Although mental diseases are a global health issue, the cultural stigmas and traditions of being Asian play a major factor in how they are dealt with in the community. This is particularly true of Alzheimer’s, a disease which affects millions of Asians, yet in most Asian countries and cultures, a word does not exist to describe the disease. To further complicate these cultural stigmas, at the center of Alzheimer’s lies the intersection where filial piety and stigma meet with a lack of understanding of mental diseases. Why is there such a lack of awareness of mental disease in the Asian community? What contributes to all the shame and embarrassment of these issues? How does this all affect Asian Americans who have been raised in a different environment as the elderly? Although this documentary focuses on Alzheimer’s, the themes of family, stigma, and awareness apply to many aspects of Asian culture and the growing tension between Asian Americans and their immigrant parents.
Directed and Edited by Peter Trinh