Living with a Thai boyfriend

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RichLB
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Living with a Thai boyfriend

Post by RichLB » Thu Jun 13, 2019 10:15 am

I don't know how many of these things are unique to
my own living situation or are universal - I suspect they are general characteristics. Anyway, here are a few things that took (and still takes) some time to get used to when living in Thailand
with a boyfriend.

- I swear my boyfriend has selective deafness. On more than one occasion I'll ask a simple question and receive only silence as an answer. Repeating the question yields the same result.
- In the US when one leaves a room one is expected to excuse themselves. That doesn't seem to be the case in my condo. On more than one occasion I've torn myself away from the computer to ask the boyfriend something only to discover he's disappeared. It might be as simple as a trip to the bathroom, but it could be a trip to 7/11.
- The mobile phone can become a permanent appendage to a boyfriend. The device is on permanently and commands far more attention than I do.
- Refrigerators must be seen by Thais as largely useless. Cooked food can be left out unrefrigerated for days. Why Thais don't all die of food poisoning is one of life's unsolved mysteries.
- Thai time continues to mystify me. If the boyfriend takes a trip out of town and I ask when he plans to return, the answer is invariably, "soon". I've learned that is a meaningless response; it can mean in a day or two or as long as a week.
- Out of town visitors seem to follow "rules" different from those I'm used to. First off, when family members come to visit they never arrive alone, but instead an entourage accompanies them.
Surprisingly, when I ask the boyfriend what their names are he has no idea nor does he make any effort to find out. And, of course, it's fruitless to ask how long they intend to stay - it can be days or even weeks.
- Guests apparently follow a different set of norms from US expectations. Strangely, it is not unusual for them to travel across the country and arrive without a baht to their name. Food, entertainment,and even booze are expected to be provided by the host.
- However, overnight guests comfortably make themselves at home - floors are swept, dishes washed, piled up laundry is cleaned, etc.

All that being said I wouldn't trade my life with my boyfriend for anything. I consider myself blessed that we found each other.

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mahjongguy
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Re: Living with a Thai boyfriend

Post by mahjongguy » Thu Jun 13, 2019 3:00 pm

RichLB wrote:
Thu Jun 13, 2019 10:15 am

- In the US when one leaves a room one is expected to excuse themselves.

Hmm. From the dinner table, sure, if everyone is wearing a tie. Otherwise, no, it sounds like a Noel Coward play. We only make announcements if there's a point. I'm going to take a nap (so go easy on the TV noise, please). I'm going to 7/11 (can I get you anything?).



- The mobile phone can become a permanent appendage to a boyfriend. The device is on permanently and commands far more attention than I do.

We both spend a fair amount of time on our computers but happily walk away when there are more useful things to do. We both also have decent smartphones but they are only used to make and receive occasional calls.


All that being said I wouldn't trade my life with my boyfriend for anything. I consider myself blessed that we found each other.

Amen to that.

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Re: Living with a Thai boyfriend

Post by Dodger » Thu Jun 13, 2019 4:29 pm

Thanks Rich,

An enjoyable read and oh so true.

My boyfriend displays many of the same behaviors as your's which I think we can just chalk up to the age and culture gaps.

The "refrigerator" stuff is just too funny. We have two residences, my condo in Bang Saray and his home in Buriram. I purchased Tupperware containers years ago for use at the condo and told him that any unwrapped food found in the fridge would end up in the trash. He used to store unwrapped vegetables that were actually multiplying into some sort of alien hybrid and would then ask me if I wanted a salad with dinner. I swear his immune system is so strong you could put him on Mars without a helmet and he'd survive.

I've always believed that deep inside every disappointment is an opportunity.

Thais don't always answer your questions. As you described, they will often just remain silent as if they didn't hear a word you were saying. This used to irritate me until I decided to give this technique a try myself. Now when he asks me a question that I don't want to answer either because it's attached to something I simply don't want to discuss at that point-in-time, or, a situation which may cause a confrontation, I just remain silent. He will usually ask again, and again I will remain silent. He rarely asks a third time.

I'm sure he would have a lot longer list of things that irritate him about me, but I guess that's where compromise comes in. We are (or, at least were) complete opposites. I enjoy having friends, going out, socializing, etc., and he is a total homebody, extremely shy/inward personality and has never once invited friends over or shown any desire to go out anywhere unless we're together. Admittedly, this can be challenging at times, but honestly, in the past I always had partners who were the same as me and things never seemed to work out. I find myself taming which is a good thing.

We made a rule years ago: Never go to sleep angry. Silent treatments don't work here. It forces communication and even some of that "confrontation" stuff sometimes, but seems to work pretty good. This is especially important if you want to get laid.

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Re: Living with a Thai boyfriend

Post by Jun » Thu Jun 13, 2019 8:01 pm

Fascinating. I would completely fail to accept the following behaviour.
RichLB wrote:
Thu Jun 13, 2019 10:15 am
..... an entourage accompanies them. Surprisingly, when I ask the boyfriend what their names are he has no idea
RichLB wrote:
Thu Jun 13, 2019 10:15 am
Strangely, it is not unusual for them to travel across the country and arrive without a baht to their name. Food, entertainment,and even booze are expected to be provided by the host.
As for leaving food out, this seems prevalent in other Asian cultures.
Despite lots of space in the fridge & an ample supply of plastic tubs with lids, postgraduate students from China & Malaysia will leave cooked food out on the worktop for a couple of days before finishing it off. Including even rice.

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Re: Living with a Thai boyfriend

Post by Dodger » Sat Jun 15, 2019 8:00 am

RichLB wrote:
Thu Jun 13, 2019 10:15 am
If the boyfriend takes a trip out of town and I ask when he plans to return, the answer is invariably, "soon". I've learned that is a meaningless response; it can mean in a day or two or as long as a week.
I'm not sure I would buy into this one, and I'm sure my partner wouldn't buy into it either..

Relationships (successful one's anyway) rely on honesty, trust, and a sense of commitment to each other. Dashing out-of-town and not telling your partner when you're returning is something singles do - or couples who have an open relationship and live in a "freestyle" arrangement.

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Re: Living with a Thai boyfriend

Post by RichLB » Sat Jun 15, 2019 9:26 am

Dodger wrote:
Sat Jun 15, 2019 8:00 am
Relationships (successful one's anyway) rely on honesty, trust, and a sense of commitment to each other. Dashing out-of-town and not telling your partner when you're returning is something singles do - or couples who have an open relationship and live in a "freestyle" arrangement.
I certainly agree on your assessment of ingredients for a successful relationship. However, I must have miscommunicated what I meant by the partner going on an out of town sojourn. The problem arises due to inability to anticipate demands from the family - what repairs are needed to the house, what festivals or parties are in the works, who else is planning a visit to the homestead, etc. I've learned that "soon" (as flexible as that might be) is preferable to a fixed date that invariably is delayed.

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Re: Living with a Thai boyfriend

Post by Dodger » Sat Jun 15, 2019 11:41 am

RichLB wrote:
Sat Jun 15, 2019 9:26 am
Dodger wrote:
Sat Jun 15, 2019 8:00 am
Relationships (successful one's anyway) rely on honesty, trust, and a sense of commitment to each other. Dashing out-of-town and not telling your partner when you're returning is something singles do - or couples who have an open relationship and live in a "freestyle" arrangement.
I certainly agree on your assessment of ingredients for a successful relationship. However, I must have miscommunicated what I meant by the partner going on an out of town sojourn. The problem arises due to inability to anticipate demands from the family - what repairs are needed to the house, what festivals or parties are in the works, who else is planning a visit to the homestead, etc. I've learned that "soon" (as flexible as that might be) is preferable to a fixed date that invariably is delayed.
Thanks for the clarification.

I certainly understand these type of delays and experience them myself.

I'm mystified every time there's a holiday or family get together of some sort up at his home village when his family members routinely arrive days earlier or days later than planned and seem to have no idea when they're actually departing. I guess I'm stuck in the western interpretation of "Planning".

The first time his family members visited us in Bang Saray I made the mistake of trying to "Plan". My first question to my boyfriend was..."where are they all going to sleep" and he just pointed to the floor. I laughed and said..."do you want you grandmother sleeping on the hard tile floor"? He responded..."she does it all the time". When they finally arrived (10 of them and we were expecting 6) they all sat down and started chatting and my boyfriend continuing sewing something as if they weren't even in the room. I was embarrassed to no end, but nobody else seemed concerned one bit. They are a strange breed that's all I can say.

Now, I just go with the flow...play my guitar with my headsets on...try not to step on anyone's head on my way to the hung nam at night...and let them enjoy life as they see it.

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