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Winning Over the Kids

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Look at her bonding with the children!

"I read someplace that the surest way to meet the mother is to be kind to the child."
Fred Gailey, Miracle on 34th Street

When you find out the hottie you just met has adorable kids, it becomes up to you to bond with the offspring of your beloved. Most likely, you will win over the heart of the single parent in question by demonstrating your super winning (step-)parenting skills. This may be a step in your plan for Romancing the Widow.

You may also become a Parental Substitute for kids whose busy single parent doesn't always have time for them; it's not always about getting in the parent's pants, it may also be a sincere bond with the rugrat in question.

Probably a good way to prevent Blended Family Drama.


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     Anime & Manga 
  • A side story for K has this sort of situation with Misaki and his stepfather, when Misaki was about 6 years old.
  • Dad, the Beard Gorilla and I: One of the reasons Souichi ends up falling for Tsukasa rather than Yukari (aside from the fact that they have more similarities to each other then Yukari does with either) is because Tsukasa also likes Sgt. Ruckus, which Souichi's daughter Michiru is a big fan of, allowing them to bond.

  • Jerry Maguire: Jerry instantly bonds with single Dorothy's young son.
  • The Holiday: When Amanda discovers that rakish Graham has two adorable ankle biters, she has to prove that she can win the kids' affection along with his.
  • Enchanted: Giselle, once stranded in New York, gets along surprisingly well with the hot single dad's daughter. They have a very heartwarming shopping trip together.
  • Miracle on 34th Street: Fred spends time with young Susan as a way to getting to the heart of his single mom neighbor Doris.
  • Maid in Manhattan has Chris Marshall impressing Marissa by advising her son Ty on how to overcome his fear of public speaking.
  • The Aristocats: O'Malley helps lovely single mom Duchess get her three kittens safely home. The kittens bond with him faster than their mother does.
  • Jawan: Inverted. Narmada's ex-boyfriend, the biological father of her daughter Suji, tried to pressure her into having an abortion. She left him, and since then she's been adamant she won't allow any man into her life if he doesn't care about her daughter as much as she does. This creates the situation where little Suji picks out Azad, pre-approves him and decides she wants him as a stepfather, and then introduces him to her mother. Having already won over this kid, Azad must now secondarily win over the love interest.

     Live Action TV 
  • The Baby-Sitters Club (2020): Kristy's eventual stepfather Watson frequently tries to bond with her and her siblings throughout the series. Kristy is reluctant, however, and takes a long while to accept her mother's engagement and marriage.
  • Supernatural: When Dean tries to hook up with old flame Lisa, he discovers that she now has a son, Ben. By demonstrating how good he is with Ben (not to mention saving the kid from the Monster of the Week), he wins Lisa over.
  • Hightown: Ray with Frankie Jr., Renee's child, as she becomes his informant and the pair get involved.
  • In season 3 of The Mandalorian, Bo-Katan begins bonding with Grogu and Din. Now, Grogu is a Ridiculously Cute Critter who tends to invoke parental instincts in everyone he meets, but she also seems to be winning over his adoptive father at the same time; they become rather attached at the hip very quickly.

     Video Games 
  • Swooning Over Stans: A Grunkle Dating Simulator: A non parental example in Fordís route with the "Dungeons, Dungeons And More Dungeons" session with Ford and and his great nephew Dipper. While his sister Mabel has instantly become friends with the player, Dipper is polite but understandably wary. But after the date, heís more friendly.
  • Played for Laughs in a voice actor twitter stream for Fire Emblem Heroes best summarized here. For context, Arvis infamously and killed Seliph's father and his entire army by luring them to Belhalla Castle under the pretext of a celebration and then dropping meteors on them. He also married Seliph's mother for unrelated reasons.
    Arvis: Aren't I you're [sic] step-dad technically? Is this cause we didn't play catch enough?
    Seliph: Not even one time!
    Arvis: Son, I know you miss your dad, and I know I haven't always been around because...well, empire don't run itself...but do you wanna grab that glove and play some ball with your new old man who gives you way better Christmases?
    Seliph: Sure, maybe we can play in that mysterious meteor-ravaged field just outside the castle. Wonder what happened there!

     Visual Novels 
  • Daughter for Dessert gives an inversion of sorts, if the protagonist chooses someone other than Amanda in the end. Kathy, Heidi, and Lily all win over Amanda before thereís any possibility of a "proper" romance with the protagonist.

     Western Animation 
  • A variation in OK K.O.! Let's Be Heroes: Lord Boxman is business partners with Professor Venomous, and is implied to be romantically interested in him as well. For the first many episodes they appear in, Venomous's minion, Fink (a young girl who insists on calling Venomous "Boss", but is pretty much his adopted daughter for most intents and purposes) hates Boxman and makes this abundantly clear. But in "Boxman Crashes", he finally manages to impress her (and Venomous too) over by building her a motor-powered Cool Bike for her to attack the Plaza with. She warms up to him afterwards, even calling him "Boxboss" (basically like "Box-dad") as a sign of her newfound respect.
  • In Green Eggs and Ham, as soon as Sam learns that Guy has fallen for Michellee, he advises him to make nice with Michellee's daughter EB, pointing out that EB is "the gatekeeper," and that no relationship will survive without EB's approval. EB quickly figures out his scheme and makes the same point.


Video Example(s):


You Called Me "Dad"

Steve spends time with his estranged stepson Matt on a trip through England.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (15 votes)

Example of:

Main / WinningOverTheKids

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