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Given how many Western men relish the more “traditional” (read: pre-feminist revolution) concept of male-female relationships they sometimes encounter here, that’s perhaps not surprising.Even for those not indulging in retrograde Orientalist fantasies about submissive Asian housewives, it’s all too easy for them to not respect their Thai partner as a true equal. She said of Western men: “People from Western society tend to be more respectful towards one another than towards Asians.“Women want someone with a profile that they already know.It’s more than just attraction,” said Ann, a 28-year-old in a relationship.In fact, approaching someone in public is not common — and even frowned upon — in a culture where people are not expected to engage with strangers and can now keep their noses glued to their smartphones in public.But by avoiding that kind of small talk, the chances of finding love outside their social circles is very slim and leaves them with a tiny dating pool.Because of this, Thais may approach relationships more seriously than Westerners, who are comfortable chatting up complete strangers as well as with the phenomena of “friends with benefits,” “seeing each other,” and “not labeling things.” It might be due to this that most Bangkok women find themselves dating the people they come across in their social circle — and only those of the same or higher social class to boot.
One recent afternoon, in a group chat between six Thai women who went to college together, Belle sent a candid photo of a decent-looking man she came across in her diplomatic career. ” one friend in the group suggested in the way that one offers advice to a friend that you know is destined for disappointment.
Even if he stared at me and seemed interested, I still wouldn’t go. While she has completed an MBA, bought a house for her parents, and built a stable career in a male-dominated field, she still suffers from the drawbacks of a small dating pool — most of the men she’d consider dating in her circle are already taken.
“I don’t have anyone coming on to me, at least not the ones I like. Asked if the possibility of remaining single all her life bothers her, she said: “I’m happy…I spend time with my family and friends; I don’t bother looking for a man.
“I texted my friend the first day I saw him in class that I liked this guy, but I didn’t even think about speaking to him until he asked me out,” Ying said.
“It’s not that I try to be a traditional Thai lady.