Grounded for Life

Common Sense Media says

Married... With Children-lite; iffy for kids.





What parents need to know

Positive messages

The parents aren't much more mature than their teenage kids, offering questionable role models. But the underlying messages is that it's important to maintain family ties because you're always going to need your family to look after you.

Not applicable

The parents and even their eldest child make sexual jokes. The oldest teenage daughter has called her parents "horndogs" and has a sexual relationship with her boyfriend. Strippers and pornography have cropped up from time to time.


Mild: Words like "crap hole" are used.

Not applicable
Drinking, drugs, & smoking

Social drinking.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that while the kids' mother and father are loving and attentive, they often garner laughs with their sarcasm, immaturity, and tales of occasional carelessness. This might turn off adults who want their kids to be exposed to Married... With Children, this show isn't nearly as envelope-pushing as its predecessor, but it still might raise some eyebrows.

Parents say

Kids say

What's the story?

In GROUNDED FOR LIFE, a young, blue-collar couple struggles to raise their kids while discovering what it means to be good parents and spouses. Donal Logue (ER, The Tao of Steve) stars as Sean Finnerty, who married his wife Claudia (Megyn Price) after she got pregnant in high school. Since they skipped young adulthood and went straight to parenthood, they find they still have much to learn about being a good mom and dad to their three kids: Lily (Lynsey Bartilson), a typically self-absorbed teenager; Jimmy (Griffin Frazen), who, at 13, is discovering life as an adolescent; and Henry (Jake Burbage), the youngest, whose innocence balances out the rest of the family. At the center of the couple's issues is Sean's decision to quit his job as a subway worker so he can open a bar with his brother, Eddie (Kevin Fitzgerald Corrigan). On top of this, the couple has to guide and counsel their kids, who have questions about everything from dating and academics to their place in the family.

Is it any good?


Grounded for Life has a gruff exterior -- Sean is often pretty tough and sarcastic with the kids, and both parents take a "tough love" attitude when their brood act up. In one episode, for example, attention-getter Lily complains about how her mother, who has a new baby on the way, isn't cherishing her, and instead of tuning into Lily's needs, Claudia brushes them to the side. But underneath the Married... With Children vibe are some important lessons about loyalty, patience, and familial trust.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about selflessness. Why is it important to sometimes put what you want on hold in favor of the good of the group? When you're part of a family, why do you sometimes have to give up or do without in favor of something your siblings need? Have teens ever felt like their parents were acting immaturely? How did that make them feel? What did they do?

TV details

Cast:Donal Logue, Kevin Corrigan, Megyn Price
Network:ABC Family
TV rating:TV-14
Available on:DVD, Streaming

This review of Grounded for Life was written by

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About our rating system

  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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What parents and kids say

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Teen, 13 years old Written byThreeDaysGracesGirl October 28, 2010
The older episodes are better in my opinion. However when Jimmy starts to get older and gets into masturbation, that's funny.
Kid, 12 years old April 9, 2008
AGENot rated for age
Adult Written byChrisj8910 April 2, 2011

Perfect for older teenagers and adults

One of my favourite sitcoms. The show is full of sex references and innuendo, the language is moderate, there are alot of drug references and teen drinking, there is not alot of violence.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking


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