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The strength of the Filipino family culture is also its bane.


We don’t kick out our kids when they turn 18; they’re free to stay if they choose to, and on some occasions, parents prefer them to stay. However, some children stay indefinitely and create new families under their parents’ roof. Most Filipino parents don’t find it toxic.
Filipinos typically don’t place their elderly in nursing homes or senior care facilities. But some parents demand from their children a good life, despite being capable of self-support. Filipino adult children who love their parents, don’t find extending help to them as toxic.
The issue isn’t the culture itself which is fundamentally rooted in familial love. The toxicity arises when recipients of generosity take advantage of it.
Toxicity emerges when family members—be it parents, children, or siblings—cease to be productive and become dependent on the support and kindness of their benefactors.

“Dahil nasanay, or feeling entitled or sadyang makapal ang mukha”, they ignore the sacrifices and hardships of those providing for them. Or forget about the needs of a struggling parent(s).

This dynamic has led some of my acquaintances to remain single, and others to bear the hardships of life abroad, all to support their families back in the Philippines. I’ve also met elderly couples, widows, or single parents facing hardships while their children live in affluence.
Here are Bible verses to guide us in making prudent choices and to avoid being manipulated or guilt tripped:
Principle #1: Self-Reliance (huwag umasa)
2 Thessalonians 3:10b (NLT) “Those unwilling to work will not get to eat.”
Principle #2: Parental Duty
2 Corinthians 12:14b (NLT) After all, children don’t provide for their parents. Rather, parents provide for their children.
Principle #3: Filial Responsibility
Exodus 20:12 (NLT) Honor your father and mother. Then you will live a long, full life in the land the LORD your God is giving you.
Proverbs 19:26 NASB2020 He who assaults his father and drives his mother away Is a shameful and disgraceful son.
Principle #4: When to help relatives?
1 Timothy 5:3-4 (NLT) Take care of any widow who has no one else to care for her. But if she has children or grandchildren, their first responsibility is to show godliness at home and repay their parents by taking care of them. This is something that pleases God.
1 Timothy 5:8 (NLT) But those who won’t care for their relatives, especially those in their own household, have denied the true faith. Such people are worse than unbelievers.
Principle #5: Do not be a freeloader. (when you are living in someone’s house for FREE and you’re an adult and working, share the expenses)
Proverbs 3:27 (NLT) Do not withhold good from those who deserve it when it’s in your power to help them.
Read here to get the context of Dani Barretto‘s quote.
What is your take on the issue?

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