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Posts: 263

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Q: What's your take on the Chinese 月子 tradition?

坐月子 means to stay in bed for one month after childbirth. There're some other rules: don't touch cold water, don't take shower, etc. I wonder, how rational it is from the scientific point of view? We don't have this thing where I come from, women are encouraged to be up & about the next day after childbirth. Did your Chinese wife observe "one month in bed" tradition?  I didn't, my husband says I'll be sick when I grow older. How much truth is there in it?

8 years 21 weeks ago in  Family & Kids - China

 
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Posts: 2584

Emperor

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I just read about this one month in bed ritual they do. I also took a nursing course and if you lay in one place for too long it could have serious side effects. You don't want to lay in bed for a month. You have to get up and get exercise. 

 

As far as don't touching cold water goes. I notice that many chinese people don't touch cold water regardless if they just had a kid or not. They drink hot water instead of cold water. And I'm not sure but that could be the reason some of them don't wash their hands in public it could take a long time for the water to warm up and they don't want to wait for it. 

 

I disagree with both rituals. One because I studied the effects of lying in bed for too long and two because not drinking cold water or touching it is just ridiculous!

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8 years 21 weeks ago

There are cookies, bookies and too many rookies for me to sit here trying to be a hooky! Looky Looky don't call me a wooky. Touchy Touchy Feely Feely Spicy Spicy Nicey Nicey & that's what the doctor Ordered!!

 
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I think there is a strong link between 坐月子 and the fact that many Chinese mothers are not able to breastfeed their children. By being passive, the mothers body will not get into milk production mode, and by being in bed and leaving everything to the parents or in-laws of the new mother you have the foundation for poor bonding between parent and child. 

This may be harsh, but. "If you don't want to take care of your offspring, don't have them, the planet has enough people"

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8 years 21 weeks ago
 
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And have to add, that my waife during the month after born, can not eat fruit, because its cold, and can damage the stomach and health. fruit, which is most important during the breastfeeding, and can not eat it ? ok, warm the apple in the micro-oven ? Laughing out loud same issues about not washing hair this time and so on. 

 And also, i have not let she have a mom here or any ayi to care about them, just help her as much as i can and still working all the day .. well, she feed son from breast alsmost 10 month , son in his 3years is bigger than many chinese children of age 5 or some even older. Mother is well, healthy, nothing going bad. Ok, She feel tired manytimes, but she is a mom right ? not someone, who your grandparents tell you in CNY celebration "ooh, you mom come to see you". -- "who ?" 

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8 years 21 weeks ago
 
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Governor

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I had my son in china and I was asked to 坐月子, actually it was kind of expected of me, but I had no idea what it was like until it started. I rebelled for the most part and refused to do it. My rules would have included: Staying in bed, not going downstairs for any reason (used to live in a three story house), don't bathe, don't brush teeth, do not exercise, eat a million eggs a day (apparently they help lactation), do not stand in the sun, not even on the balcony. The only one I agreed to was to not go downstairs (my mother in law and I modified it into: do not come downstairs when extended family are here, otherwise they will give hell to mother in law, understandable, so I agreed to that).
For the rest, I tried to do everything as normal and tried to breastfeed my child: as it turned out, didn't have much milk, consequence of all the pressure I went through? Possible.
I strongly agree with the posts above: 月子to me is just bullshit and even though I didn't do many of the things that were required, I can truly say I hated that month. It is just pointless. To OP, you will be perfectly fine, as I am. You know what they told me? If you keep going up and down the stairs u will have joints problems once u enter menopause. Well guess what..all women do! That's nature, it's called aging and it has zero to do with sitting out the month or not! BS.
And I also agree that the the "not taking care of one's own children starts right then". To be honest, to most Chinese women, this is perfectly fine...hey, less work, right? well, until they realize how screwed up their kids are because they are spoilt rotten by the grandparents. Then they look at my son in amazement and go...oh my god, your son is sooooo good! Well, no, my son is soooo normal, and it took a great deal of hard work to achieve that, but I guess they'll never get it.
Finally: I was talking about yuezi with a colleague of mine the other day(Chinese). An educated, young, bright woman who studied in the US and worked there for ten years. Guess what she told me? You didn't do 月子?really? And you feel OK now? Are you not sick? I wanted to jump off the bus we were riding.

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8 years 19 weeks ago
 
Posts: 263

Governor

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 I wonder where the ignorance comes from. All the Asian women back home have babies & are up & about the next day. They're all doing just well.

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8 years 19 weeks ago
 
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