From the 2024 Asian American Mental Health Conference “Intergenerational Wholeness for Asian Americans: Integrative Approaches to Christian Spiritual and Mental Health Formation.” This lecture is by Dr. Jessica ChenFeng, titled “Honoring, Owning, and Integrating our Asian American Identities,” recorded January 12, 2024. Find out more about the conference here: https://caac.ptsem.edu/events/2024-mental-health-conference/.
Abstract: When we are part of families with a recent legacy of migration, we understand the desire to “forget what is behind” and “press toward the future.” In our desire to focus on the hopeful things ahead, we can often reject anything bad (past trauma, pain, grief, loss, shame, etc). In this plenary talk, we open-heartedly explore what it might look like to take an honest look at the “both-and”: the narratives of resilience, strength, and success alongside our family narratives of trauma, grief, and loss. How can we, in community, honor and own the fullness of our Asian American identities and legacies? Is it possible that in moving in the direction of courageously sitting with uncomfortable and dishonored histories that we can find freedom together to live life to the full?