a "cool dad." More seriously, though, he doesn't fully understand how much Sokka and Katara have changed in his absence (particularly how Katara can no longer simply accept the Southern Water Tribe's patriarchal traditions), and takes his children keeping secrets from him poorly.

[[folder:Films -- Animation]]
* WesternAnimation/{{Coraline}}'s parents are too busy trying to move into a new house and meet a publishing deadline to cater to their bored daughter--as her mother points out, she is old enough to entertain herself. [[BeCarefulWhatYouWishFor What she finds when she goes exploring]] is more than enough to make her appreciate her lovingly boring parents. [[Literature/{{Coraline}} The book]] has a similar vibe, but Coraline's mother is harsh and unsympathetic, while her father is loving, but too distracted to pay much attention.
* In ''Disney/{{Frozen}}'', the King and Queen meant well but understandably did not know how to handle a daughter with vast magical powers. Their attempts to keep her isolated from everyone and telling Elsa to "conceal, not feel" prevented disaster in the short-term but they also strained the once close bond between their children and left them both with issues. Worse, the psychological toll this had on Elsa ensured that when she did eventually lose control she would lose it to such a degree that the entire kingdom was threatened.
* Judy's parents in ''Disney/{{Zootopia}}'' have a loving, supportive relationship with their daughter, but they wish she would choose a safer career. They mean well but they do acknowledge and advise to a young Judy that it's near impossible for her to be a police officer and try to attempt to convince her to "settle" and be a carrot farmer instead. While they're honestly relieved that Judy is only a meter maid, Judy, who had higher aspirations, is not happy to hear their reactions.
* ''WesternAnimation/{{Sing}}'':
** Meena's family are shown to be loving and supportive of her but their attempts to encourage and push her to pursue a singing career has the unfortunate effect of putting a lot of pressure of the already shy Meena. This is especially noticable with her grandfather, who is one of Meena's biggest supporters but has a tendency to be abrasive towards her stage fright.
** Rosita loves her husband and 25 children with all her heart, but she feels consumed with taking care of them and wants to re-ignite her dream of being a star. That's the reason why she auditions for the singing competition in the first place.
** Her husband, Norman, is a loving husband and father who truly appreciates his family, but he is a {{Workaholic}} who works a 12-14 hours a day and is often fatigued and distracted as a result.
* ''Disney/{{Moana}}'''s father Chief Tui loves her very much and wholeheartedly believes that she'll be capable of leading the people of Motunui when she becomes the next Chief. However, because of his DarkAndTroubledPast where [[spoiler: his best friend drowned in a storm when the two of them recklessly stole a fishing boat and sailed beyond the reef as teens]], he actively discourages Moana from her desires to wayfind despite being fully aware of her fascination for it [[AdultFear because he fears that his only child might suffer the same fate if she tries it]].
* ''Pixar/{{Brave}}'': Queen Elinor is very dedicated to her role as queen, running the kingdom of Scotland and following tradition to a fault to ever notice that Merida feels trapped in such a rigid environment that doesn't allow her to do her own choices. Due to this clash of ideas the two fight and lead to the main plot of the movie.

[[folder:Films -- Live-Action]]
* Maisie's biological parents in the modern adaptation of "What Maisie Knew." The father, though self-absorbed, is implied to feel seriously insecure about his paternal capabilities. Her equally self-absorbed mother tries to lavish Maisie with as much affection as she could but eventually pulls a IWantMyBelovedToBeHappy and allows Maisie to stay with her kind stepparents.
* ''Film/{{The Secret Garden|1993}}'':
** Mary's parents are hopelessly self-absorbed people who accidentally abandon their daughter during an earthquake because they forgot about her.
** For that matter, Uncle Archibald would also count. He loves his son and sees to it that he has the best care, but is so driven to grief over his wife Lillias's death and the fear that Colin inherited his hunchback condition that he is almost never home at all. This is also the case when he becomes Mary's guardian. He sees her exactly once [[spoiler:before the end of the story]], but when he meets her, he makes sure that she has everything she needs to be well looked after.
* ''Film/{{Juno}}'' uses this Trope to a degree. The title character's parents are divorced, leaving her with her Dad, step-mom, and half-sister. [[MissingMom She hasn't seen her mom in years, only communicating through letters,]] and her Dad and stepmom don't exactly react too horrified or shocked when they hear she's pregnant, aside from Dad proclaiming an intent to [[GroinAttack punch the boy who did it in the balls.]] At the same time, Juno's stepmom sticks up for her in the doctor's office when an x-ray tech makes a passing insult, and when she's feeling doubtful about a potentially serious relationship, her Dad is there to offer some good advice (albeit admitting that as a divorcee, he isn't the best person to give it).
* The reason Cobb in ''Film/{{Inception}}'' took Saito's job was so he could return to America to see his children. [[spoiler: Mal]] was like this too, but after [[spoiler: being unable to tell reality from dreaming, she committed suicide, believing herself in a dream, so she could be with her children again, not realizing she was already in the real world. Or was she?]]
* In the stupid Mexican kids' movie ''Santa Claus'', presented as a Christmas episode of [[Series/MysteryScienceTheater3000 MST3K]], one of the children Santa visits is a little boy whose socialite parents literally needed Santa to drug them in order for them to remember that they have a kid.
* General Ross from ''Film/TheIncredibleHulk'' has a few moments where he seems to care about his daughter Betty but most of his life and time is devoted to capturing the Hulk. In fact, in his determination to subdue the Hulk, his actions nearly got Betty killed at one point. Psychiatrist Dr Samson points out to him how he was lying when he said Betty's safety was his main concern.
--> '''Dr Samson''': "I never knew why she never talked about you… I do now."
* They had this problem in the earlier ''Film/{{Hulk}}'' film as well. General Ross wanted to be a part of Betty's life but couldn't because of his work. He also disapproved of her relationship with Bruce, but only because he knew about Bruce's abusive parents and wanted to keep her safe. By the end of the film, Betty's house, phone, and computer are being monitored in case Bruce ever attempts to contact her, but the two of them make an effort to stay on good terms.
* [[AlphaBitch Regina's]] stepmother in ''Film/MeanGirls''. She is so desperate to be the "cool mom" to her stepdaughter that she effectively spoils Regina rotten, letting her get away with anything, and contributes heavily to Regina's lack of respect to other people.
* King George V in ''Film/TheKingsSpeech'' is strict and harsh to his younger son Albert who has a speech impediment, especially when he was younger where George was a bit of a JerkAss towards him. But because his oldest son is shirking his duties, he knows that Albert may eventually have to take over his duties as a king (whether Albert wants it or not) and he is trying, in his own way, to fix Albert's stuttering. On his deathbed, he does approve of Albert as king but he never actually told Albert.
* In ''Film/BeforeMidnight'', [[spoiler:Jesse and Celine are shown as parents who try very hard and love their kids to bits but ultimately are flawed and imperfect at being parents. Celine later confesses how ashamed she was of being clueless as the mom of their daughters and making mistakes and how she felt she was supposed to be instinctual and a natural at this parenting thing. Also, Jesse totally steals a half-eaten apple from his sleeping daughter!]]
* Herc Hansen from ''Film/PacificRim'' is a good man and is trying hard to be a good father but he and his son Chuck suffer from poor communication and trauma from when Herc had the SadisticChoice of either saving his son or wife during a {{Kaiju}} attack. Chuck is implied to have SurvivorsGuilt in regards to his father saving him over his mother and resents Herc as a result.
* James Reid from ''Film/TheGreenHornet'' is a very good example. He was a well renowned publisher, a strong believer in a free press [[spoiler: which costs him his life at the hands of the corrupt DA Scanlon]] , and beloved by his employees. He was also a widower with a young son who had problems in school. Mr. Reid's response was to treat him with contempt, even in a case of self-defense. The result was a young, lazy playboy with no respect for any of the values James preaches. Over the course of the movie, however, Britt comes to learn about more about what his father believed in, and while still thinking he was a lousy dad, he was still a respectable human being, enough to put the head back on his statue.
* ''Film/OverTheEdge'': The parents of [[{{Suburbia}} New Grenada]] pretty much built not only their lives, but their ''town'' around their lives and careers. Their children, left in a town without much to do, were driven to delinquency, and the solutions their parents proposed only made things much worse.
* In ''Film/TheDescendants'', Matt is a workaholic who struggles to connect with his two daughters after his wife goes into a coma. His wife Elizabeth is a self-absorbed adrenaline junkie who cheated on her husband and her refusal to admit her affair when her oldest daughter caught her only caused a lot of problems for said daughter.
* The Kents as they appear in ''Film/ManOfSteel'' and later, ''Film/BatmanVSupermanDawnOfJustice'', unlike most depictions of Clark's adoptive parents who tend to have perfectly instilled wisdom; here they admit that they are making up much of what they do as it comes since neither of them was prepared for accidentally adopting an alien child with immense power.
* ''Film/AntMan'':
** The aging Hank Pym had a strained relationship with his daughter, Hope, for not telling her the details of her mother's death. Because of this, Hope defected to Darren Cross when he took over Pym Industries until she found out Cross is not a nice man. Despite returning to her father, she's still angry at him particularly for choosing a con-man, Scott Lang, to take the Ant-Man mantle instead of her. Then it turns out that Hank is just trying to protect her because he doesn't want her to end like her mother [[spoiler:who made a HeroicSacrifice during their mission]]. In the end, they made up and Hank decided to let Hope inherit Comicbook/TheWasp mantle from her mother.
** Scott Lang is an ex-con struggling to find work so he can help in taking care of his IllGirl daughter, Cassie. Though Cassie loved him, his ex-wife thought that Scott is a very irresponsible parent.
* Zach and Gray's parents in ''Film/JurassicWorld'' are this. They send their children on a vacation without them to see their aunt and enjoy themselves, while they quietly arrange for a divorce, trying to hide the fact from their children.
* ''Film/GuardiansOfTheGalaxyVol2'': Yondu Udonta is the rare adoptive parent example. By his own admission, he wasn't the best parental figure to a young Peter Quill: as a Ravager, one who had participated and/or bore witness to much of the darkness of the underbelly of the intergalactic community, he was hardly someone that should aspire to something like fatherhood. He could be harsh and he could be cruel at times. But when it came down to it, he loved Peter, and [[ToughLove raised him that way so he could survive even without Yondu by his side]], against any enemies that might come his way -- [[spoiler:such as Peter's ''biological'' father. As final proof of his love, he dies saving Peter's life, an act that makes Peter realize that Yondu, for all his faults, was the father he had been searching for all his life]].
-->'''Yondu''': [[spoiler: [[FamousLastWords I'm sorry I didn't do none of it right, but I'm damn lucky you're my boy.]]]]
* Kylo Ren/Ben Solo in ''Franchise/StarWars''' ''Film/TheForceAwakens'' is implied to have a troubled relationship with his parents. Leia Organa and Han Solo are seen by the rest of the world as heroes but Kylo has a hard time reconciling that his parents are only human. The fact his parents also ship him off to his uncle for training made Kylo feel abandoned and neglected.
** In ''Film/TheLastJedi'', Luke has lost his faith in the Jedi and the Force in general after he couldn’t prevent Kylo Ren from falling to the Dark Side, feeling he failed as a teacher, uncle, and ParentalSubstitute. [[spoiler:Yoda]] helps him recover by bringing up this trope; he points out that, for all their wisdom and strength, the Jedi Masters (himself included) were always just people, as capable of failing as anyone else. He notes that the true goal of any parent or teacher is to help their child/pupil overcome such failures and become better people... a path that Luke has set Rey on via his teachings, however flawed they were.
* ''Film/TheIncredibleMeltingMan''. Despite being ComicRelief, Judy's mother is having an affair with a man she's not married to. They joke and snark around with each other in a loving way. Even for TheSeventies, it was an unusual to depict older unmarried couples having an active sex life.

* ''Literature/{{Touch}}'' depicts a set of parents attempting to help their child through the trauma of assault, all while quietly falling to pieces about it whenever he isn't looking.
* Creator/JacquelineWilson is diligent in depicting her Parents As People. Often likable, these characters don't fall into stereotypes... but the reader still wouldn't want to be related to them. In ''Literature/TheIllustratedMum'', Marigold, a manic-depressive single mother, ''adores'' her two children, but feeds them cake rather than cooking them a proper dinner. In ''The Suitcase Kid,'' Andy's divorced parents marry new partners who already have families of their own. Her parents are so involved with their new lives that they don't realize they're using Andy as a pawn to "get back" at each other. In ''The Diamond Girls'', the heroine and her sisters have lived in continual disorder all their lives, with their mother frequently changing boyfriends and moving her family to new homes. ''Amber'', an early novel, was about a girl who rebels against her traveller mother and struggles to live a normal life.
* Creator/JudyBlume uses the trope as well.
** In ''Literature/AreYouThereGodItsMeMargaret'', the religious issues affecting Margaret affect her parents too--her mother was raised Christian, her dad raised Jewish. They're good parents for most of the book, until Margaret's maternal grandparents show up... whereupon they cancel Margaret's holiday in order to allow her to meet them, only to spend the entire visit using her to placate or annoy her grandparents.
** ''Literature/TigerEyes'' is about a teenage girl named Davey whose father, a convenience store clerk, was shot during a robbery and, it is eventually revealed, died in her arms. Davey's mother turns into pretty much a space cadet for most of the novel, unable to function, and transplants Davey and her brother Jason to the opposite side of the country. The three live for most of the story with the dad's sister and her husband, who ''try'' to act as substitute parents for the kids, but do so in the most ham-fisted manner possible.
** There's also the stories about Peter Hatcher (the ''{{Literature/Fudge}}'' series). His parents are nice, but often butt heads with their sons over various things (moving temporarily to Princeton, having a third child, etc).
* ''Literature/{{A Patch of Blue}}'' has the mother and grandfather of the blind protagonist Selina: Rosanne, the villain, and Ole Pa, [[Main/AdultsAreUseless a sympathetic failure of a man]], respectively. They both work most of the day in bathrooms, and Rosanne moonlights as a prostitute. Ole Pa is a stone-dead-drunk most of the time, but tends to be more humane to Selina, whereas Rosanne frequently beats her.
* This is key to the mystery of ''Literature/TheCuriousIncidentOfTheDogInTheNighttime''. It turns out that being an adult does not automatically make you able or willing to adapt to parenting a child with a highly stigmatized disability. Nor does it make you capable, nor enable you to face up to that in a mature and constructive way.
* Creator/JodiPicoult's parents are often good parents to one child with exceptional needs, but pretty terrible parents to all of their other children. The story will detail the parent's private and legal struggles on the behalf of their child, while the rest of the family falls apart due to neglect. A classic case is in ''Literature/HandleWithCare'', where the mother sacrifices her best friend, her husband and her oldest daughter supposedly on behalf of her youngest daughter, only to realize that the real issue was not her invalid daughter, but ''herself.''
* April Cleaver in ''Series/IAmNotASerialKiller''. As a parent, she's oblivious, emotionally inept, and frequently makes insensitive comments about her son's [[LackOfEmpathy mental]] [[BrokenBird problems]], but it's clear she loves John despite his hating her, and just wants to know how to help him. She's also insecure and needy, but it's [[DomesticAbuse not for no reason]], and is mostly used to frame her as sympathetic.
* Jon and Thayet are RoyalsWhoActuallyDoSomething in the Literature/TortallUniverse books, but according to WordOfGod, being king usually takes precedence over being a daddy in Jon's book (he blackmailed his daughter out of becoming a knight in case that endangered her marriage prospects), and Thayet is often busy with the Queen's Riders military group.
* In ''They Never Came Back'' by Caroline B. Cooney, Murielle's parents are like this, eventually abandoning her to escape charges of embezzlement.
* Annabeth's human father in ''Literature/PercyJacksonAndTheOlympians'', who is a brilliant man and cares deeply for his children, though he is a bit absent-minded at times.
** The gods in general tend to be this, to greater or lesser degrees, towards their demigod children. Some examples:
*** Poseidon, upon meeting his son Percy for the first time, flat-out tells him that he regrets siring him - not out of cruelty, just because of all the problems that have resulted from it, and the fact that he broke an oath in doing so - and that he's not sure what to make of him. Their relationship remains awkward, but improves as the series goes on, and Poseidon is one of the more doting of the godly parents in his own way.
*** Hades once directly says to [[spoiler: his son Nico's face that he wished the boy's older sister Bianca had survived instead of him, and openly criticizes Nico's abilities. However, he is later shown acting fond and even proud of his son, and in the sequel series is said to occasionally make awkward efforts to be "fatherly", such as gifting Nico with a zombie chauffeur, though Bianca's memory remains as a cloud over their relationship. He even encourages Nico in his inter-personal relationships, expressing a desire for his son to find the happiness that so few of his children ever have. Also, as Pluto, he deliberately avoids openly interacting with or even acknowledging his daughter Hazel, as she is technically breaking the laws of the Underworld by returning to the living world after her death, and he wants to give her another chance at life instead of enforcing his own law and bringing her back.]]
*** Even Zeus/Jupiter, though he often tends to slide into ParentalNeglect or AbusiveParent territory (the latter more so with his godly children than the half-bloods), has been shown as conflicted, once expressing to [[spoiler: his son Jason]] that he wishes he could be more of a father to his children but feels that he must maintain distance, as he is king of the gods and must make hard decisions that affect the fate of the entire world. He also saves his daughter Thalia's life by turning her into a tree, and later [[spoiler: shows concern for her over her decision to join the Hunters.]]
* Creator/DianaWynneJones, as noted below, wrote her nearest thing to an autobiographical novel and called it ''The Time of the Ghost;'' it is about this sort of family. The father is a towering professor known to his children as Himself, who runs a boys' school, where the lead and her three sisters live. The mother spends all her time keeping the school in order, and all four girls are really ''shockingly'' neglected. Getting food regularly involves raiding the school kitchens and doing their best to get away with it. Both parents, however, despite fairly limited page time due to their disinterest in their children, are highly realized characters with internal lives of whose shape we get a sense.
* ''Literature/DresdenFiles'': Maggie [=LeFay=], having the best intentions, skirted the bounds between white and black magic, falling in with what one might call "the wrong crowd", one of whom [[spoiler:murders her in childbirth]]. Her son inherits one hell of a legacy.
** Harry's father was a different story; Malcolm Dresden was a decent, kind, hard-working and loving man, all traits which [[SingleWomanSeeksGoodMan drew Maggie to him]]. Then he died under mysterious circumstances....
** [[spoiler: And now ''Harry'' is a father]]... which just kind of says it all, really.
* Mr. and Mrs. Bennet in ''Literature/PrideAndPrejudice''. Mrs. Bennet is a shallow airhead who is an [[AmazinglyEmbarrassingParents Amazingly Embarassing Parent]] attempting to match-make her daughters off in unsubtle and humiliating methods. When Elizabeth calls her out on her behaviour, she reveals her real fear that she and her daughters will be utterly destitute if they don't marry well. Meanwhile, Mr. Bennet copes with his [[NoAccountingForTaste ill-matched marriage]] by finding refuge in his books and sarcasm. He could care less that he exposes his wife and younger daughters to the ridicule of the world. By the end of the novel, he accepts responsibility for his youngest daughter's mistake and takes measures to instill some sense into his two remaining unmarried daughters.
* An Old Republic survey team, well before ''Literature/GalaxyOfFear'', crash landed on Dagobah and couldn't get off. They couldn't find enough food to support themselves, but a few years into this some still paired off and had children. This meant there were more mouths to feed, and not enough food for any of them, especially as more and more of the adults died from animal attacks and fevers. The remaining adults [[spoiler: started to [[ImAHumanitarian feed the bodies to their children]]]], a practice which the kids adopted when the last parent died, when the oldest child was seven. Malnourished and uneducated, the Children felt [[spoiler: cannibalism]] was an expression of love--and they're forced to confront the truth that in fact it was filled with desperation and horror.
* Lampshaded by Poirot in ''Literature/FiveLittlePigs'': He finds it strange that every witness of a case seems to forget that the murder victim has a baby daughter. It's discussed when Miss Williams, a governess, explains to Poirot that middle-class children know that their parents love them, but the parents are too busy providing for them to pay them attention. The affluent murder victim, on the other hand, and his wife led such intense lives that the baby could never be their first concern.
* Fanny Hatter in ''Literature/HowlsMovingCastle'', while having good intentions, sends off her late husband's two younger daughters to their new placements without really considering their own thoughts on the matter. She also uses her eldest stepdaughter Sophie to run her hat store without pay and is implied to have an ItsAllAboutMe mentality.
* All four of ''Literature/TheUltraViolets''' mothers, who are all brilliant scientists and consumed with work. The only time they ever ''do'' get involved with their daughters is when they unintentionally impede their plans to save Sync City.
* With the introduction of child viewpoint characters in ''Literature/{{Edenborn}}'', several of the characters from the first book get this characterization.
** Vashti and Champagne see maintaining humanity as their highest goal. Thus they raise many children, but don't spend too much energy on any one of them, which leads to tensions between Penny and her siblings. Vashti spends most of her time researching; Champagne spends hers on studying and composing artwork.
** Isaac sees the spirituality of humanity as a key component of its revival and does not accept rebellion against his fundamentalist principles. This drives a wedge between him and his teenage son, as well as between his fundamentalist oldest child and the younger siblings.
** Halloween teaches his son all the skills that Halloween needed to survive. He does not adapt to the circumstances around them, nor does he train Deuce to address novel situations.
* In ''Literature/TheFaultInOurStars'', Hazel's parents are shown to be very loving and supportive of her, but also have their obvious frustrations with the burden her illness has put on their personal lives.
* [[Literature/PrinceRoger The Empress Alexandra VII]] is a terrible mother to her youngest son because of unresolved feelings about his bastard of a father. She doesn't ''mean'' to take it out on Roger, but she does.
* [[Literature/HarryPotter Petunia Dursley]] probably doesn't realize she's taking out her anger at the Wizarding World for stealing--and killing--her beloved little sister on Harry. She doesn't mean to to turn her own son into a spoiled, selfish oaf either. Petunia needs some serious counseling.
** Molly Weasley is a good person with noble intentions and is an excellent ParentalSubstitute for Harry; but because she has so many kids and is very overwhelmed at times, her youngest son Ron feels ignored/neglected sometimes. She also sometimes has a tendency to treat Harry better than her own children, particularly Ron, when her other children are right next to Harry.
* Janine Hathaway from ''Literature/VampireAcademy'' is a legendary guardian but Mother of the Year she is not. When we meet her she barely knows Rose, Rose doesn't like or trust her at all, and Janine has the tendency to project her own fears and failures onto Rose.
* Kasia's mother Wensa in ''Literature/{{Uprooted}}'' loved her daughter "carefully" once she saw that Kasia was going to be pretty and intelligent and therefore most likely to be taken away the wizard called the Dragon. Wensa also sent Kasia on exhausting walks to other villages to learn how to bake, sew, etc fit for a lord's mistress and set her to frightening tasks to make her braver. When Kasia was ''not'' picked, the return home was therefore rather awkward, but Wensa is still distraught enough to go all the way to the Dragon's tower and beg Agnieszka's help when Kasia is abducted by the Wood. [[spoiler:At the end, Kasia elects to remain with the royal children for a while. Her strained relationship with Wensa is a major reason why.]]
* [[Literature/JessicaDarling Jessica Darling's]] parents aren't particularly good at being parents to her, but it's not for lack of trying and good intentions. Jess notes at one point that they clearly have her best interests at heart, they just have no idea what those interests actually are--and she finds it hard to hold that against them, because most of the time [[TheEeyore she can't even figure out herself what actually would make her happy.]]
* ''Literature/ASongOfIceAndFire'' has several noble parents who only see their children as pawns for political alliances and never bother their wellbeing. But there are a few who really love their children; it's just that they live in a CrapsackWorld where they need to make alliances:
** Catelyn Stark has to leave Winterfell to find those responsible for the crippling and attempted assassination on her younger son, Bran. She stayed with Robb, when the War of the Five Kings broke out, to help him rescue Sansa and Arya, leaving Bran and Rickon in Winterfell, which is later invaded by the Ironborn and sacked by Ramsey Snow. While Catelyn loves her children, her desire to protect and save them led to dire consequences which resulted to the downfall of her family.
** Doran Martell is not as much of a good parent as his brother, Oberyn. He even sent his eldest son, Quentyn, to a rival house due to Oberyn's mishap with its lord, causing his wife to leave him. His daughter, Arianne, noted that he doesn't mind that she lost her virginity at a young age and arranges marriages to very old people, which made her think that he's going to pass her inheritance to Quentyn, and all the important duties at Sunspear are done by Oberyn rather than her despite being the heir. But it turns out that Doran really cared about his family except that [[spoiler:he's too caught up in wanting to avenge the brutal deaths of his sister, niece and nephew and paranoid in not telling his plans to Arianne and his brother's bastard daughters. It takes Arianne's failed coup to realize his weakness]].
** Lysa Arryn loves her sickly son, Robert, to the point of being MyBelovedSmother due to suffering several miscarriages in the past. When she heard that her husband Jon planned to take Robert away, [[spoiler:she poisoned him with the help from her childhood friend and crush, Petyr "Littlefinger" Baelish. Unfortunately, Littlefinger is only manipulating her to further his plans sow distrust between the Starks and the Lannisters, and admits to Lysa, before he murders her, that he loved her sister Catelyn. As of ''A Feast Of Crows'', poor Robert is under the care of Littlefinger, who is using him to further his plans]].
* Literature/RonjaTheRobbersDaughter: Mattis loves his little girl deeply, but his pride and stubbornness make it impossible for him to end his feud with Borka, even for her sake. In fact, these traits make him the closest thing this book has to a primary antagonist.
* ''Literature/JourneyToChaos'': Basilard tries to be a good father for [[spoiler: Zettai]] but the fact that he became her father because a TricksterArchetype twisted his arm into committing sacrilege to his clan's religion makes it difficult for him to accept her.
* ''Literature/DannyTheChampionOfTheWorld'': Danny's father is a good man and very much a caring and attentive father, but he is also a poacher who risks getting killed and leaving his son an orphan for sport (not to mention that he is stealing someone else's precious game birds).
* In ''Literature/{{Room}}'', Jack's Ma loves him unconditionally, but she suffers from severe PTSD from her time being held prisoner against her will by Old Nick. At times, she temporarily snaps and loses her temper with Jack. She wants to get her old life back but Jack wants to cling to her and their old life, causing disagreement.
** Likewise, Ma's mother loves both her daughter and grandson but struggles with trying to reconnect with her daughter and caring for her grandson who has very little experience and knowledge of the outside world.
* Val and Max from ''Literature/HalfwayHuman'' both make sacrifices for the family. They are occasionally stressed out, broke, tired, etc. But they love their kid.
* In ''Literature/TheBabysittersClub'', the girls EW AHOQN RO have these, but most especially Stacey. Her father is a workaholic who doesn't have much time for her, and both of her parents are more than a little overzealous in their crusade to find a cure for her diabetes. It doesn't help that she's an only child. When her parents get divorced midway through the series, their Parents As People status gets turned UpToEleven because the split is so acrimonious.
* "Literature/TheVeldt": George and Lydia are a loving couple who care deeply about each other and their kids, but who unintentionally neglect them since the robot house does an inhumanly perfect job of looking after them than they do. To their credit, they realize this and resolve to fix things.
* Essun in ''Literature/TheFifthSeason'' has the [[BurnTheWitch heavily stigmatized]] magic of orogeny and passed the ability on to her children. Her own TraumaCongaLine of personal tragedies, including [[spoiler:being MadeASlave and pressed into TrainingFromHell, then enduring the loss of her lover and [[OutlivingOnesOffspring first child]]]], left her with a bone-deep AdultFear for her children -- which causes her to be cold, distant, and sometimes outright [[ParentalAbuse abusive]] as she tries to prepare them for a world that will hate them if it learns what they are.

[[folder:Live-Action TV]]
* Blanche Devereaux from ''Series/TheGoldenGirls'' clearly didn't enjoy being a mother, mainly due to her vanity and ItsAllAboutMe personality. She basically left childcare to nannies and even admits that as they got older, she would tell people they were her husband's from a much earlier marriage. It all comes back to haunt her as she gets older and none of them want anything to do with her. An interesting perspective flip, as this is told from the view of the "bad" parent rather than the child. (Also, in a show known for its NegativeContinuity, this is one of the few details portrayed consistently.)
* ''Series/{{Supernatural}}'': John Winchester is a good-hearted man who had something awful happen to his family... but no matter how much he tries or how much he loves his sons, he's just incapable of being a good father. Before he dies, he gives Dean an extra-horrible order to kill Sam if he can't save him, treats Sam like a child and Dean like a blunt weapon, and an awful lot of their issues that are still going on today can solely lay the blame at his feet.
* In general terms, this is a popular trope in drama series like ''Series/TheBill'' or ''Holby City'' when the children of characters in high-pressure or high profile jobs (such as doctors, teachers, political figures or rescue services) are involved. Often the child will have a scene where they berate their parent for being a hero to everyone else ''but'' their child (i.e. a successful doctor who's never home because she refuses to abandon her patients, or a teacher who goes the extra mile for her pupils while completely forgetting her own son's graduation).
* Any parent on ''{{Shameless}}''.
* ''Series/MySoCalledLife'' can be considered the TropeCodifier in TeenDrama--Patty and Graham played just as large a role in the plot as Angela herself, because a WrittenInInfirmity (Claire Danes's age--child-labour laws prevented her from spending a full work day on set) necessitated TwoLinesNoWaiting.
* Rumplestiltskin in ''Series/OnceUponATime'' is a DotingParent toward his son Baelfire; but to save his son from being drafted into the Ogre Wars, he becomes the Dark One to get power, becoming increasingly ruthless and would even [[spoiler: kill people in front of Baelfire]] as a massive overreaction to any injury done to his son. When [[spoiler: offered the chance to live with Baelfire in a world without magic]], he's unable to let go of his power and endS up [[spoiler: losing his son]].
** Rumplestiltskin's wife, Milah, may also count since when she was around before Rumplestiltskin became the Dark One, she was often at the village's tavern and seems to not think about her son. Not to mention [[spoiler: running away on Captain Hook's ship and letting her family believe she was dead.]]
** That series runs on enough BigScrewedUpFamily to power a whole season of ''[[Series/TheJerrySpringerShow Jerry Springer]]''; Charming and Snow didn't ''get'' to be parents due to the curse, and are starting from scratch when dealing with Emma (who is now thirty and was raised by the DepartmentOfChildDisservices). Regina (aka Snow White's stepmother) is the adopted mother of Henry (Emma's biological kid from a TeenPregnancy), but neglected the boy for hours on end because bullying the townsfolk into submission and batshit crazy revenge schemes against her old enemy Snow White were a more "worthwhile" use of her time. Regina's own mother, Cora, was weapons-grade sociopathy, and ''Regina's birth'' was nothing more than part of the plan to have the whole universe bowing to her in revenge for the royals making fun of Cora's low birth as a miller's daughter. It's bad when the boy who hasn't yet hit his teens is a good candidate for OnlySaneMan.
* In ''Series/{{Flashpoint}}'', Ed Lane struggles to be a good father and husband but his job often comes first, causing strain between his wife and son.
** Parker's alcoholism had caused his wife to divorce him and his son to refuse to see or speak to him. But since then, he has cleaned up his act, resulting in reuniting with his son for the first time in ten years and eventually, his son Dean decided that his father is a good man and came to live with him.
* Lily's father Mickey in ''Series/HowIMetYourMother'' loves his daughter and can occasionally be a DotingParent for her but he was emotionally apathetic towards her during most of her life and his gambling and money problems hurt his relationship with Lily who has difficulty trusting him. It's pointed out in a later episode that when she was a baby he was an ''exceptionally'' good parent. His flaws didn't manifest until she reached school age and he had to find other things to fill his time.
* Graham and Jan in the ''Series/InsideNo9'' episode "Last Gasp." They do love their daughter, who is terminally ill; but have no qualms in taking advantage of her illness for their own ends (Graham wanting money, Jan wanting to meet her favourite pop star.) When the pop star dies while blowing up a balloon for their daughter's birthday, they spend most of the episode ignoring her, instead preferring to argue with the singer's staff over who owns the balloon; which contains his literal last breath and as such is worth a lot of money.
* Devin's parents in ''Series/TheKicks'' aren't perfect, but they do their best and are generally pretty on top of things.
* Martin Crane in ''Series/{{Frasier}}'' is a down-to-earth, likable and friendly guy, especially when compared with his uptight, snobby sons, so it's easy to see why people tend to get on better with him and take his side in the tension he has with Frasier and Niles. But it's made pretty clear, and Martin himself at times concedes, that he has as much if not more responsibility as they do for the difficult relationship he has with them. While he clearly does love them, he appears to have been a rather distant parent who was largely uninterested in the more esoteric and refined interests of his sons and didn't make a lot of effort to bond with them. He tends to take other people's sides in arguments against them (including bullies) and appears to have spent more time at his favourite bar than bonding with them, something he later comes to regret.
-->'''Martin:''' Maybe if I'd spent less time at Duke's and more time with you guys, I wouldn't be sitting opposite a son who places so much stock in one beer.
** Hester Crane, Martin's wife and Frasier and Niles's mother, gets this somewhat less because she's deceased by the events of the series and all three choose to abide by NeverSpeakIllOfTheDead. Nevertheless, while she was a loving mother and wife to her family, she had feet of clay as well; she had a brief affair at one point, her overly clinical and psychological method of parenting appears to have directly resulted in a lot of Frasier and Niles's neuroses, and she appears to have been actively hostile to a lot of the women her sons chose to date.
** This was demonstrated in vivid detail in her lone appearance in ''{{Series/Cheers}}'', in which she threatened to shoot Diane.
* Another cop example is Inspector Brackenreid in ''Series/MurdochMysteries''. When his youngest son Bobby is kidnapped, he laments his failure to spend adequate time bonding with him, partly blaming his career, and resolves to put things right when Bobby is found.
* ''Series/DeadLikeMe'' strongly focuses on this trope for the Lass family, particularly Joy. She's selfish, judgmental, narrow-minded, and completely breaks down when things don't go her way, but she's also trying to cope with a huge amount of grief and stress after what is implied to be years of putting in efforts for her family that went unappreciated.
* ''Series/RebeldeWay'' the three main parents exemplify this. While Sergio is absolutely abusive towards Pablo, Sonia and Franco instead are presented as doting parents who would do anything for their daughters, Mia and Marizza, even to the point of spoiling them. Yet they're also shown to have flaws in their parenting: the girls at times act a little too bratty due to their parenting; Sonia has difficulty connecting to Marizza who feels overshadowed by her, and Franco has kept Mia wrapped in a figurative plastic bubble that shields her from the reality surrounding her. [[spoiler: Not to mention that when the two discover the parentage of their missing parents, the girls naturally freak out.]]
* In ''Series/TheCrown2016'':
** George and Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon are portrayed as loving parents but still possessing many faults. They follow advice that Elizabeth only needs schooling in areas directly related to the monarchy, leaving her entirely unprepared with a broad range of subjects when she took the crown. Her younger sister Margaret ended up feeling like a lesser sister than Elizabeth and as a result, acted out for attention, though she believed that George [[ParentalFavouritism loved Margaret better]] than Elizabeth.
** Elizabeth and Phillip, especially in the second season. Though both love their children, Elizabeth's job as queen keeps her unavailable to them. She is also becoming distant with Charles as he is a constant reminder of the representation of the Crown and of her own mortality. Likewise, Phillip is disappointed in Charles' sensitive nature and attempts to toughen up his son by sending him to a notoriously tough boarding school. He also at times feels outranked by Charles, who is his wife's successor.

* This is a realisation that Music/TheDivineComedy had come to in his song 'Mother Dear', but uses this fact to sing her praises for how she was ever able to put up with him in his youth.
-->''It was not that long ago it first occurred to me,\\
That my mother was a person in her own right.\\
Now I realize how very lucky I have been,\\
And there, but for the grace of God, go I.\\
Mother dear, she can see inside.\\
Mother dear, and I've nowhere to hide.\\
Mother dear, did I spoil your plans?\\
Mother dear, I do the best I can.''
* The protagonist in "Rockabye" by Music/CleanBandit is a poor single mother, work as a prostitute who struggles to provide for her son but love him dearly and wants him to have a better life than she did.
-->''Now she got a six-year-old\\
Trying to keep him warm\\
Trying to keep out the cold\\
When he looks in her eyes\\
He don't know he is safe when she says\\
She tells him, "Oh, love, no one's ever gonna hurt you, love."\\
"I'm gonna give you all of my love."\\
"Nobody matters like you."\\
(Stay up there, stay up there!)\\
She tells him, "Your life ain't gon' be nothing like my life." (Straight!)\\
"You're gonna grow and have a good life."\\
"I'm gonna do what I got to do.", yeah.''\\

[[folder:Newspaper Comics]]
* The UrExample would have to be Mom and Dad from ''ComicStrip/CalvinAndHobbes''. Dad routinely complains about having children, exclaiming that what he really wanted was a dog, and has given up on educating or instilling respect in his delinquent son; quite the contrary, Dad's favorite pastime is filling his son's head with complete nonsense about how science works. (This may actually stem from Calvin criticizing Dad's ignorance in this field in a past strip.) Mom generally keeps her game face on, but even she has her limits. Artist Bill Watterson said in response to angry complaints about the cruel parents, "They do a better job than I would."
** They're trying, and their better efforts tend to produce wonderful heartwarming moments. But they're ordinary people, and Calvin is extraordinary. (Take that whichever way you like.)

* Tidus' father Jecht and Tidus' mom from ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyX''. From the one scene we see of them together the two are SickeningSweethearts. When it comes to their son, Jecht is an emotionally abusive jerkass (and a [[AlcoholicParent drunk]] to boot). Tidus' mom actually cares for her son, but outright ignores him whenever Jecht is around and when he disappears, she dies of a broken heart, essentially abandoning poor Tidus.
* Despite the HeartwarmingMoment at the end of the first game, poor Ashley Robbins suffered this between the first and second ''VideoGame/AnotherCode'' games. While it's forgivable in that Richard still had a ton of issues to sort out after coming back into his daughter's life and his social skills probably atrophied during ten years of self-imposed isolation, the two flubbed the initial bonding effort and had to work through another game to patch things up.
* Parents in ''Franchise/TheSims'' do very little to raise their children. Babies and toddlers will need constant attention, but older children only really need homework help and food cooked for them and teenagers can live in total independence.
* ''Franchise/TalesSeries'':
** ''VideoGame/TalesOfSymphonia'' has Lloyd's ParentalSubstitute Dirk, who once hits him in a case of AngerBornOfWorry: Lloyd had just been in ''quite'' the danger - plus he had an [[MacGuffin Exsphere]] with him...
** ''VideoGame/TalesOfTheAbyss'' has Luke's father. Duke Fabre has a high standing in Kimlasca and is very hands-off and incredibly cold, almost harsh, to his son. He eventually admits why he remains distant. [[spoiler: Since [[BecauseDestinySaysSo the Score]] predicted that Luke would die at the age of 17, Duke Fabre felt that it was better to just not get to know a son, who was destined to die so soon, at all, so that he wouldn't be sad or regret anything when the time came. But as Luke survives and the two talk, Duke Fabre admits that he feels like he missed out on Luke and tries to rectify things.]]
* A few cases in ''VideoGame/WorldOfWarcraft''.
** Magni Bronzebeard was quite disappointed that he was unable to get a male heir, leading to some distance between him and Moira. Anduin has great respect for Magni, but notes that it was partly his fault that Moira turned out the way she did, joining the Dark Irons out of love for their emperor, Dagran Thaurissan.
** Varian Wrynn toward his son, Anduin. Varian's Lo'gosh side and his more warlike ways cause a rift between him and his pacifistic son Anduin, leading him to send Anduin to stay in Ironforge while he works through his issues. Later on, Anduin goes to study under Velen, rather than Archbishop Benedictus as Varian suggests, but Benedictus brings the two together to help them reconcile. Varian openly admits on a few occasions that he is a less than perfect father.
* ''VideoGame/{{Persona 4}}'' has Ryotaro Dojima, the protagonist's uncle and guardian for the events of the game. While he's a hardworking, honest cop and genuinely loves his daughter Nanako, he often neglects her thanks to lingering issues regarding his wife's unsolved hit-and-run death and his fear that he alone is inadequate as a parent, which he hides from by avoiding Nanako and burying himself in his work. Fortunately, it's possible to help parent and child overcome their problems and become a true family again.
** The game also has Eri Minami, [[ParentWithNewParamour a young woman who has become a stepmother to a young boy named Yuuta]], whom the Main Character can tutor. She has difficulty bonding with her new stepson, and in return Yuuta mistakenly thinks she hates him. Her social link allows the Main Character to help the two bond as well.
* ''VideoGame/{{Crusader Kings}}'': If you've played this game the Empress Maria Theresa example in the real life section may just come across as eerily familiar. You might really love your charitable, brave, gregarious daughter who happens to be a genius, but that won't stop you from setting up an ArrangedMarriage to a man she hardly knows in order to help secure your borders from invasion.
* A spoilerrifc example--coming to terms with this is actually the crux of [[spoiler: Cheryl's]] issues in ''VideoGame/SilentHillShatteredMemories''. Harry and his wife [[spoiler: Dahlia]] ''did'' seem to have a happy relationship at some point in the past, but they also had plenty of issues that made getting married basically out of high school and raising a kid pretty tough. (Depending on the player's actions, the ending can also reveal that [[spoiler: the couple ended up going through a divorce, that either one of them was abusive, or that Harry ended up cheated on his wife]].) Then [[spoiler: Harry dies in a car crash, causing Cheryl--who was seven at the time--to grow up obsessing over her few rose-tinted memories of him, while also viewing her mother as a bitter, washed-up tramp]]; Kaufmann's WhamLine and accompanying speech at the end of the game break down exactly how harmful such an unrealistic worldview is for the psyche.
* An obscure example in ''VideoGame/{{Evolve}}'' is Ida Lennox. She's an engineering genius who vastly prefers designing space stations and colonies to interacting with people, has an (admittedly deserved) ego, and admits to switching men out every once and a while. Her performance as a parent is described by WordOfGod as being a hands off affair, allowing the child to find their own way, to the point where there's only a single line of dialogue mentioning she's a parent. [[spoiler: The line in question comes from her son: Jack.]]
* ''Franchise/FireEmblem'' has many of these:
** Greil from ''VideoGame/FireEmblemPathOfRadiance'' was a loving father who cared not just for his own kids but for [[AFatherToHisMen his entire mercenary company]], but kept a lot of secrets from Ike and Mist. [[spoiler:For example, the fact that he killed their mother Elena in a berserk rage, due to the effects of a cursed medallion that only Elena (and later Mist) was able to handle without going crazy. Or that Ike had witnessed the entire thing and had the memory magically sealed and repressed by Sephiran.]]
** The entire first generation of ''VideoGame/FireEmblemFates''. Because birth control was harder to come by in those days ''and'' several of the First Generations are either BlueBlood or members of a LegacyOfService (so [[BabiesMakeEverythingBetter they're in desperate need of heirs]]), any couple married during the war produced a child or two and in order to protect those children, [[spoiler: their parents had to send them to the Deeprealms. They visit the kids but not too frequently as they keep fighting, so they eventually ''do'' reunite with their children (whose ages range from pre-teens to older teenagers, as the Deeprealms have different time flows) for real, the parents are aware that maybe sending them away wasn't the perfect choice due to some of the kids having abandonment issues or being pissed.]] The resulting support conversations delve into the troubled relationships and ultimately prove that even if circumstances weren't ideal, the parents do very much care about their children and want to keep them safe above all else. And in the end, the kids do recognize that they're loved even if their parents aren't perfect.
** In ''VideoGame/FireEmblemEchoesShadowsOfValentia'', [[spoiler: Emperor Rudolf truly wanted the best for his son Albein/Alm and his nephew/adoptive son Berkut. Problem is, he had a huge ZeroApprovalGambit to play for the sake of the Valentian continent as a whole, so he first sent a pretty much newborn Alm away and made sure that he wouldn't learn the truth of his origins, then some time later adopted a very young Berkut as his heir ''without'' telling him about Alm or his plans. While Alm was more or less fine thanks to being raised by Rudolf's advisor Mycen, Berkut's already present obsession with strength (as already taught by his now dead parents) became ''even stronger'', and this would bite ''everyone'' in the ass later.]]
* [[spoiler: King Rhoam]] in ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaBreathOfTheWild'' was a stern and harsh parent towards their child [[spoiler: Zelda]], admonishing them for not being able to [[spoiler: awaken the divine power of Hylia]] and forbidding their child from pursuing other interests and studies. They had good intentions, but their methods only made things worse and it was after [[spoiler: his death, Zelda sacrificing herself to seal Calamity Ganon and the fall of Hyrule]] that they realized their mistake.
* Futaba's mother in ''VideoGame/Persona5'' loved her dearly but tended to prioritize her work over her private life and therefore had little time for her daughter. After her death, this attitude [[spoiler:coupled with her forged suicide note]] led Futaba to mistakenly believe her mother died hating her.
* In ''VideoGame/GodOfWarPS4'', while he was never physically abusive with Atreus, Kratos is rather abrasive and deliberately distant with his son, which obviously damaged Atreus and they have a strained relationship because of it. It's clear that Kratos does genuinely care for Atreus but ironically his cold attitude towards Atreus is his attempt to protect Atreus from Kratos's bloody past. Kratos admits to himself that he is simply not ready to be a father figure again after the traumatic loss of his first wife and daughter and he is ''terrified'' of [[AdultFear failing as a father]] to Atreus.

[[folder:Visual Novels]]
* ''VisualNovel/UminekoWhenTheyCry'' is one of the most radical examples of this trope. The parents aren't just people, they're full-fledged main characters. All of the mothers got some great development, and the fathers have quite a bit as well. (Except Hideyoshi, who despite being really nice we don't know much about, [[EnsembleDarkhorse to the disappointment of the fanbase]].) They also have one of the [[BigScrewedUpFamily Biggest, Most Screwed Up Families]] a videogame player is ever going to meet.
* Averted in ''VisualNovel/{{Clannad}}'' with Nagisa Furukawa's parents. Her father Akio has the phases of the tough guy and an OverprotectiveDad, while her mother Sanae has the sensitive and loving personality as TheDitz. They are willing to do everything to protect and help Nagisa whilst trying to maintain a healthy, loving relationship between their own selves. [[spoiler: It was eventually revealed that the two indeed ''followed'' this trope earlier in their lives, as they were constantly busy pursuing their dream careers in acting (Akio) and teaching (Sanae) and little Nagisa was left alone home constantly. After an incident where Nagisa fell seriously ill while they were working and they [[ParentExMachina just managed to save her before she nearly died]], they find out she was [[IllGirl born sickly]] and have decided to both quit their jobs to pursue the goal of protecting Nagisa instead. This explains the bakery they set up, and why Sanae is [[LethalChef so horrible at baking]] to begin with. Poor Nagisa doesn't know this, and falls into an HeroicBSOD after she finds out, but eventually recovers when [[ParentExMachina her parents tell her directly during an important play she was doing]] that she shouldn't [[ItsAllMyFault blame herself]]. In ''After Story'' they still fit in as they raise Ushio during her early years, after Nagisa's DeathByChildbirth and Tomoya's years-old HeroicBSOD, but [[StepfordSmiler don't allow themselves to]] [[OutlivingOnesOffspring grieve for Nagisa]] so they can do their best for Ushio.]].
* Phoenix Wright from ''Franchise/AceAttorney'' is obviously a loving, devoted father to his adoptive daughter Trucy, and while they have a very close relationship, he isn't infaliable. For example, he jets off to Khura'in when he believes his old assistant Maya is in danger, just days before Trucy's big television debut. When it turns out Maya is fine, but isn't going to be done with her training for a few more weeks, he decides to stay in Khura'in rather than come home to support his daughter. When poor Trucy [[spoiler:gets accused of [[FatalMethodActing murdering her costar during the show]]]], he ''still'' doesn't come home; while Apollo may be a capable attorney, the game makes it clear he's a complete '''legend''' by this point, and even if he weren't, Trucy would probably appreciate her father being there for her.

* Occurs in ''Webcomic/FriendlyHostility.'' Padma and Nefertari Maharassa are still besotted with each other, and they aren't conventional parents--especially since "conventional parents" generally don't have a pet Satanist (Rafi) occupying the spare room. They're not ''bad'' parents though; the Maharassa kids have a interesting/fun childhood, it's just prone to some… drama. Such as the parents leaving Rafi to babysit only to find he'd lost their daughter to cannibals. Fatima, their oldest child, has a strange love-hate relationship with her family, but then again she's an extremely cynical DeadpanSnarker. Their younger son, Fox, just adores them. Padma and Nefertari are always there for their now grown-up children, but they're still prone to some rather eccentric behaviour.
** In comparison to Collin's ultra-conventional, narrow minded family, however, the Maharassas are model parents. "Different is good" is a bit of a mantra for this webcomic.
* Danny in ''Webcomic/OtherPeoplesBusiness'' (same creator as ''Webcomic/FriendlyHostility''). Though she feels a certain amount of shame at not having custody of her son, she admits late in the comic that the first moment he called her "mommy" she felt like she wanted to die. She hated being a parent, and begrudgingly admits to feeling relieved that she doesn't have to be a full time mother anymore.
* Anthony Carver in ''Webcomic/GunnerkriggCourt'' is a cold, distant, and [[AbusiveParents emotionally abusive father]] to his daughter Antimony, but as chapter 53 showed, he's a deeply flawed and neurotic man [[spoiler:who blames himself for his wife's death, and deeply regrets the choices he made in its wake. Anthony does love his daughter, but he's so neurotic that he's assumed that she blames him for Surma's death and that it would have been better if he just stayed away from Annie's life. Especially after he discovers that the "ritual" that would bring his wife back from the dead is a fake and nearly killed their daughter in the process. He was also unprepared to see Annie after such a long time and how much she looked like Surma and admits that humiliating her in front of class was wrong, but has yet to apologize to ''her'' for it.]]
* In ''Webcomic/WhispersInTheWind'' Scarlet litteraly abandons her daughter Robin's side in the middle of a pirate attack because she's too caught up in the fire of the battle. Bailey in the other hand, not only does he hide to their son Evan that he is his real father but he also will try to mould him in the way he needs by influencing and manipulating his decisions.

[[folder:Web Originals]]
* ''{{Literature/Touch}}'' depicts a set of parents attempting to help their child through the trauma of assault, all while quietly falling to pieces about it whenever he isn't looking.
* We don't see them, but WebVideo/TheNostalgiaCritic's parents. Abusive, scary, implied to have expected way too much of him and apparently raised him as a girl for a short time, but took him out for a meal when he got an A--and his mum sorted things out when he was getting bullied as a child. That last bit more than likely induced StockholmSyndrome, as he's still living with her and calls her his world.
* Jobe in the Literature/WhateleyUniverse has parents like this. His parents are still together, but his father is a megalomaniacal supervillain who now runs his own country, and his mother is TheDitz. They seem proud of the fact that they have managed to raise a sociopath. The biggest area of friction before this year was that Jobe prefers bio-devising while his father is a robots-and-power-armor kind of inventor.
* Website/CollegeHumor: In "[[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IuLG6WqjOEo The Six Ways You'll See Your Dad]]", the last way you'll see your father, after viewing him as a superhero, a clown, a tyrant, a sell-out, and a source of income, is that he's a guy with his own hopes and dreams just like you.

[[folder:Western Animation]]
* Timmy Turner's parents, in ''WesternAnimation/TheFairlyOddParents'', exemplify this trope. They're silly, affectionate, devoted to each other... and leave Timmy in the care of a psychotic babysitter while they're off pursuing their hobby-of-the-week. They do make earnest attempts at being good parents (and are always quick to declare YouAreGrounded), but the fact is that Wanda provides the more traditional "motherly" role. In the pilot, they were unaware it was possible to hire someone to look after your children and were just sickeningly devoted to giving Timmy all their attention.
* Ray Rocket, Reggie and Otto's dad in ''WesternAnimation/RocketPower'', is a "cool" dad with one foot firmly in the CompetenceZone… so he falls victim to this trope occasionally. One examples is in ''Race Across New Zealand,'' where he lets his own macho pride turn into ParentalFavoritism, to Reggie's dismay.
* Arnold, from ''WesternAnimation/HeyArnold'', is the "old before his time" result of this trope, despite living with his grandparents rather than his parents. His grandma and grandpa are of the loving-but-eccentric variety (though his grandpa can step up to the plate pretty well when called upon), which means Arnold spends a lot of time alone or with his friends.
** In sharp contrast to Arnold's absent-minded but loving family set-up, Helga lives in the purely dysfunctional version of a family whose parents have both personalities ''and'' serious issues. If anything, the extensive characterization given to her parents, particularly her disillusioned and possibly-alcoholic mother, make her and her sister's situation seem even more tragic: Helga is cynical, bitchy, {{Tsundere}} and disenchanted because they pay so little attention to her, whereas Olga is a deluded ShrinkingViolet and StepfordSmiler because they give her too ''much'' attention.
* Ickis, one of the main characters in ''WesternAnimation/AaahhRealMonsters'' is often described as the son of the Great Slickis. Many characters, particularly Oblina and the Gromble gush about how talented Slickis is (in stark contrast to Ickis' struggles to successfully complete his assignments.) Slickis is shown to be a very friendly, laid-back monster who is often traveling the world while he son attends a boarding school, so consequently they don't talk to each other much. The first time they try to reconnect, Slickis honestly cannot remember whether or not his son likes certain activities and Ickis gets mad because everybody else wants to hang out with Slickis, and he wants to spend the day with just his Dad. They end up going to the surface world together in an attempt to scare the humans. Ickis messes up, Slickis saves him, and then decides NOT to humiliate his son by revealing what happened after they return to the Academy. Ickis is puzzled but pleased, and the episode ends with the two monsters finally having a nice conversation. Later seasons mention Slickis, who Ickis still wants to impress, and he actually does come to watch his son win a Sewerball game (the monster version of baseball) but mostly he remains too busy with his own career to help Ickis.
* The parents of the characters on ''WesternAnimation/SouthPark'', especially Mr. and Mrs. Marsh, have received a surprising amount of development, even to the point of directly impacting the episodes' plots. Similarly, Kyle's mom Sheila often ends up causing more problems than she solves, both for her son and the town in general, when she starts off on one of her social crusades.
* Ron's parents in ''WesternAnimation/KimPossible'' could be said to fit this trope. His parents--particularly his dad--are relatively pleasant people, but show little interest in their son. They barely even include him in decisions they make which affect his life, such as moving to Norway in TheMovie or adopting a second child. The fourth season did, however, see them become a little more involved in his life, such as the episode in which Mr. Stoppable, who is an actuary, helped bring down a villain whose power was his ability to do math.
* Parents on ''WesternAnimation/{{Daria}}'' tend to be this way. Helen is a {{Workaholic}} and Jake is a ManChild who can't seem to move on from his own HilariouslyAbusiveChildhood, but both clearly care for [[TheSnarkKnight Daria]] and [[LovableLibby Quinn]]. [[CoolLoser Jane]]'s HippieParents are firm believers in HandsOffParenting, thinking that this is nurturing their kids' individuality, but don't seem to realize how dysfunctional her siblings are as a result. [[ExtracurricularEnthusiast Jodie]]'s parents are both {{Education Mama}}s, but the GrandFinale shows that they are willing to put that aside when they realize how stressed it has made her. Etc.
* The ''WesternAnimation/{{Rugrats}}'' parents were funny and developed, and their subplots were an important part of what made the show entertaining for adults as well as kids. However, the entire premise of the show relies on them being completely oblivious to their toddlers wandering off on dangerous adventures.
* Professor Membrane on ''WesternAnimation/InvaderZim'' is a generally-affable and utterly brilliant [[BunnyEarsLawyer Bunny Ears Scientist]] who is entirely too wrapped up in [[DaddyHadAGoodReasonForAbandoningYou fixing every problem in the world]] to pay much attention to his children. His relationship with his son Dib is particularly strained because Dib won't get involved in "REAL Science" (he's an eleven-year-old paranormal investigator), while his daughter Gaz's desire to spend time with him is the ''only'' time in the series she shows a desire to be around ''anybody.''
* Jack and Maddie on ''WesternAnimation/DannyPhantom'' are sometimes more obsessed with their latest ghost-hunting activities to pay attention to their children--like, for example, to notice their son is ''the half-ghost kid they're hunting.'' Their older daughter Jasmine actually [[LampshadeHanging Lampshades]] this, though her diagnosis is a bit of an exaggeration--when not distracted they can show plenty of interest in their kids, often to the point of clinginess.
* Doctor Doofenschmirtz, resident MadScientist from ''WesternAnimation/PhineasAndFerb'' would probably fit into this trope. After having a HilariouslyAbusiveChildhood, he's ''very'' dedicated to being a wonderful dad to his daughter Vanessa... except he isn't very good at it. When he isn't making the usual 'embarrassing parent' mistakes, conflicts result from the fact that he's sometimes too obsessed with his job of causing evil to care for his daughter. However, he's still overall presented as being one of the GoodParents, and Vanessa clearly loves him even when she's exasperated with him.
-->'''Vanessa''': I can't believe you brought work with you!\\
'''Dr. Doof''': What do you mean?\\
'''Vanessa''': Dad, you've got some guy tied up here. \\
'''Dr. Doof''': No, Vanessa. ''We've'' got some guy tied up here.
* In the ''Franchise/AvatarTheLastAirbender'' franchise:
** ''WesternAnimation/TheLegendOfKorra'':
*** Tenzin is mostly a good father to his three kids. However, when it becomes clear that his daughter Jinora is much more spiritually talented than him, he ignores that due to both his pride and to avoid feeling inadequate as a spiritual mentor. He gets better after a pep talk from his student.
*** Tenzin's own father Aang spent more time with Tenzin than he did with Kya or Bumi, since Tenzin was the only airbender (and thus the only one who could help revive the Air Nomad culture). [[TheUnfavorite Kya and Bumi resent Aang and Tenzin for this]] even in the present day [[spoiler:though they get over it in the second season, and when Bumi becomes an airbender in the third season, he takes it in stride]]. Plus, Tenzin has severe self-esteem problems due to being TheDutifulSon: he loves his father, yes, but for a long time he tends to view himself as "The son of Avatar Aang and the hope for future airbenders" rather then just as "Tenzin".
*** Toph was very "hands-off" with her daughters due to her resentment of her own parents' opposite methods. Her younger daughter Suyin resented the perceived lack of attention and acted out, resulting in her being forced to leave her home, something her older sister Lin took very badly. Suyin in turn tried to keep her own daughter Opal from seeing the world [[spoiler:though she relents in the end]], in a manner eerily reminiscent of her grandparents' treatment of Toph. The Bei Fong family in general seem to be prone to making mistakes in parenting despite the best of intentions.
*** Korra's father Tonraq, the chief of the Southern Water Tribe, never revealed to her that [[spoiler:he used to be the heir to the Northern Water Tribe, but was exiled due to his recklessness, or that he raised her in near-total isolation and lied to her about the reason for doing it]], so Korra is understandably pissed off when she learns about the first from her uncle Unalaq. Of course, then it turns out [[EvilUncle said uncle]] was behind [[spoiler: his brother's exile]] in the first place, and in the third season it's revealed Korra was hidden away because [[spoiler:a terrorist group wanted to kidnap her for their own ends]].
*** Hiroshi Sato is a RagsToRiches success story and devoted to his daughter Asami ever since his wife was murdered by a firebender. [[spoiler:Then when it turns out he funding the Equalist movement, he ends up trying to kill his daughter when she stays with the Avatar. He realizes how wrong he was and redeems himself later, though, via pulling RedemptionEqualsDeath.]]
** The parents from [[WesternAnimation/AvatarTheLastAirbender the original series]] are hardly better: never around (Katara and Sokka's dad, [[DaddyHadAGoodReasonForAbandoningYou though he had quite good reasons]]), stiflingly overprotective (Toph's parents, as said above), overbearing (Mai's family, obsessed with their self-image ''and'' prone [[ParentalFavoritism to ignore Mai's needs to favor her baby brother Tomtom]]), were banished (Ursa, expulsed from the Fire Nation court [[spoiler: after killing her father-in-law, Fire Lord Azulon, to protect Zuko]]). Zuko's ArchnemesisDad Ozai is [[AbusiveParents a whole other deal, however]].
* ''WesternAnimation/TheSimpsons'' has Homer, who does admit he's a terrible parent, and he does try to rectify this ([[DependingOnTheWriter usually]]), but he and Bart don't usually get along, he and Lisa are too different despite her being a DaddysGirl, and with Maggie, Homer sometimes forgets she even exists, or what her name is. At one point he even tries to be a better and attentive father, only for Bart and Lisa to tell him they ''prefer'' him being a "half-assed under-parent".
** Marge can be considered a more mundane variant; while she's a more competent parent, she is still imperfect and sometimes vents her personal issues and overbearing nature onto her kids despite her devotion to them.
* ''WesternAnimation/BatmanTheAnimatedSeries'': Mayor Hamilton Hill is portrayed as this. He is a competent public official, but he used his son Jordan's birthday as a platform to promote himself, and disapproves of the boy's interest in magic. This eventually drove the kid to run away. They do eventually make up.
* A major theme of ''WesternAnimation/StevenUniverse'' is that all of Steven's parental figures are, for all that he looks up to them, people, with problems and issues of their own. This is particularly true of the main maternal figure in his life, the local TeamMom Pearl, who has been a neurotic wreck ever since Steven's mother Rose left her for his father Greg, with resulting projection issues.
** Steven's MissingMom is a PosthumousCharacter, and while she initially seems like an ideal example of DeceasedParentsAreTheBest, she falls under this trope the more we learn about her, with Steven struggling with her imperfect decisions.
** Steven's father Greg is a very loving, supportive, and open-minded parent who dotes on his son as much as he can. However, due to him almost always working just to support him financially and Steven's constant training to become a Crystal Gem, they don't always see each other as much as they want. It even becomes a plot point in one episode [[spoiler: where Greg fakes an injury just so they can spend more time together.]]
** Connie's parents, Priyanka and Dough Maheswaran, bordered on abusive but settled in this. They genunely desires to help Connie, but Priyanka's ControlFreak tendencies and very harsh punishments made the poor girl terrified of them. They realized this, however, and do their best to ease off.
* Both Jerry and Beth of ''WesternAnimation/RickAndMorty'' often show concern for their kids and the effect Rick's antics can have on them, however they are continuously hindered by their own psychological problems and their failing marriage.
* Tino's dad in ''WesternAnimation/TheWeekenders'' obviously cares a lot about his son but due to insecurities about being boring, fails to realize that all his son wants to do when he's visiting his dad (or his dad is visiting him) is to spend time with him and ''just'' him and is so upset by the latest visit that he just wants it to be over. He eventually fixes it but it takes a full-hour episode to do it.
* ''WesternAnimation/{{Futurama}}'': Fry's parents were odd individuals, with his mother being a hard-drinking sports fan and his father being a paranoid ConspiracyTheorist obsessed with the then-disbanded USSR. Though neglectful at times, the flashbacks showed that they really did love Fry and raised him as well as they were able. They even tried searching for him when he went missing.
* This is a running theme on ''WesternAnimation/{{Recess}}''. The Gang's parents aren't depicted much, but when they are, they're far more likely to end up making a mess or admitting their own flaws rather than saving the day.
** The trope is most commonly seen with Spinelli's parents. As the [[LittleMissBadass toughest kid on the playground]], she frequently makes it ''extremely'' clear that she doesn't like cosmetics and fashion, and has a general aversion to all things "girly." Despite Spinelli repeatedly saying this, though, her parents, and especially her mom, have a tendency to baby and treat her like a little princess, which she hates.
*** In "More Like Gretchen," Spinelli recruits Gretchen to come along to a cosmetics museum, as her mother is outright forcing her to go. While there, Gretchen makes a big impression on Mrs. Spinelli with her wide array of knowledge; she does the same with Mr. Spinelli at a family dinner later. The parents are so pleased with her that they constantly wonder why Spinelli can't be [[TitleDrop more like Gretchen]] ''to their daughter's face.'' Needless to say, this deeply hurts Spinelli's feelings.
** Gus's father has a similar problem. A lieutenant who calls his son "cadet," he tends to look at the world through a military perspective, which, while well-intentioned, doesn't always come across as particularly wise. In one episode, he responds to Gus's question about a bully by telling a lengthy story about Belgium standing up to Germany during World War One. Gus is impressed at the idea of "little Belgium" defeating the superpower; Lieutenant Griswald then bursts out laughing, explaining that Germany absolutely ''destroyed'' Belgium in the war (although the action did prompt the rest of Europe to stand up to Germany, a metaphor for what happens later in the episode regarding the bully). Gus ends up feeling no better than before after hearing this "advice."
** In a more minor example, Gretchen's parents often encourage her scientific pursuits to the detriment of her friendships and other hobbies. In "My Fair Gretchen," the young genius gets a perfect score on a difficult test, prompting the school to try to send her to a academy for gifted students. Gretchen doesn't want to go, because it will separate her from her friends, but her parents won't listen (in her own words, "my mom's been turning cartwheels since I told her").
* ''WesternAnimation/StarVsTheForcesOfEvil'': Marco's parents, Rafael and Angie. The two are HappilyMarried alright, but they act so much like they're still on their honeymoon that they can be a bit neglectful of Marco at times and are oblivious to all the life-threatening adventures he goes on with Star. Despite this, they still show a lot of care for their son, like showing concern for him when he's depressed, becoming lonely when he's gone for long periods, and enjoying those moments they spend with him.

[[folder:Real Life]]
* Diana Wynne Jones' childhood, as she tells it, [[http://www.leemac.freeserve.co.uk/autobiog.htm was this to a T]].
** She put this to a direct use in ''The Time of the Ghost,'' a rather good novel in which the main character is a ghost; the book is her nearest thing to an autobiographical work.
* Austrian Empress UsefulNotes/MariaTheresa is described as such by history, media and Wiki/TheOtherWiki. She ''was'' affectionate to them (showing some favoritism towards her fifth child Maria Christina, both for being born on Maria Theresa's 25th birthday ''and'' for [[TheOjou being classy, talented and cute]]), but also used them as pawns via {{Arranged Marriage}}s like pretty much every Habsburg and non-Habsburg monarch; she wrote to them frequently to keep close contact with each son or daughter, while not being above of trying to use her motherly authority to influence their lives. And you know how... ''[[SarcasmMode well]]'' that worked [[MarieAntoinette in a certain case.]]
* Edward I of England was a famously doting father to his several daughters, but that did ''not'' keep him from using them as political pawns; it was, after all, his job as king. It might also be argued that going along with such arrangements was the girls' job as princesses. Two of the daughters were able to make love match second marriages with their father's (reluctant) approval.
* Henry VIII was known to be lavishly attentive to his three surviving children, most particularly the longed-for son Edward VI. His daughters, however, were often juggled in his affections depending on his current wife and mood; the way he treated their mothers also factored into it. The result was that Mary I and Elizabeth I, though they loved each other, were also vicious rivals with neurotic tendencies aplenty, and Henry was largely to blame for all of it.