> This may seem strange by western standards, but I'd caution against extrapolating this to mean that the parents don't care for their child.
It shouldn't be strange by Western standards. It was the way it was in the US before WWII or so. It also works very well because it frees up what might otherwise go into retirement savings, and this gets spent on helping the kids get established instead.
I am not in China, but my wife is Chinese-Indonesian and her mother is starting to get closer to retirement, and that system, while it has transformed in urban environments like Jakarta, is still very much alive at least among the Chinese diaspora here.