How to Get Along with Your Asian Parents

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I found this hilarious piece by aspiring writer Lillian Wu on her Teen Writer’s Haven blog. Enjoy.

angry asian dad

By LillianW
If you are like the majority of Asians, your parents are the stereotypical tyrants. You don’t have the faintest clue as to how to live up to their skyscraper standards, and they don’t understand why you’re never trying. Here are some tips on getting along with your Asian parents, and maybe eventually you’ll even understand them.

1. Never Talk Back to Them
Asian parents are infamous for resorting to violence once provoked. When you strip them of their authority (especially in public), they retain respect by humiliating you in return. If you supplement your threats with incoherent cursing, you are asking for a fate worse than death. Even if your parents murder you, everyone will agree that you had it coming.

2. First Apologize, then Reason
It doesn’t matter whose fault it is. You’ll never hear the end of it if they think you haven’t learned. If it really is important enough, wait until time has passed before you bring it up again. Reason with them rationally, and avoid getting heated, or your parents will follow, and then they will win.

Warning: If they go for the whip or whatever weapon they use to teach you a lesson, run! Contrary to popular belief, being obedient at that moment won’t do you any good. When you infuriate Asian parents, they don’t take it well. They lose all reason and will become vicious, more so than they intended. You’ll most likely outrun them, and once they recover, they will have cooled. That’s when you apologize and bring them some tea.

3. Perform the Best of Your Abilities
To Asian parents, as long as you perform well academically, you don’t have to know anything else. They think Americans waste their time on extracurricular activities and would much rather their kids be hermits. To appease your strict parents, perform the best of your abilities. They will witness your efforts and help you discover your talents elsewhere. They will never settle for less.

4. Make Sure They Can Always Find You
Asian parents are very protective of their children and spend half their lives sheltering them. If you leave the house, be prepared to receive frantic calls wondering your whereabouts and who you’re with. Always pick up and reassure them that you are alive and well. Treat them as you would your boy/girlfriend. They have dangerously creative imaginations and will be suspicious if you don’t offer thorough details.

5. Do Not Let them Catch you lying
It is probably best to lie to your parents sometimes, especially when it concerns a failed test. Just be sure not to arouse their suspicions. You will never know privacy again with all their snooping. Just because your parents may not always be around, does not mean you’re free to be reckless. They have probably installed cameras all over the house, claiming it was for feng shui.

6. Give Them Something to Brag About
Asian parents have one hobby they all share: bragging about their children. Mothers are more frequently guilty of this and they love it. It becomes a competition between squabbling mothers eager to prove how her kid is the best. The highest honor goes to the 4.0 students with 2400’s who got into Harvard and M.I.T. and are having a hard time deciding. In Asia, they have never heard of any American school but Harvard and M.I.T. so it is a huge accomplishment. Parents devote their lives to getting their children in.

Be careful if you have absolutely nothing your mother can boast to her friends about. It will only frustrate her more when all the other mothers are describing their superhuman kids. Find a talent soon. Mediocrity does not sit well with Asian parents. Good luck!

a. hu notes – check out the “Date Sexy Asian Singles” and “Asian Dating and Singles Site. Find the Perfect Asian Woman Now! Asian Girls For Marriage ” ads that pop up for keywords in this article. Hardly works for the usual “please support our advertisers” line. Sigh.

About the Author

MIT electrical engineering computer science graduate has written conservative columns on politics, race / culture, science and education since the 70s in MIT The Tech and various publications in including New Republic and National Review.