Forewarned Is Forearmed – Clean Up Operation!
A short time ago I wrote a submission about my visit to Phuket and touched on the subject of the Thai bar girls and my intimate encounter with one of them.
It is always difficult to judge how a written piece comes across to others. You know what you want to say in your own mind and all you can do is approach it in a way that is coherent and tactful to the sensitivities of others while getting your point across in a way that holds interest. However, sometimes you just get it wrong. I think that I might have come across blinkered and stiff upper-lipped in my approach to certain subjects and wish to clear up some points raised in a number of emails I have received….most of which were full of praise and some constructive criticism based on experience and wisdom on aspects of Thailand that surpass my own experience of the country. Almost all of the emails quite rightly pointed out a few things that I totally agreed with.
“I told myself I would never pay for the company of a woman…”
The issue that I was taken to task with most was what I said about promising to myself that I would never pay for the company of a woman.
What I actually meant when I said this was – I would never use the services of a prostitute – it was a very specific principle that I was referring to. When I say ‘pay for the company of a woman ‘ I mean in the conventional sense – paying for sexual gratification or favours. However, a few people have been quick to point out that we, men, end up paying for sex, whatever way you look at it – be it through keeping a high maintenance girlfriend, a wife, getting a divorce….a date with the woman of your dreams in a fancy restaurant and plain good old fashioned security!
I agree, we do, and this applies to both men and women and anyone at the sharp end of an alimony or palimony can testify to this! Relationships do not survive on charm and good looks alone…money and security is just as important as all the other basic ingredients of love and trust and respect. However, lots of money does not guarantee an easy ride….in fact it is more likely that the more you have got the more chance of much trouble and strife (incidentally the expression ‘trouble and strife’ is a term of endearment used in Britain to describe ‘wife’) – what does that tell you?
Anyway, that is what I meant when I said that I would never pay for female company…and as I stated clearly in my submission, this changed when I went to Thailand. I also said that I wasn’t judging anybody, in fact I was only attempting to rationalise the situation from my own perspective and attitude towards the whole thing and how easily a guy like me can find himself going against his own judgment and principles. So if anything, I was judging myself, and I concluded that what I did wasn’t so bad after all. Two consenting adults, much fun had, and the elements of dignity, decency, propriety and respect were all present too!
I guess what I also wanted to underline was that to me and my encounter with the girl talked about in my last submission, it was important to adhere to some ground rules, the first and foremost being that I conduct myself as a gentleman and treat the woman as a human being, not as something I just bought (there are too many foreigners that go to Thailand quite literally to shag it – they are not seeing women, they see pussy, and cheap and plentiful at that). Now some of you may say, yeah, damn right….that’s the situation, GET OVER IT!
Well, to me the situation is also this – they are women working in a profession that makes them extremely vulnerable to the abuse of men AND women, and regardless of how they got there they do not deserve this. I said in my last submission that many are forced into it by circumstance – which is true. But this seems to have been interpreted as naivety on my part. To the contrary, I am aware…most of all through reading many submissions on this site (as I said Stickman submissions enlightened me and answered many of my questions when I got back from my first visit) that there are many girls working as prostitutes for the obvious financial gains to be had in comparison to conventional employment, and that many of these are from middle class backgrounds making fortunes in Bangkok and elsewhere, girls with a good start in life. I am also aware that many of the poorer women do so as an alternative to the harsh reality of working back home in agriculture, or that simply there is nothing going for them in their rural hometown and that the world of Phuket, Pattaya and Bangkok are seductive to them and offer a means of bridging the gap between industry and agriculture, a gap that isolates the rural poor from the commercial and industrial centres. I am aware that many women are functioning as breadwinners to boost the status of the family back home and the complex issues of inheritance of land and property (their home) through Teeding can place pressures on them to enter into the profession as an insurance policy to ensure that they keep it. There are also more sinister ways that these girls find there way into the brothels of Bangkok and the clubs of Pattaya through the misery of debt bondage…we know this too.
So I may have come across with a black and white view in my first submission, but did not intend to. But I also know that I am not a fortune teller or a mind reader and I certainly cannot know the path or route of any one woman to the bar that I may find myself in. So I feel that benefit of the doubt is called for…..and I decide that when I go next time I will not engage the services of the working girls, as I cannot know what brought her there, no more than I can know if that lovely smile and pretty face is because she is genuinely happy to be in my company or happy to be doing what she is doing full stop! It is a conscious decision that I have taken. This does not mean that I will not have any human contact with bargirls – that would be silly and pointless. I enjoyed very much having a laugh and a joke with many girls working in the bars of Phuket on my last visit – but apart from the one I mentioned in my last submission – I just didn’t bar fine them….it is not an unwritten rule to do so! <Be careful if you want to hang, but not bang. Many guys have tried that, and never always successful – Stick>
I also reiterate my position on keeping in mind that the experience is driven by money, and that love has nothing to do with it. It amazes me that so many men, men in good jobs back home and presumably some intelligence, seem to take leave of their senses when it comes to their encounters with these women….these guys are truly naive. But I appreciate that the whole Thailand experience can cloud judgment, as it does present a piece of heaven to those who visit. This is all the more reason to keep your head on your shoulders and one's feet on the ground.
There have been some recent submissions that have highlighted what I perceive to be the main underlying issue when I think of the so called ‘naughty nightlife/sex industry’ in Thailand, Cambodia and the Philippines etc. – that being the lack of opportunities and options open to the most vulnerable and poorer people. If such countries invested in the future of its people by ensuring decent standards of education to its disadvantaged, and an economic infrastructure capable of supporting and utilising its most valuable resource, its people, then there would not be this disproportionate reliance on its women to sell themselves. It is a sorry state of affairs when options are so limited to the poorer majority that its men are effectively emasculated and its women are sold. They are being failed.
It is also a situation that is open to abuse by those with the good fortune of having been born in a country that at the very least gives them a fighting chance by offering them decent standards of education, healthcare, employment, opportunity and a currency that goes a long way in a place like Thailand, Cambodia or the Philippines. I say abuse, because, while many visitors, including your humble (and admittedly opinionated) writer, are considerate and mindful of such details and generally observe some basic rules and morality, there are many that could simply be described as sexual predators and vile and pointless human beings.
I guess my emphasis on respect and the human element was to counter the tendency of the most ignorant, to dehumanize women with little option or alternative to do much else and see countries like Thailand, Cambodia and the Philippines simply as meat markets to gorge themselves on. I read a weekly on Stickman about guys who go around ripping off bar girls. These guys expend vast amounts of time and effort in meeting these women – through chat rooms, playing silly games and comparing notes with other scumbags as well as scouring the bars and clubs like parasites. How sad and pathetic these people truly are. Unfortunately there are many of these scumbags exploiting the poorest of SEA countries for their playground. Perhaps SPENDING POWER is the only power they do have, as I suspect that they are generally inadequate in their own countries on several levels.
As some esteemed submission writers have stated clearly in the past (a certain Frank Visakay for one), if you are going to play, make sure you observe the rules. I would add, keep you head and your dignity and extend respect, common courtesy and consideration to the women you encounter as part of your leisurely activities, the overall experience will be much richer.
I thought your first piece was just fine.
One of the things you touch on here, about how guys come to Thailand and sort of just fall into the bargirl scene is something that interests me and which I cannot remember reading anything really good about.