Monday, July 03, 2006

Two Strange Articles from China

It seems the Chinese media has had a spike in interest in childfree issues lately, not unlike the French media's obsession of years past:

Childless husband mad at wife

A husband who is desperate to have a child asked to divorce his wife of eight years after she refused to have a baby.

Can DINK continue to be childless?

From China Daily. Have your anti-nausea medication ready. Does anyone know if this is government-written?

China's DINK class (Double Income No Kids) began more than twenty years ago. Just when people are beginning to acknowledge and accept the existence of DINK families, DINKs themselves began to regret their choices and one can observe the phenomenon of "post-35 childbearing" DINK women after passing 35 realizing that if they were to postpone having children they might never become mothers. Or they realize that without children in their midst, their flat marital life would drift towards isolated quietude and therefore they gave up their DINK lifestyle.

Chunmei, 43 years old, is professional manager with a son 2 years and six months old. She said she originally chose to be a DINK. When she accidentally became pregnant and was told that she might never conceive again if she chose to abort the fetus, she made the decision to have the child.

Wen Yu, 41 years old, is free-lance writer with a two-year old daughter. She said she chose DINK to begin with but realized her choice required much courage because many people could not understand her decision and were talking behind her back. After toughing it for eight years she could not hold on and also realized if she persisted she would never have a chance to choose to bring a new life to this world. She gave up and gave in.

The emergence in China of the phenomenon of a return of DINK family to tradition is caused by different psychological frame of mind induced by different age groups. Accelerated societal competition made it easy for people to feel hatred and anxiety, resulting in loss of psychological balance. Only a triangular family model can form stability, can build a platform to bear and neutralize these negative psychological feelings. A healthy, complete and happy family is man's heaven and woman's Eden.
It sounds like:

1 - The Chinese have as much trouble understanding the difference between postponing parenting and those who don't want children, not unlike Sylvia Hewlett. They do stem from similar social phenomena brought on by increasing ability and awareness on choosing to parent, but are two seperate things.

2- Chinese society is so resistent to the childfree lifestyle that people like Ms. Wen are simply bullied into parenting. I know it might be easy to judge them, but I have a feeling that most of us in the Western world cannot really understand what it is like to live there. Keep in mind, among other things, the Chinese government censors all media, including the internet. I think I just got this blog censored.

3- The propaganda wheel is in motion even in a country with a one child policy. Odd.

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