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Bill Belew has raised 2 bi-cultural kids, now 34 and 30. And he and his wife are now parenting a 3rd, Mia, who is 8.

Japanese don’t hug

My daddy spent many years in Japan. My two big brothers grew up there.

Parents teach their kids differently in Japan. And I hear France and countries in Latin America are similar in one regard.

The Japanese like greetings.

Like – Where you headed?

And – Thanks for your help the other day.

And instead of saying good-bye – Thanks for all your hard work.

Daddy said he knew a group of missionaries in Japan who complained that the Japanese were not affectionate.

Read: Why do you hate my Japanese brothers?

It’s true, the Japanese are not huggers, touchers, and they don’t vocalize their feelings like we do here in the West.

But they go to great pains to remember the last time they saw a person and remember that time in their greetings.

Thanks for attending … thanks for remembering … and so on are much more powerful and demonstrate an affection than a simple ‘hello’ and a mindless ‘how are you?’

When my daddy taught in Japan his students asked him, “How come people ask me how I am doing but don’t wait for my answer?”

The Japanese care about when they last met each other and the impression that was made in the current meeting is important before saying good-bye.

Does your country raise children differently than people in the United States? How? Want to share?

Talk to Bill and others about their experiences raising bi-cultural Japanese-American kids.


Bill Belew

Professional Blogger, social media marketer, professor of marketing, Christian and dad.

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Growing Up Aimi Series