Many Chinese immigrants live with their senior parents in Canada, due to their cultural traditions. As multigenerational families are increasingly prevalent in the Asian communities, financial disputes between adult children and their senior parents escalate，as described in this story. The disputes break family bonds, wreaking havoc on the life of many immigrants.
Is your family facing the similar struggles? We hope you can share with us your personal experiences or success stories.
据《洛杉矶时报》2014年1月14日报道，41岁的美国华裔李晓琳(Xiaolin Li，译音)，在她的阿卡迪亚的家中因遭多处刀伤而死亡。就在同一天，和她住在一起的公公，68岁的美国华裔朱力(Li Zhu，译音)，被指控犯有谋杀罪。被关进洛杉矶监狱的三天后，朱力在狱中自杀死身亡。
On Jan. 14, 2014, Li, Xiaolin, a 41-year-old Chinese American was found dead of multiple stab wounds in her Arcadia home, according to L.A. Times. On the same day, her father in law, Li Zhu, a 68-year-old Chinese American who lived with his son’s family, was charged with murder. Three days later, he was found dead of an apparent suicide in a L.A. jail.
According to media report, the motive appears to be related to an on-going dispute over family assets. Zhu, who had wanted to return to his hometown, was shocked to find that his family home in China had been sold by his son and daughter-in-law. After his desperate plea for money was turned down, the frustrated Zhu took the extreme action that has caused irreversible damage and destroyed the family.
While such incidents are rare, the underlying conflict among family members – between seniors and their adult children — are quite common amongst Chinese immigrants in North America. Unlike Caucasian or other ethnic minorities, big families –with multiple generations living under the same roof – are prevalent in Asian communities. After uprooting from China and settling in North America, many immigrants invite their senior parents to live with them, hoping through family reunification, they can fulfill their responsibilities as daughters and sons.
However, good intentions do not always generate good outcomes. In fact, family conflicts and disputes frequently arise in those multi-generation families. And of course, most of these disputes are over money.
Mr. Song is an IT professional. His parents have lived with his family in Toronto for over 3 years. But life was nowhere close to what he had expected. Frequent yelling and arguments have often led to family crises.
According to Song, his parents, who own a property in China, collect CIS every month from the government, but they save them all into their bank accounts, never contributing to the expenses of the family.
Song says he feels obligated to support his parents due to his Chinese background, but he can’t convince his disgruntled wife Ming.
“Why? None of my Canadian colleagues live with their parents-in-law, and they don’t believe that they have a responsibility to financially support them. That is why they can collect the government subsidies. Isn’t it unfair for your parents to live as free-loaders, seeking benefits from both sides?”says Ming.
“In Western culture, there is no filial piety!”
However, Song’s parents have her own concerns. They don’t want to give up a full control over their personal assets, in case they need them if they return to China.
“Of course we need to protect our personal assets. I don’t want to see that Zhu’s tragedy would one-day happen to us!”
Besides, Song’s parents claim that they have made enough contributions to this family. They help to take care of their grandchildren, cook meals and clean the house for the family.
Despite the fact that Ming pushes Song to raise the financial issues with his parents, he is reluctant to do so.
“The topic is such a big taboo. Setting your heart on your parents’ money is immoral and distasteful in Chinese culture.
But that would leave Ming increasingly dissatisfied. She would seek every opportunity to pick a fight or ignite an altercation with Song’s parents. As a result, yelling and fighting has become a family norm, pushing it on the verge of war.
Song says he understands the concerns of both his parents and his wife, if he puts himself in their shoes. However, he doesn’t know how to solve the problem.
“The only solution seems to ask my parents to go back to China, but that would make me guilty as hell… I was raised in the culture that I have a responsibility to take care of my parents — how could I do that if they’re not here with us?”
The teary-eyed mother and angry wife often baffle him, making him frustrated and depressed.
In fact, Song family’s problem represents the tip of the iceberg of the struggles faced by thousands of Chinese immigrant families. Stuck between a rock and hard places of two different cultures, they are desperate for a solution to the problem that increasingly wreaks havoc on their lives.
But unless comprises are made from both sides, there seems to be no perfect solution.
– See more at: http://chinesenewsgroup.com/news/17159#sthash.dfk9ag9Z.dpuf
本文发布于： 2014-1-28 10:34