I just returned from a week of teaching in Guangzhou, China. Chinese parents are eager to learn about how to better communicate with their children and learn what to teach them through the transitional years of puberty. In two separate sessions, I explained the physical changes their child is experiencing and offered them an explanation for why they are seeing the emotional changes in their child during adolescence.
I took with me several copies of my I’m a Girl: My Changing Body and I’m a Boy: My Changing Body books for them to purchase and I was surprised at the enthusiasm they expressed, considering the books are written in English!
I was pleasantly surprised to find that the questions asked by the Chinese parents were basically the same questions I receive when I talk to parents in the U.S. It’s often a relief for parents to learn that the emotional and personality changes they observe are happening because of changes in the child’s brain chemistry.
Chinese parents, like most American parents, seem to have limited understanding about the body and many were busy taking notes as I described the physical changes that happen during puberty and what to expect from year to year. As always, there were more questions concerning puberty in boys than in girls.
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