Many single men come to Thailand with the intention of finding love. Most of us would agree that Thai girls are beautiful but as hot-blooded, western men we need to appreciate that there are some fairly major cultural differences between us. These cultural differences often lead to frequent problems with your Thai girlfriend are usually caused by a misunderstanding on the part of one person. Here are some of the things that you need to understand.
Do Thai Family Comes First?
This is something that is very different to in the west as many Thai girls (even as adults) still live with their family. Often once you are married the Thai girl will expect you to live close to her parents or at least have a house in ‘the village’. Families will often require emotional or more frequently, financial support and you and your Thai girlfriend will be expected to provide this. If there is a problem, the family will come first. Sometimes but not in all instances, if you have a child with your Thai girlfriend or wife, “family” will then include you and your child.
This is quite a common problem even with Thai girls who speak excellent English. Due to the complexities of the English language, some things get lost in translation due to misunderstandings with grammar or vocabulary. Make sure you speak slowly and try to keep the language you use as simple as possible – certainly until you have got to know each other better.
This is one of the most frustrating aspects of Thai culture for many westerners. In essence, this is a Thai person complete inability to admit that they have done something wrong as it will “make them look bad” in front of others. So as not to “lose face” they will often resort to lying about the smallest things. As you can imagine, this is the cause of many an argument between falangs and Thais.
Cultural and Religious Differences
Thais and westerners have a very different general outlook on life. Thais, as a sweeping generalization, live for today whereas westerners prefer to plan for the future. Elders are always respected and this must be remembered. Always remember to ‘Wai’ someone older or in authority regardless of how much you disagree. Failure to do so will again cause embarrassment for your girlfriend.
The King of Thailand is also highly revered and the Royal family cannot be criticized by law so this is something you should be aware of. Whilst you may feel that you are simply expressing an opinion, your Thai girlfriend will be hugely embarrassed and uncomfortable so this can cause friction. Thailand is a Buddhist country and Buddhist beliefs play an important part in the day to day life. This rarely causes problems but is something that you should be conscious of.
Is money important?
Money plays an important part in Asian culture and that is no different in Thailand. It is frequently spoken about in day to day conversation and financially supporting someone is very important. Indeed, if you can’t ‘support’ your Thai girlfriend she is likely to end the relationship rather quickly.
Applying for a general visitors visa
A visit to the UK may help your Thai girlfriend to understand some of the cultural differences between the UK and Thailand. In order to do this, she would need to apply for a UK Tourist Visa which would allow her to visit the UK for up to 6 months.
We can help!
We can help your Thai girlfriend to apply for a UK Tourist Visa or any other UK Visa. If this is something that you would find useful, you can call us on +66 (0)80 102 2328, +66 (0) 38 420 313 or +44 (0) 20 8133 8059, email us on: firstname.lastname@example.org or alternatively contact us via our website.