There were a few other parts of Discovery Atlas: China Revealed that seem particularly relevant to this blog. For example, part of the documentary featured the PRC’s war on drugs. The film focused on the nation’s drug police. There was a scene where a taxi driver was arrested for dealing drugs, and the narrator noted that he would face the death penalty for such crimes.
The film then focused on the experience of a female drug police officer. As a woman, she had broken barriers to succeed and excel in her profession. It was noted how rare and amazing her achievements were in the male-dominated culture of the PRC. It was also noted that she constantly had to prove herself despite her past achievements.
The film also noted that this female drug police officer was a single woman. In her interview, she expressed that she couldn’t find Mr. Right, and men did not seem to approve of her professional accomplishments. In listening to her, I came away with the sense that she was destined to a life of loneliness simply due to her professional success. That was very sad to me.
However, I was heartbroken by the attitudes of the parents of this female drug police officer. Apparently, she was their only daughter. In their interview, they initially described their pride in her accomplishments. But contradictorily, they also spent a lot of time expressing concern that she had not taken a more traditional path in life. Her parents wished she had become a full-time wife and mother.
My heart just broke for the female drug police officer. She had worked so hard and accomplished so much, but she was still being condemned by her parents. And how hurtful it must have been to be condemned for not having started a family. I had the sense that she was already sad about her inability to find a supportive, suitable partner. I had the sense she did not want to end up alone in the world such that her parents’ condemnation seemed to be rub salt in the wound.
Moreover, I felt very frustrated that the parents were so ungrateful for their daughter’s hard work. Despite the fact that she comes home late from grueling hours at her job with the drug police, she cooks for her parents and cleans their clothes (by hand because they did not have a washing machine). She seemed to be supporting them financially and caring for all their basic needs. They lived in her home. She was clearly making a lot of sacrifices for them.
This drug police officer was caring for them and was asking little of them, which seemed odd to me. They looked to be about 60 years of age and in very good health. Indeed, I was surprised they didn’t have jobs themselves. They seemed a little young to have retired. But even if they had retired, they seemed to be perfectly capable of caring for themselves. I was stunned that they were not doing more to pitch in around the house. From my perspective, they ought to have been washing her clothes and having a hot meal on the table for her when she got home from a long day on the job. The parents’ attitude seemed selfish and not loving.
Fathers, do not aggravate your children, or they will become discouraged.