NPR: Looking at the Bamboo Ceiling – Afterthoughts

http://www.npr.org/2011/07/05/137631005/looking-at-the-bamboo-ceilling
This was on today. One thing that struck me was the “Asian Poker Face”, which apparently garnered the attention of others thinking that they were angry all the time just because they didn’t smile all the time since it’s considered crazy rather than friendly if you are smiling all the time in certain cultures.
I had this happen too many times.  It’s rather frustrating when you’re having an actually nice day and you’re accused of being angry and they won’t accept any other possibility.

As if it weren’t bad enough that my patients don’t trust me because I look too young to them.
Speaking of which, I found myself guilty of judging people as crazy for smiling too much. Especially Asians. Example would be the State Farm commercial they have on TVB.  They’re either retarded or crazy.  I highly doubt you have to be raised the way I was to think that.  (Also, they sound heavily ABC – American Born Chinese – here)

Despite my background, however, the measure of success I was taught was not just about the grades that I get in school; it was also measured by the people I know.  It was, however, difficult for me to understand what I kept doing wrong while trying to get to know people despite doing my best to be congenial.  Rather, according to this, I am led to believe it’s due to others not being able to understand me.  So either I have to learn to adapt to this, or the country needs to adapt.  Both are difficult, but it’s likely easier for me to adapt than to wait for all my possible patients or contacts to adapt to me.

Of course, as I mentioned, it’s difficult, especially since it has followed me through all of my youth.  I’ve heard some professionals claim that it’s near impossible for one to change one’s personality or behaviour once they pass the age of 21.  I fall under this category.  I intend to beat those odds, but I’m not quite sure where to start. After all, no one tells me when I’m doing something right…

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