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Thai Definition Of Pain

  • Written by Anonymous
  • May 25th, 2005
  • 4 min read


Black Pagoda Patpong Bangkok

The Thai Definition Of Pain

By Rat Boy


Some years ago I was living together with a Thai girl, I'll call her S., who I managed to get over with a tourist visa. During that period of 3 months I wanted to find out if we could live and have a future together…

Only few days after her arrival she came to my complaining about 'a big pain in her stomach'…

As her English was quite basic, it wasn't very clear to me what was the matter, but she said she had to go to hospital fast… as the pain seemed unbearable, I thought this had to be something serious…

Anyhow, by looking at the pain she was in, I took immediate action. My brother in law was working in the emergency department of the biggest hospital in town, my sister was working there as a surgeon. So it took me just a phone call to get a "VIP" treatment organized. Doctors were in standby to do all kind of tests while I was on my way with S. to the hospital.

Normally it takes days here in Western Europe to get appointments and long hours in waiting rooms before you can see a doctor, but as I was the brother of doctor X, a full medical VIP check up was done within 2 hours after we arrived at the hospital's emergency room… I managed to see several specialists who looked into all possible angles of the problem… It was therefore also a bit embarrassing for me when they all came to the conclusion that they couldn't find a thing… They gave some medicine anyhow and we returned back home. S. never took the medicine she got… instead she took some Thai medicine which she carried with her from Thailand and the next day the pain was gone…

While time passed by, I learned S. had a completely different perception on pain, and even more on medicine! She had absolutely no trust in Western medicine as she felt they didn't work. And for her a good medicine was a medicine that worked instantly… The only Western medicine she wanted was 'antibiotics' which she took for every occasion, and which she took as long as she felt sick… It was as simple as : I got a headache -> I take antibiotics -> the headache is gone = the antibiotics worked and she stopped taking them. I tried to explain her over and over again that antibiotics don't work that way but in the end I gave up. When she was sick she asked for antibiotics, she took one pill, and most of the time the next day she was "cured".

When the tourist visa was about to expire, few days before she returned, she woke me up at 3am in the morning. "Darling, I have something in my ear, it's like an animal, the pain so bad, I need to go to hospital NOW !" As by that time I knew her pain level was quite low, or her level of exaggerating quite high, I told her I would take her to see a doctor in the morning and she better take a pain killer or antibiotics and try to have some sleep. But no, she said : "If you don't take me, I take taxi and go alone". As I didn't want to end up as the bastard (hey, who knows this time it was serious !?), I got dressed and drove her to (another – too embarrassed to go back to the first one) hospital nearby. Straight into the emergency department where normally people with broken arms, necks, strokes, etc were taken… 4 am in the morning… S. had an "animal" in her ear…

After having seen two doctors, they told me they couldn't find anything wrong. They prescribed some eardrops and advised me next time not to come for these kind of things directly to hospital.

When I saw S. few minutes later, she asked me what the doctors said. You should have seen her face when I told her they "only" gave some eardrops… huge disappointment and disbelieve that the doctors could not find the 'animal' in her head…

Conclusion : the eardrops were never used… the next day she took her magic Thai medicine again (why didn't she do this from the beginning ???) and the pain was gone….

Anyhow, I don't say all Thai girls are like this but reading the story of BEN DOVER definitely reminded me of my ex-Thai girlfriend :-)

Stickman's thoughts:

Yep, they do tend to have a propensity to blow things out to be MUCH worse than they are. Hunger is the one that makes me laugh…..when a Thai is hungry, perhaps they haven't eaten for just a few hours, you'd think it was the end of the world!