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Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother

April 10, 2013

Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother

By Amy Chua

Battle Hymn

I admire Amy Chua.

There, I said it. Most people probably think she’s a horrible child abuser for the things she’s made her children endure, but to me? She’s basically the most unselfish person I’ve ever come across. That’s why it amazes me that people cut her down for being so dedicated to her children.

Forgoing vacations so she can hire expensive violin / piano teachers? Selfless. Spending hours of her time making sure her kids practice? Selfless. Driving hours and hours on a weekend so her kids can take lessons from the best instructors? Selfless. Allowing her children to hate her so that they can (hopefully) be better people? Selfless.

I, who can barely find the energy to pick up my 8-year-old’s spelling list at the end of a long day at work, can take a lesson or two on what a dedicated parent should be.

But that’s not to say that Amy Chua isn’t slightly off her rocker. I mean, I totally get wanting to have your children put some thought into your birthday, but “not accepting” a child’s homemade birthday card because it’s sloppy? That seems harsh. And organizing two-hour practice sessions while on vacation? That seems a bit extreme too.

A few other things I didn’t like about the book as a whole:

  • I would have liked to know more about Amy Chua’s approach to academics. Meaning, how did she enforce her children did their homework every day? How did she handle TV time? Was she controlling about what her kids ate and watched too? These are things I struggle with – it would be nice to know her thoughts.
  • Some chapters were utterly boring. I mean, great job on getting your kids to practice for hours Amy, but I seriously had to skim a few pages because I couldn’t read about yet another practice.

The Bottom Line:

Not sure I 100% agree with Amy Chua’s method of child-rearing, but since it appears that she’s far more successful in her life than I am? Well I can’t really judge her parenting theories.

I will say that Amy has taught me that in order for my child to be successful, I must play an integral part. And since finishing this book two days ago? I’ve been making more of an effort to put my computer down and pick up my kid’s homework instead. I only hope that I somehow find the tenacity to stick it out.

3 Comments leave one →
  1. April 11, 2013 7:26 am

    I have always wondered how parents thought about her book and her approach. I have not read the book nor know anything about parenting but from what I have read online (reviews), I am sure there are some things that we all can learn from but I agree- its little too much. Its selfless but sometimes too harsh on the child’s psychology and who knows what impact it will leave on them in the future.. enjoyed reading your opinion

    • April 13, 2013 9:21 am

      Thanks for your opinion too Dixya…I too am so curious what others think about this book. I spent a while reading reviews on and was surprised to learn that most people either loved or hated this book.


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