Readers' Submissions

Why I’ll Not Go To Teach in Thailand – The Pony Equation

  • Written by Major
  • October 5th, 2002
  • 6 min read


Hotels in Hat Yai more info


The following are my own unique experiences and observations.

I've been to Thailand three times and spent there about 3 months in total this year. Even though I don't live in Thailand I consider myself quite knowledgeable about the culture and the Thai way.

I've been thinking of moving to Thailand as an English teacher for a very long period of time weighting the pros and cons and now I know that if go, I'll not be happy.

On my second trip I hooked up myself with a bar girl who never asked me for money and I feel that she may even love me. Is she loyal to me? I doubt it. Do I confront her? No, she may have sponsors overseas and that probably keeps her from asking me for money. After all, where does she get the money to call me 2 times a week. Now, I've been around this girl, her friends and her family for quite some time. I've also observed people in Bangkok and its no secret that the Thais are very materialistic and "image" oriented. When in Thailand, people look at me as a young handsome successful farang on holidays visiting his Thai girlfriend. Compared to them I'm rich. Now, I hate living in the West and would love to live in Thailand, BUT only if I had a good paying job. As a starting English teacher, I would be making around 30,000 baht.

When I was in Isaan, just about every family had at least one member married to a westerner. When riding through the streets, I could easily spot which family that is as every "westerner" house was bigger, cleaner and made of bricks. Lot of the families now also have their sons working in factories in Taiwan and their daughters working the bars in Bangkok. In fact during my time in Isaan I have to say that I have hardly seen any women aged 17 to 27. All I saw were old hags and little girls. My guess is that all the good looking women are all working the bars. Lot of them make better money than many of the farang English teachers. Its sad but the fact is that today in this world money means respect / power and I felt it more in Thailand than anywhere else I've been. I know for sure that if I made about 30,000 in Thailand I would be looked down upon from the local rice farm girls to the rich Bangkok sugar daddy girls.

Now going back to my bargirl girlfriend, she knows that I'm young and don't make loads of cash unlike her "older" sponsors / customers but she knows that if she marries me down the road she will have that security once I do get older and more senior in my career. If I lived in Thailand making a few bucks, I'm sure that no matter how sexy or good looking I would be, the girl just looks towards the future and knows that I wouldn't be able to provide more than a few thousand baht. The girls do look for security as they do have dreams of buying that house and provide for their families. This is quite ironic but I think that in order to marry a poor Thai girl, you have to be somewhat wealthy because once married you have to support her and maybe her family too. Will I marry my BG girlfriend? I don't think I could afford it. The way I look at it, its like buying a pony. If you buy a pony, you gotta shell out a load of cash to keep it alive, you have to give it attention and care for it day and night….its a high maintenance. I think that most girls in Thailand now are quite jaded with western men giving them cash and their expectations and ideas of the West are unrealistic.

They think that farangs are all rich, own expensive cars and houses. How else would they afford to come to Thailand for holidays and spend lots of cash every year? Right….

Little do they know that many of those guys live in worse conditions than the bar girls themselves. My girlfriend's friends all have sponsors in the West and live in nice apartments. One of them gets 30,000 baht from her boyfriend in Germany. What does she do? She's permanently renting a hotel room on Sukhumvit where she brings customers for sex. Many of the men actually don't even pay. Again, I think its a status symbol as this girl brags to her friends that she can afford to have fun and screw whom ever she wants in her hotel room. Again if I made a few bucks in Bangkok, most of the girls would lose respect for me as I'm a westerner and it is expected to make more money than the girls.

Ok, now back to the marriage thing. I think that marrying a bar girl would end in a disaster (I am a little paranoid and don't trust bargirls). The longer the girl is exposed to the scene the more slutty, demanding and jaded she becomes. If I brought her to my country, I believe that she would run off in a couple of months if not weeks. No matter how good looking you are and no matter how much money you make, unless you're are very rich, there's always someone better looking and wealthier than you in the West. The bargirl instinct is set to always aiming for better. They are never satisfied. I could already hear my girlfriend asking why I don't own a BMW and a house. I can already see her looking lustfully at the model type looking stock broker guys driving around in their BMWs. Now with money aside, a Thai can't stay alone for long periods of time. When you're at work, what is she gonna do? Watch TV all day? Again, I can already hear her say, why you not make time for me? You not care? Its a vicious circle, you gotta work to keep the girl but don't have much time to spend with her. If you take time off work to be with her you won't have enough money. As I said, its the Pony thing.

The sad thing is that I am young, attractive and do make a decent salary but in no way can I afford a pony.

Therefore, unless someone offers me a job in Thailand for a decent salary I'll stay in the West and go to Thailand for holidays. I will also not marry my BG girlfriend as I can't afford it. So what do I do? Well, I think I may marry either an Asian from my own country or marry a Japanese girl. At least they know the reality and don't think that money grows on trees in the West. In the mean time, at least I can afford to play with the ponies, even rent them for a few weeks.

I love my Thai girlfriend and will keep in touch with her but I just don't think I'll ever marry her.

Those are my 2 cents.

Stickman says:

So many good points – some bargirls earning more than English teachers, the importance of money the world over, the cost of "keeping" a girl etc. I think many people need to reassess the idea of solely English teaching. Teaching English will give you a work permit and a one year visa. And in the right position, you might have a fairly light schedule which allows you to make money elsewhere or do other things in Thailand to supplement your income.