In my bio statement I proudly mention that I am a Third Culture Kid (TCK)… You’re probably reading this wondering ” What is a Third Culture Kid?!” ” Could I be a Third Culture Kid?”Let me explain the definition of ” Third Culture Kid ” and the impact on life and therapy.
Definition of Third Culture Kids:
A TCK is a person who has spent a significant part of their developmental years outside of their parents culture
What are the three cultures?
1) Birth Culture
2) New Culture
3) Process of creating a new culture
- Military/ Army “Brats”
- Non-Military Government
- Religious/ Missionary Kids
- Business Kids
Lifestyles, Customs, Rituals & Traditions:
- Suggested benefits:
- Linguistic ability
- Cross-cultural skills
- Expanded worldview
- Expanded spiritual view
- Priscilla Presley
- Bruce Willis
- Barack Obama
- Sean Lennon
How does being a TCK affect Partnering, Coupling, Marriage & Family?:
- Typically TCKs marry older (25+)
- Military TCKs marry earlier
- Lower divorce rates
TCK’s and Education Impact:
- Missionary Kids (MK): At one point the majority of their education was from boarding schools, this is beginning to change.
- 4 x more likely to earn a Bachelor’s Degree than Non-TCK
- 40% earn an advanced degree
- 45% attended 3 universities before completing their undergrad degree
- 44% earned an undergrad degree after the age of 22
- Educators, medicine, professional positions , and self employment are the most popular professions
Themes TCKs Experience Regarding: Oppression, Discrimination, Prejudice, and Marginalization:
- Life Transitions
Themes in Therapy:
- Grief & loss
- Depression, anxiety & stress
- Feeling different
- Feeling like they have no control
- 16 Celebrities Who Came from Military Families: Veteran’s Day. (n.d.). Retrieved November 10, 2014, from http://www.babble.com/celebrity/veterans-day-16-stars-who-were-military-brats/
- Davis, P., Suarez, E., Crawford, N., & Rehfuss, M. (2013). Reentry program impact on missionary kid depression, anxiety, and stress: A three-year study. Journal of Psychology and Theology, 41(2), 128-140.
- Fletcher, A. (2001, March 5). The Homeless VIPs. Christianity Today, 80-82.
- Gould, J. (2001). Always Saying Goodbye. Journal of Loss & Trauma, 6, 75-81.
- Third culture kid. (2014, October 31). Retrieved November 10, 2014, from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Third_culture_kid
- TCKID: What is a Third Culture Kid? (TCKs). (2008, January 1). Retrieved November 10, 2014, from http://tckid.com/what-is-a-tck.html
- Walters, K., & Auton-Cuff, F. (2009). A Story To Tell: The Identity Development Of Women Growing Up As Third Culture Kids. Mental Health, Religion & Culture, 12(7), 755-772.