LWB Community Blog

The Intersection of East and West: Parental Expectations

Have you ever wondered what Chinese American families think of those of us who have adopted Chinese children? Are we strict enough in our parenting? Do we push our children towards excellence enough? Many people believe Asian-American parents hold higher educational expectations for their children than non-Asian parents.

Just this weekend, I had a discussion with one of my college sons about a boy from Taiwan that lives on his dorm floor. He is great friends with this boy, and they have both talked about their families. He was telling me how much pressure this boy feels to become a doctor due to parental expectations. This boy spent his high school years living away from his parents so that he could get into college in the US.  Education is first and foremost in his family.

Recently, I came across this blog and was so embarrassed by the behavior of the one adoptive parent. (Please note that there is a word in the body of this blog that some may consider offensive). The blogger’s disappointment with her fellow adoptive mom’s overreaction is an exaggeration of how I feel. Nonetheless, it made me wonder if many Chinese Americans feel we are not raising our children in a proper way. Occasionally, I am also embarrassed by association.

Have you received any feedback from a Chinese-American about your parenting style? Have you been embarrassed in front of Chinese-Americans because of incidents related to the parenting by adoptive families?

Karen Maunu is the Associate Executive Director for Love Without Boundaries. She lives in Minnesota and has five children, two of whom are from China.

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