How far will you go to help your friends or kins escape singlehood? For one Chinese mother, this means baring it all on live television.
The 70-year-old mother, surnamed Zhang, sought help through the local news channel Chongqing TV in finding her 38-year-old daughter a job and a husband.
In the video posted by Weibo and spotted by South China Morning Post, Zhang said that her daughter had been unemployed for more than six years and instead keeps herself preoccupied with vlogging regularly about her six cats. In addition, she had no plans of finding a partner.
Zhang revealed she had no other means of talking her daughter out of her lifestyle and added that it has been a problem that weighed on her husband as well. “We hope she can, like most other people, find a job and a man to marry. If so, we can leave this world happily and without any concern,” she said.
Zhang's daughter has stayed single since graduating from college and, according to the mother, used to live in an apartment in their hometown, Chongqing, which she and her husband bought. She said that they have also been shouldering her financial needs.
Zhang could not see how her daughter could rely on her chosen lifestyle and expressed her embarrassment at her daughter’s situation.
“It’s a big headache for me and my husband,” Zhang told Chongqing TV. “We have to bear this emotional pain by ourselves and cannot share it with our friends because it is an embarrassing matter for us.”
Meanwhile, Chongqing TV reported that the daughter, who was kept anonymous, sold the apartment and moved to a new rental unit closer to her parents’ home to be able to spend more time with them. The daughter also insisted that she tried to talk things through with her mother.
“The old generation has a different mindset from the younger generation. I have tried to communicate with her. But do you think I can persuade her?” the daughter stated and added that finding a relationship is not her priority.
“I will not force myself to accept a relationship that I don’t really like. If I happen to meet my Mr. Right, it’s okay,” she said, noting that she did not have any plans to find a partner by attending blind dates.
Despite the apparent lack of understanding in the family, the portal said that the daughter remains respectful with her parents and still maintains a healthy relationship with them.
Heated discussions have been brought up regarding situations like Zhang’s daughter, who has been facing the pressure of being unmarried.
According to The Atlantic's report, the derogatory term "sheng nu" or “leftover women” is being used in the Chinese community to pertain to unmarried women in their late 20s and 30s. The term led unmarried Chinese women to question their rights and self-worth and inspired the documentary Leftover Women, which tacked the stigma of being single.
Earlier this year, Insider also reported that Chinese women have begun to flaunt their wealth on social media to break traditional gender roles and prove their power to become independent individuals.
Screenshot from HBTV via SCMP