How do Vietnamese families live in today’s modern times?
Today, Vietnamdrive tells you about the important features of the Vietnamese family.
You will find various points, including:
- The husband and wife relationship
- Ranged marriage changed
- Equality between men and women
- The value of children in Vietnamese families
- Family size in modern life
Let’s go to see more now!
1. The husband and wife relationship is indispensable in Vietnamese families
Despite the increasing trend and risk of divorce, marriage has always played an important role in Vietnam.
Therefore, the concept of reaching adulthood to establish a family is given as a principle in everyone’s mind. According to regulations, the age of the majority in Vietnam is 18 years old for both men and women, which is the age that can get married. However, for those who choose to follow the educational path, the least to get married is after finishing university.
You will see that the marriage age of Vietnamese people is relatively early, only 26 years old; in which, the number of young people living in rural areas gets married earlier than in urban areas, girls get married earlier than boys. People who graduated college got married later than those who did not.
The age to get married in Vietnam tends to increase, which proves that individualism is developing over time.
Despite that, everyone believes that marriage is an important factor in the formation of a family, maintaining the sustainability of the Vietnamese family. So most people consider getting married as one of the most important things in life.
2. Changes in the way of choosing a life partner in Vietnamese families
In the past, arranged marriage was a mandatory element in most Vietnamese families, based on family features, same class, social suitability, and status.
Arranged marriage began to change in 1959 when the Law on Marriage and Family was introduced. The law officially abolished arranged marriage, polygamy and established a new value of marriage, which is love-based marriage and monogamy. However, the concept of arranged marriage had still lived in many Vietnamese families until the early 1990s when there was full openness.
Since then, boys and girls have been freer in their understanding of lifestyle, more comfortable in their perception of love and relationships. Criteria for choosing a husband or wife are more personal, such as based on love, education, health, profession, personality, and appearance. Economic factors play a weaker role in the above criteria.
The elements of marriage according to the old way of thinking of the community, suitable for the conditions of two families, husband and wife in the same locality, and ethnicity, are no longer as important as before. This shows that the choice of spouse is shifting from the old perspective to a more modern consciousness in Vietnamese families and social life.
3. Equality between men and women in Vietnamese families
In the past, due to the influence of agriculture, the demand for manual labor was high, so the concept of respecting men was high, besides the son to work and also to take over the family later. This concept existed for a long time in Vietnamese family life.
Today, that concept has changed a lot, men and women have equal rights in the family and society. It is natural for husband and wife to work together and contribute economically to the family.
However, in the subconscious of many Vietnamese people, husbands must be the economic breadwinners for the family, the one who leads the family. That invisibly creates an economic burden on the husband’s shoulders, and at the same time puts the woman in the role of a housewife.
In many Vietnamese villages, the fact that families support both husband and wife working has increased over time, but in their minds, they still emphasize the woman’s role in taking care of the family, especially when the family has small children. Meanwhile, social services to support the family are limited, the pressure on women is bigger.
In short, the problems of imbalance and patriarchy are mainly in the countryside, where there is little access to innovation and modern techniques.
4. The value of children in Vietnamese families
Children have always played an important role in family and marriage. Contrary to the old belief, most people do not like to have many children, especially in big cities, like Hanoi and Saigon.
Many couples see children as a bond, a foundation for striving, a spiritual value to maintain the stability of the marital relationship in the family, and most do not accept a marriage without children.
The thoughts of many Vietnamese families about the value of children have also changed over time. The desire to have a son, have someone to be taken care of in old age and have a main worker in the family gradually turn to psychological and emotional values such as improving marriage relationships, self-improvement, and someone to love.
The concept that children’s maturity is measured by economic value, which means the economic amount that an adult child can make, is still in the minds of many traditional families, families with little access to modern life, families with low economic conditions, in underdeveloped areas such as the Mekong Delta and the Central Highlands.
The upbringing of children is considered today to be the joint work of husband and wife. In the past, when the family had many generations living together, grandparents also contributed significantly in helping to educate children, especially moral teaching.
However, you will meet many Vietnamese women who view raising and educating their children as their main responsibility. Holding this view unintentionally creates a burden and pressure for the wife and also the mother in the family.
5. Family size has changed
Before 2000, it was easy to find many families with many generations living together, including grandparents, parents, and children. There are many houses where many couples live together.
But, with the change in the idea of personalization, the desire for a private life increases. Multigenerational families are gradually hard to find; nuclear family comes instead of the traditional ones.
However, grandparents are still respected in the family. Therefore, on official holidays in Vietnam, many young families still have the responsibility to bring their children back to visit their grandparents. It is like a way of educating the thought of respecting adults, grandparents, and educating the roots of young parents to their children.
A reverse development has formed in the family structure in Vietnam, that is, multi-generational families in rural areas are gradually shrinking while in urban areas there is an increasing trend in this regard. The main problem may lie in the price of houses and land in big cities that are too expensive for many young families.
Even so, the desire to live separately into a nuclear family still dominates the thinking of many Vietnamese. When they are economically eligible, young families will be ready to separate from the crowded house to develop their small one. Since then, the conditions for taking care of grandparents and elderly parents are gradually decreasing.
However, the responsibility of raising grandparents and elderly parents is still the responsibility of the children. They don’t like sending their parents to nursing homes; This is what makes them more and more burdened in life, but it is a responsibility that many people still keep to fulfill their duties and morals.
Surely, there are many things you can’t see right away just by looking or hearing something on TV or through narrative. Although I have detailed the outstanding aspects above, it is only when you have real experience with a family in Vietnam that you have a better understanding of the way of life of the people there.