Why you should never trust a Hollywood Wife Guy.

Listen to this story being read by Melissa Mason, here.

You might have heard a fair bit of news today about a YouTube group called The Try Guys. Maybe you were across their comedy sketches before (they do have over 7 million followers), or maybe the name means nothing to you. All you really need to know is that a founding member, Ned Fulmer, has just admitted to cheating on his wife, Ariel.

To recap, fans of The Try Guys found screenshots that allegedly show Fulmer kissing and dancing with a producer who works for the YouTubers. 

Next, The Try Guys issued an Instagram statement announcing Fulmer was no longer part of the group, and Fulmer issued a statement admitting to an affair with a colleague, saying he had lost focus and was committed to his family going forward.

The reason this is so shocking is because Fulmer’s entire brand has been built on being a Good Husband. A Great Dad. A Family Man. The Fun But Committed Guy. 

He’s a classic Wife Guy, a term that started off as a weird, niche internet meme back in 2016 but has since been used to describe a man who religiously and (more importantly) publicly, worships his wife.


The Wife Guy seems like the kind of person who would never cheat on their partner, because they are constantly proving their adoration online. Every day, a Wife Guy will post a gushy, loved-up essay on Instagram about what an incredible mother/businesswoman/partner their wife is. They’ll do TikTok dances with their spouse and/or children, lip-sync viral sounds, and score hundreds of comments praising them for being a catch. They are husband goals.

For Fulmer, being a Wife Guy led to some pretty lucrative business opportunities. He released a recipe book called Date Night Cookbook, with a marketing rollout that heavily features Fulmer and his wife, as well as a series of TikTok "date night outfit" videos. 


The Fulmer family has over 300,000 followers on their personal YouTube channel, which covers everything from gender reveal parties to hidden camera pregnancy announcements. Basically, the guy has turned being a great husband and father into a business – and now that’s all about to crumble.

But he's not the only Wife Guy making headlines this month for cheating. 

Adam Levine, lead singer of Maroon 5 and husband of ex-Victoria’s Secret model Behati Prinsloo, was swamped with cheating allegations on TikTok last week. Another Wife Guy, Levine was known for worshipping Prinsloo online – regularly sharing photos of her with captions like, "The GOAT" and, "The Queen turns 30 today. She’s a legend. She’s THE baddest." 

There are, of course, Wife Guys who aren’t being accused of cheating right now. As my co-host of The Spill Chelsea McLaughlin pointed out today, Ryan Reynolds is a Wife Guy. John Legend. John Krasinski. We love these Wife Guys, because they seem like triple threats. Good guys, good husbands, good dads. Maybe they are. But the scandals that have erupted with Levine and Fulmer just prove that what we see is not always what we get.

Men have weaponised doing the bare minimum in a relationship to build their brand. And my god, does it work. 

Fulmer, for example, posts a lot of videos doing "dad stuff". One that particularly irked me was of him chatting about the 3am buzz he has after getting up to soothe his son back to sleep. Maybe it’s the fact I now know his perfect-partner persona was an illusion, but the video reeks of smugness. 


Are we meant to be impressed that a husband and father is doing the 3am wake up? Yes, we are. We’ve given Fulmer 1.2 million followers for it. We’ve given him a New York Times bestselling book. Sure, some of that success is due to The Try Guys, but his personal ventures are all intrinsically linked to this persona he’s created.

It’s the core of the Wife Guy brand – they’re smashing patriarchal roles (wife doting on husband, mother tending to children) and positioning themselves at the forefront of feminism. 

Except... they’re documenting it, and in doing so, and in the way they do it, they’re not only patting themselves on the back for sharing a load that should always have been shared, for supporting and loving people they should always support and love – they’re seeking praise from others for it. 

Remember Curvy Wife Guy? Robbie Tripp’s ode to his wife went viral as people praised Tripp for celebrating his wife’s curves. But things took a turn when critics began to point out that Tripp’s post was akin to putting himself on a pedestal for daring to love a woman with curves. He’s made an entire business out of praising plus-size women. He's even released a rap song called 'Big Girl Banger'.

These men might be 'revolutionary' in a sea of outright misogynists, but the fact they’re courting internet fame for doing the bare minimum actually just turns the focus onto them – not the women they’re supposedly celebrating. The women they marry are so lucky. How fortunate they are to score a man who will do 3am feeds and praise their bigger body. Who puts them on a pedestal and worships them.


It’s the opposite of feminism, whether that’s their intention or not.

I’m sure these men aren’t straight-up demons. I’m sure they love their partners and they might be incredible and supportive, too. However, we can be sure of one thing – what we see from Wife Guys is not what is actually going on behind-the-scenes at all times. Both Levine and Fulmer’s love-fests for their wives never stopped, but somewhere along the way they started to engage in flirtations and alleged affairs with other women. Making whatever they were putting out on social media during that period, bulls**t. 

Now, I’m skeptical about all the Wife Guys online. 

What’s real? What’s fake? We honestly will never really know, and I don’t really need to, to be honest. 

I’d just like these scandals to end the trend of making men famous for doing the bare minimum.

Read more on this topic: 

Melissa Mason is a freelance writer. You can find her on Instagram and Twitter.

Image: Getty, Instagram and Mamamia. 

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