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ken_ichikawa

Harsh Or Fair?

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Simply my gran whom I hate with a passion is apparently dying.... she's been on her death bed three times this year and 7 times last year too - she cries wolf A LOT.

The moment my dad and uncles arrive at her death bed she makes a miraculous recovery. Her last lie was that she'd broken her spine.

As a Chinese thing I HAVE to go out and see her. I saw her three times last year when she was supposedly dying. I was incredibly angry last year at having told my boss at the time with 12 hours notice I had to go see her.

Its costing me both £££££ as plane tickets ain't cheap and I'm not wealthy to begin with. I feel it's hurting my job prospects as I have a tendancy to vanish off to see her. (My thrill seeking is done in my own time btw).

Am I being overly harsh in suggesting until she is declared dead I'm not going to fly out there and see her again? Since she seems to not give a damn about my money/career prospects by crying wolf.

It's OK for my dad and uncles as they are retired and have comfortable amounts of money.

I feel amongst my cousins everybody wants to say the above but social custom of face is preventing it from being said.

As non Chinese people what do you think?

Note I will shed no tears when she dies. She lived with me and my parents till I was 15 and would spend every waking hour undermining my confidence. And even though I spend a ton of money flying out there to see her she treats me with utmost contempt anyway and treated my grandad like a meal ticket.

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Well, I don't know what making you Chinese, Lebanese, Portuguese, or Martian has to do with you HAVING to visit a dying relative who you dislike...

You need to get over it and man up a bit. Let the people who actually care about her do the visiting.

Send your nan a box of crocodile tears maybe.

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Note I will shed no tears when she dies. She lived with me and my parents till I was 15 and would spend every waking hour undermining my confidence. And even though I spend a ton of money flying out there to see her she treats me with utmost contempt anyway and treated my grandad like a meal ticket.

If the above is true why are you even debating the issue?

I have a simple rule in life. Only people who have something positive to offer are welcome to my time. Anyone else doesn't exist.

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If the above is true why are you even debating the issue?

I have a simple rule in life. Only people who have something positive to offer are welcome to my time. Anyone else doesn't exist.

you ever see the Simpsons? Where Homer wants to impress a whole bunch of people he doesn't know? Chinese concept of face is ALL about that... My dad typical Chinese bloke born on a farm, he is absolutely obsessed with the concept of face.

Apparently by not going I make my dad lose face in three ways:

It makes our family unit look poor because a £800 is nothing to people with decent careers. This makes you lose face.

It makes you look uncaring decendent which again makes you lose face.

It makes you look selfish because you are unwilling to borrow money to do the above two things.*

If my dad had a choice of starving and losing face. He'd chose to starve as would many Chinese people. I wouldn't because I'm not so idiotic.

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Then take the easiest route and just pretend to be seriously ill yourself when the next time comes.

Really, this whole concept of losing face is the worst aspect of family I think. And it's not just in Chinese culture. Relatives tend to compete with one another. You have to rise above it and think of clever ways to get round it. I sympathise with you a bit, because in my own experience no one can make you feel small like family can. The day I decided to break away from all that was a huge relief.

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I presume your nan is in China?

Go there every time and use it as an opportunity to buy chinese stuff cheaply and starting an ebay business on the side in the UK. It should pay for the flight and more!

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I probably wouldn't go any more...It's not like a couple of hours by car...You may have to make a stand, otherwise the family will always run rough shod... My Gran (mum's mum) died last June. She was very difficult and awkward, and my mum loathed her. She only lived an hour away, but me or my mum probably only saw her once in three years. No one shed any tears at the funeral..

How about telling your dad about the way she treated you when you were younger? (although he may not listen)...he may understand then..

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Explain all this to your dad, say you cannot afford it and do not want to borrow to go given both your previous relationship and your recent history.

If he is insistent that you go to prevent him from losing face then point out that if you are doing this for his benefit then he should be funding it.

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Develop an inner ear infection or blood pressure issue that stops you from flying. Play her at her own game..

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Next time just tell your dad that there is no way that you can afford the flight.

If he wants to save face so much then let him save your wallet.

Tbh, as a non chinese person, I wouldnt go even if the ticket was paid. I didnt visit my grandmother who was much the same even when I knew she was about to snuff it.

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What's the use of asking non-Chinese people?

My wife, who is Thai, was in the same situation 10 years ago with her mother. A few false alarms and expensive trips back to Bangkok including one when our first born was just six weeks old, and then she decided to die for real when we were on holiday so we missed out on the burning after all. You have to decide whose cultural norms you want to follow. Just being halfway around the world from your relatives brands you as wealthy by default.

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I presume your nan is in China?

No, she's in Alaska which is why he flies to China to see her. Duh.

(Edited to add I realise there's no suggestion that she is actually in China, but I'm leaving the above for a cheap laugh)

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since when was £800 nothing to one of the 1.1 billion Chinese?

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you ever see the Simpsons? Where Homer wants to impress a whole bunch of people he doesn't know? Chinese concept of face is ALL about that... My dad typical Chinese bloke born on a farm, he is absolutely obsessed with the concept of face.

Apparently by not going I make my dad lose face in three ways:

It makes our family unit look poor because a £800 is nothing to people with decent careers. This makes you lose face.

It makes you look uncaring decendent which again makes you lose face.

It makes you look selfish because you are unwilling to borrow money to do the above two things.*

If my dad had a choice of starving and losing face. He'd chose to starve as would many Chinese people. I wouldn't because I'm not so idiotic.

Maybe you need to open the 'Lost Face Bureau' in China then. Sounds like you'll do a roaring trade.

And it sounds like a national custom of emotional blackmail that is very destructive financially for entire families, a bit like the idea here that children need an expensive school to get smart, whereas mom schooling the kiddies at home would do a far better job than the crazy marxist crews of lefty shrews that staff our schools.

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  • 311 Brexit, House prices and Summer 2020

    1. 1. Including the effects Brexit, where do you think average UK house prices will be relative to now in June 2020?


      • down 5% +
      • down 2.5%
      • Even
      • up 2.5%
      • up 5%



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