[Reporter's Note] Did you call your parents on 8th of May?
[Reporter's Note] Did you call your parents on 8th of May?
  • Youngchul, Woo Reporter/ Yohan, Bok Reporter
  • 승인 2023.05.17 12:08
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8th of May is Parents' day in Korea. (photo: Consumerwide DB)

[Consumerwide-Youngchul, Woo Reporter/ Yohan, Bok Reporter] 8th of May is Parents' day in Korea. Initially, it began as Mother's day in 1956, but later on the name was changed to Parents' day in 1973. So, every year we celebrate the day, reminding ourselves of the love and favor of parents, and the traditional value, 'spirit of filial piety'. Having the idea behind it, people in Korea tend to give a gift or pin a carnation on their parents, remembering the devotion of their parents. However, as a single-person household increases along with a small budget and busy routine, the day seems to fade its color.

Most children start to find their own life when they complete school (high school to undergraduate or beyond) or get a job. According to the Korea Institute for health and social affairs, 45% of households live separately from their parents among 3130 household members between March and July in 2022, referring to the '2022 Korean welfare panel research and analysis report'. The number of visits and calls averaged 40 times and 112 times during one year among all the participants. On the other hand, just counting on the people who relatively (mid-range) contact their parents, people contact their parents 52 times and see them 12 times a year. It can be estimated that people see their parents once every month, and talk on the phone once a week. The number of visits and calls has increased compared to research 15 years ago. In 2007, the yearly average number of visits was 33.9 times (mid-range 12 times), and the call was 88.1 times (mid-range 48 times) based on research. In 2019, the yearly number of visits was 39 times (mid-range 12 times), call 90 times (mid-range 52times).

Nevertheless, I suppose that people with a low income had less contact with their parents, referring to the research data. Based on the total average numbers, people with a low income met their parents 39 times and called 91 times during a year. This record is 1 times less for visits, and 21 times less for calls. Among the households with a low income, people in a mid-range in terms of contacting parents, visited their parents 5 times, and called 52 times. People with low income households counted on health issues of their own household members or financial reasons for not being able to see their parents more often. It can be interpreted as serving parents is not irrelevant to financial plans and circumstances.

Fortunately, 9 people out of 10 people answered to remember and thank their parents on Parents' day. Based on research by a marriage data company, 89.3% of females and 91.3% of males among married people answered that they call or see their parents on Parents' day to express their heart of gratitude. Yet, it probably isn't easy because the day is not an official holiday like children's day. For this reason, there had been a never ending argument about Parents' day not being an official holiday. In 2013, there had been some discussion about revision of the law regarding holidays through the Public administration and security committee, but they couldn't come to a conclusion because the mediation was not easy at the National assembly. Later on, during the 19th presidential time period (2017/5/10~2022/5/9), there had been another discussion on Parents' day, but there was no change. I don't see there will be a huge change regarding Parents' day. It would be great if it became a national holiday.

Apart from these issues, I thought that it would still be worthwhile to show appreciation on Parents' day by making a call. Because see, what our parents count is never an expensive gift, but our genuine heart wanting to spend time with them.



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