Happiness is more important than scores

Updated: 2014-10-27 10:08

By Li Yang(chinadaily.com.cn)

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Chinese parents should think more about their children’s mental health and happiness than their academic record, says an article in the China Youth Daily. Excerpts:

A Chinese student of Johns Hopkins University committed suicide on Oct 15 near the campus in the United States because of long-term depression and insomnia. He came from an affluent family in China and attended boarding school in the US.

In August, a Chinese student of California State University, Fullerton, threw himself out of window because he failed to pass the language test in three years. The student came from a single parent family.

The two extreme cases expose some common problems confronting the Chinese students studying overseas. They have pressures caused by difficulty in academy, lack of money and cultural clashes. If these pressures cannot be relieved timely and properly on time, they may develop psychological illnesses, or even take the extreme step of ending their lives.

Chinese parents feel proud of their children’s academic performances. But they do not care about the pressures on their children.

Unlike the 1980s, Chinese parents can send their children to study abroad more easily than before. As long as they have money, their children can secure a seat in foreign universities, even if the children do not have good academic record in China. It means some children from the wealthy families are actually forced to go abroad for the education that they are not prepared for at all.

Statistics show Asian college students are more likely to commit suicide than the white people. They are not used to seeing a psychologist for professional treatment.

Facing the same problems, the US parents would let their children suspend their schooling for half to one year, or transfer to another university that is less stressful. Compared with the children’s health and happiness, these temporary setbacks are nothing. However, few Chinese parents would do so.