Applying Elisabeth Kübler-Ross’s “Grief Process” to TCKs and CCKs

投稿日(Posted on): 2024年5月13日 | 最終更新日(Last Updated on): 2024年5月24日 by 河野傑

Adapting to Multicultural Environments

One of the unique challenges that Third Culture Kids (TCKs) and Cross-Cultural Kids (CCKs) face is adapting to multicultural environments.

Living between different cultures often requires reconciling separations due to moves and making choices.

Such departures and adjustments are part of the process TCKs and CCKs go through in facing their own thoughts and emotions, contributing to their identity formation.

Elisabeth Kübler-Ross’s Grief Process

The movement associated with TCKs and CCKs and the adjustments between intersecting cultures can lead to grief.

The five stages of grief model proposed by Swiss psychiatrist Elisabeth Kübler-Ross, initially designed to describe the psychological process of patients at the end of life, is insightful here.

This grief process includes the stages of denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance and has since been applied to various loss and grief situations.

TCKs and CCKs may experience grief from parting due to relocation or feel anger and dismay when trying to balance different cultural values.

For them, finding harmony between themselves and their surroundings is crucial.

Feeling and Expressing to Accept

Experiencing each emotion in the grief process is a natural response. Accepting and managing these emotions effectively is vital.

For example,

Communication at school may be in Japanese, while a different language is used at home, leading to challenges in communicating with friends.

Previously, in the country where they lived, proactivity and uniqueness were valued. However, the new school may prioritize correct answers or conformity, which can be confusing.

These difficulties, confusing, and anger during the grief process can be a way for TCKs and CCKs to honestly express their feelings and resolve internal conflicts.

Instead of suppressing anger, expressing and processing it in healthy ways is essential for psychological adaptation and development.

Assessment and Compassion for Both Background and Environment

Supporting TCKs and CCKs involves understanding and expressing the emotions within the grief process correctly.

It is important for parents and educators to accept the anger they feel and show empathy and understanding.

Assessing the background of TCKs and CCKs and supporting them according to their situation, while considering their environment (home, school, community), is crucial.

Such interactions help TCKs and CCKs deepen their self-awareness and adapt to various cultural environments.

They can transform their multicultural background into strength and achieve rich self-expression.


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