By Renee Jamerson
This week I finished reading Amy Chua's book, Battle Hymn of A Tiger Mom. If any of you remember, Chua's book gained notoriety due to her "strict" and sometimes seemly "authoritarian" parenting-style. Chua however, described herself as a typical Chinese mother...a "Tiger Mom". None of us are strangers to the stereotyping that occurs with people of Asian descent (mostly Chinese and Indian), of them being brainiacs and wiz kids. I began reading this book because I wanted to look into the stereotype for myself and (to be truthful) pick up some tip to help my children amazing grades for the upcoming school year. What I found was that besides traditional family beliefs, there was also the idea of training the child as opposed to raising the child (which according to Chua is a Western ideology). Many of the Asian familial and child rearing beliefs are founded on the ideas of Confucius' Chiao Shun (training) and Guan (govern and love). These concepts have been described as strict by a lot of parents others have viewed them as just a difference in culture.
This got me to thinking about what the bible had to say regarding a mother's attitude toward academic success for her children. Should I, as a Christian, be a "Tiger Mom"?
For the first half of our list, check out Are You A Christian Tiger Mom?- Pt.1 with that said let's get into the second half of our list.
7. When a child continues to disobey you, he/she deserves a spanking- Despite popular belief spanking is actually in the bible and is an acceptable discipline when administered with patience, control and explanation. There is actually a manual on the Focus On the Family website on how to administer a proper and biblical spanking. The book of Proverbs is full of scriptures on spanking.
Biblical Support: "Those who spare the rod of discipline hate their children. Those who love their children care enough to discipline them"- Proverbs 13:24
8. Mothers primarily express love by helping children succeed- I think this goes above with #7. You disciple out of love and the need to teach life lessons to help your child succeed. -see Proverbs 13:24
9. A mother's sole interest is in taking care of her child- While it is impossible for child-rearing to be your only interest, it should be one of your most important interest.
Biblical Support: "Then they can urge the younger women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled and pure to be busy at home..."- Titus 2:4-5
10. Child should be in the constant care of their mothers or family- We can only imagine the trouble an unattended child could get into or even the poor result in the life of a child not properly raised.
Biblical Support: "The rod and reproof give wisdom: but a child left to himself bringeth his mother to shame."- Proverbs 29:15
11. Mothers should do everything for their child's education and make many sacrifices- Any parent knows that the decision to be someones mother or father is a huge responsibility that requires great sacrifice and selflessness. Little people depending on you night and day, your eyes the first to open and the last to close with no days off.
Biblical Support: The whole entire chapter of Proverbs 31.
It looks like despite how "strict" the ideologies of traditional Asian child-rearing may seem it appears that Chiao Shun and Guan fall in line with God's idea of what a devoted mother should be...a Tiger! Anyone else feel a roar coming on?!? Being a parent is not easy but it sure does help when you at least have guidelines for what you're supposed to be doing.
Stay Strong Mommas and as always Be Fruitful!
1 Chao, Ruth K. Beyond Parental Control and Authoritarian Parenting Style: Understanding Chinese Parenting through the Cultural Notion of Training. Child Development, 1994, 65, 1111-1119