Intercultural parenting in Australia: managing cultural differences

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Publication details

Bhugun, D 2017, 'Intercultural parenting in Australia: managing cultural differences', The Family Journal, vol. 25, no. 2, pp. 187-195.

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This study employed a qualitative and social constructionist approach to examine cultural differences in intercultural parenting and how parents negotiated cultural differences. Semistructured, in-depth interviews were conducted with 14 intercultural couples/parents. Thematic analysis was used to analyze data and understand the meanings of participants’ experiences. The findings revealed that while intercultural couples experienced several similar aspects of parenting experienced by monocultural couples, their experiences were exacerbated because of the cultural differences. The most common descriptions of differences and uniqueness in parenting were identified as (a) discipline, (b) sleep patterns, (c) cultural taboos refood and traditional medical practices, (d) children’s socialization process, (e) education, (f) language and communication, (g) role of children, and (h) the role of extended families. Five major conflict resolution strategies were identified: (a) communication, (b) compromise, (c) sphere of rule, (d) asymmetrical decision-making, and (e) individual traits. Practical implications for therapists and counsellors working with intercultural parents/couples are discussed.

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