Family Type

Five culture types for the family variant( typical Hualish family structure comprised of a couple, their children and the couple's parents)

*For details, please refer to the book


The core objective of the helpmates family structure is to strengthen the family’s collective physical or mental power. 

Pragmatists get married because they can rely on each other during times of need, or have complementary skillsets and strengths

Pensioners bear and raise children as their retirement plan so they have people to take care of them when they become old.

Procreators raise (a large number) of children (especially males) to increase the power of the family

Soulmates need their so-called “second half” to make them complete psychologically.


Conformists form families to fulfill others’ expectations.

Model citizens build a family in response to societal expectations and face-related needs (e.g., peers are getting married).

Model children build a family in response to expectations or even pressure from parents. Not getting married and having children is a major sin in the traditional Hualish value system, even worse than mistreating one’s parents.


Progenitors include people whose goal of family is to produce children—ideally, successful children.

Dream chasers produce children to realize their own (often unfulfilled) dreams in life.

Legacy builders produce children to carry on the family’s bloodline, fortune, fame and status.


Experiencers view building a family as an essential life experience.

Friendship seekers want to experience intimate friendships that are strong and free from betrayal.

Love seekers want to experience physical and emotional love.

Box tickers want to build a family simply because it’s a major experience on the metaphorical “life checklist.” The last subtype is actually more common than one might expect. Some people decide to get married because they see their friends getting married and having kids, and they don’t want to miss out. This is different from conformists, because they are not responding to pressure from others to start families.


Reformists are somewhat similar to experiencers, but they see the traditional family structure as optional, and are willing to embrace it only if the right conditions exist. Family is not an aspiration that they strive to fulfill in their lives, although it could be the icing on the cake under the right conditions. They believe one can have a complete and fulfilling life without ever being married or having a child. Moreover, they typically are not wedded to the idea that a family is a lifelong commitment.

Non-traditionalists reject traditional ideas about marriage and family and support flexible family structures in which partners do not necessarily need to be married or even committed to each other. Non-traditionalists view children as optional.

Commitment-phobes support the idea of flexible duration. They reject the idea of lifelong commitment and think transient relationships should be the norm.