I Knew And They Still Almost Got Me
I visited Bangkok for a week in early November. Although it was my first time, I entered Thailand with a pretty clear perception of the 'bargirl syndrome'.
Last year, I had a relationship with a Thai girl in England. For anyone who thinks it is any different dating a Thai girl over here — get real. I went through the whole rigmarole that will be very familiar to the readers of this site (eventually finding out she had two kids and a husband, meeting her from 'work' outside massage parlours in south London with names such as 'Bubbles', running into male 'friends' of hers who went slightly mad when they saw me holding her hand, coping with increasing demands for money and so on). The only difference is that everything here is 10 times more expensive — paying 125 baht for a lady drink seems a trifle when you are 200 pounds down after a shopping trip and evening out in central London.
Combine all this with the fact that I have a good friend who lived in Bangkok for eight years, and that I spent my evenings before the trip perusing the contents of this site then it is obvious that I was preparing myself to be pretty wise.
First night in Nana was nearly textbook. After a sleep to recharge my batteries at my hotel, I went out feeling relaxed and 'in control' of my emotions. Inevitably, I soon hooked up with a girl, who, while not a stunner in the looks department, seemed like a gentle introduction to Bangkok. I had worked out at this point that there were definite advantages to being a young-looking 30 year old with all my own teeth. The bargirl I went off with did her best. She got pissed as a newt on cocktails and burst into tears when I took her clothes off later on. I then heard about dead brothers, family turmoil, her lack of barfines and so on. Anyway, I said we could just have a cuddle and it was okay. We slept for a bit and then had some really good sex for the remainder of the night. However, I made it clear that 'me butterfly' from the first hour of meeting her. She tried to persuade me to come and barfine her again, but like a sensible lad I made no promises.
So pretty sorted eh? But the next day it all went wrong. I'm not a bastard to women and I felt really cheap kicking her out so I could get my breakfast. I didn't like myself, even though I had been really nice to her when she got upset the night before. I think this is a real dilemma to some guys in Bangkok — the 'butterfly' approach, while very sensible, doesn't satisfy my emotions at all. A part of me really wanted to barfine the same girl again, however, reason took over and I didn't return to her bar.
So, next evening, I had a real gander around Nana. Talked to a lot of girls before ending up in a pool bar just outside the Plaza. Nobody talked to me for a while but then this very pretty girl sat next to me, obviously very shy, but very funny. After a very strange first evening (when I got the feeling I was being sussed out) we ended up spending the rest of my holiday together, apart from one night when she wasn't working, and my male hormones took over (that and Heineken).
So, I tried my best to 'butterfly' it, but for some of us it just doesn't satisfy. Bargirls offer an emotional side, that, if you meet a 'nice' girl like I did, unpick all your previous intentions. Even then, I think I was pretty sensible: I didn't make promises for the future; didn't agree to send her money (she never asked); and didn't agree to be a 'boyfriend'. In return I think I got some honesty from my new friend: no 'love you long time' bollocks and she made it clear that when I'd gone she would be back in the bar on the scout for nice farangs. Since coming home, we have emailed each other but nothing more.
However, it is obvious to me that despite all the good advice, the horror stories on here will continue. I think most people want more than sex and the fact that Thai bargirls can (on the surface) satisfy emotions to do with companionship and feeling wanted means that farangs are always open to be exploited. I went with my eyes wide open but nearly got hooked. I probably won't go back to Bangkok — I know I'll get into trouble.
It's good that sites such as this exist and the advice (and previous experience in England) kept me out of serious bother, but it was a real struggle. So many times I had to bite my tongue and not utter the fatal words 'I love you'.
I love the last sentence of the second to last paragraph. Maybe not a bad thing…