Monitor on Psychology - October 2011 - (Page 22)

Upfront How will China’s only children care for their aging parents? A generation of children has now grown up under China’s one-child policy, which was enacted in 1979 to limit many Chinese couples — particularly urban, ethnicmajority ones — to one child each. The policy was intended to curb population growth, which it has done. But now, some in China are beginning to wonder whether a generation of only children — sometimes pejoratively called “little emperors” — will be ready to take on the challenge of caring for their aging parents without any siblings to ease the burden, according to Xiaochen Chen, an educational psychology graduate student at the University of California–Los Angeles. Chen spoke at APA’s 2011 Annual Convention about her research on Chinese young adults’ attitudes toward elder care, as part of a panel discussion on Chinese adaptations to the one-child policy. “I was interested in learning about this because this is my generation,” said Chen. Traditionally, she said, Chinese culture has valued filial duty — sons were expected to care for aging parents, and daughters to join their husbands’ families and do the same. Chen wanted to know what the country’s younger generation believes now. Do they expect to care for their parents or to put them in nursing homes? Do only children worry more about what will happen when In line with traditional values, a study found that today’s generation of Chinese men their parents grow old than people with and women said they expect to care for their aging parents. siblings do? To answer those questions, she analyzed personal, both men and women said they expect to care for data from a survey of more than 600 young adults, 41 percent their parents. More than half of respondents said that they of whom were only children. The data were collected in six would definitely not put their own parents in nursing homes, Chinese cities by Xiaotian Feng, PhD, a professor at Nanjing and 19 percent said they would probably not do so. University. Chen found that 83 percent of the respondents had “People still would feel guilty about sending their own thought about the issue of elder care, but that only children parents to a nursing home,” Chen said. didn’t seem to worry more about it than people with siblings More research is needed to see what this generation will did. really do as their parents age and the theoretical questions She also found that traditional values still held strong, become real, she said. “Attitude is not always an accurate particularly among men. They were less likely than women to predictor of behavior.” agree that nursing homes are a practical solution for elder care. When the question moved from the theoretical to the —L. WINERMAN 22 MONITOR ON PSYCHOLOGY • OCTOBER 2011

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Monitor on Psychology - October 2011

Monitor on Psychology - October 2011
President’s Column
Subtle and stunning slights
From the CEO
Live science on the showroom floor
Zimbardo re-examines his landmark study
Ready, set, mentor
Attention students and ECPs: Self-care is an ‘ethical imperative’
Suicide risk is high among war veterans in college, study finds
Psychotherapy is effective and here’s why
From toilet to tap: getting people to drink recycled water
What’s ahead for psychology practice?
A push for more accountability is changing the accreditation process
Peer, parental support prove key to fighting childhood obesity
Popular media’s message to girls
Bullying may contribute to lower test scores
A consequence of cuckoldry: More (and better) sex?
Manatees’ exquisite sense of touch may lead them into dangerous waters
Building a better tomato
How will China’s only children care for their aging parents?
‘Spice’ and ‘K2’: New drugs of abuse now on the market
Many suspects don’t understand their right to remain silent
In Brief
Boosting minority achievement
Where’s the progress?
And social justice for all
Helping new Americans find their way
Segregation’s ongoing legacy
A new way to combat prejudice
Retraining the biased brain
Suppressing the ‘white bears’
How to eat better — mindlessly
Protect your aging brain
Must babies always breed marital discontent?
Outing addiction
Flourish 2051
The danger of stimulants
Keys to making integrated care work
Is technology ruining our kids?
Facebook: Friend or foe?
The promise of Web 3.0
NIMH invests in IT enhanced interventions
Science Directions
Science Directions
PsycAdvocates work to safeguard key programs
The psychology of spending cuts
APA’s strategic plan goes live
Visionary leaders
Vote on bylaws amendments

Monitor on Psychology - October 2011