Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Tiger Mom

There's been so much buzz about this Wall Street Journal article by Amy Chu.  I feel that I have to put in my two cents.  Personally, I got a good laugh when I read it.  Having been raised by Chinese tiger parents, I know that I have a very relaxed parenting style.  None of my kids played piano (though the youngest just started playing violin through the school), they were allowed playdates and sleepovers, and (gasp) all three girls took ballet lessons.  In fact, E is attending an arts boarding school where ballet is her "major".  She is actually auditioning to study dance at college next year.  My oldest daughter, A,  is studying Art at a private liberal arts college (double gasp!).  My son, J, plays computer games constantly, and youngest child, M, swims on a swim team.  I guess I'm not a Chinese mom, according to Amy Chua.

I don't think we need to go to the extremes that Ms. Chua is going through to raise successful children.  Though I guess success can mean different things.  My children are well-adjusted and happy.  They don't get straight A's, but A's show up more than any other letter in their report card.  Unlike me, they actually like spending time with their parents and look forward to coming home during their school breaks.  I know I'm much more permissive compared to immigrant chinese parents, but I'm also much stricter than my non-Asian friends.

In the end, I'm just surprised.  Out of all my siblings, cousins, and American-born Asian friends, none of us are as strict as Amy Chua. But then again, none of us are trying to sell a book...

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