Bringing Up Brits: Reviewed

[pullquote align=”left”]Being a parent is challenging enough, but for those raising their children in a country that is foreign to them, a whole new level of difficulty is introduced. [/pullquote]Meghan Peterson Fenn is a Korean-American who married an Englishman. She has three children, all of whom were born in Britain.    In Bringing Up Brits, she shares the range of emotions and social experiences she went through and, to a certain extent, is still going through today.

I am a British mother with a British husband and live in England.  This is a very normal situation but something that I am grateful for after reading this book, because it has kept  my children’s,   my family’s, and my own life simple and happy,  with all our family close by. I have spent time living in the USA as a parent of a pre-school age child, but it was only a temporary situation, Knowing it was only temporary saved me an awful lot of thoughts, worries and longer-term complexities. Reading this book demonstrated to me that living abroad permanently or for the majority of your children’s youth is not just a physical re-location decision.  It is a decision that also changes your extended family’s lives and the people your children will ultimately become.

Bringing Up Brits helps the reader to see just how much they have (possibly unknowingly) been influenced by their own and other cultures during their life and how this is reflected through their parenting.  The book includes case study families, showing how birth nationality is of varying importance to each individual and how hard it can be to explain to children why your roots or where you grew up should matter to them.  The book demonstrates that there is often a case of “you don’t know what you’ve got until it’s gone” but that this isn’t to say that cultural identity can’t be re-instated, albeit sometimes to a limited extent. Fenn manages to portray any negative experiences she had whilst living in the UK in a non-pitying way and simultaneously explain how some Brits’ natural behaviour can often be very offensive to others. Her personable tone makes the book a light read, despite covering the complex matter of life as an expat parent.

Fenn covers topics in Bringing Up Brits that may often be overlooked within the subject of cross- cultural parenting; the difference in real and emotional identities, the accessibility of cultural traditions, and parenting children that may not recognise their nationality as part of their own identity. From the viewpoint of many other men and women raising cross-cultural kids in Britain and Fenn’s portrayal of real-life misunderstandings, this book brings some reassurance, humour, and appreciation to those amidst the task!  Its intention is not to be a literary masterpiece but rather to bring some solace

to expat parents whilst opening the minds of those that are parenting in the UK as their home country. It does just that, and therefore, this book is definitely worth a read, especially if you are considering becoming an expat parent in Britain.

Bringing Up Brits
Author: Meghan Fenn
Paperback: 168 Pages
ISBN-10: 1906954216
ISBN-13: 978-1906954215
Click Here to buy from Amazon.Com 

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