In an attempt to save his mother’s deteriorating mental health, a man in his fifties has been dressing as his deceased sister for 20 years to help his mother cope with the death, BBC News reported.
Pear Video released a film about this unnamed man which has received more than 4.2 million views on Weibo alone, and is being shared on all major news portals in China. The footage shows the man from the Guilin area in the Guangxi region comforting his mother whilst wearing a traditional cheongsam dress.
He told Pear Video that he started dressing as a woman after his mother started showing symptoms of mental illness after the death of her daughter. The first time he did it, he said she felt so happy it convinced him to continue. “She was so happy, so I kept doing it,” he said.
“I’ve basically been living as a woman ever since,” he added. “I don’t own any men’s clothing.”
In the video his mother refers to her son saying: “She is my daughter. When my other daughter died she became my daughter.”
He also added with much conviction that he is not concerned about what others think of him because he “is doing it for his mother”. “Why would I be afraid of people laughing at me?” he adds.
Thousands have responded to the posts on Sina Weibo with many using the hashtag #HePosedAsHisDeadSisterFor20Years.
The responses he got were very mixed. Some users were “moved” by his commitment towards his mother, “to make his mother happy, he dressed as a woman for 20 years. It doesn’t matter how you view this, you have to praise this man for his filial piety!” one user commented.
But other users were less supportive: A user commented saying, the “mother has been successful in controlling her son” and another asks “is this filial piety or is he looking for an excuse to be a transvestite?”.
“Has this mother not asked where her son has got to?” asks another user.
The concept of filial piety is of vital importance to the Chinese, it is a key value in their culture, and it was a main criteria for the selection of officials from earlier times as well.
“You should be filial, but to this extent, it’s going to be hard for people to match,” one user concluded.
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