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Anime & Manga
- Pinako Rockbell of Fullmetal Alchemist raised her granddaughter, Winry, after the murder of the young girl's parents. This was immediately after the death of the mother of two neighborhood boys (prior in the 2003 adaptation), Ed and Al Elric, and she ended up with all three. She seems to have done a good job, as all three are prodigies in their respective scientific fields.
- Joseph Joestar in Jojos Bizarre Adventure was raised by his grandmother Erina, since his father George II died in the Great War and his mother Lisa Lisa had to go on the lam for killing a British military officer who was actually a zombie minion of Dio Brando in disguise, and the real killer of George II.
- Yoh's grandparents, Kinu and Yohmei, in Shaman King
- Yugi's grandfather in Yu-Gi-Oh!. He does have a mother, but she got Brother Chucked quite quickly. Rebecca Hawkins, as well.
- In One Piece, Luffy and Ace were watched over by their grandfather, Vice-Admiral Garp. Somewhat subverted in that Garp wasn't Ace's grandpa by blood, but actually adopted him upon the request of Ace's biological father. Garp still considered him his grandson anyway, even if adopted.
- Konohamaru. But curiously, there are lots of orphans, but grandparents appear much less often than parents.
- Sasori ended up being raised by his grandmother Chiyo after his parents were killed in battle by Kakashi's father Sakumo when he was 6.
- Arika Yumemiya from Mai-Otome, and Grandma's sayings are quoted throughout the show.
- Rei/Mars from Sailor Moon is raised by her maternal grandfather after her mom dies. In the Manga and Live action, her father Takashi is still around but she refuses to have anything to do with him because of his cold treatment of her Ill Girl mother Risa, not visiting her a single time until her death; he isn't mentioned in the anime. Her grandfather isn't mentioned in the live action (nor anyone else she may be living with) thus not using this trope.
- In Fushigi Yuugi Genbu Kaiden Firuka and Haagasu's great-grandson is raised by Limdo to become the next emperor, because he has no heir of his own.
- Link is raised by his grandparents (including his Badass Grandpa) in the manga adaptations of The Legend of Zelda Oracle games.
- Ushio from CLANNAD lives with her grandparents until she's five years old, because Tomoya sees her as a reminder of his wife Nagisa, who died giving birth to her, and can't handle the depression. Once she's five, however, they start rekindling their bond.
- When first introduced, Yukito Tsukishiro from Cardcaptor Sakura, though as they're often said to be out of town, his grandparents are never seen. As Yukito is the "false form" of the magical being Yue, most of his background is actually false memories, including his grandparents. They simply don't exist.
- In the manga Baby and Me, one of Takuya's classmates claims to live with her grandparents because her father and mother are famous and are overseas. Actually, it turns out that her grandparents are really her parents, and she's embarrassed about the fact, so she lies.
- Renton in Eureka Seven was raised by his grandfather after his mother died in childbirth and his father Adrock sacrificed himself during the New Era Summer of Love when Renton was a young child. His uncle appears in one episode, however.
- Miu in Kenichi: The Mightiest Disciple was raised by her grandfather Hayato.
- Yasutora "Chad" Sado. Chad's parents died when he was a little boy, so he spent a good part of his life under the watch of a Mexican Cool Old Guy named Oscar Joaquin de la Rosa, whom he referred to as "abuelo" (Spanish for "grandfather"); it's not fully known if the "Abuelo" was his real grandpa, a distant relative or a mere family friend, but Chad considered him as his gramps for all that was worth.
- Same goes to Toshiro Hitsugaya and Momo Hinamori, raised together in Rukongai by an old lady whom they both called grandmother.
- Axis Powers Hetalia:
- In the original Gakuen Hetalia, Seychelles mentions that she used to live with an old man she referred to as "grandfather". Since she's a nation-tan, it's highly doubtful they're 100% relatives.
- Also, the young Italies used to live with their grandfather Ancient Rome until his "death", then were taken in either by Austria and Hungary (Chibitalia) or Spain (Chibimano).
- Kaoru Hanabishi from Ai Yori Aoshi. Unluckily for him, the trope comes along abusive grandparents.
- Since Kotetsu Kaburagi from Tiger & Bunny can't properly raise his daughter Kaede due to his superhero role and Kaede's mother Tomoe died of illness years ago, Kaede lives with her paternal grandmother (and her uncle Muramasa aka Kotetsu's older brother) instead and has no idea about his Secret Identity until the second half of the series.
- Lunlun from Hana no Ko Lunlun, since mom died in childbirth and dad followed five years later. Also some of the people she helps, like a Spanish girl named Isabel and a Moroccan boy named Sayid.
- Takeshi Sendoh from Hajime no Ippo. His mother died few after he was born (maybe because of childbirth, but it's not specified), his father was a firefighter who died in the line of duty when Sendoh was around five years old. Hence why he was raised by his widowed grandmother, the owner of a small shop in Osaka's ward of Naniwa.
- Mario and Masako Natsume from Mawaru-Penguindrum. unfortunately, they also were victims of their grandfather's abuse.
- Shinobu Iijyuin from Haikara San Ga Tooru, since his father is a very high ranked military man stationed abroads and his mother was a German noblewoman who never was accepted by Japanese society, so she had to leave baby!Shinobu with the Iijyuin clan.
- Mei from Arashi no Yoru ni is raised by his grandmother, as his biological mother was killed protecting him from Giro and his pack of wolves in the prologue.
- Nice Guy Panther from Eyeshield 21 was raised by his grandmother whom had given him his treasured sweatband. She was also the one who provided him the money with her own savings to go to Japan. He desired to join the NFL so his grandmother would no longer have to work.
- Misaki from Hana no Mizo Shiru was raised by his grandfather after his parents died in accident...for a few years, until he died, too. Then he's left in Kawabata's care, which doesn't really end well.
- In Kotoura-san, after Haruka was disowned by her parents, it was implied she was raised by her grandfather Zenzou.
- Sandra was raised by her maternal grandmother in A Cruel God Reigns.
- Ryou of Gourmet Girl Graffiti have been living with her grandmother since her parents started working overseas six years ago.
- Takuto, the main character of Star Driver was raised by his Badass Grandpa who also taught him the art of Dual Wielding swordfighting and how to use his Cybody. It seems like his mother left her son with Icaro at an extremely early age, as Takuto only knows what she looks like from one single photo. The female protagonist, Wako, also seems to have been raised by her grandmother alone, although we never get to hear what actually happened with her parents.
- Tsubomi in HeartCatch Pretty Cure! was raised by her grandmother while her parents were constantly on business trips. This came to a screeching halt 13 years later when she had an emotional breakdown at just the right time, prompting her parents to stop their trips and make up for all of the lost time.
- This is repeated again in ''Doki Doki Pretty Cure" with Aguri a.k.a the kid that turns into the Trump Card of Love, Cure Ace.
- The titular character Izetta from Izetta: The Last Witch was raised by her grandmother prior to the beginning of the series.
- In Yuri!!! on Ice, Yuri "Yurio" Plisetsky is strongly implied to have been raised by his grandfather Nikolai. As said below, this seems to be pretty common in Russian society.
- In Private Actress, Shiho Kobayakawa was initially raised by her maternal grandmother. The lady died of a heart attack some time later, after a huge fight with Shiho. Shiho herself is still very remorseful for this.
- Chris Rock discusses this in his special Bigger and Blacker. He says that "if a kid calls his grandmama 'Mommy' and his mama 'Pam', he's going to jail".
- In one continuity, Legion of Super-Heroes' Luornu Durgo (Triad/Triplicate Girl/Duo Damsel) was raised by her grandmother, until she died and Luornu was sent to a mental hospital, due to her three selves not being emotionally identical. The grandmother was like this, as well, though she didn't reveal it to Luornu until shortly before she died.
- The Batman villain Dr. Jonathan Crane aka The Scarecrow was raised by his grandmother. She was not a pleasant woman and it did not turn out well.
- The same goes for Humphrey Dumpler, AKA Humpty Dumpty. Befitting his nickname, he cut her apart and tried to put her back together again to "fix" her. He sowed her up with shoe strings.
- Damian Wayne was partly raised by his grandfather, Ra's al Ghul, though his mother was also present.
- Billy of Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season 9 who is being raised by his grandmother because his parents kicked him out when he came out to them.
- Strontium Dog: Middenface McNulty was raised by his gran, a tough old biddy in the best Glaswegian tradition.
- Shazam's Freddy Freeman, aka Captain Marvel Jr., was raised by his grandfather from the time his parents died until Grandpa Freeman was killed by Captain Nazi.
- In The Racket-Rotter Chronicles, Harwood tells Annette that his maternal grandparents raised him, much to her surprise. This is because his parents were murdered when he was a child.
- Code Geass: The Prepared Rebellion has Milly Ashford, who was raised by a combination of her grandfather and an old nursemaid. She didn't meet her parents until she was five, and disliked them both almost immediately.
Films — Animation
- In Atlantis: The Lost Empire, Milo Thatch was raised by his late grandfather Thaddeus Thatch (whose best friend was apparently Preston Whitmore until Thaddeus "was laughed at and died a broken man") because his biological parents were both killed in a railway accident.
- In The Land Before Time (sequels, that is), Littlefoot is raised by his grandparents. Although the end of the first movie implied it pretty clearly.
- Possibly Wybie in Coraline — it's not spelled out, but we repeatedly hear his grandmother call him home and learn about her past with no mention of his parents.
- In The Book of Life, a line from a young Manolo implies that after Joaquin's father died and his mother left, his grandmother raised him.
- In Your Name, Mitsuha and Yotsuha are raised by their maternal grandmother Hitoha after their mother's death and what it does to their father.
Films — Live-Action
- Masao in Takeshi Kitano's Kikujiro No Natsu is a boy who is raised by his grandmother. The plot involves his looking for his estranged mother during the summer vacation (and meeting an oddball surrogate father figure).
- In Letters to Juliet, Charlie's parents died when he was young so he was raised by his grandmother, which explains why he was protective around her.
- In The Hunt for Red October Captain Marko Ramius was raised by his paternal grandfather, a fisherman who taught him to fish.
- The five girls in Mustang were raised by their grandmother.
- Menace II Society: Caine was raised by his grandparents after his father (a drug dealer) was shot to death and his mother (a crack fiend) died of an overdose. It's clear that they can't keep him from getting involved in the thug life, and Caine's grandfather eventually evicts him from their home.
- Actually subverted in Captain America: Civil War as Tony Stark believes that Aunt May is a kindly old grandma but finds her to be smoking hot. Being played by Marisa Tomei helps. It makes thing awkward as calls her "Aunt Hottie" right to Peter.
- Enter the Void: Deconstructed. It is implied that after the car crash that killed their parents, Oscar and Linda are initially being taken care of by their (paternal?) grandparents, but since they're just too old to take care of kids any longer Oscar and Linda are forcibly split up and moved into different foster families.
- Heidi starts when the title character goes to live with her paternal grandfather. Her friend Peter is raised by both his mom and his blind grandma.
- Neville Longbottom from Harry Potter was raised by his Apron Matron grandmother, Augusta, because the Cold-Blooded Torture from Barty Crouch Jr. and the Lestranges drove his parents Frank and Alice mad.
- According to Word of God, Teddy Lupin is raised by his grandmother after his parents die in the last book, with a good bit of help from his godfather, Harry.
- Rajput Cool Old Lady in Kim by Rudyard Kipling took it upon herself, though due to her style it was rather taxing for everyone around as well:
He is wearied, and I forgot, being a grandmother. (None but a grandmother should ever oversee a child. Mothers are only fit for bearing.)
- In the American Girl historical fiction series, the Victorian-era Samantha is raised by her wealthy grandmother because her parents died on a boat. No, not that one.
- Allanah Solo in the Star Wars Expanded Universe.
- Peter Hartling's book Oma ("Grandma") is about an Cool Old Lady who takes in her 5-year-old grandson Karl aka Kalle after his parents die. They both have to deal with the loss and with the grandmother's ailing health.
- In Les Misérables, Marius Pontmercy's grandfather takes him away from his father after his mother dies by threatening to disinherit him if his father raises him.
- In Fire and Hemlock, Polly is raised by her grandmother from around thirteen, after both her mother and father send her away to avoid difficulty with their love interests, leaving Polly stranded and sick in the middle of a strange city. Granny flatly refuses to let Polly's mother take her back even when she offers.
- In Doctrine of Labyrinths, Corbie was raised by her grandmother, who is implied to have died at some point before she meets Felix and Mildmay. Her parents remain shrouded in mystery as she never gives any information about her mother, and all she knows about her father is that he was probably a Ygressine sailor because she looks almost exactly like the Ygressine people about town.
- Brown Girl in the Ring 's main character Ti-Jeanne is raised by her grandmother Gros-Jeanne.
- The Changeover: The male lead, Sorenson Carlisle was originally raised by foster parents, but after suffering abuse at their hands, he managed to escape to his birth mother and grandmother's dwelling place.
- In "The Sword Bearer", John is raised by his maternal grandmother after his mother dies in childbirth. His father is missing until late in the book, and didn't even know he had a child.
- Captain Marco Ramius in The Hunt for Red October was raised by his grandmother since his father was off being the model Soviet hero, something that shamed Marco deeply.
- In Banana Yoshimoto's Kitchen, Mikage Sakurai was raised by her grandmother. The plot starts when Mrs. Sakurai dies and Mikage moves in with a friend of her, Yuuichi.
- The main character in Robert Bloch's "Floral Tribute" was raised by his grandmother until the authorities found out that she saw dead people and transferred him to an orphanage.
- Corie is being brought up by her maternal grandmother in Summers at Castle Auburn.
- In The House of Night, due to Parental Abandonment by both Zoey's mother and father, Grandma Redbird pretty much raised Zoey and continues to help out whenever possible.
- In The Secret of Platform 13, Ben is raised by his grandmother, Nanny Brown, who was the unwilling accomplice to the villain, Mrs. Trottle, when she kidnapped Raymond. Subverted because she's not actually his grandmother; Ben is the kid Mrs. Trottle kidnapped, and passed him onto Nanny Brown when she got pregnant with Raymond.
- In Jack Vance's Demon Princes quintet, young Kirth Gersen is raised by his grandfather Rolf after everyone else in their family is either enslaved or murdered by the titular villains. Grandpa turns him onto (and trains him for) the path of vengeance.
- Tinker and her cousin Oilcan were raised by their grandfather. Tinker spent literally her whole life under his care, as he had her made from his dead son's sperm and a donor egg.
- Rabble Starkey: For the first eight years of her life, Rabble was raised by her grandmother while her mother, who was fourteen when she gave birth, grew up.
- Prue, Piper, and Phoebe from Charmed were raised by their grandmother after their mother's death and father's abandonment.
- Mako/Shinken Pink from Samurai Sentai Shinkenger was raised by her grandmother. Both her parents are actually still alive but her mother was crippled in the climatic fight of the last generation and was unable to train her daughter in the family traditions.
- It's revealed in the first episode of The A-Team that Murdock's mother died when he was five years old. His father is never mentioned. He mentions both grandparents on occasion, and it's implied that they may have raised him.
- Sookie Stackhouse and her brother Jason in True Blood were raised by their grandmother after their parents died in a flood.
- Special Agent Seeley Booth from Bones was taken from an abusive alcoholic father and raised by his grandfather.
- It's indicated Brennan was rescued from foster care by her grandfather, but there's later info that makes things fuzzy about this.
- Thalia's character Marimar in the Soap Opera of the same name was raised by her grandparents in a cute little shack near the sea. Then, they died in a fire. Literally.
- Actually a pretty standard upbringing in Soap Operas, if the hero/heroine is orphaned.
- Warrick Brown on CSI.
- Gentarou Kisaragi, a.k.a. Kamen Rider Fourze lives with his grandfather in the latter's motor shop after losing his parents at an early age.
- A plot point in one episode of Stargate SG-1 is that Daniel's parents died—in front of him—when he was eight years old and his famous anthropologist grandfather didn't take him in. Adult Daniel is still a little bitter about that.
- Once Upon a Time: Red Riding Hood was raised by her grandmother after Red's fellow-wolf mother was killed by hunters. What happened to her father is never mentioned, but given what Red accidentally does to her love interest, that's probably for the best. (Naturally, in the cursed Storybrooke, Ruby was also apparently raised by her grandmother.)
- In Raising Hope, Jimmy's mother Virginia was raised by her grandparents after her mother abandoned her, but was told that her mother had died. Jimmy also made a will that said that if he were to die, his parents would be first in line to be his daughter Hope's legal guardians. Lucy's parents also kidnap Hope so they can do this, though she is returned by the end of the episode.
- In the Sufjan Stevens song "Romulus", the narrator and his brother are left in grandpa's care by their mom, who they apparently don't see again until Grandpa's funeral many years later.
- Final Fantasy
- Harvest Moon:
- Chloe in Harvest Moon: Tree of Tranquility and Harvest Moon: Animal Parade is raised by her grandfather, Ramsey.
- In Harvest Moon Friends Of Mineral Town and the female equivalent, May is raised by her grandfather Barley, though it's suggested in a couple of events that her mother is still alive. Also, Stu is raised by his sister, Elli, who appears to have been raised by their grandmother, Ellen. In Harvest Moon 64 it was mentioned that Elli's parents died when she was little and Ellen had to raise her.
- Story of Seasons: Trio of Towns:
- Ludus was raised by his grandmother, Tototara. His parents left Lulukoko several years ago and haven't been back.
- Iluka and Siluka are adopted grandchildren of Tototara's and were raised by her, after their parents dropped them off in Lulukoko one day and never came back.
- Yuzuki was raised by his grandparents, after his parents dropped him off there as a baby because of his sickly constitution.
- Dead or Alive: Gen Fu is fighting to save the life of his granddaughter, whom he raised himself.
- The Legend of Zelda:
- While not his Biological Grandparents (assumingly, as they're described as "surrogate mother[s]" but nothing more specific is said), according to The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, Ganondorf was raised by the sisters Twinrova, who are far older then him and fit the dynamic nicely.
- In The Legend of Zelda: The Minish Cap, Link lives with his grandfather, the master blacksmith of Hyrule.
- In The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker, Link and his sister Aryll are raised by their grandmother.
- In The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, Paya is implied to have been raised by her grandmother Impa.
- Naoto Shirogane from Persona 4 claims "Grandpa" as the main parental figure.
- Fire Emblem:
- Saleh and Lute from Fire Emblem: The Sacred Stones were raised by their respective grandmothers. Saleh is an orphan, Lute's parents are Walking the Earth.
- Subverted with Lyn from Rekka no Ken, since she came to live with her grandfather only when she was in her mid-late teens and had been living alone for a bit after her parents (and whole tribe) died. Played straighter with Canas's son Hugh from the prequel; he was raised by his grandmother Niime since his parents died protecting their village from a snowstorm.
- In New Mystery of the Emblem, My Unit can have various backgrounds chosen by the player, such as being the child of a merchant or a noble house, or perhaps an orphan; however, this simply affects their base stats, and no matter what, circumstances force them to be raised by their grandfather, who trains them from a young age to be an Altean knight.
- Mai Shiranui from Fatal Fury and The King of Fighters is hinted to have lived like this too, since her only mentioned relatives are her grandfather and trainer Hanzou and her dead grandmother. The hairpin that she wears is hinted to be a Tragic Keepsake from said grandma. According to Mai and Takuma's intro conversation in KOF XIII, Hanzou Shiranui recently passed away. Takuma straightforwardly asks Mai if she and Andy are up for the challenge of keeping up with the Shiranui school of ninjitsu now that Hanzou is gone, and Mai calmly tells him not to worry since they're ready for it.
- This seems to be the case for Blue and his sister Daisy in Pokémon Red and Blue, as their parents are never brought up, only their grandfather Professor Oak.
- It's mentioned in Pokémon Diamond and Pearl that the Big Bad Cyrus was raised by his grandparents.
- Hapu from Pokémon Sun and Moon was raised by her grandparents.
- Gabriel Knight was raised by his paternal grandmother; his parents died when he was still a baby.
- Kainé in NieR was raised by her grandmother following her parents' deaths.
- Mars in Shining Wisdom is raised and trained to be a knight by his two grandparents after his father (a famous knight) succumbed to the poison inflicted on him in a great battle with a dragon.
- La-Mulana's Lemeza Kosugi was raised by his grandfather after his father abandoned him to go looking for the ruins of La-Mulana. Naturally, Lemeza respects his grandpa a lot more than his dad.
- Alex Roivas of Eternal Darkness lost her parents to a car accident; her grandfather Edward raised her until she moved away to go to college in Washington state, though he never told her about their family history before he dies under unusual circumstances, prompting her to return and investigate.
- Catherine "Cathy" King of Criminal Case is implied to have been raised by her grandfather, Chief Samuel King. No word on where her parents are, or what happened to them.
- Alex in Stardew Valley lives with his maternal grandparents, George and Evelyn. If you develop a sufficiently strong bond with him, he explains that his abusive father walked out on him and his mom, and she died of sickness shortly thereafter. Also, Jas lives with her godfather Shane and his aunt Marnie.
- Nakmor Drack in Mass Effect: Andromeda raised his granddaughter Kesh himself. He prefers not to talk about what happened to Kesh's parents and grandmother.
- Maria Robotnik from Sonic the Hedgehog was an Ill Girl in the custody of her grandfather Gerald Robotnik on a spaceship. Her parents are never referenced. After Maria was killed, Gerald underwent a Villainous Breakdown.
- In Little Busters!, Kud's mother was a busy cosmonaut, so she was raised primarily by her grandparents.
- In Umineko: When They Cry, the audience finds out early on that Battler Ushiromiya had a falling-out with his father Rudolf about six years before the story started, and so from the age of twelve until relatively recently, was living with his maternal grandparents.
- Kyouko Kirigiri in Danganronpa, due to her father walking out from the family of business detective-work. She claims to be glad about that, saying she'd probably never become the Great Detective she is now (or a detective at all, for that matter) if he'd taken her with him.
- In Noob, Sparadrap and his younger brother were raised by their grandmother. Between Sparadrap being a Manchild and his brother still being in high school in Season 2 (but eighteen in the second novel), both are still living with her. Sparadrap mentions that their father is a priest a handful of times in the webseries, but their mother has yet to be mentioned or seen in any media.
- In Hey Arnold!, Arnold lives with his grandparents, who are the landlords of a quirky boarding house. This went unexplained until the episode "Parents Day," when we learn that his parents, Miles and Stella, disappeared on a humanitarian mission in South America. Later episodes and the upcoming movie explore the issue in more detail.
- Max Tennyson in Ben10. With all they've gone through together, there's not much more raising those kids' parents can do.
- William Murderface. Murderface, Murderface.
- The Tibbles from Arthur are raised by their grandmother.
- Applejack, Apple Bloom and Big Macintosh from My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic are under the care of Granny Smith. Possibly applies more to the elder siblings given Granny's ailing health, which may or may not include the early stages of dementia; Apple Bloom was probably raised more by her older siblings. Canon has yet to explicitly address the question of what happened to their parents.
- Word of God says that a pair of shooting stars AJ sees in Apple Family Reunion represent her parents, who are in fact deceased. In Season 5 Applejack wishes "Mom and Dad could be here" when Applebloom gets her cutie mark.
- Huey and Riley Freeman in The Boondocks. Various news reports and other official statements treat "Granddad" as if it were Robert Jebediah "Mr. Bitches" Freeman's actual first or middle name. Even he does it. Huey and Riley's parents are stated to be dead (Robert spent their inheritance on the house), the anime suggests they have no aunts or uncles, so he is the closest person left to take care of them.
- DuckTales (1987). Webby Vanderquack is being raised by her grandmother Mrs. Beakley. Upon her grandmother getting hired as the maid and nanny to Huey, Dewey, and Louie, their great uncle Scrooge McDuck becomes a surrogate uncle and grandfather figure to her as well. Scrooge even asks Webby to call him Uncle Scrooge instead of Mr. Scrooge.
- The triplets themselves and Great Uncle Scrooge are a variation of this. They are being cared for by him while their uncle Donald Duck, who had been their guardian and de facto father was serving in the Navy.
- On Gravity Falls, Soos has lived with his maternal grandmother since at least his twelfth birthday. It's unknown what happened to his mother, but he hasn't seen his dad since he was four.
- George Washington - First U.S. President; he raised two of his step-grandchildren.
- Clarence Thomas wrote a memoir called My Grandfather's Son. Its title refers to the fact that he only met his father once, with his maternal grandfather serving as his male role model growing up.
- Ted Bundy's mother gave birth to him at a young age, and he was raised as her brother rather then her son.
- Professional wrestler Arn Anderson was raised by his grandparents, as his father took off when he was an infant and his mother was a screw-up who had enough trouble taking care of herself.