A typical Maonan household is composed of three
parents and grandparents. An
overwhelming number of married couples live with the
husbands' parents. If the husband's parents have more
than one son, the parents would choose to live with the
youngest son. The other children shall live separately
from the parents when married.
Maonan kinship system appears to be less complicated
than Chinese in that unlike Chinese, Maonan makes no
distinction between the genders for ego's younger
siblings, among other things, as also true of all Kam-Tai
groups. Thus the term nuŋ4 refers to younger siblings
regardless of their genders.
Similarly, Maonan makes no distinction between father's
elder brother, mother's elder brother, father's elder
sister's husband and mother's elder sister' husband. Nor
does it distinguish between father's younger male
siblings and father's younger sister's husband, and
between mother's younger male siblings and mother's
younger sister's husband. This is different from the
Chinese system, where a six-way distinction is made for
such kinship relationship.