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The Son

The role of the Filipino son or. more specifically, the role of a good Filipino son is placed above all the other male role It is more important to be a good son than a good father or a good husband. Filipinos stress the importance of remembering your past, where you came from and what your parents have done for you.

The farmer's lad who becomes a rich and famous doctor will buy his parents a nice house in the city or, if they don't want to move, will visit them once a week and give material support, possibly expanding the farm into a great hacienda. If his parents put hint through medical school, he owes them even more. Being a doctor he would have to personally see to his parents whenever they need any medical aid. (He also becomes the personal physician of the rest of the family-by the Filipino definition of the word, a service for which he never charges and which is often a personal inconvenience.) His great accomplishments as a doctor are nothing if he does not perform his duties as a son. First he must be a good son. Then, and only then, may he be successful.

Filipino Men

Regarding the Filipino male, Dr Lapis states that the ego-ideal for men is that of one who is cool, cautious, inoffensive, pleasant, relaxed to the point of being rather easygoing, incapable of anger except when his amor-propio ... is provoked. His masculinity is definitely and emphatically regarded as intrinsic to this narcissism (self-esteem). Of this masculinity he is quite conscious and proud, and will emphasize it in many subtle and not-so-subtle ways. Outside of this ego-ideal, the Filipino male may appear to some, and in particular to foreigners, as not being masculine enough. He tends to be fastidious about his appearance, particularly his hair and clothes, to have soft and graceful movements. With strangers and in some unfamiliar situations, he may tend to say very little and act even less, which is the antithesis of the American male's tendency to quickly state his identity and give his opinion. The Filipino will be quiet and will strive to be inoffensive in situations where an American would feel obliged to be more vociferous.

The Mother

Children are of great importance in family-oriented Philippine culture. They form the link that binds the wife's family to the husband's. They also present opportunities for extending kin relations through the compadrazco system. Hence, Filipinas expect and are expected to have children once they marry.

The Spinster


The Filipino spinster or matandang dalaga is not a liberated individual, free from responsibilities. Although she does not have her own family of procreation (husband and children), she is still tied to her family of orientation (parents, brothers, and sisters, aunts, uncles, ect.), and she has duties and obligations of them. She may live with one of her brothers or sisters, serving them in the form of assisting in household management, or she may continue to live with her parents, serving them looking after them in their old age. There is also position set aside for her in her local church - she is in charge of its upkeep and maintenance. Hence she has a definite role in the family and society. In this way she feels she 'belongs' to someone and her family keeps her from getting lonely.

The Mistress


The role played by the mistress is essentially also that of wife and mother. In many cases the mistress is preferred over the wife because the former is a better wife to a man than the latter. There is usually much rivalry between her and the wife, not on bedroom matters, but on who cooks better and who takes better care of the husband.



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