‘Chicken Blood’ Chinese Parents Make ‘Tiger Moms’ Look Lazy


In spite of some absurd screwups by politicians, America became the current superpower it is today by holding the most deadly weapons and excellent strategies. But the world is fast changing. For at least a decade we have watched as Russia and China have entered the internet wars, while we have lagged behind. Now, China has implemented a new weapon, getting the top education out of their children through “Chicken Blood” parenting. But that holds some real problems.

America has long held the corner on ingenuity and boldness. That demands creativity, but the new Chinese educations model squeezes every drop of that out of their children by super-pressuring them. Plus, learning works best when a child is mentally and physically relaxed and receptive. The far East may be way off track when they force their children to be tense and assertive.

We heard about the frightening Tiger Moms, but the Jiwa or “chicken” parents make them look like a holiday. So remind us, what is a “Tiger Mom?” Well, according to The Good Housekeeping Magazine, it revolves around a demanding-on-steroids mother:

‘[It is] a strict or demanding mother who pushes her child or children to high levels of achievement, especially by using methods regarded as typical of childrearing in China and other parts of East Asia; a tiger mother.’

Now, for those Chicken Blood mothers who have evolved out of the Chinese Culture. Amber Jiang is a Haidian mother and a  bestselling author of a book on parenting. She described the Jiwa model as “the strong feasting on the weak:”

‘They schedule their children’s days in 15-minute increments. They scour online forums and swap tips on the most exclusive tutors and best sports coaches. Some even buy second homes next to the best public schools.’

These parents are both aggressive and obsessive with a helicopter parenting style. The term “Chicken Blood” comes from an unproven 1950’s Chinese medical treatment thought to stimulate energy, by injecting themselves with fresh chicken blood. Ewww.

Beijing-based education bloggers Xiaohua and Zhao Juan produce instructional videos on teaching young children English, according to NPR:

‘It’s not a very easy task because you know how crazy — or passionate, let’s say — some Chinese parents can be. They always ask me, “Oh, my kid has been listening to [English] stories for a week, when can she speak?”‘

Rainy Li is a Beijing Jiwa father of two daughters. One is 11-years-old and the second is a toddler. He said:

‘Because of these policies, parents are even more convinced of the potential [risk] for social immobility. They are more eager than ever to propel their kids into elite circles, and more willing than ever to cut back on their own spendings in order to invest in their children.’

Li’s days begin at:

  • ‘6 a.m. she prepares to send her older daughter to school.
  • 3 p.m. she picks her up. Then there’s dance practice, an online math class, and a swim session. They sometimes eat in the car in between activities.
  • 11 p.m. Li can relax and see her husband.’


Li continued:

‘I have encountered some Haidian jiwa before. They are kind of desperate. They care very little whether their children enjoy what they do. We sort of look down on them.’

Isabella Liang is the mother of a nine-year-old in Shanghai. She felt peer pressure about her child:

‘I had no plans when I had my daughter. [But] I discovered the other children were learning all this extra material, and my daughter did not know how to do anything. I worried that if she did not take these classes, she would not be able to keep up with the other children.’

Li added:

‘Why do people bend over backwards (sic) to get into the top schools in Beijing? I don’t care much for the brand name [schools], but I care about the educational environment. Parents have group chats, so you learn by doing what others are doing.’

Li continued:

‘I have encountered some Haidian jiwa before. They are kind of desperate. They care very little whether their children enjoy what they do. We sort of look down on them.’

East China Normal University psychologist Lixin Ren, who has studied the Jiwa phenomenon said:

‘Every time I hear the word “jiwa”, I feel a very strong sense of anxiety, stress, fear and exhaustion. [There is a sense among parents]  I feel that if I don’t move forward, I will fall behind.’

Parenting psychologist at NYU in Shanghai Xuan Li said:

‘Of course you don’t want your child to, in any case, fall into the abyss of poverty or lifetime adversity. You want them to at least survive and thrive well,’

Take the hyper-competitive parents and blend them with an emerging private education sector worth billions, and this tactic influences how large their family will become in China’s new three-child policy. They spend 25 to 50 percent of their income on supplemental education, even as the Communist Party and the State Council have curtailed them.

Featured image is a screenshot via YouTube.

Three White Lions podcast, Gloria Christie reads her week’s most important news/ commentary stories in the liberal online newspaper The Bipartisan Report. Gloria Christie Report her newsletter for people on the go. Written in her own unique style with a twist of humor in a briefer version of Bipartisan Report. Christie’s Mueller Report Adventures In Bite-Sizes a real-life compelling spy mystery. Find her here on Facebook.