Parenting in Tibet

Tibet was occupied by China in 1950 and since then the six million Tibetans who today live in the so-called Tibet Autonomous Region are under the rules imposed by the Government of Beijing through a regional authority. In 2010, bilingual education was introduced in minority areas of China – not just in TAR – for competitive reasons: it would be better for students to learn two languages, their local one, in this case Standard Tibetan – which is also official language in the region – and standard Chinese, to open doors in the world of work tomorrow.

The people of Tibet are known to be distinguished by their patience, wisdom, and unique vision in all spheres of human life. In the same way, there is a special «Tibetan vision» when it comes to raising children that helps to form an independent and self-sufficient person, who will make the right decisions and treat their parents with respect.

From 0 to 5 years, according to the Tibetan system of education, during this period the child should be treated «like a king». You cannot forbid him anything, much less punish him. At this age, a child is curious, active, wants to learn and explore the world. But he still doesn’t know how to take advantage of his experience and use logical reasoning. Therefore, if he does something wrong or dangerous, you need to show that you are terrified and shift his attention to something else. Emotions are a language that children understand well in this period.

From 5 to 10 years, during this period, it is advisable to treat the child «like a slave», but, of course, without cruelty. At this time, the intellect and logical thinking are very actively developed and the basis of his future personality is established. It is important to give the child various tasks, monitor how they are performed, and teach him to be prepared for the consequences of noncompliance with it. So the child must learn to be responsible for his actions, focus on positive things and avoid negative ones. Right now, he absorbs knowledge faster than ever. It is a great learning stage for children as they begin to instill different practices and elements of their culture.

From 10 to 15 years, it is important to treat the child «as an equal.» You know that you have more experience and knowledge of life, but it is key that the child declares his philosophy of life and shows the strength of his opinion. So help him with this: ask questions, ask for his opinions, encourage his independence. It is important to advise and not order or prohibit, because at this age their independence of thought, deeds and actions develops.

From 15 onwards the child is considered as an adult in society, ready to become independent and defend himself. By this time, the child’s personality has already been formed. Now it is important to treat him with respect and give advice, but not educate. And you will reap the fruits of your work, since you will see that your child has become a self-sufficient person, valuable and respectful towards himself, his parents and all those around him.

Photo by Julia Volk on

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