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When you subtract the age (or apparent age) of a child from that of their parent, this results.
In Real Life, a girl can conceive as soon as she has her first menstrual cycle, generally around 11 or 12 years old... although in rare cases this can occur at an even younger age, such as five years old.
Somewhat justified if set in the past when girls might get married at 12-14 and boys at 15-19. In modern times, it depends on your country and the culture you live. Avoid posting examples of why you believe a relationship is squicky unless it is declared as such in-universe by the author or the characters themselves. This trope isn't about the morality of Teen Pregnancy or what is considered statutory rape.
Compare Playing Gertrude if the actress playing the mother is absurdly youthful. No Real Life Examples, Please. This is for Fridge Logic parent ages where the issue is swept under the rug, not parent ages that could (hypothetically) be possible.
- 1 Actual parent-child relations with small age difference
- 2 Pregnancy at a young age is clearly implied or stated
- 3 Anime and Manga
- 4 Film
- 5 Literature
- 6 Live Action TV
- 7 Tabletop Games
- 8 Video Games
- 9 Web Comics
- 10 Web Original
- 11 Western Animation
- 12 Parent remarriage, adoption, or gained custody through other means
- 13 Anime and Manga
- 14 Comic Books
- 15 Fanfiction
- 16 Film
- 17 Literature
- 18 Live Action TV
- 19 Theater
- 20 Video Games
- 21 Western Animation
- 22 Music
- 23 Real Life
- 24 Children are born, then their age is retconned.
- 25 Time Travel, Magic, Bizarre Alien Biology or Immortality are involved
- 26 Anime and Manga
- 27 Comic Books
- 28 Film
- 29 Fan Fiction
- 30 Literature
- 31 Live Action TV
- 32 Theater
- 33 Video Games
- 34 Visual Novels
- 35 Web Comics
- 36 Western Animation
- 37 The parent looks younger, or the child looks older
- 38 Anime and Manga
- 39 Film
- 40 Literature
- 41 Live Action TV
- 42 Video Games
- 43 Web Animation
- 44 Web Comics
- 45 Western Animation
- 46 Parents that were young but still considered adults when the child was born
- 47 Anime and Manga
- 48 Video Games
- 49 Literature
- 50 Faked parentage
- 51 Live Action TV
- 52 Western Animation
- 53 Unclear if it is one of the above or a case of Writers Cannot Do Math
- 54 Anime and Manga
- 55 Live Action TV
- 56 Webcomics
- 57 Clear Cases Of Writers Cannot Do Math
- 58 Comic Books
- 59 Combination
- 60 Fanfic
- 61 Literature
- 62 Western Animation
Actual parent-child relations with small age difference
Pregnancy at a young age is clearly implied or stated
- In Haré+Guu, Hale is 10 while his mother Weda is 24. It's the reason she lives in the jungle: Her city family kicked her out.
- Kodomo no Omocha: Sana's birth mother Keiko was fourteen when she gave birth. And it's implied in the manga that Sana was the product of sexual abuse, as apparently her dad was Keiko's uncle. It also would've been borderline statutory rape, since the age of consent in Japan is in between 13 and 18, and this means Sana was conceived when Keiko was 13.
- Great Teacher Onizuka: Kunio Murai's mother Julia was 13 when she gave birth to him. (It was a Surprise Pregnancy.) The Live Action Adaptation ups the age.
- Atsuko Urameshi from Yu Yu Hakusho gave birth to Yusuke when she was just 15.
- Banji's mother in Go Nagai's Delinquent in Drag (Oira Sukeban) gave birth to Banji in her early teens, explicitly stated in dialogue.
- In Digimon Tamers, some maths will reveal that Ruki's mother Rumiko had her when she was sixteen. The English dubs ups Ruki's age by three years without upping her mother's, however. This makes her exactly twice her daughter's age.
- In Devil Hunter Yohko, Yohko's mother Sayoko was 15 when Yohko was born. It was Sayoko's youthful indiscretion that prevented her from becoming a devil hunter, so Yohko must take her grandmother's place.
- Boys Empire has this with almost everyone eventually, but it is H-manga with Incest Is Relative...
- In order of oldest to youngest: Mina Tamura, daughter Sakura, 17. Umeko Tamura (nee Sakagami), daughter Mina, 15; son Makoto, 20. Hitomi Mizumura, son Makoto, 12.
- In Toradora!, male lead Ryuuji Takasu was born when his mother, Yasuko, was about 16-17.
- Sanae Furukawa of Clannad gave birth to Nagisa at young age. Of course, it doesn't really matter since she seems to be eternally youthful.
- Nagisa gave birth to Ushio at age 21. And then, she fell victim to Death by Childbirth. And years later, she got better. She also most likely possesses her parents genes for mysterious eternal youth.
- Seems to be very common in Clannad or just Key's works in general. Tomoya's mother gave birth to him shortly after marrying her husband. His parents married when his father was still in school.
- In the Distant Finale of Inuyasha, Sango already has three children and she's only about 19-20, which is not that surprising since she married Mr. "Bear my child" Miroku and the story takes place in Feudal Japan.
- That, and two of the kids are twin girls no older than three years old. The third child is actually born in that same Distant Finale.
- Hinagiku and Yukiji's adopted mother in Hayate the Combat Butler looks to be rather young to be the mother of 28-year old Yukiji, a little more probable for 12-years-younger Hinagiku, especially recently, but she's still nearly alarmingly young to be their mother. That she's the Katsura's adopted mother doesn't make things that much better, especially when considering that Mr. and Mrs. Katsura had apparently been trying to have children of their own for years beforehand.
- Mikoto is stated to have had Wataru when she was young (and there's implication that Nagi's mother also gave birth while she was young) and actually left Wataru in the care of his maid Saki because of it. Mikoto still looks young despite having a 13-year-old son.
- Rosario to Vampire gives us Kurumu's mother Ageha and Mizore's mother Tsurara, both of whom appear to be in their early thirties; the anime reveals them to have been classmates. Justified in Tsurara's case, since Yuki-Onna go sterile at a very young age, and as a succubus, Ageha probably didn't want to take things slowly either.
- Marine Gabrielle de Polignac in Rose of Versailles, who had her eldest daughter Rosalie at age 14. She gave her away to her former maid Nicole, who took the baby away and raised her as a peasant. For massive irony, Polignac's carriage ran Nicole over several years later, killing her...
- Karin: When Kenta was born, his mother was 16 and his father was 19.
- Parodied in Don't Be a Menace to South Central While Drinking Your Juice in the Hood, where the father of Ashtray (played by Shawn Wayans) is played by Lahmard Tate, who is about a year younger than Wayans. This is a Running Gag through the entire movie, with things like Ashtray reminiscing about changing his father's diapers, and going to a party his dad is too young to attend. This was poking fun at the fact that Lawrence Fishburne, who played the father of Cuba Gooding Jr's character in Boyz N the Hood, is only about seven years older than Gooding.
- Gender inverted in The Wild Hunt Trilogy. Judith's father was 14 at her conception, due to him being the only male around at a time when her 28 year old mother desperately needed to get pregnant.
- In Romeo and Juliet, Juliet's mother says she was already a mother at Juliet's current age (nearly 14) in justification of Juliet's Arranged Marriage with Paris.
- Which was normal... back then, as girls from rich families got married around that age so they'd be able to have healthy kids soon. Poorer women would marry later (around 20 or older), as possible suitors would take far more time to gather enough money for a decently-sized household.
- In the Kate Thompson book Children of the Night, the teenaged protagonist's mother was only 14 when she had him. He realizes that his father, who he never knew, must have been an adult, as she would have told him if his father was a classmate of hers. This squicks him out, as the idea that an adult could take advantage of a young girl like that is inherently disturbing.
- Gender reversed in The Shipping News, where the protagonist calculates that his grandfather must have been about 11 when he fathered a child. His aunt's reply is simply: "You don't know Newfoundlanders."
- Several examples in the works of V. C. Andrews. Notably, Dawn in the Cutler series was 17 when she gave birth to Christie; Leigh Casteel had Heaven at age 13-14 (the books waver on this since the last two were finished by a Ghostwriter) and Celeste in the Gemini series is around fifteen when her daughter is born.
- In Randall Garrett's Lord Darcy stories, every story that Mary, Dowager Duchess of Cumberland is in also contains an explanation that she's a year younger than her stepson, the current Duke of Cumberland. She was his father's second wife, and it was a May-December Romance—she was in her 20's, he in his fifties when they married.
- In Clan of the Cave Bear, Ayla is eleven when she has her son Durc - her sister Uba isn't much off that when she gets pregnant. Justified in-universe in that the Clan have a lifespan of about thirty and go through menopause in their early twenties, and so have children early, and Ayla was held to their standards.
- In Ginger Pye, Jerry and Rachel's mother married their father at the age of seventeen, at a time when such marriages were unusual but not unheard of. Their grandmother is still quite young, and they have a three-year-old uncle, affectionately referred to as "Uncle Benny" by everyone in the neighborhood.
- In the Books of Swords, it is outright stated that the Silver Queen, Yambu, became pregnant with Ariane while still barely a teenager herself. As such, when Ariane is in her early twenties, Yambu is still only in her mid-thirties or so.
- In the first episode of Gilmore Girls it is explicitly stated that Lorelei had Rory out of wedlock at age 16. Another episode has Rory's friends commenting on how young she looks before figuring this out.
- In Boardwalk Empire, Gretchen Moll is a grandmother in her thirties, and still a nude cabaret performer. She was impregnated at the age of 13. Michael Pitt, who plays her son, is only seven years younger than Moll.
- Eastenders: Kat Slater/Moon is discovered to have given birth to Zoe at age 13 after being raped by her uncle.
- "Best Player" featured the mother of a 16-year-old dating a 30-year-old. No mention of an age difference in the couple was made... so... How old was Chris's mom when she was born?
- Bliss Stage, taking place almost a decade After the End where everyone over 18 falls into an eternal sleep, has every mother being 17 or below. It's that sort of game.
- Leisure Suit Larry: Love For Sail has Nailmi and Wydoncha Jugg, a mother-and-daughter pair of country/western singers who look almost identical. This being Leisure Suit Larry, the game hangs a lampshade on this, implying that Nailmi gave birth to Wydoncha at an improbably young age.
- In El Goonish Shive, when Elliot's mother meets his female duplicate Ellen, she immediately accepts her as part of the family. She admits to herself that she always wanted a daughter, and that this time, she doesn't have to drop out.
- In Shadowgirls, Charon had Becka at 15, and Chrissy had her daughter Missy at around 17.
- Equestria Chronicles has Kettle Cornflakes, who it is very clearly stated was raped and birthed her daughter at the age of 15. Magical talking ponies.
- In Drawn Together, because Toot is such a deplorable and incompetent mother, Toot's adopted Nicaraguan baby gets pregnant herself.
- Foxxy Love is implied to have something like this trope with her kids.
- At one point a member of Foxxy's family shows up and looks to be about 14 or 15. He introduces himself as being Foxxy's grandson. So unless Foxxy is just way older than she looks, both she and her own kids must have their kids at very young ages.
- Foxxy Love is implied to have something like this trope with her kids.
- Family Guy gives us an absurdly young father: Brian apparently fathered a human child who is older than Brian himself. And if you don't like it, you can go complain on the Internet.
- Daria has Jane Lane's older sister Summer who isn't that much older than the early-twentysomething Trent and has two preteen kids.
Parent remarriage, adoption, or gained custody through other means
- In Elfen Lied, Kohta and Yuka (both 18-19) are given custody of Mayu (~13) by her mother as she doesn't want her any more.
- The title character of Lyrical Nanoha officially adopted the then 6-year old Vivio when she was just 19. One fan comic had fun with this small age difference by having Nanoha introduce Vivio to her parents with no prior information, causing her father Shiro to have a breakdown when he thought that she got Vivio the usual way at the tender age of 13. See it here (comic is SFW, but ads may not be):    
- Taking this even further, as of Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha Vi Vid, Vivio can transform into teenager/young adult version of herself, which, coupled with Nanoha's own rather youthful looks, makes it appear as if they are virtually the same age.
- There's also Fate, who's the official guardian of Caro even though they only have a 9 year difference between them Erio would also count, but he's officially under the guardianship of the forty-something Lindy since he was rescued back when Fate was still too young to officially be his guardian. Fate goes on to become Vivio's other mother, as well as Lutecia's legal guardian for the time when her mother Megane is still in her coma.
- Averted with Subaru Nakajima who, while likely old enough to become Tohma's guardian in Force, despite being only six years older than he is, asks her father to take him in.
- Eureka (14-16) of Eureka Seven has three adopted children, all orphans. She's the one who orphaned them.
- In the epilogue, all three children are adopted by Renton as well, who is also 16, as Maurice, Maeter, and Linck all are shown to have the last name Thurston. It is also implied that Renton and Eureka are married, at least legally.
- At age 15, Fraw Bow from Mobile Suit Gundam starts taking care of the orphans Kikka (4), Retsu (5) and Katz (8). Seven years later, we see them again in Mobile Suit Zeta Gundam: 22-year-old Fraw has married her Victorious Childhood Friend Hayato and they have adopted the three kids, who are now 11 (Kikka), 12 (Retsu) and 15 (Katz, who even joins the cast as a regular).
- In Sailor Moon, the Outer Senshi (all 16-17) adopt Hotaru after she has magically regressed to an infant. She then magically re-ages to around 13.
- In Bunny Drop, 30 year old Dankichi pretty much adopts Rin, his grandpa's 6-year-old daughter (and technically his aunt).
- Yuuri (16), from Kyo Kara Maoh!, adopts the ten year old girl, Greta, who tried to kill him in her first appearance.
- Satoshi, from D.N.Angel, was adopted as a teenager by a man in his twenties.
- In the Age of Apocalypse, Rogue married Magneto and thereby became the adoptive mother of the sole survivor of his children, Quicksilver. He is an unspecified number of years older than her. (It could still happen in the main timeline).
- There's a Touhou 4koma in a near-mundane setting in which Suwako and Sanae, who already have this kind of relationship in canon, are classmates of the 11-year old Letty and 17-year old Yuuka respectively (Usual warnings about Danbooru and NSFW ads apply). They are still mother and daughter, in that order, which has been commented on being a special case. It has been theorized that Suwako merely looks young... and also has the mentality of a child and still attends elementary school. It has eventually been shown that they both look their age and aren't related in blood, which does raise the question of what in her name Kanako was doing at a children's festival with a bag of sweets and a marriage contract.
Ted: [whispering to Bill] Your stepmom's cute.
- Diane, the mother from Poltergeist is far too young to have given birth to the family's teenage daughter Dana. The quandary is explained when a construction-worker quips to Steven that his daughter is as good-looking as her mom, and Steven gruffly replies that Dana's mother is dead: he's a widower, and Diane (mother of Carol Anne) is his second wife.
- Paige of Women of the Otherworld adopted Savannah when Paige was 23 and Savannah was 13. Then Paige marries Lucas Cortez, also in his mid-twenties, and Savannah has two parent figures less than a decade older than her.
- Twenty-five-year-old Kate Daniels becomes the legal guardian of twelve-year-old Julie. At first Kate refers to herself as a substitute mom, then as a crazy aunt, but she always refers to Julie as her kid.
- In the Flowers in the Attic series by VC Andrews, it's a significant plot point that Malcolm Foxworth fathered a child (Corrine) with his stepmother Alicia, who was sixteen when she married his father - a decade or more younger than Malcolm. He even states in front of his father that he cannot acknowledge a girl so much younger as his new "mother".
- Kendall Casablancas of Veronica Mars has stepsons 7 and 9 years younger than her.
- After serving as the fake 18th head of the Shiba household, Samurai Sentai Shinkenger's Takeru is adopted into the family to become the actual 19th head in the finale. It's stated that the 17th head, Kaoru's father, died 17 years before, making the new adoptive mother 16-17 years old and younger than her son who, from his age in flashbacks, appears to be 6-8 years older than her.
- Ryouga in Bakuryuu Sentai Abaranger is an Absurdly Youthful Father; he is 21 with parental responsibility for his orphaned 6-year-old niece.
- In Just Shoot Me, Maya's father marries a woman who's exactly the same age as Maya. In fact, they used to go to school together.
- In A Little Night Music, Anne is eighteen and her stepson Henrik is nineteen and madly in love with her. They run away together.
- In Ace Attorney Trucy's dad Phoenix "Nick" Wright is 33, while she is 15. Protagonist Apollo does the math and is mind boggled by the implications of this fairly small age gap. However, it later, thankfully, turns out that Trucy was adopted by Phoenix. (Of course, long-time players of the series could guess that already long before that point) In a straighter example, however, her older brother Apollo is only 18 years younger than their biological mother.
- In Princess Maker 2, you can be a very young man when you adopt your daughter (in fact, you can adopt her at 11, and she starts at 10...).
- In Tales of Symphonia, 12 year old Genis's sister, sole caretaker and mother figure is Raine, age 23. She's been raising him since infancy, making her roughly 11 or 12 when she had to start taking care of him because their mother abandoned them. It's implied in a Z-Skit that she's been a school teacher in Iselia for around six years, but it isn't clear what she did to support them before that.
- In Daria, Brittany 's stepmother Ashley-Amber is about 10 years older than Brittany herself.
- King of the Hill has Hank's stepmother Didi, who was his classmate in kindergarten.
- This is how Willie Nelson became his own grandpa.
- Too many to even start listing them. Let's just say that the above Bill and Ted example is not even remotely far-fetched.
Parent and child ages (or looks) are somehow modified
Children are born, then their age is retconned.
These examples are listed under Soap Opera Rapid Aging Syndrome.
Time Travel, Magic, Bizarre Alien Biology or Immortality are involved
- Tenchi Muyo! has several of these, perhaps most notably Washu being Ryoko's mother, despite the fact that Washu actually looks younger than Ryoko. In actuality, while Ryoko is merely a child at 7,000 or so, Washu is, depending on who you ask, either 20,000 or older than the universe. She cheats via
magicalscientific age modification.
- RahXephon has Quon, Ayato's "mom", who has been kept in stasis. Making her the same age as he is, and about alf the age of his twin brother Itsuki (Ayato too was kept in a kind of stasis)
- Lyrical Nanoha has Hayate and the Wolkenritter, Hayate acts as a mother figure at age nine, while the Wolkenritter are likely centuries old
- Their "official" ages in A's, most likely determined by physical appearance, are 8 for Vita, 19 for Signum and 22 for Shamal. Zafira seems to pose as the family dog.
- In Higurashi no Naku Koro ni, it's revealed in the TIPS/ Rei OVA that Hanyuu, who looks about anywhere from 8-12, in fact had a daughter way back when. She was an adult when she had her child in life but appears as a young girl in order to get Rika to better relate with her.
- In Dragon Ball GT, Goku is de-aged to childhood as the result of the Dragonballs, making him approximately the same age as his granddaughter, 10-year-old Pan.
- Even before that, Goku was looking young to be the father of his professor son Gohan but this is because Saiyans remain in their prime longer than humans. Neither Bulma nor Chi Chi are thrilled, and you can guess how the latter reacts to her husband's further de-aging.
- Also, Goku's age was stilted by about 8 years (which is about the difference between Goku and Vegeta's dates of birth to begin with) due to time spent dead.
- Even before that, Goku was looking young to be the father of his professor son Gohan but this is because Saiyans remain in their prime longer than humans. Neither Bulma nor Chi Chi are thrilled, and you can guess how the latter reacts to her husband's further de-aging.
- Moka's mother in Rosario to Vampire is well over 200, but looked like she was in her early twenties. Justified, since her species are said to be immortal. Her daughter really is 17, though.
- Mito from Space Pirate Mito looks like she's around 5 or 6 years old, while her son is only about 15 when the series starts. Turns out she's Really a few thousand year-old alien who had a child with a human.
- In one Sandman volume it's remarked that Orpheus' mother doesn't seem old enough to be his mother. This is understandable, since she is Calliope, an immortal muse from Greek myth. Less understandable is that despite being the child of Dream of the Endless and Calliope, Orpheus seems to be aging normally for a human...
- That's because the Ancient Greeks weren't big on Mendelian genetics. You could be the son of a god and a nymph and still be a mortal man, albeit with a cool pedigree to boast about.
- Cable from X Men (picture above) is about twice the biological age of both his parents, Scott Summers and Madelyne Pryor; he was born in the present but was spirited away and raised in a distant future. Additionally, his mother was a clone of Jean Grey, and chronologically only a couple of years old when he was born. (It's complicated)... Just remember that he's a time traveler.
- Same goes for X-Man (Alternate Cable. He's made from Scott and Jean's DNA by an Evilutionary Biologist, grown to adulthood, looks 20 while parents are getting toward 30) and Rachel Summers (Scott and Jean's daughter presumably through normal means, returned from a Bad Future that may or may not still occur.)
- In the Yoko Tsuno book The Three Suns of Vinea, Khany is reunited with her mother, who was put in suspended animation at the same age Khany is now. As a result, mother and daughter now have the same biological age, prompting the former to try to make things less awkward by insisting that Khany consider her her sister rather than her mother.
- Adam Destine of ClanDestine hasn't aged since the genie Elalyth made him invulnerable when was about twenty... eight hundred years ago. Since then, he and Elalyth have had a great many children, all of whom age normally until adulthood, then slow way down. Most of his children actually look older than him, except for the twins (twelve years old) and Samantha and maybe Dominic (who look about the same age as he does).
- From the Hulk comic, the organization known as The Pantheon is lead by centuries-old, but adolescent looking Agamemnon. His immortality kicked in while young. His many sons, grandsons and grand-grandsons looks older than him.
- However, he usually takes the appearance of a towering old man with a long, white beard when he appears at the Pantheon.
- A popular strip in the British comic Bunty involved a scientist who invents a miraculous anti-ageing cream that turns her into a 15-year-old, forcing her to go to school with her daughter so the welfare authorities will not ask questions.
- The 2011 sci-fi thriller In Time features this. The premise of the film is that humanity has discovered the technology to freeze everyone's age at 25 and now live on internal "time-clocks" which expire after a set period, and people who don't work or don't buy units of time die. The extremely wealthy can purchase enough units of time to indefinitely remain the same age for years (or even decades) - in the film's trailer, a man introduces his wife, daughter and mother-in-law, all of whom are the exact same age.
- The Neon Genesis Evangelion web comic fanfic Aki Chans Life (a slice of life/ illustrated epilogue to another, very well written, fanfic called The Second Try) has a somewhat... complicated example. Aki the daughter of Asuka and Shinji, conceived after the events of the third impact was born when her parents were about 16 or so. Pretty young to begin with. Four years pass, then everyone was swept back in time and her parents returned to the age they were in the anime (14) while she remained unchanged (she's a very precocious 4). They still remain loving, mature parents, but the awkwardness of the whole situation is... well you get the idea.
- Another Eva fic, Nobody Dies, has two examples: the Reego and the Keiworu. The Reego are virtual constructs made by Iruel for Rei's Lotus Eater Machine, as theoretical offspring of her and Evangelion Unit 05. Unit 05 "saved" them from deletion when Iruel was defeated and now they exist as AI's in the real world, and consider Rei (who is 16) and Unit 05 (much younger) to be their parents. The Keiworu are AI copies of Kei Ayanami's mind randomized with elements of Kaworu's mind (both of them being 16), and also consider the two to be their parents.
- The Return, Sunshine comes across as one of these to Muggles due to the complicated nature of Succubae relationships (in purely chronological terms she could actually be younger than 2 of her kids).
- In the Doctor Who Eighth Doctor Adventures novels, the Eighth Doctor at one point mentions being a grandfather—he appears to be in his mid-thirties at the time. His companion Fitz is a bit confused. He later adopts a young girl named Miranda, who ages rather normally, so he looks about forty (and claims to be thirty-six) when she's sixteen, which other characters see as slightly unusual. But after she leaves to have her own life and they're later reunited, several decades have passed since the last time they met, so she actually looks older than he does.
- The main character of New Amsterdam is 400 years old but looks 35 (the age at which he became immortal via magical means); he sometimes seeks advice from one of his still-living sons, who is a naturally-aging 65-year-old.
- Takeru Sato, the lead actor of Kamen Rider Den-O, left the franchise after the TV series; so for future movies and spin-offs, they de-aged Ryotaro into an 11 or 12-year-old boy, making him younger than his grandson Kotaro who is around 18.
- Due to the characters being taken from different points in their timelines, 19-year-old Yuto Sakurai is around the same age as his daughter, Hana. Hana's mother, Airi, is in her late 20s and thus only a decade or so older than Hana.
- Thanks to time travel in Kamen Rider Kiva, father and son Otoya and Wataru meet when they are 23 and 18 years old respectively. In the finale, Wataru meets his own teenage son from the future.
- Kiva also features Wataru and Taiga's mother Maya who, being a Fangire, doesn't age at the same rate as a human and looks around 20 years old; appearing younger than Taiga, who is in his mid-to-late 20s.
- In Rentaghost, ghosts manifest as they age they were when they died. So Hubert Davenport's mother, who died in her twenties, looks much younger than her son, who died when he was much older (his late fifties or early sixties).
- In Angel, the title character's son Connor is kidnapped as an infant and trapped in Another Dimension where time passes much more rapidly, so when he reappears a few months later- from the perspective of the other characters- he is already in his teens. Angel also only looks young; as an immortal vampire, he is Really Three Hundred Years Old.
- Doctor Who takes this to insane levels, where, due to a mixture of time travel, Regeneration and slower aging, Melody Pond is physically in her 40s for much of the series (though chronologically at least a decade older by her River Song incarnation]]), while her parents are physically in their 20s (though mentally, her father is technically almost 2000).
- Xena was somewhere in her 20s/30s when she had her daughter Eve. Shortly after Eve's birth, Xena was frozen in ice for two decades. When she emerges unaged, she and Eve look the same age - and physically, that's almost the case.
- In Torchwood: Children of Earth, the immortal Jack's daughter Alice is upset that she looks older than him.
- Bakuryuu Sentai Abaranger: Asuka and Mahoro are both around their early 20s, but due to their infant daughter being used as a host for the soul of the Big Bad, she first appears as a child of around seven and then a young woman in her late teens, while her parents remain the same age.
- In the Gilbert and Sullivan operetta Iolanthe, the hero Strephon is half-fairy. Fairies are unaging and Stephron has a hard time explaining to his beloved that these nubile women he is seen embracing are, in fact, his mother and his aunts, all of whom look younger than him.
I wouldn't say a word that could be reckoned as injurious
- In Touhou, Sanae Kochiya is a distant descendant of Froggy Goddess Suwako Moriya. The fact that Suwako actually looks younger than Sanae is what makes it creepy.
- From Tales of Symphonia, Kratos has been physically been around 28 for 4,000 years, which helps him hide the fact that he is Lloyd's father from the child, or else it would have appeared that he had fathered him at the age of 11.
- Golden Sun's player characters, along with Alex and Kraden, were all exposed to age-slowing amounts of Alchemy at the end of The Lost Age. So thirty years later, in Dark Dawn, the former player characters all appear to be in their mid-to-late twenties, with teenage or young adult children. Alex was exposed to more of Alchemy's power than anybody else and is basically immortal: The only reason he looks older than his child at all is because the kid in question doesn't look nineteen.
- Tsugumi in Ever 17 doesn't look much older than her sixteen-year-old children, as she stopped aging at seventeen. You's mother is a more conventional really-young-looking parent... because her "daughter" is really a clone of herself that she had made when she was diagnosed with a terminal illness in her teens, and You'haru stopped aging too, at the age of twenty.
- You might not suspect it, but Drowtales' Queen Diva is a great-great-great (times x) grandma and well over 1000 years old by the time the story starts, which isn't unusual since fae (dark elves, drow, drowussu, etc.) stop aging at the human equivalent of 30 years old, so parents often end up looking the same age as their children and vice-versa. Additionally, Diva's Fusion Dance, Ragini/Liriel, makes her look about 12 once she fully manifests, which leads to a hilariously awkward moment where Diva meets two of her grandchildren and looks the same age as her granddaughter, to the point that Chrys'tel's clothes (from 22 chapters earlier) fit her perfectly.
- In Sailor Sun, 20 year old Bay Smith alternatively plays mother to two versions of her daughter Brady Honey Smith that were snatched from alternate futures: 18 year old Honey and kindergartner/preschooler Brady.
- In Homestuck, in every session of Sburb, it is predestined that the players will all really be paradox clones created by one of the players during that session. While this process isn't explicitly shown in the Trolls' session (though the end result is), in the kids' session, we see that John first created Nanna Egbert, Grandpa Harley, Bro Strider, and Mom Lalonde and then created the children themselves by combining this quartet pairwise, thereby making them essentially just a few minutes younger than their biological parents, whom in most cases were also their acting parents due to having been sent to different points in time. John, however, is quite a bit older than his "father", who is actually his half-brother. On top of that, if you consider creating the paradox clones to be a form of parenthood, this means that John is, at age 13, either a father of eight or a father of four and a grandfather of four, or both, depending on your perspective as to whether the second generation should be considered children as well or grandchildren. In short: Stable Time Loops and genetics should never mix.
- Nina and Layla's mom in Eerie Cuties does not look like could have had 13 children. Justified in that she's a vampire. (Vampires can reproduce in this verse the same as humans.)
- In Order of the Stick, when Roy meets his mother in the afterlife, he doesn't recognize her because she's no older than he is. His father, meanwhile, looks like an old man. Sara explains that his father always was an old man at heart, while she thinks of herself as a young woman still.
- In Mary Shelley's Frankenhole, Frankenstein and Elizabeth's two sons, Heinrich and Gustav, are doddering, senile old men while Victor and Elizabeth, due to an immortality potion, are still physically young adults.
No actual small age difference between the characters
The parent looks younger, or the child looks older
- Nana Sawada, mother of protagonist Tsunayoshi from Katekyo Hitman Reborn, is in her mid-late thirties but looks barely older than her teenage son.
- Miyuki Asaka of Game X Rush falls squarely into this trope; even the mangaka mentions that "I feel like her face and personality are stuck as a little girl forever." Also a borderline Type 1 case since simple math shows she'd have been 18 when she had her son.
- In Otaku no Musume San, Taeko and her mother are respectively Younger and Older Than They Look. Taeko is occasionally assumed to be the mother although she's still in high school.
- Kusanagi in The Sky Crawlers looks about twelve to fifteen, but is older than she looks.
- In Clannad, Sanae Furukawa looks like she's only slightly older, at most, than her daughter Nagisa. Fitting, seeing as she's a Hot Shonen Mom. She looks young enough to pass for being the granddaughter of her granddaughter's paternal great-grandmother, who is herself quite young for being a great grandmother.
- Despite the show/game being filled with Generic Cuteness, Tomoya specifically states Sanae's youthful appearance is strange and mysterious. This is made extremely apparent when you compare her to the midwife who delivered little Ushio. This midwife was actually a classmate of Sanae's in high school.
- She also fits in the "pregnancy at a young age folder" since its stated that she was pregnant at a young age. Combine it with this folder and it comes as no surprise that she is also a hot grandma, who perfectly could to be mistaken by the mother of her granddaughter, at least.
- In a similar vein to Sanae, Miyuki Takara's mother Yukari in Lucky Star looks like she could pass herself off as an older sister. Then again, it is a Improbably-Female Cast.
- And if Yukari, then certainly Miki, the mother of Inori, Matsuri, Kagami, and Tsukasa. She's claimed to be 47, and although it was a lie (she thought it was cute and expected), a 47-year-old woman could easily have four college-age daughters... but she still looks like she could be one of the sisters herself.
- Ah! My Goddess: Takano Morisato could pass for a sister of Keiichi and Megumi, instead of their mother.
- In Star Driver, up until the reveal, the best evidence against the theory that Reiji Miyabe/Head was Takuto's father was that he didn't look like he was out of highschool himself, much less old enough to father a fifteen-year-old son. Turns out that he ages really well. Or not at all, apparently.
- In Medaka Box, Zenkichi's mother even passes as an elementary school student, despite being 42 years old.
- Bulma's mother from Dragon Ball. While Bulma's character model is appropriately updated for her age, as she goes from 16 to 43, her mother's never changes. The result is that in some of her last appearances she actually looks younger than her own daughter.
- Akira's parents in Family Complex could pass off as 17 despite being around 40 years old.
- In Code Breaker, Sakura's mother was mistaken as her elementary school sister.
- A Spear Counterpart example from JoJo's Bizarre Adventure: Jotaro Kujo is 40 years old and a father as of Stone Ocean, but you'd never know it from the way he's drawn. At most, he looks maybe a couple of years older than his teenage daughter.
- Suite Pretty Cure has Kanade's mom Misora. When the fans first saw her on the previews for episode 4, they thought she was a candidate for a possible Sixth Ranger.
- In Alfred Hitchcock's North by Northwest, Cary Grant was 55 years-old. Jessie Royce Landis, who played his mother, was 63 years-old, meaning she would have to have given birth when she was 8 years old.
- In The Manchurian Candidate (1962), Angela Lansbury was only three years older than Laurence Harvey, who played her son.
- Angela Lansbury was nine years and three months older than Elvis Presley, her son in Blue Hawaii.
- In Earthquake (1974), Lorne Greene and Ava Gardner—only seven years apart in age—played father and daughter.
- In Nowhere Boy (2009), John's mother Julia looks way to young to be a mom
- In the film version of Harold Robbins’ Where Love Has Gone (1964), Bette Davis plays Susan Hayward’s mother, despite being barely ten years older.
- In Sweet Valley High, Jessica and Elizabeth's mother is in her late 30s-early 40s (thanks to frequent Retcon between different ghost writers, it changes) but it is often stated that she looks like she is in her 20s, and is usually mistaken for the twins' older sister.
- It's been mentioned a few times in The Hollows that witches age slowly once they reach adulthood, which presumably leads to a lot of this. Case in point: Rachel's mother is past retirement age for a human, but can pass for Rachel's sister with the right clothes.
- Ann's mother in Arrested Development—Michael can't believe that Ann's mom is so hot, and covers it by claiming he can believe she's so young. Maeby asks if she looks old enough to play Topher Grace's mom.
- Merlin's mother Hunith looked normal enough in the first season, when Merlin himself appeared extremely young and was described as a "young boy" in the Opening Narration. Five years pass in the show's time-line, and when Hunith reappears, looking exactly the same as she did half a decade ago despite her son's sudden growth spurt (and now refered to as "a young man"), she is suddenly this trope.
- Yuki's mother in Grandia III, who is 34 while he is 16, but looks about 20. For most of the game, they have more of a sibling relationship than a typical parent/child one, made clearest by the fact that Yuki calls her "Miranda" rather than "Mom."
- In Dragon's Lair 2, Princess Daphne has 13 kids, the oldest of whom looks about 13, and she still looks exactly the same as she did in the first game.
- In FireEmblem: Radiant Dawn, Almedha appears to be a beorc woman in her early or mid thirties, a bit too young to be the mother of Pelleas (who appears to be in his early twenties). She is neither.
- In Metal Gear Solid 4 Guns of the Patriots, Big Mama actually looks very well for being almost 80 (and still doing some pretty crazy motorcycle stunts during a highly destructive car chase). Her son Solid Snake also suffers from severe Cloning Blues and has rapidly aged in the last years to look actually older than her, even though she was over 30 when he was born.
- Lampshaded heavily in Bonus Stage when Jessica, Phil's mom, is introduced. We later learn that she looks younger when one of Joel's experiments in de-aging goes haywire.
- In the afterlife of The Order of the Stick when a 28 year old man is somewhat disturbed to discover that his mom has always had the soul of a 19 year old girl.
- In John S. Troutman's extended universe, Robyn, the matriarch of the Flint family is 46 but looks 30 because she discovered the Fountain of Youth when majoring in Historical Archaeology.
- In The Jetsons, Jane is 35 and Judy is 16, but they look more or less the same age.
- In The Little Mermaid 2, Ariel looks almost identical than in the first film and perfectly could to be mistaken by the older sister of her daughter Melody.
- Crystal Zilla from My Dad the Rock Star, who looks barely older than her teenager daughter Serenity.
- Queen Glimia from Dave the Barbarian. Same reason as Jane Jetson and Crystal Zilla.
- Mrs. Ridgemount from Stoked. Let's give an example: look at this picture. One of these women is a middle-aged woman with three kids, the other is a girl in her late teens. Guess which is which.
- June Darby of Transformers Prime has a high school aged son (Jack) but could easily pass for a girl in her twenties.
Parents that were young but still considered adults when the child was born
Anime and Manga
- In Prince of Tennis, Taka-san's friend Akutsu Jin from Yamabuki is fourteen, and his mother Yuuki is about 33. She insists on being called 'Yuuki-chan', even by Taka, leading to the other Seigaku regulars believing he has an older girlfriend. When they find out the truth, they freak and remark that she's a 'young mother'...
- At the beginning of Dragonball Z, which takes place five years following the end of Dragon Ball, Goku and Chichi are both 23, while Gohan is 4.
- Japanese source material stated that Delia Ketchum of Pokémon fame was 28 when Ash embarked on his journey. And since kids start their journey at the age of 10, this makes Delia 18 when she had Ash.
- Sakura from Hanamaru Kindergarten had her daughter Anzu at age 18, so by the time Anzu starts going to the titular school, her mother is still young and pretty. Then again, pretty much every mother in this series is still quite young and beautiful.
- Likely Maka Albarn's mother in Soul Eater. Both her parents were students in the same class at Shibusen and it's canon Spirit was 18 when Maka was born. Although details on the woman herself are sketchy, implications about the staff as a whole makes this a possibility.
- In Weiss Kreuz, Omi's admirer Ouka Sakaki is 15. Her Hot Mom Shizuka is 34. Do the math.
- Gears of War had Dominic's wife, Maria. Not much as youthful, but she got pregnant at the age of 16. She did reach her thrities though.
- Harry Potter's parents Lily Evans and her husband James were only 20 when they had Harry. While wizards are considered adults when they turn 17, it's still a fairly young age to get married and start a family. Justified, as Molly Weasley reveals that during the First Wizarding War, a huge number of couples married and settled down as soon as they could, for fear that they would die in the war. Funnily enough, Molly herself was 21 when she had her eldest, Bill...
- The pattern of hasty courtships and marriages was repeated somewhat during the Second Wizarding War, so it's not hard to imagine that there were a few instances of this trope in-universe at that point as well.
- In Only Fools and Horses, Del wins a family holiday for the Trotters by entering a children's art contest with a picture painted by Rodney when he was 14. In order for them to be eligible to claim the prize, Rodney (who's in his early 20s) has to pose as a 14-year-old boy, with Del (who was 16-17 when Rodney was born) pretending to be his father. Del at least has the sense to claim Cassandra, about the same age as Rodney, as a stepmother.
- Tracy Jordan's adult son on 30Rock is far too old. In an aversion, Tracy sees through the deception immediately (while his friends assume the Cloudcuckoolander was actually taken in).
- In Avatar: The Last Airbender season 3, Sokka and Katara fake being Aang's parents at a Fire Nation school. The two of them are barely older than he is and wear unconvincing disguises (Sokka wore a fake beard, Katara wore a pillow stuffed under her shirt to make her look pregnant.) to pass themselves off. To really blow some heads, just remember that in terms of pure chronological age, he could be their great-great grandfather.
Unclear if it is one of the above or a case of Writers Cannot Do Math
- In Dragon Ball, it's never stated how old Bulma's mother is.
- Cardcaptor Sakura: It is never stated how old Syaoran's mother Yelan is, only that she looks very young and beautiful enough to stand out in a universe populated by The Beautiful Elite. She is, however, thought to be somewhere in her mid-to-late 30's, and possibly married as a teenager. This is never confirmed, because she is only seen in the first OVA.
- Supernatural. John Winchester may be ruggedly handsome with a beard, but this hardly hides the fact that he looks MAYBE ten years Dean's senior.
- In One Life to Live, Greg is explicitly stated (in courtroom testimony, no less) to have ten years' experience as a fully licensed practicing neurosurgeon, putting him in his early 40s at the youngest. His mother is played by an actress in her late 40s, and to make things interesting he has a 15-year-old sister. All the characters were introduced during 2009 so SORAS isn't involved.
- Did they ever say he wasn't a genius who graduated high school at 11, college at 14, and medical school at 18? He'd be around 30, then.
- Neurosurgical residencies in the US are 7 years, so he'd be 35 at youngest.
- No, he'd be 33. Once he graduated medical school at age 26, he'd have seven years of residency, making him 33.
- Homestuck. Bro Strider. Most fans think of Bro as being in his early/middle 20s, until you sit down and do the math. He was at least an adult - 18 - when he adopted baby!Dave. Dave is thirteen now, making bro at least 31. The same might apply to Mama Lalonde and Dad Egbert, but Mom and Dad seem to be thought of as "older" than Bro, so I don't know. The whole lot of them don't seem to change in appearance between adopting their children and thirteen years later.
- The Egbert Family. Nana was born in 1910. John was "born" in 1996. Dad appears to be a regular middle aged man, but if Nana had Dad around age 20 (as was normal for a woman of her time period) Dad would have to be in his sixties when John is "born." If Dad is about, say, 40 when John is 13, Nana would have had to have given birth to him in HER fifties-sixties. It's unclear how old Dad is SUPPOSED to be, but so far it doesn't seem to add up when considering Nana's and John's ages.
Clear Cases Of Writers Cannot Do Math
- Kill Killer features a story with a "Dirty Callahan"-like killer of pedophiles who, after a lengthy period in prison for beating the supposed killer of his five year old child, reunites with his partner, the mother of the child... a 19 years old woman. Someone obviously couldn't make a subtraction...
- Past Sins has Twilight adopt the magically generated Nyx. Biologically, they're a teen/young adult and child respectively, and that's not even going into the newly-made or millennium-old question with Nyx. And things get even weirder when Nyx is artificially aged up to an adult horse...
- In Naruto Veangance Revelaitons, Taliana is said to be a clone of Sakura (who in canon is 12-13 pre-timeskip and 15-16 post-timeskip, and whose age is never stated here). She is also Ronan's mother and he is clearly stated to be 13 years old (although considering that Madara has the ability to travel back in time, that might be in play). Meanwhile, Sakura herself falls into a case of an absurdly young birth mother if we are to assume that she's the same age as in canon, since she gets pregnant and gives birth during the fic.
- A really bizarre case in Twilight with Bella Swan-Cullen and her daughter Renesmee. She gave birth to her just before her nineteenth birthday, but since she got turned into a vampire at the same time AND her daughter ages faster than a normal human, eventually they'll both look the same age.
- Star Wars: The Clone Wars included an episode involving a clone deserter with young children. He's no older than 13 at this point while his children are about 5-6, but he's been fast-grown so physically he's in his mid-twenties, and the children are his step-children.
- She was the youngest mother ever recorded, though she was too young to fully remember the pregnancy and so her parents raised the baby as her brother. While the father was cleared of rape charges, there's still the Fridge Horror question of who the parents allowed around their daughter.
- and the father was 10
- Technically, Fate's younger than that, since she was a clone created only a few years before the events of the first season.