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Asian Parental Love & Abuse: The Yin and Yang of Traditional Asian Parenting

Asian Shame, Uncategorized0 comments

Photo by Raychan on Unsplash

When Asian-American clients come into counseling, it’s quite typical during their early stages of therapy to have a very black and white way of thinking in terms of how they perceive “love” from their traditional Asian parents.  In other words, love and abuse to them are separate entities and can not coexist.  Later they discover these are not mutually exclusive and painfully come to the realization that their parents may have tried their best to “love” them but also were abusive, whether intentional or otherwise.

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Emotional Hostages: When your “Bus Stop Friends” only need you in crisis.

Counseling & Coaching, Uncategorized0 comments

Photo by Noah Buscher on Unsplash

Friendships are supposed to be two-way streets.  In other words, there should be a sense of mutuality and reciprocity but in some cases, it can become skewed where one party becomes dependent upon the other, and the other oftentimes unconsciously takes on the role of the burdened friend who feels they must be at the other’s beck and call.

In therapy, I often see this with clients who have a nurturing nature yet lack the ability to draw healthy boundaries with these friends who take them emotionally hostage.  

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Asian Shame & Blame: How cultural shame and blame are used to maintain honor even at the expense of appearing judgmental, self-righteous, or lacking empathy.

Asian Shame, Uncategorized1 comment

Photo by John T. on UnSplash

The traditional Asian worldview is one where shame and blame are commonplace. I was reminded of that recently when giving a personality questionnaire to measure an Asian client’s level of empathy and came across a question to the effect of, “If a friend was ripped off by a con artist, how would you respond?” The client answered in a very traditional way, “That person deserved it!” In American or Western psychological profiles, that would be deemed unsympathetic to another’s plight. But the cultural consideration that this is how the majority of Asians would answer got me thinking about how deep-seated a lack of empathy can be among some Asians.

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