Tongue Tied Farangs

I was reading Werewolf’s post about being tongue-tied and I thought it fit in somewhat nicely with my other post about the deck being stacked against men in the West. Namely it’s the topic of Western women vs. Thai women.

Deep down I think all women are the same. The same concept applies to men as well. Okay, you might have your psychotic anomalies but for the most part we’re genetically hardwired to certain types of behaviors. There are differences between Thai and Western women but they are not different. Allow that concept to blow your mind for a bit and I’ll explain.

Let’s look at two situations. First situation is that you walk up to a fit little bird in London and she tells you to go piss off and makes some sort of disparaging remarks about your manhood. Second situation is that you walk up to a fit little Thai bird in Bangkok and she giggles and gives you a typical Thai polite brush-off. Now, your typical guy is going to think that means the women are different. That typical guy is wrong.

The end result is you got turned down. Neither girl was attracted to you. So the Thai girl and the London girl aren’t different. But there are differences in what method they chose to signal their disinterest. Their choice in response was a matter of culture.

I know some guys are reading this and saying to themselves “Uh Billy, that’s still different. Aren’t you just getting semantic about this?” I don’t think so. Let’s dig a little deeper.

At the very core all women pick a mate based on a few basic factors. Off the top of my head I would say that it boils down to ability to provide, ability to protect, and ability to produce successful offspring. In modern society that pretty much translates into how much money he makes, whether he can take care of a family, and if he’s good looking/healthy/intelligent/etc.

So whether you walk up to a girl in London or Bangkok she’s sizing you up based on that criteria. The difference between London and Bangkok though is going to come down to culture. In the West women are taught to be strong, assertive, and to place a very high value themselves. In Thailand and most Asian countries woman are taught to be submissive, polite, and to avoid losing face.

The cultural perspective also accounts for the difference in standards. In London making £1500 a month probably isn’t going to impress a lot of women. In Thailand it’s going to impress quite a few. Similarly, things like being able to take care of and protect a family, intelligence, and health are held to two different standards in London and Bangkok.

The observant reader will notice I skipped over good looks. That was intentional. A lot of guys go to Thailand and think that they just got better looking. Well, not really. Women tend to sacrifice on the good looks if you rank highly on the other factors. An average looking rich guy is going to pull better looking women than an average looking middle-class guy.

So what happens is that your average Western guy is perceived to be wealthy (and by Thai standards he is), educated (and by Thai standards he is), and able to provide security (and he usually can). Looks almost become irrelevant in her calculations because the average farang ranks so highly on all of her other selection criteria many girls are willing to compromise.

Some of this is certainly socioeconomic. Most Western societies have multiple safety nets for those down on their luck. If you’re unemployed there’s probably a government program or two there to help you. In Thailand, not so much. If you’re down on your luck you’re screwed. So the fear of living in abject poverty is very real in Thailand. That’s a pretty big motivator for her to look past whether you look like a movie star or not.

And this sort of leads to another misunderstanding about Thailand. Many people think that if the girl never worked the bar scene then she’s a “normal” girl and being normal somehow imparts on that person magic attributes that make her above looking at you like a walking ATM. If that’s what you’re looking for start trying to date with women who are actually in your own league.

By that I mean, if you’re an average middle-class bloke in the West and want to find a comparable Thai girl you should probably be looking at girls who either run a successful business, are at a senior level position in a large (preferably multi-national) corporation, or who’s daddy is either wealthy or in a moderately high ranking government position (unfortunately in Thailand that probably means he’s wealthy as well). That’s where you’re going to find your financial and intellectual equal.

Now, I’m not passing judgment one way or the other. What I am saying is that you shouldn’t delude yourself into thinking that dating a woman who’s one or two pay checks away from being in total and complete poverty is in the same league as dating someone who is your actual intellectual, social, or financial equal.

If you want to date a secretary then date her. No fault or shame in that at all. But be aware that for her it would be the equivalent of a London girl making £30,000 a year marrying a guy making £300,000. Sure it might be true love but that 10x standard of living increase probably isn’t being completely ignored in her decision making.

Now, I make good money by Western standards. I know that I earn more in a month that the most Thai women (or men for that matter) earn in a year. I know that it would be a step up the social ladder for many Thai women to marry me. I also know that I’m a kind, caring person so any lady I choose to be with will certainly feel loved and appreciated. Those are the reasons I don’t get tongue-tied in Thailand. Not because it’s easier to talk to women or they aren’t rude like woman can be in the West.

And by the same token I know those things are not too far off in the West either. Sure pay disparity will be less and there’s less classism here so stepping up the ladder is less of an issue but more or less I view approaching women in the same context in the West as I do in Thailand. I know, and am confident in the fact, that I bring a lot of highly desirable qualities to the table in a potential relationship. And that is why I don’t get tongue-tied talking to women in the West either.

Getting tongue-tied is a result in not being confident. Guys come to Thailand and because there’s less emotional risk in getting turned down by a Thai girl they gain a little more confidence than they have back home. But to me that just seems like you’re not giving yourself enough credit.

The way I look at it; if you’re good enough to approach a stunning Thai girl why shouldn’t you be good enough to approach a stunning Western woman? I mean, we’ve just seen that women, whether they be Thai or Western, choose their mates based on the same selection criteria so what’s the difference?

What’s the worst than can happen? She tries to emasculate you? She tries to make you think you’re not good enough for her? If you’re confident of what you bring into a relationship than none of that should bother you. It’s her loss, right? Just because she’s been blessed genetically doesn’t mean you should surrender to her the power to dictate how you feel about yourself.

Believe me, I used to be your average guy who was afraid of what some girl might say if I talked to her. I know that feeling. I’ve been tongue-tied. But then I went to a school reunion and I bumped into a girl I had a major crush on but was too afraid to ever ask out. We were having a few drinks and I admitted I had had a thing for her. She got a bit of a shocked look on her face and a sense of panic went through me. I knew she was married now and my first thought was she was going to ring up her hubby and have him beat me senseless for hitting on her. But then she started laughing and she admitted to having had a bit of a crush on me as well.

It was like a moment of clarity for me. Right in that instant I realized how pointless it was to be afraid of being shot down. It was a fear that ruled my life so much that I stayed in bad relationships far longer than any sane person would because even a bad relationship seemed better than having to go out there in the scary dating world.

Things didn’t change overnight but from that point forward I made a conscious effort to push through the fear. And sure, sometimes a woman would verbally abuse me but for every one of those types there were seven or eight who would be pretty civil about it. And somewhere in there were some really nice women that I ended up dating. Women I wouldn’t have had the balls to approach previously.

I think that’s one of the things that makes Thailand a dangerous trap for a lot of guys. They never conquer that fear in the West and then they come to Thailand and they fall into the same pattern that they followed back home which is to basically latch onto the first thing that says “yes.” Sure she might be much, much more attractive than what the guy could have gotten back in Farangland but what’s underneath the looks?

Unfortunately, where do most men end up on an initial trip to Thailand? They end up in places like Nana, Soi Cowboy or Patpong. And the girls they meet are bar girls, go-go dancers, and every other opportunity seeker who makes their living in the naughty nightlife districts. So right off the bat the guy is selecting from a somewhat tainted pool.

But let’s just say our subject farang avoids the naughty nightlife or gets burned out on it and meets a normal Thai girl. Hopefully things work out for him. But chances are that the first normal Thai girl willing to go out with him probably has some issues hiding underneath the surface. I mean, most normal Thai girls play a little hard to get and since our farang is going for the most accessible girls he can find he, almost by definition, is dating women who wouldn’t be considered a keeper by most Thai standards. These are girls who Thai men aren’t interested in and/or she’s only looking at the guy as a way out of her current lifestyle.

It’s not enough to be confident in approaching beautiful women but you have to be disciplined enough to walk away from the women who don’t meet your standards. Unfortunately, guys who barely have the approach part down usually aren’t even close to having the discipline to walk away from a bad relationship. Again, I know this because I lived it.

And by standards I’m not talking about how beautiful she is or how good her English skills are. I’m talking about things like honesty, loyalty, and such. I’m very upfront about my standards with women. I will tell them the things I consider deal breakers. For instance if I were to find out she’s cheated on me there isn’t even a conversation. It’s over. There is no fighting or discussions about second chances.

But when you read message boards and blogs of guys who have girl problems in Thailand it’s always the same story. They all say things like “I had caught her cheating before but . . .” or “I had caught her in a few lies early in the relationship but . . .” The ones that really send me over the edge though are the guys who detail out a long-term escalation of violent behaviour. One guy was actually dumb enough to post on message board forum asking for advice on how to patch things up with his girlfriend after she had slashed him with a knife . . . AGAIN!!!! I mean exactly how low can your self-esteem be when you allow your girlfriend to attack you with a knife of multiple occasions and you’re asking how to patch things up?

The alternative to getting yourself sorted out on the confidence and discipline fronts is an endless cycle of bad relationships. Granted, in Thailand they’ll be more frequent and with a girl ranking a little higher in the looks department but if she’s with you for the wrong reasons and your only criteria is that she says “yes” then you’re headed down a bad road before things even get started.

I’ll wrap up the post here by recapping.

Thai women and Western women are not different even if there are differences in their cultural and socioeconomic filters.

Western men do not suddenly become more attractive in Thailand it’s simply an issue of men taking advantage of market disparities.

Being tongue-tied around women should not be a matter of fear of how impolitely one expects to be turned down.

You increase your chances of having a successful relationship by taking stock of what qualities you bring into the relationship and having standards that the people you date must meet.

7 thoughts on “Tongue Tied Farangs

  • July 3, 2008 at 1:44 am
    Permalink

    This is the first sane, sober post I have read on the frequently blogged thai vs western women topic (most of them amuse me up as the poster (not to his knowledge) is normally still wearing his bar (handum man) glasses)).

    But you know this does also apply to a lot of the world outside of the rich nations (mainly western). If you travel to a lot of former eastern bloc countries you will find a healthy amount of stunning, sweet, smiling fair skinned girls very keen to make aqunatance with an Eligble western male. And the reasons are the same, the allure of moving to foriegn land for a dream home family and for the increase in ready cash. If you don’t believe me just sign up a free profile on a Russian dating site (you thought thai love dot com was amazing?!?).

    But a lot of guys don’t get this far afield. They here of Thailand, visit, end up in Sukhimvit and never see much further then this.

    Another valid point as you make – they have never been to successful with western girls, which is why they will accept shit from a thai girl so readily (as the underlying issues still prevail).

  • March 24, 2009 at 3:16 pm
    Permalink

    Billy,

    Just a question for you about the 2 situations you compare:
    “Let’s look at two situations. First situation is that you walk up to a fit little bird in London and she tells you to go piss off and makes some sort of disparaging remarks about your manhood. Second situation is that you walk up to a fit little Thai bird in Bangkok and she giggles and gives you a typical Thai polite brush-off. ”

    So, do you think that your ‘fit little Thai bird’ in BKK would respond with the same sweet and polite smile if you were a construction worker with your hands still dirty from the afternoon’s work, or could her reaction be slightly influenced by her expectations about the size of your wallet?

    Just trying to add some objectivity here.
    Interesting article though.

  • April 4, 2009 at 10:56 am
    Permalink

    A real great article. A real eye-opener and right on the nail.
    Tks
    Rudi

  • June 3, 2009 at 11:44 am
    Permalink

    Brilliant! Refreshing to read something offering a balanced viewpoint. Thank you.

  • June 3, 2009 at 3:54 pm
    Permalink

    “Western men do not suddenly become more attractive in Thailand it’s simply an issue of men taking advantage of market disparities”

    You mean to say every western guy that gets on the plane to Thailand IS NOT transformed into a “handsome man”

    I have seen the “bar girl confidence injected” anointed guys hit on Chula students at Siam Paragon. Apparently the walls at Paragon are like Kryptonite to “handsome men”

    I am only an observer….

  • July 7, 2009 at 10:23 am
    Permalink

    Hmm.. I think it’s higtime to be wiser. It’s not being bad to be unsuspecting, neither being suspicious in some way.

    Let us not forget also that regardless of culture and nationalities. People are the same. There are different ways in terms of mentality and maybe I should touch morality but basic logical thing, what is good and bad in some other countries are similar with the rest. The problem takes in on what is the common behavior or social problem in specific areas and what have been done with it so far.

    It is a fact that the Western’s currency is stronger than Thai Baht. Some Westerners may be just an average in their native land but get to be millionaires when they come to Thailand.

    Additionally, depsite the strong currency, many couldn’t enjoy as much as they can in Thailand as it’s a lot cheaper than in their own countries. They can for sure enjoy this luxurious life in here.

    The problem comes when they start to believe everything they hear. As they say, nobody can spit to a smiling face. And if one believes everything, he forgets to think about anything.

    If a certain farang has never attracted a single woman in his country, that’s indeed a huge transition to be here and being surrounded with nice, caring and maybe loving people wanting to be with them. The trouble is authenticity as the farang may never know what’s the motive behind it or just mainly a business.

    It’s being a human to act with this “stimulus-response” activity. But then the farangs should know themeselves if there’s something wrong going and they still let themeselves be in the situation making it worse. ( I should say there is THE FEAR OF THE UNKNOWN ). Until they end dead broke. 🙁

    It’s smarter and a lot better to be aware of what one is into. Research and observe your partner, background and all. It’s unfair to hear also for some complaining about the women here when there are bunch also of decent and highly educated single women around. Too bad, the country is judged on the bad ones.

    Finally, I have to add, if you seek someone who is a reliable partner, that person will never pressure you with money and instead, let you and your relationship grow in a win-win way.

    I have to reiterate, people are the same, there are good and so evil.
    I just hope that those farangs didn’t transform thesemelves upon getting here, spoiling the fraudulent creatures who have the eyes for their next prey.

  • March 20, 2013 at 12:18 am
    Permalink

    Great post!

    I like the point about standards. Some Thai girls will lie and cheat their way up (or down) the ladder, and guys with no standards stick around for the show!

    I don’t get it.

    Anyway…refreshing point of view indeed. Good stuff.

Comments are closed.