China father kneels on street after daughter shamed him for having no money to buy her a phone, sparking heated debate


A video of a Chinese father kneeling to apologise to his teenage daughter because he could not afford to buy her an iPhone has sparked a heated discussion about parenting in China.

The footage was filmed by a pedestrian in Taiyuan, in central China’s Shanxi province, on May 4, when he encountered a father and his daughter on the street, reported Jinyun Video.

The pedestrian, surnamed Zhong, said the duo’s conversation was so loud that he could clearly hear what they said.

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The girl yelled at her father, saying: “Other parents can buy their children an iPhone. Why don’t you have the money?”

After the severe rebuke, the father got down on his knees and shook his head as a gesture to blame himself for financial incompetence.

“Get up! Get up quickly!” shouted the daughter, who apparently thought her father’s behaviour was embarrassing, according to the video.

After the girl’s audible outburst directed at her dad for not able to buy her an iPhone, the father sank to his knees, shaking his head in self-reproach for his financial shortcomings. Photo: Baidu

Zhong said he stood nearby, watched their interaction for about five minutes, and “grieved for the father” while directing his outrage towards his daughter.

“I even felt an impulse to walk up to her and slap her,” he said.

The clip has gone viral on social media in China, being viewed 91 million times on Weibo and six million times on Douyin, and soon became the talk of the country.

Most people denounced the girl and criticised the father’s inability to properly educate his daughter.

“Consumerism has brought negative impacts on the youth. They are so obsessed with material comforts but ignore the hardships of their parents. It is a social tragedy!” said one user on Weibo.

Consumerism poses a significant challenge among the youth in China, prompting concerns about materialism and its impact on societal values and personal well-being. Photo: Shutterstock

“I feel sorrow for the two. The daughter is very vain, but the father’s kneeling is inappropriate,” commented another person. “Of course, this father is pathetic, and his actions will propel the girl to be more rebellious. He did not point out the kid’s mistake. He did a bad job parenting.”

Incidents of parents or grandparents overindulging their children frequently make headlines in mainland China.

In 2019, a 10-year-old boy in eastern Jiangxi province seized his mother’s hair tightly when she refused to buy him a toy at a shopping centre.

Last year, a teenage boy received immense backlash online for kicking and beating his grandmother after she told him to stop playing mobile games and to hand the gadget back to her.

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