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Wheel of Fate/Dr. Roy Curien: *has just been defeated in an epic battle and is letting off random electric bolts, apparently unstable* This is the world you humans wanted... The world is overpopulated... even you must realize that! Daniel, you need me...

Lisa Rogan: This is our future, we'll handle it ourselves! You have bigger problems to worry about!

Daniel Curien: You're not my father! *shoots the Wheel of Fate along with Lisa*

Wheel of Fate/Dr. Roy Curien: *groans in pain and explodes*
—The cutscene after the final battle in The House of the Dead III (and, yes, It Makes Sense in Context)

The closing line to any fight or disagreement between a teenager and either his father/mother or (more commonly) his important replacement parental figure (in the right genre, between the hero and his mentor). This is either a loophole for someone who really is in the wrong and wants a reason to end the argument without defending himself, or a way for a Good-aligned (or standards-bearing) offspring to inform his Evil-aligned father [figure] that he has crossed the line and is no longer worthy of respect, admiration, or obedience.

A stipulation is that the mentor has been more of a parent than the referenced father ever was. Or maybe an older brother with a Promotion to Parent.

A twist that turns up the tension is "You're not his father."

Compare/contrast with I Have No Son.

Examples of You're Not My Father include:



 Nanoha: Vivio, this might hurt a little bit...

    • In an unusual variation, Vivio meant this literally. She'd been mind-screwed so thoroughly by Quattro that the poor girl genuinely believed that the person she was facing was someone disguised as her Mama in an attempt to deceive her.
  • Shinji Ikari of Neon Genesis Evangelion is practically a trope-namer, he uses it so much.
  • Ace uses this phrase on Garp in a flashback in One Piece, in response to him opposing his plan to become a pirate. Unlike some who invoke it on a non-biological father figure, he doesn't think much of his biological father.
  • Kyo from Fruits Basket shouted this (in a flashback) about his adoptive father, who became distant after overhearing it. It turns out it was because Kyo (who has self-esteem issues) didn't want people to reflect poorly on his adoptive father by thinking they were related, as he's not worthy of having such a good parent.


  • Spider Jerusalem from Transmetropolitan was once told this by a person he was trying to interview.

 Liesl: How is that any of your business? You're not my dad. I do what I have to do. I was told to hide, I hid. I get scared, I deal with getting scared my own fucking way. Clear?

[[[Beat Panel]]]

Liesl: You're not my dad, right?

Spider: No.

Liesl: Good.

[[[Beat Panel]]]


Fan Works

  • In a now-deleted series of Amazing Chan and the Chan Clan/Winx Club crossovers, the third installment has Layla referring to Mr. Chan and his new wife Mrs. Van Inkley as Anne's parents. Anne, who was very close to her late mother, snaps and screams at Layla that Rosa (as Mrs. Van Inkley's named in the fic) is not and never will be her mother. An earlier fic also touches on Alan (also having been close to his biological mother) hinting that he's Not Himself when he calls Rosa "Mom" by accident, and the third fic also mentions that only Mimi and Scooter call Rosa "Mom" as they're too young to remember their birth mother.
  • Due to both Alm and Celica having been somewhat screwed over in the parent department, some Fire Emblem Echoes: Shadows of Valentia fics tend to play with this trope:
    • Alm Calls Tatiana "Mom" and Dies. While Alm privately admits he does think of Tatiana as a mother figure, he's thoroughly embarrassed and keeps insisting she's most certainly not. Tatiana just laughs it off.
    • This fic has Celica call Saber "father", leading to both of them to become embarrassed and deny it to all hell.
  • This Sheith fic in Voltron: Legendary Defender fandom has a sick Keith telling Lance that because he's dating "space dad" Shiro, he's his stepmom and has to listen to him. Lance fires back that Keith's not his real mother.


  • The last conversation Peter and his uncle Ben share in the Spider-Man movie:

 Uncle Ben: Now I don't mean to lecture you, and I know I'm not your father...

Peter: Then stop pretending to be!

    • Echoed in a later line:

 Peter: I had a father... his name was Ben Parker.


 Sonny: That's easy for you to say; he's not your father.

Tom: I was as much a son to him as you or Mike.

  • Said by Kristy in the Babysitters Club movie, when her stepfather berates her for forgetting to walk David Michael home, causing the 7-year-old to make the possibly dangerous trek himself. Made all the more heart-breaking by the fact that there are several points in the books where Watson plainly calls Kristy his daughter, even giving her an antique family heirloom in the Little Sister Spin-Off, and her biological dad stood her up in the end, anyway.
  • A variation occurs in Terminator 2 with John Connor.

 Todd: John, do as your mother tells you.

John: She's not my mother, Todd.

  • Played in Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull as a brief point of contention for Indy and Mutt, as they'd only recently met. Having been raised to believe his father was a British war hero, Mutt doesn't accept the news at first.
  • Said by Jerri in the Strangers with Candy movie to Stew the meat-man, who promptly responds, "You're not my daughter!"
  • Inverted in Star Trek where Spock meets future Spock, who says "I'm not our father."
  • At the end of Ninja Assassin, Raizo confronts his old mentor Lord Ozunu, who wants Raizo to "beg [his] father for forgiveness". Raizo shoots back "you are not my father", prompting a shadow-blending ass-kicking from Ozunu.
    • For reference, Ozunu had Raizo and dozens of others kidnapped as children and put through Training From Hell to become ninjas. As far as Ozunu was concerned, they were all his children.
  • A gag in Mystery Science Theater 3000: The Movie:

 Joe: You know what my kids would say...

Tom Servo: "You're not my real father!"

  • In the second live-action film of George of the Jungle, Junior says this to Lyle Van De Groot after his mother was hypnotized to thinking he was her husband. Twice. And kicking him in the shins both times. Well, in the second time, Lyle had shin guards, in which Junior then proceeded to stomp on Lyle's foot.


  • Elaine Isaak's Eunuch's Heir — used by Wolfram, the title character, against his (unbeknownst to him) actual, biological father.
  • Both used straight and inverted in Lamb the Gospel According To Biff. Joshua (Jesus) uses the line straight when arguing with Joseph; then Joseph, at a later point, points out "I'm not your father".
  • In Harry Potter and The Order of The Phoenix, Sirius tells Molly that Harry is "not her son." Her response? "He's as good as." Later, he does become her son... in-law.
    • To make this variant more interesting, Harry feels touched by this... but then goes against Mrs. Weasley's wishes anyway.
  • Anna uses this on Isabel in Stepmom, and Isabel's response is "THANK GOD FOR THAT!"

Live Action TV

  • The lines are spoken word-for-word on Heroes on several occasions when Claire Bennett tries to assert her independence from Noah, aka HRG guy. Naturally, her not-dad, despite his communication shortcomings, is usually right.
    • To be fair, dealing with her real father and grandmother soon prompted her to declare "I have a family!" and jump out a tenth story window to escape from them.
    • It happened in a bigger way with Sylar. Angela went "Sylar, you're my son — oh no sorry false alarm." It was kind of pathetic.
  • The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, in the landmark episode when Will's loser father shows up and invites his son to take a road trip. Will jumps at the opportunity, despite his uncle's warnings that his father can't be trusted.

 Will: I've been waiting for this for a long time, my whole life, and nobody's gonna stop me now. Come tomorrow, I'm outta here.

Uncle Phil: Oh, I don't think so.

Will: Who cares what you think? You're not my father!

  • Sister Sister: When Ray tells Tia that her new boyfriend just got out of prison and the bottom line is that she can't go out with him, she responds, "Well, bottom line, you're not my father!"
    • Tamera says the reverse near the end of the series when Tia and Tamera meet someone who could very well be their biological father. Tamera gets pissed when he asks them to take a DNA test to confirm that he is their real father:

 Tamera: I don't need a DNA test to know who my real father is. He's the man who's been there for me my entire life. And a good part of yours too Tia. His name is Ray Campbell. And as far as I'm concerned, he is all the father I will ever need.

  • 7th Heaven, in the episode when Eric is trying to protect Robbie from his recently resurfaced deadbeat father, Ed:

 Ed: You're not his father.

Eric: Neither are you.

  • Perhaps not quite average for the trope since the boy in question is a baby, not a teenager... But the line came up, unavoidably, in a very tense scene in the Lost episode "Fire & Water". Charlie, insistent on baptizing Claire's baby son regardless of Claire's wishes, runs afoul of Locke:

 Charlie: Who the hell are you, John? Aaron's not your responsibility. ...You're not his father. You're not his family.

Locke: Neither are you, Charlie.

  • A really bizarre example occurs in the UK science fiction comedy Hyperdrive. Technical Officer Jeffers is reminiscing about being raised by a computer simulation of his father, created when his father knew he was dying. Then, when Jeffers was fifteen, they got into an argument, and Jeffers said "You're not my real dad! You're just a piece of code!" and deleted the program. He tried to restore it the next day, but couldn't.
  • The British Soap Eastenders had this sort of conversation, subverted because:

 Zoe Slater: You can't tell me what to do, you ain't my mother!

Kat Slater: (Zoe's "sister") Yes I am!

  • Six Feet Under - Claire uses this line plenty on older brother Nate.
  • In Nip Tuck, Matt says this to Christian right after the latter bails him out of jail. the twist is that Christian really is Matt's father and had only found this out in the same episode. Unusually for this trope, Matt's pronouncement is actually quite accurate- Christian isn't much of a father figure to him at all.
  • A slightly depressing example occurs in the last episode of Supernatural, Season One. Sam and Dean have managed to rescue their father and Dean is worrying about having wasted a bullet (it only has a few left and they need all the bullets they can get). Unknown to them, John has been possessed by the Big Bad ever since they found him. But when John comes out and tells Dean how proud of him he is, Dean realizes the truth and says exactly this.
    • Played straight in a Season Five episode; a depressed Dean tells this to Bobby.
  • There's an episode of CSI: Miami in which Horatio meets a teenage boy. Horatio keeps calling him 'son', until the boy snaps back at him 'You're Not My Father'... little does he know that Horatio had earlier run a paternity test...
  • Angel: Angel's son Connor, raised by Angel's sworn enemy in a hell dimension, gets off at least one of these Eastwood style. He later identifies Angelus as his real father (who he wants to kill).
  • On Mystery Science Theater 3000: Pod People, after singing "Clown in the Sky", Joel tells the bots that he loves them. Crow's reply is "You're not my real father!"
  • In a House episode, the titular character reveals that he figured out that his father (John House) was not really his biological father when he was twelve, and told this to him, causing John to not speak a single word to his son for two months.
  • Freddie on ICarly uses this when Lewbert, their building's doorman enters a relationship with Freddie's mother.
  • Used in Fringe after Peter finds out that Walter stole him as a child from the alternate universe.
  • Delivered in a stunningly awesome way from Clark to Lionel in Smallville, just before the former cuts ties with the latter completely.
  • Andrea in The Walking Dead, when arguing with surrogate father figure Dale: "I'm not your little girl, I'm not your wife, and I'm sure as hell not your problem."
  • Morgana does this indirectly on Merlin, telling someone that she comes in the name of Gorlois because Gorlois made her who she was, not her real father, Uther.
  • On Charmed, Paige delivered this line to her adopted parents during an argument on the day before they died, and spent years feeling guilty about it.
  • On Revenge: rebellious teenager Declan to his older brother Jack when Jack is trying to convince Declan he has a duty to attend their father's funeral:

  Just because he's dead doesn't make you my father.

  • Subverted on Whos the Boss when Angela and Samantha get into an argument and Angela orders Samantha to go to her room. Samantha immediately shoots back that Angela isn't her mother. Tony intervenes, pointing out that he's her father, and he orders her to listen to Angela.

Stand-Up Comedy

  • In a routine done by Robin Williams, the Biblical Joseph, after hearing Mary is pregnant and he'd be "the stepfather of God's kid," fears he won't be able to discipline Jesus since he'd just scream, "You're not my real dad!"


  • In Avenue Q, Rod and Nicky make their first appearance on-screen in "It Sucks to Be Me" arguing about Nicky coming home late, with Nicky yelling "you're not my mother, Rod!"

Video Games

  • In Super Paper Mario, when Luvbi finds out that she's really one of the Pure Hearts, she argues with Grambi. At one point, she says: "Wait... Why do I explain myself to thee?! Thou art not my real father!"
  • In The House of the Dead III, Daniel says this verbatim as he delivers a final shot to his dad, the Final Boss of the game. See the page quote for more details.
  • Late in Disgaea, Jennifer chews out her foster father General Carter, who only adopted her to use her for his plans. In the anime, she actually says "you're no father to me!"

Web Animation

Web Comics

Western Animation


 Zuko: After I leave here today, I’m going to free Uncle Iroh from his prison and I’m going to beg for his forgiveness. He is the one who has been a real father to me.

Ozai: That’s just beautiful. Maybe he can pass down to you the ways of tea and failure.


 Slade: I may even become like a father to you.

Robin: I already have a father. (cue pan up to bats flying overhead)

  • Sari pulled this on her father in Transformers Animated after finding out that she was actually a robot, despite the combined efforts of Sumdac and the Autobots to reconcile them.
    • Of course, it turns out he actually is her father, with the other "parent" being the Allspark. However, she really accepts him as her father when he stands up to the Headmaster to protect her.
  • Presley says this to Ja'Kal in the Father's Day Special of Mummies Alive! when he offers to take the boy fishing in place of his real dad (who was in Memphis at the time.)
  • The end of the X-Men: TAS episode, 'Beauty and the Beast involving Graydon Creed.
  • In Drawn Together, Clara invokes this in an argument with her stepmother. Her stepmother then reminds her that her mother's dead, and after realizing that she went too far in bringing this up, the two reconcile and Clara's stepmother gives her advice on how to break her Octopussoir curse.
  • Robot Chicken has their skit "Jedi Master George W./Jedi In Chief" more or less parodies this trope during a parody of the I Am Your Father scene in Star Wars, with George Bush as Vader and his daugher Jenna replacing Luke:

 Bush: Jenna, get over here right now! I am your father!

Jenna: That's not true! That's impossible! My real father would let me go clubbing as late as I want! *flips off Bush*


Real Life

  • A serial killer was apparently able to kill about six women operating by this trope. Said women were drug addicts, prostitutes, women that their families just didn't care about anymore.