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Parenthood – Controversy Over Amy Chua's Book- Tiger Mom

Updated on April 6, 2018
Pamela99 profile image

I'm interested in social issues, good relationships, problems of daily living, jobs and advances for safer living conditions for many years.

Amy Chua's book – Battle Him of the Tiger Mother

Amy Chua, a law professor at Yale University, who wrote a book called "Battle Him of the Tiger Mother", which she claims are her memoirs from raising her children.

She believes that Chinese women make the best mothers because they brutalized their children with tough love. Amy Chua states she doesn't think raising children this way is about achievement but helping them be the best they can be.

Public Reaction to her Book

When an excerpt from her book ran before the books release under the headline" Why Chinese Mothers Are Superior" and in the Wall Street Journal, to more than 5000 online comments – most of them angry – and Chua almost immediately began receiving death threats.

The greatest criticism came not from Western mothers who Chua characterized as self–esteem stamps and disciplinary pushovers, but from the Asian–American matriarchy. Their outrage spilled into the Facebook and across mommy blogs nationwide.

Amy Chua's Jewish Husband

Her husband is Jewish and is also a successful a successful law professor at Yale University and was not raised at all like Amy. Overall, he agrees with Amy but he does feel she's too harsh in some areas. He likes to hike, enjoys football and other activities, so the family does get out together to have some fun.

Amy Chua's Parenting Beliefs

She believes that strict, uncompromising values in discipline used by some Chinese parents is what makes their children successful. Amy Chua based her book on her own personal experience as a parent. She thinks practicing an instrument for four hours a day is what it takes to be exceptional. She called her daughter's lazy and garbage when they weren't doing well with their piano practice; she also threatened to burn their toys and they had no play dates.

Her rules for her two girls include: no sleepovers, no play dates, no grade lower than A on report cards, no choosing your own extracurricular activities, no ranking lower than No. 1 in any subject with the only exception being gym or drama. Do you think the girl's success has made them happy and given them happy childhood memories?

"Tiger Mother" Parenting Debate

More of Amy Chua's Views

The book review raised many questions and anger across United States as many consider her methods abusive. Also, it is thought the book reinforces the Chinese mother stereotype, which isn't true for all Chinese parents. Many Asian Mothers that live in America fear that their children may become spoiled, obese and they won't excel to their capability.

Amy Chua stated, “She resented her parents when she was little because she felt like they were being strict and that they had high expectations of her which were coupled with love, always love. That's what allowed me as an adult to have these choices".

She made the point that if you look at Western parenting 100 or 60 years ago, people did chores and they were proud of building things. I believe that is even true 40 years ago as I was raised to do chores, our family worked together for the benefit of each other and I had a job by the time I was 15. However, I was not called ugly names when I make mistakes or didn't quite measure up. My parents had expectation of me but they were not so unreachable. I never doubted their love.

The Myth behind China's Tiger Mothers from China

Family Fun

10 Tips for Raising Children of Character

Let's look at the American view of raising children of character.

At Boston University School of Education, Dr. Kevin Ryan, has published 10 tips for raising children of character. Children of character demand time and attention and while children may be doing what comes naturally being a good parent is much more complicated.

Family Dinner

source Commons Wikimedia
source Commons Wikimedia

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Parenting Tips and Styles

  • “Put parenting first:” With all the demands in our daily lives this isn't always easy but to be a good parent you must consciously plan and devote time to parenting making development of their children's character their top priority.
  • "Review how you spend the hours and days of your week thinking about the amount of time your children spend with you” and please and how you can include your children and your social life and become involved in their life as well.
  • Set a good example. Children learn primarily by modeling the behavior of their parents when you're young, whether it's good or bad. This is probably your most important job.
  • Develop a watchful year and eye so you will know what your children are absorbing. Children are like sponges and much of what they learn with regards to moral values and character is found in the books they read, songs they sing, from the TV, the Internet and films which can easily be moral or immoral. Parents must control how much time children spend watching TV and on the Internet so they are influenced in the wrong direction.
  • Speak the language of character. Children will develop a moral compass unless the people around them use clear, sharp language of right and wrong.
  • If you must punish them do so with a loving heart. Punishment today has a bad reputation and the results are guilt-ridden parents and self–indulgent, out-of-control children. Children need boundaries as it makes them feel safe. When they ignore these boundaries, reasonable punishment is one of the ways they learn. Children must be told exactly what the punishment is for and its source is parental love.
  • It is so important to listen to your children. When we get busy sometimes we just easily tune them out and it's one of the greatest disservices of being a parent. Set aside a time routinely to listen to what they have to say. Their opinions are important.
  • Since school is the major part of your children's lives is important to get very involved in their activities. They have triumphs and disappointments just as adults do. Learning to deal with them will influence the course of their lives. When you help your children become good students it helps them acquire strong character. Show up at their games, concerts and any other events that are important for your child.
  • Make the family meal the most important time of the day. This is a time when everyone is together communicating, with the TV turned off which allows you strengthen that bond with your children. This is also a time where children are taught manners at the dinner table and an excellent time to pass on our values. The family meal is a dying trend in America as so many families eat at different times or eat in front of the TV, so there is no communication happening during the dinner hour.
  • Do not reduce character education to empty words because they gain virtue through practice. Parents need to help their children by promoting moral action through self-discipline, good work habits, kind and considerate behavior to others in community service. The bottom line and character development is behavior– their behavior.

In Conclusion

As a parent I always wanted my children to succeed well in school, in any sport of their choosing, to develop good moral character, and to be kind. Developing habits of honesty and generosity are something you teach them through the years as our children grow.

Raising children is a huge responsibility. I believe discipline for children should be relevant to the mistake or poor choice they made. So, one mode of discipline doesn't fit for each problem that comes up. I do not believe in name-calling; as a child may make a stupid mistake but that does not mean the child is stupid. And, it is most important that your child understand punishment is merited out by love, and they need to be assured that you have their best interest at heart. 

Obviously many people have different opinions as to the best way to raise their children. It seems many children are not getting the foundation that they need at home to be able succeed in life.

Parenting Your Children

How do you discipline your children?

See results

The copyright, renewed in 2018, for this article is owned by Pamela Oglesby. Permission to republish this article in print or online must be granted by the author in writing.

© 2011 Pamela Oglesby


Submit a Comment

  • Pamela99 profile image

    Pamela Oglesby 6 years ago from United States

    Andre, Good luck with your new web site.

  • profile image

    André M. Smith 6 years ago

    Dear Miss 99:

    My pen runneth over! What you have suggested likely will develop on my forthcoming web site, which will be devoted to music history, poetry, book reviews, and other features I believe will interest musicians.

    Meanwhile, I'll need to continute to bless you with my creations.


    André M. Smith

  • Pamela99 profile image

    Pamela Oglesby 6 years ago from United States

    Andre Smith, You have written extremely long comments to this hub and I would suggest that you write an article yourself. I am not going to address all your points this time, but I think you should consider writing an article as you make many good points.

  • profile image

    Andre M. Smith 6 years ago

    Some words penned in response to the thoughts of a student writing elsewhere . . .

    I would not normally lock horns and try to best a junior in high school; I’m hoping you do not read my words here as such, for they are meant for you only as a provocation to further thought to your ideas well-presented.

    You’ve written that you “used to get frustrated when I had to practice violin and I really didn’t want to . . .” Do I read correctly that you no longer “get frustrated?” If so, that’s a remarkable advancement. As a musician myself I want to ask you, Why do you practice violin and not another instrument of your choosing less frustrating, for examples, flute, harpsichord, tuba, or tabla. There is a vast – and I do mean vast! – repertoire for each of those, and many other, instruments that could challenge you unendingly for the remainder of your life. Instead of spending hours at your chosen instrument (whichever it may be) in the drudgery of isolated practice, why not spend more of your time in practice with music ensembles of various kinds. This can yield a discipline and advancement of a uniquely different kind. If you are studying formally with a violin teacher I’m quite sure he will confirm the well-founded idea that, as a performer, playing an instrument is one kind of challenge but playing an instrument WITH PEOPLE is significantly more so. A musician in isolation is a musician limited. And herein lays one, only one, of the transparent contradictions of the way Professor Chua has taught her two daughters to approach their instruments; opportunistically solely for unartistic purposes.

    A fundamental flaw in the approach to music of Amy Chua – an amusical hack with no known talent for an art of any kind! – is that she has decided it’s perfectly acceptable to pervert one of the greater of the fine arts for use in ulterior purposes. In the example of the Chua family, so-so slogging through masterpieces of music was used to impress others when applying for admission to university. (Would Professor Chua dare to advocate this openly with religion, physics, good grammar, or issues of national interest?) The whole idea that her elder daughter, Sophia, played a debut recital in Carnegie Hall is an early example of the pervasive blight of résumé bloat on which social climbers like Amy Chua have advanced themselves; a blight to which the Chua daughters were introduced early by two parents who know well how to tweak the system to gain unearned personal advantage.

    Carnegie Hall,, includes three auditoria in its building: Stern Auditorium Zankel Hall and Weill Recital Hall It was in Weill that Sophia performed as only one among a cattle-call string of young pianists that day. Do you doubt what I write here? Compare the architectural design, behind Sophia with that of the architectural design at the rear of the stage in Having been a performer, myself, in both Stern and Weill over many years you have my assurance that Sophia performed her piece in Weill. Debut recital in Carnegie Hall! Indeed!

    You have written about your parents that they are “less extreme than Chua I’ll admit, but a lot of her memoir is satire and exaggeration.” Don’t be deceived by quick-change artist Professor Chua. She has spent more than one year trying to convince readers of her text that she is some kind of nouveau belles-lettrist who did no more than exercise a writer’s license to engage her readers. In truth she meant what she wrote until her hypocritical posturing as an authentic Chinese mother — born in Illinois to a Filipino father, neither speaks Chinese nor writes Chinese script — came back to haunt her with a ferocity that caused this self-styled Tiger Mother to recoil into improvised doublespeak. Amy Chua is a complete fake!

    All young musicians should be given only two music instrument choices to pursue in life, Violin or Piano. All else is useless waste. Any adult giving such advice is one woefully ill-informed. As a bass trombonist, my instrument has been my first class ticket from person-to-person, school-to-school, city-to-city, studio-to-studio, and stage-to-stage. With the kinds of preparations the Chua daughters were given will they ever perform, as I have, with Richard Tucker, Birgit Nilsson, Roberta Peters, Herbert von Karajan, Leopold Stokowski, and the two-thirds of The New York Philharmonic who were my schoolmates for five years in Juilliard? Forget it!

    Mercifully, I was never besieged with a Tiger Mother or Tiger Anything to motivate me. Yes, I too sometimes was bored with scales and chords. Yes, sometimes my imagined future seemed an unattainable fantasy. Yes, I did sometimes fall flat on my face in public performance (as did my teachers before me and also their teachers before them). Life went on and continues to do so.

    You’ve written that “At this point (as a Junior in high school) about 35% of the pressure to do well comes from my parents and the other 65% is complete self-motivation.” From the subtlety of your writing I suspect you’re cutting yourself short with that 65%. You appear to be much more highly motivated than your objective perspective about yourself can show you at this early time.

    The violin? I advise you to seriously reëvaluate what you believe is your relationship to any instrument of your choice; if, indeed, the violin has been your choice and not that of someone else. If the violin has been your choice, stay with it through all the coming stormy weather of doubt and seeming incompetence. If it is not, drop it in preference to another more to your liking and its fitness for your physicality. (If it’s the tuba, tell your parents that someone other than I recommended it!)

    Good Luck!


    André M. Smith, Bach Mus, Mas Sci (Juilliard)

    Diploma (Lenox Hill Hospital School of Respiratory Therapy)

    Postgraduate studies in Human and Comparative Anatomy (Columbia University)

    Formerly Bass Trombonist

    The Metropolitan Opera Orchestra of New York,

    Leopold Stokowski’s American Symphony Orchestra (Carnegie Hall),

    The Juilliard Orchestra, Aspen Festival Orchestra, etc.

  • profile image

    Andre M. Smith 6 years ago

    Further on Chua as a Chinese surname . . .

    My wife, a gyn surgeon, hails from a family of intellectuals and professionals in Shanghai. She has four sisters and three brothers. Among those eight are six of their children between the ages of twenty-one and thirty-six. Chua as a Chinese surname is unknown to them all.

    Bilingual speakers at the consulates in New York for Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia all have told me the word chùa – with a grave – (= temple) is Vietnamese. A trilingual speaker at the City Campus Mahayana Temple at 133 Canal St in Manhattan has told me that the word chùa is common in Buddhist use but is not Chinese. In the illustration of the attachment hereto, the word for “temple” emblazoned is transliterated into pinyin as si or shu. But, again, I have it on the authority of my Chinese family that “chua” – at least as it’s pronounced in the nations subjoined to China and in English – is definitely not a Chinese word or name.

    Perhaps Chinese speakers of languages other than Wu or Mandarin, from elsewhere on the Mainland, may have an informed knowledge on this point of nomenclature countering what I’ve sent to you here.

    The faces of both father Leon Chua and daughter Amy Chua are textured similarly to reflect a family origin, at least within the previous handful of Chua generations as likely more south than Mainland China; although within fluid populations, this is speculative. Honestly, though, that part of the world is such a mixed bag of all its ingredients that . . .


    André M. Smith, Bach Mus, Mas Sci (Juilliard)

    Diploma (Lenox Hill Hospital School of Respiratory Therapy)

    Postgraduate studies in Human and Comparative Anatomy (Columbia University)

    Formerly Bass Trombonist

    The Metropolitan Opera Orchestra of New York,

    Leopold Stokowski’s American Symphony Orchestra (Carnegie Hall),

    The Juilliard Orchestra, Aspen Festival Orchestra, etc.

  • Pamela99 profile image

    Pamela Oglesby 6 years ago from United States

    Andre Smith, I will approve this comment so you can vent your frustration.

  • profile image

    Andre M. Smith 6 years ago

    Why is the art of music required to endure the ill-informed antics of such inartistic imbeciles as Amy Chua? Her lust for fame as an old-fashioned stage mother of either a famous violinist (yet another mechanical Sarah Chang?) or a famous pianist (yet another mechanical Lang Lang?) shines through what she perceives as devotion to the cultivation of the cultural sensitivities of her two unfortunate daughters.

    Daughter Lulu at age 7 is unable to play compound rhythms from Jacques Ibert with both hands coordinated? Leonard Bernstein couldn’t conduct this at age 50! And he isn’t the only musician of achievement with this-or-that shortcoming. We all have our closets with doors that are not always fully opened.

    And why all this Chinese obsession unthinkingly dumped on violin and piano? What do the parents with such insistence know of violin and piano repertoire? Further, what do they know of the great body of literature for flute? For French horn? For organ? For trumpet? Usually, nothing!

    For pressure-driven (not professionally-driven!) parents like Amy Chua their children, with few exceptions, will remain little more than mechanical sidebars to the core of classical music as it’s practiced by musicians with a humanistic foundation.

    Professor Chua better be socking away a hefty psychoreserve fund in preparation for the care and feeding of her two little lambs once it becomes clear to them both just how empty and ill-defined with pseudo-thorough grounding their emphasis has been on so-called achievement.

    Read more about this widespread, continuing problem in Forbidden Childhood (N.Y., 1957) by Ruth Slenczynska.


    André M. Smith, Bach Mus, Mas Sci (Juilliard)

    Diploma (Lenox Hill Hospital School of Respiratory Therapy)

    Postgraduate studies in Human and Comparative Anatomy (Columbia University)

    Formerly Bass Trombonist

    The Metropolitan Opera Orchestra of New York,

    Leopold Stokowski’s American Symphony Orchestra (Carnegie Hall),

    The Juilliard Orchestra, Aspen Festival Orchestra, etc.

  • Pamela99 profile image

    Pamela Oglesby 6 years ago from United States

    Andre, You have made several interesting points in your comment but I think you should have written your own hub on this topic as this is certainly too long for a comment. I do appreciate your effort.

  • profile image

    Andre M. Smith 6 years ago

    Russians call me German, Germans call me Russian, Jews call me a Christian, Christians a Jew. Pianists call me a composer, composers call me a pianist. The classicists think me a futurist, and the futurists call me a reactionary. My conclusion is that I am neither fish nor fowl – a pitiful individual.

    Anton Rubinstein (1829-94), composer, formidable Russian concert pianist, founder of The Saint Petersburg Conservatory (1862).


    WHO or WHAT is AMY CHUA?

    Her father, Leon L. Chua, was born in The Philippines. He was graduated in 1959 from Mapúa Institute of Technology in Manila as a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering. His Master of Science followed from MIT in 1961. Amy was born in Champaign, Illinois on 26 October 1962 while Leon was pursuing his studies for a Ph.D. (1964) at The University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign. And it’s here in this synoptic review that her troubles begin with her shield in a contrived public relations makeover comastered by her publisher, Penguin. She states that she is Chinese. But her surname has not been identified anywhere as Chinese.


    Is the author fully ethnically Chinese? I am wondering because while I certainly have not met every Chinese person who has lived, I have known a fair number of Chinese yet have not met a single Chinese person with the author’s surname. I read somewhere that the author’s surname is a translation of a Chinese surname, Tsai, with which I am familiar. How many generations back in her direct family line, i.e. her parents or her parents’ parents, did her family come from China? I have not previously encountered a person who talks & writes so much about being Chinese & talks on behalf of the vast population of mothers born in China yet her surname & how I have heard it pronounced is very different from that with which I am familiar. While I wish to improve to better fluency in Mandarin, I have spoken enough Mandarin with native speakers to notice I have not heard Mandarin Chinese words pronounced with the same pronunciation as I hear her name pronounced. I truly am curious about what I have read briefly about a historical migration of immigrants, including the author’s ancestors, who immigrated to the Philippines, speak a language seemingly common among those immigrants & bear names that are translations from Mandarin Chinese into such language. It is an interesting occurrence I am curious to know more about.

    Cheap Social Worker said…

    When reading excerpts from Amy Chua’s latest book, I noticed that she left out any reference to her Filipino background. Looking at Chua’s biography, her parents spent a considerable amount of time doing business in the Philippines, with her father even going to school there. Chua also spent a good portion of her childhood going back and forth between the United States and the Philippines, though I wonder if she ever went outside the walls of her gated community to interact with the main population. Given that Filipino values on education are very similar to these “Chinese” values Amy Chua promotes, why does “Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother” ignore her Filipino heritage completely?

    As a Harvard undergraduate during the years that the author was there, I do not recall the author attending any of the many meetings or social occasions held by the Asian students on campus. Although the book discusses the author’s “Chinese” upbringing, and refers to the Chinese food that she loved as a child and the “high culture” of her Chinese ancestors, there is little in the book to indicate that the author is, or considers herself to be, part of a larger community or network of Asians or Chinese in America, an affiliation that’s critical if the author’s voice is to be heard as at all representative of that community.

    It’s not uncommon to hear alcoholics claim that it’s because they’re Irish or to hear that a bad temper is a result of bad genes. Chua is no different, and is justifying her abusive behavior based on the fact that she is Chinese. The reality is that Chua’s style is not a product of her Chinese heritage. Chua has never lived in China; her parents have not either.


    It isn’t at all clear to me when and where Chinese culture came into the heritage of Amy Chua, if indeed it ever has, for the surname Chùa is, in fact, Vietnamese. It means "temple" and is commonly found in Buddhist and other religious contexts, e.g., (1) Chùa Pháp Hoa – Nam Úc, (2) Chùa Ph?t Tích [Temple of Saint Paul], (3) L? Khánh Thành D?i Hùng B?o Di?n Chùa Quang Minh, ph?n 1, and (4) t?i Chùa Ho?ng Pháp, H?c Môn, Sài Gòn.

    Professor Chua is a graduate of El Cerrito High School in California. She claims a superiority of a Chinese culture she has never lived in but is married to a white American Jew. Attempting yet another of her unpersuasive slow-change / quick-change acts she has claimed to have inculcated so-called, but unspecified, Chinese values into her two American daughters. She clearly believes that unrelenting emotional pressure on children and simultaneous denial of affection toward them will improve their physical skills. What implausible culture that has lasted more than seventy-two consecutive hours has advocated such a bizarre relationship between parent and child? She states that she has denied her two daughters the experiences of having performed in school plays. But their father had to have had enough stage experience prior to having been admitted at age 21 into the Drama Department (1980-1982) of The Juilliard School in Manhattan to justify that admission.


    “all you need to be able to do [to get into Juilliard] is just be badass at one instrument and read music.”

    * * *

    I think that is an extremely simplistic way to look at it. There are children who are groomed for Juilliard from grade school onwards. Children who start playing at 3 or 4 and by the age of 10 are already practicing 6+ hours a day. It takes incredible long-term discipline to be “badass” at one instrument.

    Juilliard grants a 10 minute audition. By the time you walk in, greet the jury, tune up, they get their papers ready to go, glance at your accompanist, you have 7 minutes to convince them that you are at the top of the top and that you have a viable career in performance ahead of you.

    Harvard is, in some senses, more forgiving because you have so many more ways to prove yourself. You can show you are smart through grades, you can show that you earned academic honors, you can show character through recommendation…all Juilliard gives you is 7 minutes to blow them away.


    Professor Chua has stepped as an authority into several worlds in which she has no known experience and attempted to convince readers deeply concerned with the subjects she has written about that her word is the best word, founded as she believes on substantial personal experience. She moves in step with a long and continuing line of crackpot self-styled such authorities to lay claim to a success citing her ill-chosen and unexamined demographic whopping sampling of two, one of whom has effectively rejected her horrific emotional, social, and artistic models in favor of a pursuit of a life as a real person.

    Does anyone now remember the scam of Linus Pauling (1901-94), author of “Vitamin C and the Common Cold”? In 1970 Dr Pauling, a hust

  • Pamela99 profile image

    Pamela Oglesby 6 years ago from United States

    rachelsholiday, That is so true. Thank you for your comments.

  • rachelsholiday profile image

    rachelsholiday 6 years ago

    I definitely agree with HennieN. I believe that if you give your children good principles in the beginning, the person will be successful. Leading by example is the best way to teach anybody.

  • Pamela99 profile image

    Pamela Oglesby 6 years ago from United States

    Thanks for your comment.

  • profile image

    Anonymous 6 years ago

    The author, and most people who replied are complete nongs!!! Anyone who agrees with this load of bs book, needs mental treatment, and sedetives asap. I read the book, al its good for is toilet paper. Parent of three.

  • Pamela99 profile image

    Pamela Oglesby 7 years ago from United States

    HennieN, I think coaching our kids is the right path and I appreciate your comments.

  • HennieN profile image

    HennieN 7 years ago from South Africa

    I believe this could also just be a terminology issue.(my definition of stricct vs somebody else's definition) As long as we "coach" our kids, as opposed to "controlling", we are on the right track. Kids learn by seeing.

  • Pamela99 profile image

    Pamela Oglesby 7 years ago from United States

    marcoujor, Thank you so much for your comments and yes I learned well from my mother. Happy Mother's day to you also.

  • marcoujor profile image

    Maria Jordan 7 years ago from Jeffersonville PA


    I am glad I happened upon this later because the comments raised have been fascinating! This article is interesting and well written.

    I must say Mom and you have identical parenting philosophies, and I believe you hit every successful step in this labor of love that lasts a lifetime.

    Happy Mother's Day! Voted UP, USEFUL & AWESOME!

  • Pamela99 profile image

    Pamela Oglesby 7 years ago from United States

    Sun-Girl, I agree with you fully. You can use time-outs and many other methods to train your children. Thanks for your comments.

  • Sun-Girl profile image

    Sun-Girl 7 years ago from Nigeria

    Very informative hub you actually shared in here but i practically don't believe with the concept of hitting a child, a little spanking will do .All the same, you did a great work here,thanks.

  • Pamela99 profile image

    Pamela Oglesby 7 years ago from United States

    DjBryle, It sounds to me like you are a great mother. I appreciate your sharing my hub with other sites and also I appreciate your comments. God bless you also.

  • DjBryle profile image

    DjBryle 7 years ago from Somewhere in the LINES of your MIND, and HOPEFULLY at the RIPPLES of your HEART. =)

    I have bookmarked this beautiful and useful hub. As a parent I like my child to be successful one day, but I want him to have a happy childhood too. I believe that it is better to have good, happy kids who do good and great things not because they are afraid of their parents but because they love their mom and dad. I don't like my son to do the things I wish him to do out of his fear of me... lol! And I want to encourage him o do the things that he loves to do as long as he does not ruin his life and future. I love this hub, and I am going to share it not only at HP but also at my account at FB and Twitter too! Thanks for sharing, Pam! God bless!

  • Pamela99 profile image

    Pamela Oglesby 7 years ago from United States

    Bethany, I have to agree with you what I think she's a bit stern I do believe that sometimes we have to be for children to achieve their potential. My biggest problem with what she had to say was all the name-calling as I just don't think that's necessary. I have to look at your hub as I'm interested in what you wrote. Thank you so much for your comment.

  • profile image

    Bethany Culpepper 7 years ago

    Pamela, Thank you for all your insights! I just wrote about the same topic, but from a different perspective. It's nice to hear from someone who's "been there, done that." Chua brings up so many issues, the discussion topics are endless. While I'm not about to strap the kids to the piano bench, I think there's a lot to learn from her book.

  • Pamela99 profile image

    Pamela Oglesby 7 years ago from United States

    Tpsicotte, I very much agree with your comment especially two points you made. I think loving intentions are essential to good outcome for your children. Secondly, I think you might be right about Ms. Chua's husband providing the balance which I had not considered before. It sounds like you have a lot of experience working with children on both sides of the fence as your comment makes a lot of sense to me. Thanks so much for sharing so much information.

    Tony, I haven't read the book so you may learn more than I was able to tell you in this hub. I read several reviews and I also heard her talk on TV. I don't think she's all wrong but as I think many parents are too lenient and children need guidelines and boundaries. The main thing I didn't agree with was the way she called them awful names if they didn't measure up to her standards. I believe there is more effective ways to deal with children. Thanks so much for stopping by and leaving your comment.

  • tony0724 profile image

    tony0724 7 years ago from san diego calif

    I am going to have to read this book and see what the fuss is about.

  • TPSicotte profile image

    TPSicotte 7 years ago from The Great White North

    The parenting style controversy has been going on for a while. It is possible for parents to be strict and raise healthy children if their kids know they have loving intentions, they aren't abusive in terms of calling names or hitting, and they reinforce when they are happy with their kids achievements. But strict authoritarian parents usually don't have a good relationship with their kids and if they lose the ability to control them they can really get off the rails. I worked with a few kids from strict homes (some Chinese, some Eastern European, and some North American) and many of these kids were rebellious runaways who were trying to escape their parents extreme regimen.

    However, I also worked with a lot of children from permissive and indulgent homes and in my experience these were the most difficult kids to work with. The strict parents usually managed to instill some values and discipline in their kids but they didn't have enough balance (sounds like Ms. Chua's husband provides that). The permissive and indulgent families rarely instilled much of anything other than egocentrism and the tolerance of low impulse control, low frustration tolerance, and low expectations.

    So I guess the balanced and firm approach with high expectations (the approach associated with authoritative parenting) is still the best model. Setting clear boundaries, being consistent, and using appropriate consequences, time outs, and positive reinforcement seems to work best.

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    Pamela Oglesby 7 years ago from United States

    KimGrkker, I very much appreciate your comments.

  • KimGrkker profile image

    KimGrkker 7 years ago

    Thank-you for this hub. It speaks to us parents thatare growing and learning with our children. Every child is different in need, so we have to be loving, and listen to your heart. I wish Amy the best with her family. She exposed her own insecurities in her book and press conferences.

  • Pamela99 profile image

    Pamela Oglesby 7 years ago from United States

    Lisa, That's quite a story! I agree about passing on the culture of other countries and I appreciate your sharing your comments.

    gmwilliams, I think being strict and having good boundaries are okay when done with love like the 2nd video portrayed. I consider vicious name calling to be verbally abusive and degrades the self esteem of the child. I do agree that many American parents are not doing a good job with their children as you look at drug use, behaviors in school, etc. Thanks for expressing your views.

  • gmwilliams profile image

    Grace Marguerite Williams 7 years ago from the Greatest City In The World-New York City, New York

    Pamela99, I believe that strict and loving parents are the best. I concur with most of the principles of Tiger Mom. I believe that the way Asian and Asian-American parents raise their children are why they are more academically and socioeconomically successful than their Caucasian, Black, and Hispanic counterparts.

    The Asian and the Asian American culture place a high emphasis on intellectual, educational, and academic attainment. Asian and Asian American parents stress little emphasis on being popular and socialization as these things will not put get one into a good college and make one have a good job.

    Non-Asian American groups it seems place more emphasis on being their children being popular in school, having the latest fads, and socialization than being good in school. This is inverse logic and ludricous.

    I applaud a centillion times Tiger Mom. More parents should be that strict!

  • Lisa HW profile image

    Lisa HW 7 years ago from Massachusetts

    When my kids were little we lived in a nice neighborhood, with a nice, young, Chinese couple across the street. They brought the wive's elderly parents to the US to live with them. The elderly father would take a walk each day by my house and back. One day he walked by the house and didn't walk back. It turned out he had become sick, so he walked into the pond at the end of the street - and that was it. The young couple told us that in their culture being elderly and sick was seen as a burden and a shame. The only thing was, suicide was also seen as one of the biggest "shames" a family can have, as well. I think I'll pass on any tips that come from someone else's culture, thanks.

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    Pamela Oglesby 7 years ago from United States

    Newmama, I don't think there is anything wrong with expecting your children to do their best and has your daughters already proven she can make straight A's then why expect anything less. I think the point probably is that you have done a very good job of raising her from the time she was born and she trust you. Since you have the comparison to look at between your upbringing and your cousins I know that is going to affect your views on child rearing and there's nothing wrong with that. Thank you so much for sharing your experience.

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    Newmama 7 years ago

    As a child my parents were pretty middle of the road. Although I have wonderful childhood memory's I believe that my cousin's who's mother is Korean, were much more prepared for the "real world" than My sister and I. They were raised to do what was expected and not step off the line. When with the rest of us they were simply normal kids and given the opportunity to act like kids. But they pulled straight A's, were in band, played piano, and went to college and graduated. They are now well adjusted Adults, while the rest of us are in counsuling to because??? Just thought I would give my opinion on this topic bc I have choose to hold my kids to what their potental is and make them achieve it, are our kids not supposed to be better than us? I expect A's my daughter has even at the age of 7 proven that she can make A;s in school and that was before I told her that it was expected, as she gets older and it gets harder she may have times where she struggles but I would rather see her Try her best than slide by in life with B's and C;s as I did, without trying.

  • Pamela99 profile image

    Pamela Oglesby 7 years ago from United States

    Audry, I feel much the same way concerning raising my children. Thanks for your comment.

  • akirchner profile image

    Audrey Kirchner 7 years ago from Washington

    All great points, Pamela - I sometimes wish I had raised a trio of dummies because they surely kept us busy and even grown, they still do! I wouldn't have it any other way though...they all turned out to be shining stars and creative in their own unique ways. It was well worth all the time we spent on them and with them. I always say they helped me grow up to be who I am today! Wonderful advice!

  • Pamela99 profile image

    Pamela Oglesby 7 years ago from United States

    graceomalley, Thanks so much for your comment.

  • graceomalley profile image

    graceomalley 7 years ago

    Wildiris - thank you for pointing out that the book is memoir, not a how-to. Big difference. Seems to be alot of reaction as though it were a how-to.

  • Pamela99 profile image

    Pamela Oglesby 7 years ago from United States

    Writerly Yours, I think that is absolutely true. I appreciate all your excellent comments. Thanks so much for sharing your views.

  • Writerly Yours profile image

    Writerly Yours 7 years ago

    "Obviously many people have different opinions as to the best way to raise their children. It seems many children are not getting the foundation that they need at home to be able succeed in life."

    I can not agree with you more on this statement quoted above. I was raised with the foundation that moral character and setting the example AT HOME is key in parenting. And yes, I see, hear and experience every day how kids nowadays, not all, I'm not generalizing, are lacking that foundation. It saddens me, but both my husband and I instill this foundation in our son on a daily.

    In my opinion, many modern parents nowadays FORGET that labor and delivery is just part of the equation, and temporary, but parenting is truly a lifetime skill.

    Parenting never stops and in the long run it pays off if you put the time into being the best parent. Also, getting help is key too.

    Great hub!

    Voted up! :)

  • Pamela99 profile image

    Pamela Oglesby 7 years ago from United States

    drbj, I was impressed with Dr. Ryan's tips also. Thank you so much for your comments.

    WildIris, I did not read her book but I read several articles about her book and viewed one of her talks on TV. As I stated in my article the people that were most offended by her book with the Chinese American women not the Westerners. I certainly think children need boundaries and sometimes they need to be pushed to do their best but I didn't agree with some of the ways she handled it. I don't think any of us are expert a raising children I think we just all do our best. I appreciate your comments.

    Jordan, Many of us were raised in some type of dysfunctional home and that leaves us with many things to sort out as we get older. It sounds like that might be what you have done. Many people are raising children without spanking them today as there are other types of punishment that work well. You can set boundaries so they feel safe just by using timeouts, listening to them, talking to them, and when they become teenagers it works really well to take to take away their cell phone. Thank you so much for your comments

  • profile image

    jordan 7 years ago

    I don't know what I would do if I had kids. My parents were not strict even though there were spankings from my mother (I so dislike her for them). I never told her though. I am repressing that feeling. Why? well I don't really. It may be that I can't really be honest with anyone. Even my best friend knows only 5% about me. I can't really trust people. Anyway as I said, I don't know how to call my parents parenting style. They were not really permissive. They were not strict either. Anyway, it was anything but normal though. Do I call myself disciplined? Not really. I am everything but disciplined. I don't care anymore though. I am that I am. I made my peace with that. However, if there is one thing I will not do to my kids as a form of punishment, is to spank them. No. I want my kids to be honest to me and treat me like I am a human. Not count Dracula who wants to kindly drink their blood. This is what people who say "spank with love". This is so hypocritic. I don't want to be like that. That's for sure.

  • profile image

    WildIris 7 years ago

    Did you read Amy Chua's book – Battle Him of the Tiger Mother? Did you know that is was written as a memoir and not a how-to book on parenting? I'm not sure any parent knows how to produce well-adjusted adults, although we think we might so we try. I am not defending Chau, but I'm not being too critical of her either. Something tells me the extreme reaction to this book belies more serious issues beyond Asian vs. American parenting values.

  • drbj profile image

    drbj and sherry 7 years ago from south Florida

    Hi, Pamela, for pointing out that the strict, uncompromising discipline of children is often not the precursor to producing well-adjusted adults.

    I would endorse instead the ten excellent tips for raising children of character provided by Dr. Ryan.

    Excellent reporting here, my dear.

  • Pamela99 profile image

    Pamela Oglesby 7 years ago from United States

    K9keystrokes, Thank you for the tweet and I appreciate your comments.

  • K9keystrokes profile image

    India Arnold 7 years ago from Northern, California

    Really, really well done Pam! I wish this hub could be pinned to every parents corkboard! A tweeting I will go...Top-notch job.


  • Pamela99 profile image

    Pamela Oglesby 7 years ago from United States

    SpecialK, I love your comments to this hub. We often hear how unhappy rich people or movie stars are so money certainly doesn't buy happiness and either does fame. Thanks so much for your comments.

  • Specialk3749 profile image

    Karen Metz 7 years ago from Michigan

    I believe parents need to define what it means for their children to be "successful". Does it mean they are making lots of money when they are older, they are famous, they have many talents, etc..? For me, my children are successful if they grow up and have a relationship with Jesus Christ, and are loving & caring people to the rest of the community. Thanks for a thought provoking hub!

  • Pamela99 profile image

    Pamela Oglesby 7 years ago from United States

    ImChemist, Thank you so much for your lovely comment.

    rpalulis, I think you brought up a good point. And I wonder if being extremely successful in a career buys happiness. I also think there needs to be a balance and appreciate all of your comments.

    Ingenira, I agree, and I think that is why so many Chinese mothers in the United States were more upset with Amy choose book than the Western mothers. Is why post of second video because it shows a different side of being a Chinese mother although it is filmed in China. Thanks so much for your comments.

    BlissWriter, Thanks for the link I appreciate your comments.

    Hello, I agree with you as I think a happy childhood is important although I understand the fact that she wants her children to succeed. Thanks so much for your comments.

    ExpandYourMind, I agree that a row down the middle is probably best. My parents were strict also but I still have great childhood memories because we had fun together and there was a lot of love. Thanks so much for your comments

  • ExpandYourMind profile image

    ExpandYourMind 7 years ago from Midwest USA

    Great review, Pamela. I especially liked your tips are the end. My parents were strict, but without the insistence on perfect grades. Perhaps, someone in the middle is the best route. . .

  • Hello, hello, profile image

    Hello, hello, 7 years ago from London, UK

    She has lot of true points in it, in her strict upbrining but it is very hard to apply. They will see the point later on when they grown up and successful but their childhood won't be a happy memory which to me is also important.

  • BlissfulWriter profile image

    BlissfulWriter 7 years ago

    There is a story on National Public Radio (NPR) about her book which you can listen here ...

  • Ingenira profile image

    Ingenira 7 years ago

    I have read about Amy Chua. Not all the Chinese mother are as described by her. A lot of Chinese mom have absorbed the positive Western mothers' belief in bringing up the children. They are still successful in bringing up their children, but they don't have to use Amy Chua's brutal approach any more.

  • rpalulis profile image

    rpalulis 7 years ago from NY

    Wow talk about tough love, I can definitely see the controversy. There has to be a healthy balance, I can't help but notice parents who focus so much attention on their kid succeeding in everything, some of my greatest lessons in life were through failures. I also often wonder how much of it is a selfish pride issues as well, "My" kid did this "My kid did that, "ME", "ME", "ME" when the focus isn't always the kids best interest. Ahhh, am I making any sense, parenting is hard and you will always be judged.

  • ImChemist profile image

    ImChemist 7 years ago

    from reading your hubs , i think you good mom , thanks for sharing this information that i rated it useful.

  • Pamela99 profile image

    Pamela Oglesby 7 years ago from United States

    Ashlie, I am so sorry to hear that you are going through such hard times. I know things will get better because it seems like all of us go through some really rough times and then some really good times. Thank you so much for your comments and I wish you all the best. God bless you.

    Travel_Man, I didn't realize the Philippines were so influenced by Chinese culture. I believe children need discipline but they need to understand exactly why they are getting discipline that can be communicated in a way that doesn't involve name-calling or screaming at them. I appreciate your comments.

  • travel_man1971 profile image

    Ireno Alcala 7 years ago from Bicol, Philippines

    I've experienced Chinese-influenced rearing of children. We've been heavily influenced by Chinese culture (almost 60 %) here in the Philippines. How can we get away with some corporal punishments that often cause child abuse, and the like? I hope modern parents will not do what Amy Chua narrated on her book. She's telling from her own experience, right Ms. Pam? Tough parenting should not be the case. Gentle words are more pleasurable to hear than harsh ones. Children can understand us well or even surpass our judgment.

  • AskAshlie3433 profile image

    AskAshlie3433 7 years ago from WEST VIRGINIA

    Hey Pam Pam! I really don't believe in hitting a child. A spanking is understood, nothing more then that. Just like here in the US, they have drug addicts and criminals as we do. It is all about how you bring them up. My husband was raised by his mom. He was never beat black and blue. He is the most loving, easy going person I have ever knew. With all I went through as a child, it was a huge relief. We never fight, but we have true love. He is very respectful to others and he thinks of everybody but himself. He wants to change the world. We are broke. I am only working part time and he lost his job because of our car breaking down. He spent our savings to fix it and it didn't work. Even though we are facing hard times, he remains calm. He just wants to make a difference. He writes country lyrics but has had no luck finding a taker. I hope he will make it one day. He deserves it. He wants the fame so he can help others. In honesty, it is for others. Sorry to get off subject. Pam, great hub as always, voted USEFUL. The knowledge is there. Hope all is well. Best to you and your family Pam. Have a good night.

  • Pamela99 profile image

    Pamela Oglesby 7 years ago from United States

    Pop, I completely agree with you and I think there are many children that are getting any discipline today. My parents were somewhat strict but loving and when I got in trouble are usually deserved it. Thanks for your comments.

    Katie,I think her theory was good as far as pushing her children to do their best but I didn't like the method she used as she called them awful names and seemed just a little bit too strict. I do know that most children today don't seem to have enough boundaries and it shows with their behavior in school and on the streets. Thanks so much for your comments.

    Sheri, I use spanking when my boys were young also that becomes pretty ineffective once they get a little bit older. I also think that children should have some say so about the extracurricular activities because if they find something they enjoy they are more likely to excel. I'm sure you see a lot problem children in school who don't get much direction from home. I certainly appreciate all your comments.

  • SheriSapp profile image

    SheriSapp 7 years ago from West Virginia


    This is a really good article about this controversy inciting lady. I read a magazine article about this, and saw an interview with the lady herself. There can really be no argument that Asian children do seem to excel academically, but I know not all Asian parents are such strict adherents to these Draconian means of parenting. I used to use spanking, but my daughter is a teen now and too old for such stuff. However, the mortal fear she has of having her cell phone taken away motivates her to behave well usually. The kids of this lady do seem to truly love and respect her, but they could be on a therapist's couch for years after they reach adulthood. Personally, I think kids should have at least a small say in the activities in which they participate. If something isn't dangerous, I usually try to say yes, but there are ALWAYS limits to things, and our daughter knows the limits are there. I would never force my child to do extra-curriculars she disliked, children need to have some choices, like trying things they think could be interesting until they find the right fit for themselves.

  • katiem2 profile image

    katiem2 7 years ago from I'm outta here

    I must say I do find a lot of good practic in her theory. I'm a loving mother who loves, adores and nutures her two children. You know that about me, but many kids are missing the direction and expectations from parents helping them to excel and extend themselves learning what their made of! Great read! :) Katie

  • breakfastpop profile image

    breakfastpop 7 years ago

    There has to be a blending of strict and loving. Tiger Mom goes to far, in my view, and many parents today just don't do enough to guide their children. Some of both meted out with patience and love goes a long way to produce happy successful children. Voted up and useful.

  • Pamela99 profile image

    Pamela Oglesby 7 years ago from United States

    WillStarr, Your last sentence says it all. They know their loved, they had disciplined and they are successful. Thanks so much for your comments.

    Darsky, Thank you so much for sharing your comments. I think boundaries and discipline are important in raising children and not too much to the right in not too much to the left sounds like the perfect way to go. Thank you so much for your comments. Love you too.

  • Darlene Sabella profile image

    Darlene Sabella 7 years ago from Hello, my name is Toast and Jam, I live in the forest with my dog named Sam ...

    Good day Pam, there is a lot to be said about being strict, my father was a monster scary bad, so I have been a good person all my life. I don't agree with him in the way he raised kids but there is a solid middle that must be made. I first sent my children to Catholic schools, until high school. They learned about morals and conscious action, then when they had any problems the always came to me and they turned out great. The middle Buddha road is the secret, not to much to the left or too much to the right. Rate this up, and excellent hub love you, darski

  • WillStarr profile image

    WillStarr 7 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona

    I believe in strict parenting, but childhood is also supposed to be a time of joyous fun, not simply a dreary drudgery.

    My children are all successful, but they are also happy.


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