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Emasculated Cuckold

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"My feelings... My feelings have never changed, they're the same as they've always been! They're for you, Mio! The time I had with you meant everything to me! But now... it's all gone... If she truly is gone, I'll have to redo it all! Watch me! Rewind our clocks, back to the start! Noah... My long shadow... You have stolen her away from me..."

For many married men, one of their greatest fear is another man sleeping with their wife.note  In addition to the betrayal inherent in infidelity, the act of cuckoldry poses an existential threat to the cuckold's masculinity, and thus his identity and social status. This can be framed in two ways: the cuckold fails as a man because he can't please his wife, or the cuckold fails as a man because Real Men control their wives and their sexuality. Either way, the cuckold is left feeling ashamed, victimized, and emasculated.

Some works focus on the shame, victimization, or deception of the cuckold and the personal impact on him. Often this goes along with other "loser" traits to further characterization. In these cases, the other man will be a high-status, hypermasculine "bad boy" who contrasts with the cuckold. In some examples, the husband started it — sometimes betting his wife's chastity, using her as bait, pimping her out for quick cash, or sometimes even encouraging her to find a lover. But no matter the cause, it always goes wrong when the infidelity awakens the formerly prudish wife's insatiable dormant lust, at which point she becomes a sex maniac that can no longer be satisfied with domestic life or a husband, further heightening the cuckold's humiliation, but some characters take it in the opposite direction — a testosterone-poisoned character may be compensating for his secret shame of being cuckolded. Because of the emasculation involved, cuckolding is often a Plot-Inciting Infidelity that triggers a Roaring Rampage of Revenge as the cuckold desperately tries to get his "man card" back. This is a common Start of Darkness for a Politically Incorrect Villain targeting women or a He-Man Woman Hater, though it's a toss-up as to whether the cuckold blames his wife or the "bull" she slept with. The wife usually avoids blame if the cuckolding was a rape... but not always.

Due to the humiliation involved, this is often invoked as a form of revenge.

May involve Forced to Watch, Sexual Extortion, Scarpia Ultimatum, Droit du Seigneur, Sleeps with Everyone but You, Cheating with the Milkman, and Jealous Romantic Witness. When there are children involved, Mama's Baby, Papa's Maybe, Chocolate Baby, and Law of Inverse Fertility all come into play, and can lead to Affair? Blame the Bastard. The cuckold's status may be hinted at with Cuckold Horns. Unrelated to Crippling Castration, where the emasculation is entirely literal.

Cuckolding is a semi-common fetish, and some characters' emasculation may be enhanced by arousal accompanying their humiliation. Nevertheless, please keep pure fetish examples off the wiki. See Netorare for the Japanese term covering this type of porn.


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    Anime & Manga 
  • Cross Ange: Referenced during the final battle when the Big Bad Embryo, who has sexually assaulted Ange more than once under Mind Control and is convinced he's her destined partner, tells her actual Love Interest Tusk that he'll never know her the way Embryo does. Tusk retorts that he knows Ange perfectly well—even how many moles she has on her inner thighs. This drives Embryo into a blind rage.
  • In Excel♡Saga, this is one of the many ways the series torments the immigrant worker Pedro. After he dies and the Will of the Universe refuses to properly bring him back from the dead his ghost goes back to his beautiful wife, only to find out she not only moved on abnormally quickly to his rival Gomez but that she's already pregnant with the other man's kid which makes him realize she had been cheating on him for some time already.
  • JoJo's Bizarre Adventure:
  • Nozoki Ana: A very huge, hurtful example that many readers were predicting for ages. Not only was Yuri Kotobuki, the girl in this situation, cheating on weekends, but she decided she'd rather have sex with her rich boyfriend instead of spending Saturday with her other boyfriend, the lead male Kido. On Kido's own birthday.
  • Rent-A-Girlfriend: Several of Kazuya's early Imagine Spot feature this, with him imagining a faceless man having sex with Chizuru / Mami / Ruka. The thoughts often leave Kazuya both angry and concerned.

    Comic Books 
  • Anya's Ghost: Gender Inverted. Anya has a crush on her classmate Sean, one of the most popular boys at school. She looks to steal him away from Elizabeth, a popular girl that she resents for being perfect. When Sean invites Anya to a party, Anya is happy, seeing it as the perfect chance to steal Sean from Elizabeth. To Anya's shock, she learns that Sean is a sleazeball that sleeps around with other girls and invited her to have a three-way with his best friend's girlfriend in the bathroom. She's also shocked to learn that Elizabeth knows about the cheating and even miserably keeps watch over the door. Anya can't bring herself to sleep with Sean and hurt Elizabeth and leaves the party. Before she leaves, Anya asks Elizabeth why she lets Sean treat her that way; Elizabeth admits that she is really miserable and insecure and Sean makes her happy. She loves Sean, or she thinks she loves him and will do anything to keep him in her life.
  • Dynamo5 : A rare Gender Inversion. It is implied that throughout their relationship, from when they started dating until his death, Captain Dynamo/William Warner constantly cheated on his wife Maddie Warner, with Maddie being in the complete dark until after his death. Chrysalis also counts. For years she had an affair with Captain Dynamo/William Warner, even having and raising a daughter with him. She thought they were in love and was told that Captain Dynamo/William Warner planned to leave Maddie Warner for her. She was shocked to learn that she was not the only woman he was sleeping with and that Dynamo 5 are his illegitimate children.
  • This trope is Played With in Fantastic Four Crisis Crossover event, Secret Wars (2015), Doctor Doom gains nigh-omnipotent power and uses it to fuse what's left of the destroyed multiverse into Battleworld, where he rules as God. While he's at it, though, he takes the opportunity to throw as many Take Thats at Reed Richards as possible, including rewriting history so that he was Sue's husband and the father of Franklin and Valeria instead of Reed. Reed is clearly upset about this when he finds out, but due to what's at stake, he doesn't act on it immediately. However, it should also be noted that we're never informed if Doom's marriage with Sue was intimate or not and that Reed doesn't consider this Sue the same one he knew, so the trope may be subverted in that regard, but Reed was on the verge of tears nonetheless.
  • The Incredible Hulk: During Greg Pak's run on The Incredible Hulks, the final two arcs had Betty Ross (as Red She-Hulk) beginning a relationship with Hulk's archnemesis, Tyrannus. This trope is specifically invoked numerous times by Tyrannus, specifically stating that he and Betty "did more than dance" at one point to make the Hulk angry enough to fight a common foe. Making it worse for both Bruce and the Hulk is the fact that it's clear Betty wants to be with Bruce again, but Red She-Hulk wants Tyrannus just to spite him. This comes back to bite her later when Hulk enters a "Worldbreaker" level of rage and needs a Cooldown Hug which she can no longer provide - so Umar steps up and lovingly brings Hulk to her realm to put his energy to "more enjoyable use". This time, it's Betty's turn to be jealous and angry.
  • Justice League Elite: Manitou Raven wife Dawn stared an affair with Green Arrow because he was putting more attention to work and the trials of the "Stony Path" than her and she grows closer to Green Arrow. Raven knows of the affair and was angered of course, but was too consumed by his work to confront Dawn. Dawn eventually regretted the affair and betraying Raven. Before the couple could truly reconcile, Raven died while taking the brunt of a bomb blast, leaving Dawn devastated.
  • In Once & Future, Bridgette weaponizes this to turn King Arthur against Elaine, explaining that Galahad is the son of Lancelot, the Frank who slept with Guinevere.
    Bridgette: [Lancelot's] the Frenchie who shagged your wife, you big ninny.
  • Requiem Vampire Knight: Claudia Demona sacrificed her male lover Sean back on Earth after revealing that she was a satanic serial killer. On Résurection, she becomes a vampire and he becomes a lamia, two factions that are at war with each other. After capturing him, she decides to get rammed through by a werewolf while forcing him to watch in an attempt to further humiliate him.
  • In Thorgal, A female-on-male version of this happens to Aaricia after Kriss de Valnor takes advantage of Thorgal's amnesia to claim that he is Shaigan, a ruthless pirate and Kriss's lover. Kriss not only has "Shaigan" attack Aaricia's home village, getting her and her children exiled, she then takes Aaricia's daughter hostage. Then Kriss forces Aaricia to be her slave, so poor Aaricia is Forced to Watch as Kriss and "Shaigan" make love every night.
  • The Unfunnies: Played for Horror. Pussywhisker loses both his testicles after being convinced by Dr. Despicable that he has testicular cancer. His wife Polly was outraged that they cannot have children and refusing to adopt, so she forces Pussywhisker to pick up men to get to sleep with her in order to get her pregnant. When she did not get pregnant from the first guy, Polly forced Pussywhisker to get more men. It's clearly damaging for Pussywhisker to do this. At the end of the issue, as Pussywhisker is forced to find another man for Polly, she reveals that she orchestrated her husband's castration so that she would be justified in her acts of adultery with copious partners, is on the pill, and enjoys that she has forced her husband to find these partners while she waits at home.
  • This was the initial fate of the protagonist of Wanted, with his girlfriend cheating on him with his best friend, which is what prompts him to become a misanthrope and turn to a life of crime. When he becomes a supervillain, he cuts up his friend into little pieces before telling his girlfriend that he knows everything and walks off.

    Fan Works 
  • Better For Loving You: Lord and Lady Casterton's marriage started happily, but was soon on the rocks, with Viola Casterton making herself steadily more infamous as her affairs grew less discreet and more brazen. All of Lord Casterton's efforts to rein her in failed, and he eventually withdrew from society almost entirely to avoid the sniping and ridicule — especially for his daughter, whom he considered to be the only good thing his wife gave him. It takes a decade, the death of his wife, and the encouragement of several friends, before he can bring himself to appear in London again, and he does it more for the sake of not keeping Elizabeth in his shadow than for his own benefit.
  • Danny Phantom: Stranded: Averted. A number of characters point out that Jean Luc Bevier is a womanizer and that not has changed with him flirting with numerous other women, despite being married. Still, it appears that this has not strained Stella's marriage with him. Even when a friend of Stella's had pointed out that Jean Luc had hit on other women at the country club, her response was awkward rather than shock/angry. It is unknown whether Stella is in denial of Jean Luc's cheating or if they have an open marriage.
  • The Real Time Fan Dub version of Dr. Eggman finds himself on the bad end of this repeatedly, as his wife has sex with literally the entire Sonic cast, except for him. Eggman explicitly designed a robot to pleasure her to save her from the first Ark's destruction and to help prepare her for his Tetris dick, but then she goes on to fuck everyone and everything on the planet instead of remaining faithful. Learning just how thoroughly he was utterly screwed over by this development is what sends him over the edge.

    Film — Animated 
  • In Belladonna of Sadness, Jeanne doesn't cheat on Jean per se but is raped by the town's evil baron, but the dynamic is nevertheless there. Jean, a peasant, is devastated by the rape but is a total pushover who is incapable of defending his wife's honor and remains useless throughout the movie, preferring to drink away his sorrows rather than get revenge or exercise power when he gets a promotion to taxpayer. Meanwhile, the rape triggers Jeanne to make a Deal with the Devil and she becomes increasingly sexually and magically empowered as the film progresses.

    Film — Live-Action 
  • In 8 Mile, the protagonist Jimmy Smith (Eminem) walks in on his Love Interest (portrayed by the late Brittany Murphy), having sex with Wink, one of his friends. After a Cock Fight that Jimmy wins, Wink makes a Face–Heel Turn and joins a gang that later beat up Jimmy. During the rap battle at the finale, the fact that he was cuckolded is used to attempt to humiliate Jimmy. Jimmy comes out on top, anyway.
  • Absolute Power (1997): Because of his advanced age and his much younger wife's "needs", Walter Sullivan took to sitting in a chair and watched her from behind a two-way mirror in his bedroom when she was with other men. The whole thing was Christy's idea, and as he admits to Detective Seth Frank (who hates even having to ask him about the topic while investigating Christy's death as he deeply respects the man), he didn't enjoy it anyway.
  • Ajnabee: Raj becomes extremely anguished and disgusted when he believes his neighbor Vicky slept with his wife Priya on a "wife swap" when Raj was extremely drunk. It's later revealed Vicky didn't actually sleep with Priya, but he took advantage of the situation to frame Raj for a murder he committed.
  • Alatriste in his movie swiftly kills a man in a duel by calling him an infamous cuckold. As the man lay dying he asks the Captain if he did sleep with his wife which he answers that no it was just to set him up for a riposte.
  • All Cheerleaders Die: Jerk Jock Terry is extremely angry at Maddy for seducing and sleeping his girlfriend Tracy, especially because she's not only a girl but also a much better lover than him.
  • The Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans: McDonagh drives up to a young couple after they get out of a nightclub with drugs on them. McDonagh extorts sexual favors from the girl and makes out with her right in front of her boyfriend while they both smoke crack. When the boyfriend finally tries to leave out of disgust, McDonagh forces him to stay and watch.
  • Crazy, Stupid, Love: Suburban dad Cal learns in the beginning that his wife cheated on him and wants a divorce. He's a sad sack about it (even ranting about how he's a modern cuckold at the bar) until the fashionable, suave casanova Jacob helps him become more confident and self-assured.
  • In Cries and Whispers, Maria's husband Joakim is a weakling who is acutely aware that his wife is cheating on him with the family doctor. He's so distressed by this that he stabs himself in the gut, but he even screws this up and survives.
  • In EuroTrip, the protagonist Scotty learns that his girlfriend has been cheating on him with the lead singer of a band, who then sings a song titled "Scotty Doesn't Know" all about how clueless he is about his girlfriend's infidelity. And just to drive it home, as the film goes on we find that that song has become a hit in Europe, taunting Scotty at every stop on his journey, complete with a dance remix played at a Bratislava nightclub.
  • Eyes Wide Shut plays with this trope. Married couple Bill and Alice are smoking a joint and having a conversation about sex. Bill has always assumed that Alice, like him, is essentially incapable of infidelity. Alice, outraged at his presumption and emboldened by the joint, decides to enlighten him. She describes in agonizing detail her febrile fantasy about a naval officer she desired from a distance. They never met; nonetheless, his instant hold on her was so strong she would have given up everything if he'd only asked. She also says that this happened on a day when she and Bill had just made love, and Bill had never been dearer to her. Bill is gutted by his wife's revelation, dwelling on this as if it had actually happened. His increasing hurt and anger propel him into the bizarre circumstances he finds himself in as the film progresses.
  • Naturally, for a film about hypermasculinity, Fight Club touches on this trope.
    • The first example is the speaker during the support group for men with testicular cancer. One man breaks down into tears talking about how, after his surgery to remove his cancerous scrotum, his wife eventually found another man and bore him children.
    • The Narrator himself constantly experiences this by hearing Tyler and Marla's loud, passionate banging while he's nearby doing something else. After The Reveal that Tyler is just a Split Personality of the Narrator, the trope is not as clear as we once thought.
  • Indecent Proposal is all about this trope. A couple desperate for money agrees for the wife to have sex with a billionaire, and the experience tears the two of them apart. She winds up temporarily living, and having a sexual relationship, with the billionaire, and he is portrayed as an overall better man than her husband in most ways. In the end, she stays with her husband, whom she clearly loves more than the billionaire. But before the latter leaves her alone, she is subject to his very stalkery behavior.
  • Jules and Jim: How bad is it for Jules? Not only is he fully aware that his wife Catherine is cheating on him, she brings her lover Albert home, and they all sit around and have friendly chats like it's no big thing. He later begs his friend Jim to have sex with Catherine so the three of them can stay together, instead of Catherine running off with Albert. After business calls Jim back to France, Catherine constantly asks Jules "Do you think Jim loves me?", all while still married to Jules. And apparently she hasn't had sex with Jules at all after he came back from the war.
  • The Ladies Man has a whole gang of cuckolded men called the "Victims of the Smiling Ass" who are out for revenge against Leon for bedding their wives.
  • Mastizaade: Laila and Lily's father Ashit was constantly cheated on by their mother Seema, who is also a sex addict, which is part of the reason why Lily started her sex addiction rehab clinic. As a result, Ashit has a poor view of sex addicts and greatly dislikes protagonists Sunny and Aditya because of it. He even expresses some dislike for his daughter Laila, for being similar to her mother and acting like The Tease.
  • In Me, Myself & Irene, Charlie's wife cheated on him with a black dwarf seemingly as early as their honeymoon, which resulted in three children who look nothing like him. She eventually dumps him for her lover and leaves him with the kids, and this humiliation is partially one of the reason why he eventually manifests a malevolent Split Personality.
  • Nocturnal Animals: In a flashback, we see Edward discover that his wife Susan is cheating on him with a tall, handsome, wealthy man. He puts his feeling of emasculation into the book he writes, where his Author Avatar experiences a Trauma Conga Line of emasculation as he fails to protect his family.
  • The beginning of Wanted has the protagonist Wesley in a relationship with a girlfriend who is blatantly cheating on him with his best friend, and him being powerless to do anything about it. He later makes out in front of her with his new girlfriend.
  • Welcome Home (2018): Cassie slept with a co-worker while drunk after a big fight with her boyfriend Bryan, leaving him insane with jealousy, to the point he's impotent whenever they try to get intimate due to him picturing her with another man.
  • In X, Lorraine, the audio technician on the porn film the protagonists are filming, asks to participate in the film herself. Her boyfriend RJ, the film's writer and director, objects, but the sleazy producer Wayne eagerly obliges and forces RJ to film his girlfriend having sex with Jackson if he wants to keep his job. Afterwards, RJ takes a Shower of Angst and attempts to walk out, though he doesn't make it far before he becomes Pearl's first victim. In a way, it was Sexual Karma for him, as he brought Lorraine on as the film's audio tech without telling her what kind of film he was making, and then called her a prude when she expressed her discomfort — which motivated her to do a sex scene in the film because she was sick of being seen as a "church mouse".

  • Humorously subverted in an old joke about a middle-aged Jewish husband and wife. They go to their rabbi and explain that the husband has been unable to satisfy the wife in the bedroom, and since Jewish law states that a woman is entitled to sexual pleasure, they're at a loss. The rabbi recommends that they hire a muscular, handsome, twenty-something hunk to wave a towel over them while they make love; they do so, but have the same problem. Upon hearing this, the rabbi tells them to switch places — the hunk will be in the bed while the husband holds the linen. After just a few minutes, the wife is brought to the best orgasm of her life, and rather than be upset, the husband proudly tells the young man: "You see? Now that's how you wave a towel!"

  • An odd variation in The Accursed Kings:
    • King Edward II of England is portrayed as Camp Gay (for the time, since it involves things like wrestling with workmen or needing his male lover to get him aroused enough to have sex with his wife) but his wife doesn't sleep with anyone else before he's overthrown, so he was emasculated long before he was a cuckold. Meanwhile, her lover Roger Mortimer feels that Edward's continued existence makes him the cuckold despite being in no shape or form a rival and has him murdered.
    • Two of the wives of the three princes of France are cheating on their husbands, the discovery of which kicks off the plot. However, they were already seen as frankly useless, whiny and incompetent.
  • The nameless narrator of Beautiful Losers, whose wife was sleeping with his best friend F. The narrator didn't find out until after his wife died but was very upset to hear about it. This fits into the book's larger exploration of the winners and losers of society: the narrator identifies with the losers, and thus is humiliated by his wife sleeping with F., who identifies with the winners and pushes the narrator to do the same.
  • The Haunting of Hill House: Implied to be the case with Dr. Montague when his wife arrives with her "friend" Arthur, whom she treats fondly compared to her open disdain for him, and takes over his investigation under his nose.
  • How to Build a Dungeon: Book of the Demon King: Aur, the Villain Protagonist, employed a Netorare gambit step by step against Alan the Warrior, as if from a guide book. He corrupted Alan's three female companions, made sure to show it to him before one of the girls beheaded Alan, and used his surging hatred from betrayal to resurrect him as a powerful ally — a Dullahan. This is just the first notable case of a tactic that Aur would make use of many times later.
  • In Lady Chatterley's Lover, Lord Chatterley's wife is cheating on him, partly because he is impotent from an injury sustained in World War I, and even more than that because he has been emotionally distant from her. Though he had allowed her to start an affair for these reasons, he's even more offended that she would stoop to sleeping with the gamekeeper rather than finding a blueblooded suitor he would have approved of. Eventually she gets pregnant by Mellors and expresses a desire to leave him.
  • In The Scarlet Letter, Roger Chillingworth becomes obsessed with Reverend Dimmsdale for having slept with Hester (when she thought her husband was dead), even though Roger has become estranged from her.
  • A Song of Ice and Fire: In a fit of spiteful Brutal Honesty, Tyrion tells Jaime that Cersei (emotionally Jaime's wife though not legally): "She's been fucking Lancel and Osmund Kettleblack and Moon Boy for all I know." In the aftermath of this, Jaime's jealous ruminations nearly consume him. At times he convinces himself Tyrion was lying; other times he believes it. When he goes to the Riverlands he confronts Lancel, who confesses that he did sleep with Cersei. Poor Communication Kills, though, and Jaime never confronts Cersei herself about this. If he did, he'd find out that most of what Tyrion was referring to was sex as a political tool, not sex out of desire, and that—as she says in her own internal monologue—"It had never been any good with anyone but Jaime."
  • Wulfrik: Baron Udo Kruger is so obsessed with his wife cheating on him that he even hires a wizard to keep an eye on her while he's away, despite the fact that she's so hideous her chastity is in no danger. A few choice insults from Wulfrik get the baron so infuriated he charges from the safety of the town walls and gets himself slaughtered, soon followed by the townsfolk.
    "Protect your town then! I only came to see your wife and my children!"
    "Let me in, Kruger! It's not right to keep the baroness waiting!"

    Live-Action TV 
  • In the first season of The Bletchley Circle, one of the clues the women find, in regards to the identity of the serial killer they're tracking, is that he was involved in printing pornographic messages in German, meant to shred morale by preying on German fears that their wives and girlfriends were cheating on them while they were out fighting. The killer's messages, however, were accompanied by incredibly graphic images that wouldn't have been out of place in a snuff film and, more importantly, all depicted the same woman, showing his first target.
  • Breaking Bad: Skylar tries to invoke this by cheating on her husband Walt with her boss Ted, even making a point to proudly declare "I fucked Ted" to try to get him to leave the house out of wounded pride. Unfortunately for her, it ultimately doesn't work. All Walt does is try to fight Ted.
    Walt: You think this will make me go away? You can screw Ted, the butcher, the mailman, screw them all! I'm not leaving!
    Skylar: Suit yourself!
  • This showed up occasionally on Bones . An episode of the second season had a "Strangers on a Train"-Plot Murder where one of the murderers hated his rich wife for cheating on him. The opening episode of the third season had a Red Herring with a wealthy woman cheating on her husband, only for it to be revealed that not only did he know about the affairs, he watched and recorded them from the closet while masturbating, Falwell Jr. style.
  • Candy (2022): Pat is snooping through his wife Candy's belongings and finds a stack of love letters and cards he had sent to her in the past... and a card from neighbor Allan, alluding to his secret encounters with Candy. This clues in Pat about Candy's infidelity. When she comes home, he finds him sitting in bed... with flowers and a card for her. In his testimony during her trial for murder, he blames himself for her affair. After she reveals during her testimony that she had another affair after the one with Allan, he stops this behavior.
  • Castle:
    • One episode involved a couple in an open relationship. The wife was happily sleeping with multiple men. The husband did his best to be supportive, but couldn't bear to sleep with other women and was miserable knowing she was sleeping with other men.
    • Subverted in "'Til Death Do Us Part". The team discovers Ryan's fiancee Jenny in a dead pick-up artist's log of conquests and is nervous about telling him. When they finally do, Ryan doesn't care: Jenny and the decedent slept together after she and Ryan started dating but before they started going steady, let alone decided to get married.
  • The Confessions of Frannie Langton: George is coldly infuriated after learning Frannie slept with his wife Marguerite, saying she stole what was his and quickly firing her.
  • In an episode of CSI: Miami, the killer of the week turns out to be the husband of the woman sleeping with one of the victims. While earlier he claimed that they had an open marriage, himself not hiding his affair with a younger woman, he eventually revealed that he found the idea of his wife sleeping with a younger man disgusting and embarrassing to him. When she asked him what the difference was between him sleeping around and her, he answered "Because I'm a MAN!" with the kind of exasperation reserved for explaining things to kids. And yeah, he didn't care how his affair reflected on her.
  • The Fall of the House of Usher (2023): Frederick is rather weak-willed and deeply insecure about how people don't consider him as strong a man as his business powerhouse of a father, so when he has reason to suspect that his wife Morrie cheated on him (she was thinking about it but ultimately didn't), he takes it out on her by pumping her full of a paralytic that keeps her conscious so he can physically and psychologically torture her — while she's helplessly recovering from her skin being completely burned off.
  • In Go On, the Extreme Doormat Danny was serving in Afganistan and so missed his wife giving birth—and also missed the conception. After he came back his wife made him accept her Bull living with them while they continue their affair. He finally files for divorce towards the end of the first season.
  • On Limitless an FBI agent suspects his wife is cheating on him but does not have any proof. He then ends up taking the intelligence boosting drug NZT which helps him notice new clues of the affair. He concludes that his wife is actually sleeping with his friend and FBI partner. In the ensuing confrontation, he ends up killing the other man. It is left ambiguous whether he really was cuckolded or whether the overconfidence caused by NZT resulted in him jumping to incorrect conclusions.
  • Louis Theroux brings this up while interviewing a female pornstar and her boyfriend in Twilight of the Pornstars. He asks her if she thinks it's hard on her boyfriend, who isn't in the industry, that she's being paid to have sex on camera with other men, even gangbangs. She counters that he doesn't have a job and often spends all day playing videogames, so he's not in a position to complain. They don't describe their own sex life in any detail, but her behavior suggests she's not very happy with her career and that her boyfriend is basically a Living Emotional Crutch.
  • M*A*S*H
    • In an episode there's a threat of an air raid, so the nurses are sent away. It turns out it's just a "propaganda bomb," with leaflets dropped including "Harry Truman is sleeping with your wife."
    • In other episodes it's played more dramatically (if hypocritically) as Henry, Trapper, and some of the other married personnel worry that their wife is cheating on them, even as they carry on dalliances at the 4077th.
    • In another episode, a soldier receives a letter from a (former) friend, congratulating him on his wife giving birth to a baby. BJ starts to reminisce about his own daughter until the soldier tells him that he's been in Korea for more than a year.
  • In The Mighty Boosh episode "The Priest and the Beast", the Monster of the Week the Betamax Bandit kills every man in the town. It turns out his motive for this is that Spider slept with his wife, so he swore revenge against all men in order to regain his honor.
  • Monty Python's Flying Circus: In the "Marriage Guidance Counselor" sketch, a married couple (Michael Palin and Carol Cleveland) see a marriage counselor (Eric Idle) about her flirting with other men, and the counselor almost immediately kicks the husband out so he can sleep with the wife. Advice on being a man from a cowboy (John Cleese) doesn't really take.
  • The 2000 MTV Video Music Awards had a skit featuring Lars Ulrich of Metallica at the height of the band's fight with Napster and crusade against file sharing, in which he confronts a fratbro played by Marlon Wayans who downloaded Metallica's songs off the internet. When the guy tries to explain that he's not stealing, just sharing, Lars decides that "sharing" sounds pretty cool and proceeds to invite the rest of Metallica in to "share" everything the guy owns, including his girlfriend.
  • The Naked Director: Toru comes home to find his wife having sex with another man. Just to stick the knife in, she tells him that he has never—not even once—given her an orgasm. Later he goes out to a bar and chats up Toshi, a porno guy who tells him that cheating wives having sex with other men is a popular genre in Japanese porn. Toru immediately goes into partnership with Toshi and starts selling cuckold porn videos.
  • Parodied in a Saturday Night Live sketch starring Michael B. Jordan as insurance mascot Jake from State Farm, whose policies are so satisfying that he's become an interloper in a suburban couple's marriage. He's always around, acts as a father figure to them, and even sleeps in the same bedroom as the wife. The husband is reduced to a paranoid, drunken wreck sobbing about the state of his marriage... until rival insurance mascots Doug and LiMu Emu from Liberty Mutual show up to help him.
  • Sex/Life: Cooper feels extremely emasculated by the fact he's unable to physically satisfy Billie, especially when he reads her diary detailing her racy relationship with Sex God Brad.
  • In an episode of Stargate SG-1, Teal'c returns to Chulak only to find out that his wife has since dissolved their union and married a friend of his. Master Bra'tac warns Teal'c not to commit kelmar'tokim, which literally means "revenge by the wearer of horns" (historically, a cuckold would be seen as a wearer of horns). Teal'c visibly restrains himself from attacking the guy. Eventually, Teal'c and his ex-wife reconcile, but her new husband catches them (another example) and decides to betray the team to Apophis, requiring O'Neill to Murder the Hypotenuse.
  • Succession: Tom, an awkward nobody who is marrying into one of the most powerful media families in America, is often ragged on by his fiancee Shiv's family, and her father explicitly says she is out of his league. In season one, Shiv carries on an affair with her ex-boyfriend, and she brushes it off when he raises some suspicions, so he does not push further. On their wedding night, she maneuvers him into agreeing to an open marriage and is seen having one-night stands while he's away; the show makes it clear that he hates this arrangement and how it makes him feel.
  • Toast of London:
    • Toast is constantly trying to one-up his Sitcom Archnemesis Ray Purchase, and his most successful means of humiliating him is by sleeping with his wife in a blatantly obvious manner.
    • Conversely, Toast is an obvious buffoon who is constantly humiliated by everyone around him. This humiliation includes his ex-wife cheating on him during their wedding with his other rival Clem Fandango, a younger and hipper man.
  • In the third season of You're the Worst, self-admitted "skank" Lindsay convinces her husband Paul to let her have sex with other men to keep her happy. Paul reluctantly agrees to it and tries to be supportive for the sake of their new family, but it makes him miserable and wanting to leave her. At the end of the season, they're divorced, with Paul financially disemboweling Lindsay in the process purely out of enraged spite.

  • The Three Days Grace song "Last to Know" is about a man whose girlfriend left him for a former friend of his (whom the song is sung to). The song makes it clear that the affair had been going on for a long time before he found out, but he was clueless about it until she actually left.
  • The Irish ballad "Seven Drunken Nights" is sung from the perspective of a man whose wife is cheating on him. The Dubliners' version of Seven Drunken Nights only covers the first five and apologises for the remaining two being too hot to perform in public. In a more permissive age and country, Northern English folk singer/comedian Mike Harding resets the song in Rochdale, Lancashire, and provides the two missing verses.
  • Jairo, "Para verte feliz" ("To see you happy"). It's sung from the POV of a guy who knows his beautiful girlfriend's old flame is coming to town and chooses to rather have them almost tongue-kissing in front of him rather than confronting and then losing her since he's that much of a Love Martyr towards her.
  • The Rihanna song "Unfaithful" is written from the perspective of a woman that's cheating, and feels guilty about it. She specifically sings about how the affair is hurting him because he knows she's happy with her lover.
  • The 1996 song by R&B group Dru Hill, "In My Bed" details a man's suspicions that his girlfriend is being unfaithful. The music video shows that she is indeed seeing several individuals, including a woman.
  • The Offspring's "Spare Me the Details" is about the singer discovering that his girlfriend, whom he had envisioned marrying, got drunk at a party and slept with a random guy. The title refers to him really wanting his friends to stop trying to tell him all the juicy details. All he cares about is the fact that the relationship is over.
  • "Younger Men" by K.T. Oslin is written from the perspective of an adulterous, married cougar.
  • In "Matty Groves" Matty is killed in a duel for sleeping with Lord Daniel's wife.
  • Pink Floyd's rock opera, The Wall is centered on a very depressed rock singer named Pink. While many things trouble him, driving him into self-isolation in the construction of a mental wall that cuts him off from the world, what really sends him over the edge is when he finds out his wife is having an affair with another man at the end of the song "Young Lust". At first, Pink tries to cope by inviting a groupie to his apartment room, but it quickly goes south when he explodes into a violent rage and chases her away. The following song, "Don't Leave Me Now", sees Pink lamenting the affair, threatening his wife with violence, while simultaneously begging her to come back to him, just before he makes the decision in "Another Brick in the Wall Part III" to complete his wall and completely isolate himself from the rest of the world.
  • Gender-flipped on Paramore's "Misery Business", where Hayley Williams brags about how she stole another girl's boyfriend and how she's never getting him back no matter how miserable it makes her. For good measure, she calls the other girl a whore on top of it.

    Mythology & Religion 
  • Played With in various ways in Classical Mythology.
    • In one of the most famous examples in history, the Spartan King Menelaus had his wife Helen taken from by Paris, prince of Troy. Menelaus's rage over this prompted him to send an army to Troy to both sack the city and take her back, resulting in the Trojan War. Different myths have widely different accounts for what happened; in some, Helen was raped and kidnapped, while in others she was seduced. Either way, Menelaus didn't take the affront lightly.
    • Not even the gods were immune. When Hephaistos, the crippled Un Favorite smith god, caught his wife Aphrodite cheating on him with the ultimate manly man and war god Ares, he devised an inescapable net and tossed it around them, leaving them there for the rest of the pantheon to point and laugh at.

    Tabletop Games 

  • In Molière's The School For Wives Arnolphe, who is engaging in Wife Husbandry in order to keep from becoming a cuckold, is advised by a friend that cuckoldry can be lived with as long as you avoid the two extreme responses (raging against the heavens or bragging about it).
  • Natasha, Pierre, and the Great Comet of 1812:
    • Helene goes out to the opera with Fedya Dolokov instead of her husband Pierre.
      Chorus: Helene and Dolokov arm and arm, Pierre, the cuckold, sits at home! Pierre, the cuckold, sits at home! The poor man!
      Pierre: No, I am enjoying myself at home this evening!
    • But it turns out Helene is screwing Dolokov, prompting Pierre to challenge him to a duel, despite the visceral, frothing hatred between Helene and Pierre throughout the entire musical.
    • Despite the duel, which, in a stunning upset, ends with Dolokov non-fatally shot, Pierre doesn't love Helene, and he isn't really upset that Dolokov was sleeping with her (since she is sleeping with everyone...everyone.) Except her husband. He writes in a letter that Dolokov is a good man, and that he, 'a most ridiculous man', should have been shot instead. It was purely a matter of honor, since being a cuckold is SO bad.
  • In The Phantom of the Opera, the opera company puts on Il Muto, a Show Within a Show that features this as a plot point: a married woman has an affair with a young man while mocking her old, feeble, and generally emasculated husband. She even sings a song about it: "Poor fool, he makes me laugh, ho-ho-ho-ho-ho!"
  • In Chicago (both the original play and the musical), Amos is willing to make an absolute fool of himself to help his unfaithful and unloving wife literally get away with murder. The low point of his Humiliation Conga arrives when Billy Flynn persuades him not to divorce Roxie for the sake of her (alleged) unborn child, even though he knows that it couldn't possibly be his. In the musical, Roxie has a monologue in which she rates Amos a "zero" in bed.

    Video Games 
  • Fear & Hunger: Termina: The Woodsman's wife not only cheated on him with the goat Black Kalev, but also mocked him for his lack of sexual prowess. As a result, he was planning on killing himself before the events of the game.
  • Grand Theft Auto:
    • In Grand Theft Auto IV, Niko Bellic discovers his cousin Roman's girlfriend has been sleeping with a small-time gangster in exchange for protecting Roman. Roman is clearly upset by the revelation, but he relents in order to avoid making his situation worse. Niko, however, is horrified by his cousin's failure to act and flat out kills the gangster for what he did. Roman helps, and Niko helps him salvage some of his pride by letting him take the credit when telling his girlfriend what happened.
    • Grand Theft Auto V:
      • Michael learns that his wife Amanda is having an affair with her tennis instructor and quickly tries to kill the man himself. In his case, he's less upset about the cheating (considering that he commonly cheats on her with strippers and prostitutes) and more about the fact that she did it in their house with someone he's paying.
      • One of the strangers and freaks you can meet as Trevor is Josh, a man who left his first wife and kids for his second wife who he willingly lets other people sleep with.
        Trevor: Whatever gets you off, pal.
  • Played for Drama in Metal Gear as Mad Scientist Huey Emmerich's second wife cheated on him with his then-teenage son, Hal. This led to Huey being Driven to Suicide, but being the spiteful Dirty Coward that he is, his last act on Earth was an attempted Taking You with Me on his wife's daughter, traumatizing both kids and prompting Hal to run away from home.
  • Star Wars: The Old Republic: Attempted by Silas Wilkes in the Sith Inquisitor's storyline on Tatooine: he tries to humiliate his former captain Andronikos Revel by pointing out that "I took his ship, his crew, his cargo, his blasters, and what else? Oh, his girl." Wilkes is blissfully ignorant of the fact that said girl, Casey Rix, quite happily told Andronikos and the Inquisitor where to find him, because she can't stand him either.
  • The Walking Dead: Season One: Before the arrival of The Walkers, Lee had an argument with his wife over starting a family, which caused her to cheat on him with a state senator. After returning home from work early, Lee found the two of them in bed together and ended up killing the senator, leading to his arrest and prison sentence.
  • Xenoblade Chronicles 3: Moebius N, in a roundabout sense, feels this way after M pulls off her Heroic Sacrifice to save Mio, her clone. Because Mio happens to have major Ship Tease with N's own clone, Noah, he immediately starts screaming in denial that "his woman" would abandon him for someone else. Given how N is a Yandere who was the one who nearly killed Mio himself to break the will of Noah, absolutely nobody sympathizes, with Mio using the copy of M's memories she inherited with her body to chew him out for his entitled behavior.

    Web Video 
  • Egoraptor's PokéAwesome 2 has this as a plot twist. Brock agonizes over whether he was right to give Ash a badge, as the boy proclaims he will wear it as proof that he "defeated" Brock even though he only won on a technicality. When he wakes up later that night, he finds Ash in bed with his girlfriend...
    Ash: Defeated now, bitch!?
  • Sgt Ducky: Ducky reveals that one of his exes, named "Margot Robbie" in the video, cheated on him multiple times during their relationship and had more partners than he realised. Obviously, Ducky hates her so much that he renamed her so he doesn't get enraged at the sight of her name.
  • Mark Grondin, the host of Spectrum Pulse, has discussed the use of this trope in contemporary (2010s) Hip-Hop music, specifically songs in which the rapper boasts about sleeping with your girlfriend in order to demonstrate how masculine and virile he is. He considers it both gross and a worn-out hip-hop cliché.
  • Likewise, The Rap Critic has said that you should never listen to the hip-hop station if you've just broken up with a woman because she cheated on you, because you'll inevitably run into countless songs about how other guys have "fucked your bitch".

    Western Animation 
  • Family Guy:
    • In "The Cleveland-Loretta Quagmire", when Cleveland confronts his wife after finding out she slept with Quagmire, she calls him out for being passionless milquetoast and kicks him out of the house. By the end, however, Cleveland learns to stand up for himself and demands a divorce, saying that even someone like him deserves better than her.
      Loretta: I'm a woman, Cleveland! I need some passion in my life! I need a real man, and Lord knows that ain't you!
      Cleveland: Well, I admit, after a long day at work, I don't always come home with that "Riunite on ice, that's nice" mentality. And for that, I apologize.
      Loretta: Apologize?! I cheat on you, and you apologize to me? Cleveland Brown, you are pathetic!
      Cleveland: I disagree, but I respect your candor.
    • Played for Laughs and exaggerated in the episode "Boy (Dog) Meets Girl (Dog)" when Brian wins a dog show in an effort to get with his new girlfriend, a show dog. When he's unable to get it up, he's Forced to Watch as she's bred by a brown boxer that Stewie comments is hung like a horse while Quagmire mocks him. To take it even farther she tries to console Brian by telling him she'll name one of the puppies after him, but then comments that the father will probably eat it before she shoos Brian out of the room while he finishes. Keep in mind this episode started with Brian Driven to Suicide, but surprisingly didn't end with it.
  • In Futurama: Bender's Big Score, Hermes temporarily loses his body and has his head put in a jar. During this time, his wife Labarbara leaves him (along with their son) and goes back to her ex-husband, Barbados Slim, who is superior to Hermes in just about every possible way, including being hunkier, more athletic, and a better sexual partner. However, Labarbara later leaves Barbados again when Hermes helps save the world, and later episodes reveal that this situation is actually reversed for Barbados, who is jealous of Labarbara's pure affectionate love for Hermes.
  • Rick and Morty:
    • In "Bethic Twinstinct", Rick directly refers to Jerry as "your cuckold husband" at one point when talking to the Beths about their relationship. By the end, though, it turns out that Jerry and the Beths are turned on by them cuckolding him right to his face while he approves of and actively encourages it, to the point that it's implied to turn into an outright threesome soon after. It helps that she's having an affair with another version of herself, which they even reason is technically not cheating.
    • Subverted with Jerry's parents, who have engaged in cuckolding as a way to spice up their marriage. It's treated as a Casual Kink for both parties (with Jerry's father stating how he likes to watch while wearing a Superman outfit) and are even close enough with the third party to the point that they thought it appropriate to bring him to a family dinner (to Jerry's discomfort).


Video Example(s):



After becoming Moebius, N's love for M becomes more unhinged and possessive, causing M to swap bodies with Mio so M could die during Mio's Homecoming. N then attempts to kill Noah so he can be with Mio.

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Main / Yandere

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