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somtamlao

Educated Western Guy Settling With Minimally Educated Thai Girl: Can It Ever Work?

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Ok, so seeing as this is my first post I'll possibly be assumed to be a troll, but trust me, that's not the case. Just looking for some advice from people who may know better than me on this. So, my story is, I'm 27, and I've been with a 34-year-old Thai girl for the last 3 years. I work online so I've been able to split my time between home and Thailand during those 3 years. I've lived with her for just over half that time in Thailand, and she has spent a total of 13 weeks in my country on a short visit visa where she stayed at my family home with my parents and I. 

 

My girlfriend is from Isaan and she didn't go to school a whole lot when she was younger. Her job is, and has been for the last three years, working as a waitress in a respectable restaurant in one of Thailand's major cities, for which she earns 450 baht a day. However, before this, as is often the case with girls from poorer backgrounds, she worked in a massage shop for 3 years, and I'm not silly enough to believe that massage was her primary form of income during that time. Prior to massage she worked in a factory in Bangkok and lived with her boyfriend, who turned out to be gay and left her. Also, the factory closed down.

 

Her background wasn't enough to deter me because I recognize the difficulty of her situation and I've never been in a position where my country didn't provide a safety net of unemployment benefits if I was to be made redundant without pay and experienced a major life shift. Sure, she could've got into something other than massage at the time, but it is what it is. Just for clarity, I didn't meet her during a massage "shift"; we met elsewhere in the city. 

 

Anyway, she is a really nice girl, and my parents both like her dearly too. She's very caring and sweet in a way that I've not experienced. The difficulty arises when thinking about long-term with her. It's already been 3 years, so it's hardly a casual thing, but when I think about ten years down the line, I feel conflicted. I am from a working-class family but I'm well-educated. I like to read, I'm interested in current affairs, self-improvement, I'm interested in different hobbies like learning guitar.

 

Apart from a large shared interest in cooking, eating, travel, and photography, there is no real intellectual aspect to the relationship. Her English still is nowhere near the level where we can chat with anything approaching the humor and nuances of fluent English. My Thai is also rudimentary.  She spends a lot of her free time watching TV while I'd be reading a book or learning something new.

 

The story is the same with own members of my family though. I'm an enigma in that I am college educated, but both of my parents done pretty poorly for themselves due to a combination of bad upbringing and learning disabilities. I love my parents dearly and they raised me well, but I could say the same about them in that my actual shared interests with them are limited. But they do have the benefit of being able to communicate fluently with me.

 

My girlfriend and I can talk and have a laugh quite easily. And she's opened up about deeper stuff sometimes, but it's obviously hard when we speak different languages natively. I'm concerned about what I'm missing compared to if I was with a Western woman who speaks English. What I'm essentially wondering is whether long-term, a relationship like this can ever work out well? I know there are plenty of well-educated Thai women, but I'm not with one of them. 

 

Any advice or input would be appreciated. Thanks.  

 

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The question is what you missing out? Oh, that was a new one

 

Im impressed by all this first time posters here on TV, really

 

It is like you get paid like an magazine to produce good and touchy stories. Yes, you seem to be trolling, like so many others who think highly about themselves compare to others. Now including parents, their own parents. Shame on you

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4 minutes ago, Hummin said:

The question is what you missing out? Oh, that was a new one

 

Im impressed by all this first time posters here on TV, really

 

It is like you get paid like an magazine to produce good and touchy stories. Yes, you seem to be trolling, like so many others who think highly about themselves compare to others. Now including parents, their own parents. Shame on you

It's nothing to do with thinking I'm better than her or my parents. It's to do with intellectual compatibility and is a perfectly reasonable concern in any relationship, particularly long-term. Ask yourself the same question about a Western relationship: do you see many such relationships excelling or even happening? The answer is no. It's fine to sneer; I expect that on the Internet, particularly on a forum like this, but it's a valid concern going forward. By many measures, she is a much better person than me and has many qualities I admire, hence the length of the relationship and the sacrifices I've made to continue it.

 

But you are free to continue to mock the situation and jump to conclusions about my apparent superiority complex, I just won't be addressing your replies any further if it's the case that you couldn't be bothered attempting to understand the situation or my concerns, you just want to jump to angry conclusions. 

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? With your intellect, you shouldnt ask in first place! Or what? 

 

I have been there, thinking is this what I really want, and so far I have no answer to it. can I live 10 years or 30 years with a dialog just based on daily needs and what her family do, say and eat. I think nobody have the answer you looking for, because that have to come from you, and only you know!

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1 minute ago, Hummin said:
Quote

How can you with your sperior intellect ask about this in a forum like this? With your intellect, you shouldnt ask in first place! Or what? 

Because being book smart doesn't mean I have all the answers in life. 

 

Quote

 I think nobody have the answer you looking for, because that have to come from you, and only you know

You're right about this, but I thought the point of a forum was to talk to other people, get their perspectives on situations, and learn about their experiences. I am naturally quite a pessimistic anxious person anyway so I'm wondering is it a case of the grass is always greener. 

 

 

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I think it depends on what you feel you'll need in the future, and what things are more/most important to you.

 

I think most guys are are unlikely to end up with any Thai woman who's particularly intellectual in the western kind of way. Interest in politics, world affairs, philosophical debates, etc etc?  I think, generally not. Interest in cooking, food, clothes-fashion, Thai TV and soap operas, most likely YES!

 

Now, that might sound bad... But, what if that same person also was kind, good-hearted, honest, pleasant demeanor, family oriented, affectionate, maybe not book smart but Thailand life smart?  That might help even out the equation some. Of course, not all Thai women have those qualities. But if you can find one that does, can you get by with that and let the other things go?

 

BTW, I wouldn't be overly concerned about the massage parlor stint. Depending on what city she worked in in that trade, a lot of the business might be hand or mouth oriented, as opposed to the full-on kind of stuff. So, there's at least that to consider. Plus, she may well have honed her skills during that employment.

 

:biggrin:      :sorry:

 

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26 minutes ago, somtamlao said:

So, my story is, I'm 27, and I've been with a 34-year-old Thai girl for the last 3 years.

While the sex is good stay with her, when it isn't move on.

This advice works for all relationships, in all countries.

With a bit less financial risk here.

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2 minutes ago, TallGuyJohninBKK said:

 

I think most guys are are unlikely to end up with any Thai woman who's particularly intellectual in the western kind of way. Interest in politics, world affairs, philosophical debates, etc etc?  I think, generally not. Interest in cooking, food, clothes-fashion, Thai TV and soap operas, most likely YES!

 

Now, that might sound bad... But, what if that same person also was kind, good-hearted, honest, pleasant demeanor, family oriented, affectionate, maybe not book smart but Thailand life smart?  That might help even out the equation some. Of course, not all Thai women have those qualities. But if you can find one that does, can you get by with that and let the other things go?

 

 

Thanks for your reply. It's a toughie because right now I'm not sure if I can get by on that alone. My girlfriend has many good qualities that I admire, it's just that I see the continued language barrier and lack of intellectual compatability becoming more of an issue as we age. 

:biggrin:      :sorry:

 

2

 

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The intellectual compatibility issue is only an issue if you make it one. Bear in mind your GF may be street-smart in Thai ways at a level you cannot hope to achieve.

If she is good in bed, a good cook and not lazy that is a lot better than can be achieved with many Western women. The hell with conversation.

 

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Back to the OP -- If you're thinking about a long-term relationship with this lady, the other important issue to consider IME is her relationship and dynamics with her family...

 

What kind of family does she have? Hard working salt of the earth types or sitting around drinking lao khao and smoking all day.   How small or large in number?  And how physically close would her family members be to where you'll be planning to live?

 

I mention that issue, because another thing that's often an issue in Thai-western relationships is the extent -- greater or lesser -- that the wife prioritizes her family and family members' needs over what your needs as a married couple might be, and what your individual needs as her husband might be.

 

For example, you might be wanting to save money together for your collective married future. But if you're staying with the wrong Thai woman, every time she saves any money or you save any money together, you'll find it flying out the door to (take your pick) ... buy smokes and booze for the family ... treat their sick animals ... pay for Mom/Dad's doctor bills ... buy a new motorcycle for little brother, etc etc etc.

 

Of course, a daughter has obligations to her family, especially in Thailand. But depending on the daughter and the family, there can be either no limits to what goes that direction and what's demanded by them, or, in a better situation, the daughter exercises some common sense and does what's really necessary, but doesn't let the two of you become sponges for idleness and scamming.

 

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This is either a very clever troll post, or a remarkably honest young man.  I'm assuming the latter - so here goes.

 

I've said this many times before on here - there are so many available girls in Thailand who are looking for a relationship (reading that as 'hoping someone will look after them and their extended family' - so you should aim for perfection.

 

If comparing to Western Girls, you can't aim so high, unless you have the looks and wealth of Brad Pitt, as highly attractive Western Girls who are also smart, balanced, kind, not in possession of a huge backside and good in the sack are so rare they do not appear on the open market.

 

But in Thailand the 'currency' of beauty has been devalued due to over supply, so you can have a choice of good looking girls who are neither overweight, crazy or have a high mileage.

 

So with that as the dating environment, ask yourself, do you feel lucky?  Like 'the luckiest man alive to be with her.   Do you wake up next to her in awe of her beauty, are you constantly surprised by her little acts of kindness, her wit, her creative attempts to make you happy?

 

I'd say a formal education is irrelevant - but is she smart?  A fast learner, willing to experience new ideas.

 

And can you communicate?  In your language, hers or a combo?

 

If not .... then move on.

 

Now to your case - she is older than you, has a some Km on the clock, and you have some doubts or you'd not be posting here.  But if she has that inner and outer beauty, cares for you, and there's real fire between you .... then go for it.

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What you missing out? 

 

One who share all cost with you, working beside you, and take part of your daily life. You and her share the cleaning of appartment, cooking, and so on! A thai lady never say no, cook for you, serve you, and cleaning the joint, but she expect you to serve her to, but in a different way if she has a poor background, and family duty to take care of. 

 

A western woman is not always the best partner in crime for talking either, so I sometimes think it is good we do not have to much to talk about ?

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9 minutes ago, somtamlao said:

It's a toughie because right now I'm not sure if I can get by on that alone. My girlfriend has many good qualities that I admire, it's just that I see the continued language barrier and lack of intellectual compatability becoming more of an issue as we age.  

 

I think that is a toughie... If you're having doubts and questions about that now in a serious way, after considering the pluses and minuses, then those doubts and questions are probably only going to grow and intensify over time -- after the new car smell wears off, so to speak.

 

The language part, I'd think, a couple can work on together thru the years as you spend time together, I'd think, she's bound to pick up and understand and speak more English. But the intellectual part in a Western sense of things, I think that's pretty much a lost cause for both the average Thai young man and woman, not just for your lady from the wilds of Isaan.

 

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My wife is a school primary / kindergarten teacher - stayed at university and has degrees and awards that I could only dream of owning.  I left school at 16 with just 6 o'levels. 

 

On an intellectual level I feel I am very more advanced than her. She does not read books - I do, She struggles with a documentary holding her attention. She had no idea what goes on outside Thailand - had never heard of 9/11, one  of the biggest events on the planet. She spends ages on the phone now talking to friends and watching really terrible Thai belittling soaps. That said she did teach herself English.

 

My point is that they seem to get educated enough to 'get by' in the world - they do not get educated i na way to give them a thirst for knowledge, Certainly not educated to 'how to be intellectual' with a farang !

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