improving Chinese family communications

July 24, 2007

The Gospel Herald had recently posted 2 recent articles about Rev. Peter Lam of Asian Family Today: Researcher Comments on Cultural-Clash in Chinese Families and Communication Must Improve in Chinese Families, Researcher Says. Here are 2 excerpts from the articles:

Communication between parents and children is difficult , especially for Asian American families, which are under the influences of two cultures, said the head of Asian Family Today.

Rev. Peter Lam, executive director of Asian Family Today gave a lecture on parental communication with second generational children, at the The Salvation Army’s San Francisco Chinatown center.

From years of experience, Rev. Lam said, the most important principle is the Bible, which is the truth of all truths.

Quoting the bible verses from 2 Timothy 4:2 “Preach the Word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage—with great patience and careful instruction”, Rev. Lam suggested that there are three principles “correct, rebuke, encourage” that parents must look at when communicating with children.

“Chinese parents tend to scold their children without telling them what they did wrong,” Rev. Lam said. “Nevertheless, more than correcting the mistakes with words, parents must live as a good example so that children can follow well.”

Rev. Lam emphasized that parents must learn to look into the children’s problem instead of only focusing on their behavior. Parents must teach children about ethics and values according to the scripture.

And, from Researcher Comments on Cultural-Clash in Chinese Families:

Rev. Peter Lam from Asian Families Today gave guidance to Chinese parents on how to talk to their second-generation children while dealing with the culture-clash that is prevalent in Chinese homes. …

First, he said, parents should always seek opportunities to teach.

When children misbehave, Chinese parents seldom have time away from their jobs to talk to their children about it immediately, Rev. Lam pointed out, while suggesting that parents to find a way to remind themselves what they need to teach to their children to not lose the opportunity.

Second, Rev. Lam reminded parents to have patience and to be careful in their attitude.

“Since most Chinese parents are too busy to discipline their children, they often lose [ their]tempers easily whenever children make mistakes,” Rev. Lam said.

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Find more like this: Chinese, culture, family, L2 Blog.

Link to this article:

[…] djchuang recently highlighted two articles from the gospel herald about Dr. Peter Lam (director of Asian Family Today and father of two second gen children) on improving the communication between Chinese parents and their ABC (or not) children. lam points out the obvious problems or methods employed (to those of us who are ABC) – rebuking, punishment, guilt – and he offers simple advice to parents – encouragement is key – and other biblical sounding counsel. […]

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