Filial Therapy: Cultural Considerations for Chinese Parents

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Filial therapy has been found to be an effective intervention in increasing Chinese immigrant parents’ acceptance level and empathic attitude toward their children (Chau & Landreth, 1997; Yuen, Landreth, & Baggerly, 2002). It is surprising that there has been a paucity of research in this area in the last 10 years. This gap in the literature could be caused by value incongruence between play therapy and Chinese parenting. Takeuchi, Mokuau, and Chun (1992) found that the lack of congruence between Asian American values and mental health system is 1 of the salient difficulties in establishing culturally sensitive mental health services. This conceptual article explores some philosophical beliefs about Chinese parenting in an attempt to increase filial therapists’ awareness of Chinese parenting practices. Some suggestions are subsequently outlined to assist therapists in providing culturally responsive filial therapy to Chinese parents.

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