CW parents = terrible parents.
Hi, I’m Hannah, and I love teen dramas! It’s kind of ~my brand~. But don’t come at me with this Outer Banks nonsense. I’m old.
Hannah Marder / Buzzfeed
is me doing a photo shoot as Blair Waldorf when I was 15, how did you know??
But one thing I’ve noticed about all my favorite teen dramas is that the parents are almost always AWFUL.* In fact, there were so many awful parents, I couldn’t even include them all! Here are some of the worst of the worst.
*Except, of course, Fred Andrews.
Chuck’s dad Bart on Gossip Girl
Bart was actually evil incarnate. He blamed Chuck his entire life for his mother’s death, despite the fact that she wasn’t???? dead???? He also faked his death for years before returning and cutting Chuck out of his company. Then he put Nate in jail, threatened Blair, and TRIED TO HAVE CHUCK KILLED. So, yeah. Not so good of a guy.
Nathan and Lucas’s dad Dan on One Tree Hill
Dan was arguably even worse than Bart, but I’m giving him points for his redemption in saving Nate in the end (and Jamie earlier on). The man was a horrible father for years, rejecting Lucas as his son and making Nathan think his only worth was in sports. He then KILLED HIS BROTHER KEITH, who had basically raised his son Lucas. Dan was the actual worst.
Cheryl’s parents Clifford and Penelope on Riverdale
Literally all the parents on
Riverdale are awful (except Archie’s parents and FP!), but Cheryl’s are pretty spectacularly bad. Penelope is a serial killer who called Cheryl deviant for liking girls, and Clifford was a murderer who killed his own son.
Caroline’s dad Bill on The Vampire Diaries
He tortured his daughter to try to condition her to hate the smell of blood, even though she was a vampire who would always crave it. Then he abandoned her because he refused to complete his transition to become a vampire. So horrible!!!
Spencer’s dad Peter on Pretty Little Liars
Holy moly, did this man get a lot of women pregnant. He had an affair with Jessica Dilaurentis while he was married to Spencer’s mom, then also slept with Jessica’s evil twin Mary. He fathered Spencer, Alex, Melissa, and Jason, and only claimed two of them. He also put so much pressure on his daughters and wouldn’t let Melissa tell the truth about Bethany when she clearly wanted to.
Serena’s parents Lily and William in Gossip Girl
William was the MESSIEST. He abandoned Serena when she was 4, then came back into her family’s life to treat Lily’s cancer, getting so invested that HE PRETENDED HER CANCER HAD COME BACK so that he could continue to get close to the family. Then he fled town when he was found out!!! Lily was definitely not as bad (she was a pretty good stepmom to Chuck) but she consistently paid people off and tried to control her kids’ lives, and she cared way too much about status. Serena was kind of the worst, but honestly I can see why.
Veronica’s parents Hiram and Hermione on Riverdale
Hiram is a mob boss who kills people, and Hermione consistently goes back to his side even when promising Veronica she won’t. Plus, they’ve tried to have each other KILLED. Hiram is also incredibly manipulative and won’t let Veronica have her own life and succeed on her own merit.
Betty’s parents Hal and Alice on Riverdale
Hal was a literal serial killer and Alice gave away Betty’s college tuition to a cult, so…yeah. Alice also admitted she loves Betty more than Polly, which is just a huge parenting no-no. She is somehow both over-involved and absent from Betty’s life, plus she brought the murderous Chic into it.
Ali’s mom Jessica on Pretty Little Liars
Ali’s mom literally BURIED HER ALIVE. I know she was protecting her other daughter Cece who she thought had killed Ali, but STILL. She didn’t even check Ali’s pulse?? She was also a horrible mother to Cece, institutionalizing her for the majority of her childhood and hiding her existence from her other children (WHICH MEANT LETTING HER SON JASON DATE HER).
Brooke’s parents Victoria and Ted on One Tree Hill
Victoria might’ve redeemed herself in the end, but a LOT of bad stuff went down before that. She literally admitted that she never wanted a daughter and that Brooke had “ruined” things for her. She was a horrible absentee mother to Brooke growing up, and she only came back into Brooke’s life to make money off of her. Brooke’s dad was the same way, trying to sell the company Brooke had created as a way to connect with him after he was absent while she was growing up.
Nate’s parents Howard and Anne on Gossip Girl
Howard was so manipulative, constantly using his son as a pawn in his own business deals (that were only in jeopardy because of his behavior). Nate gave him so many chances to change, and every time he let him down. He always managed to talk his way out of things, but personally I never trusted him, even when he kind of redeemed himself in the end. Anne was just really cold and said multiple times that she cared about her social standing over her family. Nate deserved better!
Nate’s dad Cal on Euphoria
Where to start? Not only is Cal unfaithful and sleeps with teenagers, but he’s a terrible father to Nate. He controls Nate’s life down to his caloric intake and scrutinizes his every mistake, and he’s the reason Nate has warped views of sex, women, and masculinity. Nate is absolutely horrible, but I can see why with where he came from.
Marissa’s mom Julie on The O.C.
Julie was super materialistic and vain, and she was a terrible mom to Marissa. She has an affair with her daughter’s HIGH SCHOOL ex and overall gave Marissa an incredibly unstable home life.
Jughead’s mom Gladys on Riverdale
She’s not as bad as most of the other
Riverdale moms, but she still brought a drug ring to Riverdale and lied to her family about it. Not cool.
Harvey’s dad Mr. Kinkle on The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina
He’s physically and verbally abusive to his sons. There’s really not much more to say here.
Chris’s parents on Skins
When Chris was sick, his mom wouldn’t even visit him. And when he died, his father wouldn’t let his best friends attend his funeral, blaming them for who he’d become. I was SO MAD.
Isaac’s dad Coach Lahey on Teen Wolf
Another abusive father. He literally locked his son in a freezer for things like bad grades. I’m just going to say it: I was happy when he died.
Aria’s dad Byron on Pretty Little Liars
Byron cheated on Aria’s mom consistently with Meredith and made Aria promise not to tell. He also later dated Meredith, who was unstable and drugged Aria. To top it all off, he was super creepy and threatened Alison. I honestly thought he killed her for a while.
Matt’s mom Kelly on The Vampire Diaries
Melinda Clarke played yet another bad parent. She was super absent from Matt’s life, and when she did show up, she was unstable and selfish. She hooked up with her son’s best friend Tyler and constantly abandoned Matt when he needed her. She also worked with Katherine in the last season, when Katherine was basically the devil. 🙁
Tyler’s dad Richard on The Vampire Diaries
Tyler’s dad cared more about status than his family and was incredibly aggressive. He shamed Tyler for not winning a fight, then tried to get him to physically fight Jeremy. This was another parent I was glad to see go.
Allison’s mom Victoria on Teen Wolf
She tried to kill Scott, then when she was bit, she killed herself rather than turn into a werewolf, leaving Allison without a mom.
Malia’s biological parents Corinne and Peter on Teen Wolf
(Hello again, Marisol Nichols.) Corinne shot at Malia’s adoptive family’s car, causing them to crash and Malia’s werecoyote powers to be triggered, leading to her killing her adoptive family. She then tried to kill Malia multiple times to take back her power. Peter was actually not awful to Malia, but he was an awful person in general that killed many, such as Derek’s sister.
Justin’s mom Amber on 13 Reasons Why
Justin’s mom was a drug addict with a number of dangerous boyfriends who are implied to have abused and molested Justin. Then she kicked him out. I was so thankful the Jensens adopted him!
And finally, Ryan’s mom Dawn on The O.C.
Dawn was basically Amber Lite™️. She was an alcoholic with abusive boyfriends who fought Ryan, and then she kicked Ryan out and moved away before Ryan could come back. Even when she tried to come back into Ryan’s life, she was never really stable. Thank god for the Cohens.
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