Use this tool to add tone marks to pinyin or to convert tone number (e.g. hao3) to tone marks.

Although you can use the red buttons to add tone marks, we highly recommend you use the number method (e.g. hao3) for speed and placement of the accent above the correct vowel. [Hint: Type "v" for "ü"]
Note: You do not need to use this tool to enter pinyin in this dictionary.

TWCC23 – Your Kids Abroad: Would You Raise Your Babies in China?, Episode 23

Welcome back to Two White Chicks in China with Hollie and Nora!

Episode 23 comes from Lewis who left us a voicemail message asking “Do foreigners bring up Children in China, and do you know any that were raised there?”

In This Episode We Talk About…

  • Comments, Thank you!
  • Self-service checkouts experiment – you know how it went down…
  • Lewis’s question.
  • Some personal worries.
  • Having a baby in China.
  • Visas, expense and stress.
  • Littering and leaf picking.
  • Foreigners who immersed themselves in Chinese culture.
  • Peeing in the street and no car seats.
  • Foreign kids in Chinese schools.
  • Is it a good environment?
  • Shenzhen is foreign family friendly.
  • Cost of having a baby (listen to more about this in Episode12).
  • Explore the idea!
  • Our Chinese word of the week is ‘baby’ – 宝贝 (bǎo bèi)
  • If you have a question for us, please send us a voicemail or leave us a message below!
  • People and Companies We Mentioned in the Show

    Episode Length 44:16

    Thanks so much for tuning in. Join us again next Thursday for our next topic and another question from one of our listeners!
    If you want to ask us a question you can Send us a Voicemail!

    Download Options

    Thanks for listening guys!
    – Hollie & Nora


    Facebook Comments

    • Charlotte

      Haven’t listened to this yet, but I’ve had two kids here and done the early potty training (Western-style, of course…no peeing where they please!) and it’s wonderful. A site I recently found that I wish I’d have known about earlier is started by a family that had three babies here.

      • Hollie Sowden

        Hi Charlotte. It’s lovely to hear you’ve had a good experience bringing up your children here! I’m gonna check out the site and mention it in this week’s podcast. Thanks for your comment!

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    • Another great episode!

      We didn’t have (ie give birth to) any of our children in China, but we did move there with a 5 month old baby. The advice of staying in one of the very big cities is spot on. We were an hour or two away from Beijing and the local hospitals were… not what you’d expect. One of the worst experiences in my life was when our daughter got really sick with some sort of flu and they put a drip into her temple! I guess she was one and half by then. Not a fun night for any of us.

      Also, on one of our trips back we got in trouble for not keeping a closer eye on the younger kids. We got quite a telling off from a Chinese lady. Turns out she was telling us that if we didn’t keep them with in arms distance, a childknapper would grab them and run away! I don’t think that’s a particularly likely scenario, but there’d been a lot of high profile child smuggling cases around that time and people were a little paranoid about it…

      • Nora Joy Wilson

        Wow, thanks for sharing Stephen! The Chinese hospitals seem to put drips for EVERYTHING. I’ve also noticed that many Chinese people are so overprotective. Some of my friends here will literally put their arms out to stop me from crossing the street at a red light if I inch too close to the curb. It annoys me, but I know they’re just trying to keep me safe.

        I’ve also heard it so many times from Chinese people that Shenzhen is “so dangerous”, but after 6 years I haven’t had even the slightest incident. *knock on wood*

        So glad that you’re listening in, we’d love to answer any of your questions too. Cheers!

    • Chinabob

      I hope you don’t mind me chiming in on these subjects so late in the day so to speak. It’s only that I’m trying to catch up on your old episodes and on this one in particular I just really needed to put my two cents in.
      My son was born here 17 years ago. At the time we were living and working in Macau so we used the Macau hospital and it cost next to nothing. He was raised partly in Macau and partly in Zhuhai then later here in Beijing. Raising kids in China compared to the US is SOOOO CHEAP!

      The reason I am writing though is on the subject of potty training and I have to tell you the Chinese way rules!!! Having seen the nightmares friends and family back in the States dealt with I can tell you the Chinese way is far far better. Sure it seems weird, as so many other things here might at first but I am telling you their way works great. And look, with 1.3+ Billion people here I think they are pretty much experts in having kids! And while I do not agree on how they handle other issues on raising kids, like the lack of car seats or the mollycoddling, when it comes to potty training they’ve nailed it.

      People by and large pretty much biologically have a system, stuff goes in then old stuff comes out yes? Feed the kid, expect something in return. You very quickly learn when to expect a return, and certain facial expressions or actions when that is about to happen. And when it is about to happen you are pretty quick to get the kid to the toilet! The kid then, from an age so young, already starts to equate pooping to the room with the toilet. So, by the time he/she is old enough to take themselves to the toilet on their own or nearly so, they just do so out of habit. No arguing and no pooping in their pants because they are not accustomed to that convenience that western kids are used to.

      This thing about parents who have their kids doing their business wherever they are well that part is poor planning. A good parent in my book will plan those outings around the kids schedule so as to minimize the need for this uncouth behavior. We generally did that but, on the occasion that we did need to go out with our son during a questionable time it was one of the few times we would use a diaper, just in case. But even with the diaper on, if we noticed “the look” or expected PP time was near we would find the public toilet asap. Diaper use was not something we wanted him to become accustomed to. Public eliminations were a last choice result and were extremely rare in our experience. If you are outside to eat, you located the toilet’s first, period. Only Lazy parent’s did otherwise.

      Also, about the whistling, think Pavlov’s Dog. Trainers use the same system with race horses too before a race. The first few times the kid starts to wee when he/she is a newborn you start to whistle, over time the kid starts to equate whistling with peeing. Later when Grandpa is holding the kid over the toilet (or bushes ;-( ) he starts to whistle which then in turn gives the kid the urge to pee and nature takes over. You’ve trained the kid to pee on command. Maybe this is why so many Chinese people sing in public, if they all whistled you see a line up at the toilets!!!

      Our son had absolutely zero potty training issues. The Chinese rarely do. None of those nightmares parents in the States and elsewhere go through. We did tend to use the diapers at sleeping time but my wife got a lecture from my mother-in-law about how lazy she was so it wasn’t all the time…

      That’s it for me on the subject. Hope it is of interest!


      • Nora Joy Wilson

        Completely agreeing with you here. Actually, the movement has started in the West as well. They’re calling it “elimination communication” or EC’ing your baby. Makes a lot of sense as its eco-friendly, way cheaper, more hygienic (when done properly) and gets you in better touch with your baby’s needs. Clever Chinese!

        • Chinabob

          Wow, I’m shocked that you can find Americans adopting this method, truly shocked. I would never have expected that. Thanks for letting me know. I don’t go back to the States very often, once a year for a couple of days maybe. Last year not at all, so I am sure things change there too.

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