Currently, Lin Na, 25, gave birth to a baby girl last year. Six months later, she went back to work, leaving her parents to take care of her daughter. The white collar Chen Zhengjia, Lin’s husband, works for Beijing Telecom Company. Before their marriage, he used to do broadband installation. But now, he has already sensed the great change in his role in the family: “Suddenly, I became a husband and a father. In addition, I want to remain a loyal son to my parents. So I can no longer play around like a child anymore.”
Lin Na, 25, gave birth to a baby girl last year. Six months later, she went back to work, leaving her parents to take care of her daughter. The white collar
Chen Zhengjia, Lin’s husband, works for Beijing Telecom Company. Before their marriage, he used to do broadband installation. But now, he has already sensed the great change in his role in the family: “Suddenly, I became a husband and a father. In addition, I want to remain a loyal son to my parents. So I can no longer play around like a child anymore.”
What the couple has in common is that they were both born after 1978, the year
Even though she married early, Ms. Liu believes she made the right decision. She said: “Before my parents get too old, they can help us take care of our daughter. Otherwise, if we had a child a few years later, we may need to take care of her and our parents on both sides. It would be impossible for both of us.”
This is what “
The first generation of only children has reached adulthood and began starting their own families. However, apparently, they are not fully prepared for the change in their lives. They are psychologically immature, requiring their parents’ care, so many young couples do not feel ready to be parents.
As a broadband installation man, Chen Zhengjia, drives around the city everyday. From Monday to Thursday, they deliver their daughter to Chen’s parents’ house. On weekends, the couple sends her to Liu’s parents’ house. “If we could raise our daughter by ourselves, it would be fine. But now we need to make enough money for her future.”
“All for the sake of the child.” The “
Aging People, Big Issue for Only Child Generation
In fact, it is estimated that the percentage of people aged 60 or older in
Mr. Chen said jokingly, “It would be better if I had a brother or a sister.” Now, the couple works hard to save money not only to raise their daughter, but also take care of their parents.
This is not a special problem faced only by Chen and Liu. Indeed, the whole nation is facing the pressure of the aging population and the situation may worsen in the following years.
New Chinese Family, Changing the Family Structure
On the one hand, for most single children, their parents’ assistance in childcare is a good thing. On the other hand, there are some problems that cause them anxiety. Education worries them a lot.
Like Chen’s parents, they only known how to feed and bathe their daughter. Though there are music cassettes, they do not think it is necessary for their daughter to listen to them. So they forget to play them most of the time. This has made the couple worry a lot. Although some old people may have received good educations, there is a big differences in personal ideology and values between the two generations.
To solve the problem, Liu has thought of raising her daughter by themselves when she gets older. “For family gatherings or eating, we may go to my parents’ house. Other times, we need to be parents and take care of our child.”
The clash between the two generations on how to educate the child may be comparatively easy to solve or avoid. A clash on family life styles may be more serious and lead to disaster.
Xiao Xu, an accountant in
In this bizarre “
What is the main reason for this phenomenon? Xiao Xu says, “I think that many young people of our generation are quite similar. Our parents were born in the 1940s and 50s. They didn’t receive much education or social experience. So when we enter society, they cannot give us guidance. We have to do it ourselves.”
(Source: New Weekly Magazine Translated by Women of
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