Readers' Submissions

Is Ethical Dating Possible?

  • Written by Anonymous
  • October 31st, 2006
  • 13 min read

Black Pagoda Patpong Bangkok

By Jao Chuu

Dana raised an important issue in a post last month. Is it ethical to date allegedly 'good Thai girls' (GTG) while simultaneously sporting around the p4p scene? Several posters have addressed this issue since, with thoughtful contributions.

I have vacationed in Siam for at least one month per year for the past six years. Daily p4p has been my norm, whilst avoiding GTGs. This choice has been made deliberately for a long list of reasons, some of which are ethical. I raise questions for each reader to consider when formulating dating rules of engagement. Foresight, insight, inner clarification and communication will amplify the sanuk one finds in interfacing with phuying Thai.

Definition Ethical is customarily defined as conforming to a moral paradigm construed by some authority. The most popular ethical edifices are in the theories of economic, political and religious thought. It is oft quipped that morality is an accident of geography. I.e., one adopts the moral compass and ethical ideals of the culture in which one is raised. Of course, the magnitude of hypocrisy between the paradigm and the conduct of believers is shocking. There is an alternative to selecting a paradigm. I have instead cultivated attention to each situation to maximize a win-win dance for all involved. This is driven by pure bohemian hedonism. The sanuk of all involved getting high together surpasses the sanuk sanam of each individual blindly grabbing for his own jollies. Being considerate is being considerate of others and oneself because they are inextricably interdependent and part of a greater whole (society, the species and biosphere). If you cannot take good care of yourself it is unlikely that you can take good care of a teeruk.

Who needs the intellectual challenge of sizing up each moment when one can simply program oneself to operate on a paradigm? After all, there are more similarities than differences in the axiologic codes of the major religions. Why not leave well enough alone – why attempt to re-invent the wheel? Many highly intelligent beings have formulated these paradigms, which have withstood the test of centuries of civilization. I think these were intended as general guidelines for the authoritarian, unawakened masses. The principles need to be understood at an abstract (not literal) level and adapted to different contexts and times. As one develops one's perceptual alacrity, the need to rely upon these paradigms wanes and perception works better than blindly following a paradigm.

I am grateful to the sages who formulated ethical paradigms. It has improved my ability to hear the voice of conscience and augment social and career success immeasurably.

Many posters have opined that khon Thai do not have moral scruples. Instead, they use prevarication, deception, denial, avoidance, deceit, nonveracity, lazy deference to authority, silence, tantrums (acting out) and many colors of lies to save face and manipulate others. I have not had enough interaction with Thais to comment on this broad generalization. However, this is not what I am suggesting by hedonistic, win-win ethical adaptation. The alleged stereotyped Thai way is not considerate, win-win or perceptually perspicacious.

Win-win ethics entails being awake to the vicissitudes of the moment, responsive, empathetic, communicative, considerate and looking at the big picture of all involved. Is this possible when grappling with the conundrums presented by Thai-farang relationships? The barriers of linguistic and cultural differences makes it even more important to interact with the skills of win-win ethics. Develop an awareness of the paradigms, expectations, mores and norms of each's culture. Discuss the reasons and functions of such. Select phuying who have fluency in a language in which you are fluent, help her develop English proficiency, develop your Thai fluency, use bilingual dictionaries to facilitate conversation. It is very difficult to optimize win-win ethics unless the following topics can be discussed fluently, without an interpreter: feelings, values, interests, reasons for behavior, self-image, how the other is perceived, preferences, agendas, goals, motivation, priorities, co-planning, expectations, honesty, the role of the relationship in each of your families, roles and addressing complaints/dissatisfaction.

Do you like others to be paranoid (mistrustful, wary, suspicious, questioning your motives)? Then be paranoid. Do you like others to be critical of you? Then be critical of others. Do you like others to play it close to the vest? If so, play it close to the vest. This karmic cycle immediately affects the day-to-day quality of your relationships. To draw out the best in others, one must exhibit skillful pro-social behavior. Do so and be treated to others at their best.

Win-win ethicality entails harmlessness. If you harm the birds they will take flight. If you do not, they will eat from your hand. In order to be harmless, one needs insight, empathy and agile communication skills. More on harmlessness below as it applies to dating.

Yes, it is certainly easier to go Neanderthal, club her over the head and drag her back to your cave. But easier is very inferior to win-win ethics because win-win creates a relationship on many levels. This is true for relationships of any duration: short time (one-night stand) to long time (the longest typically becoming sami and panrayaa, i.e., the "m" word). Win-win anticipates and detects subtle problems before they gather destructive momentum. I.e., win-win minimizes pain by being proactive. No need to worry about this becoming boring. Phuying Thai are famous for generating an array of drama that is unanticipated by phuchai farang. Not only are individual differences perpetually in the mix but the individuals are constantly changing.

Communication Isn't over 90% of communication nonverbal? So why bother developing common fluency? One is limited to a very primitive relationship if there is little common fluency and each relies upon nonverbal communication. Furthermore, understanding and empathy are very shallow and the aforementioned relationship topics cannot be sorted out.

If both parties want a relationship where the phuying is merely a sex slave, maid, tour guide and arm candy for outings while the phuchai is a babied sugardaddy; mai pen rai. Individuals whose relationship needs are met by such an arrangement are rare. These are transient and self destruct because individuals have a wide spectrum of primary relationship (teeruk) needs that are not met by such a limited liaison. Such 'Thai girlfriend experience' (TGE) flings are very popular with sex tourists. They are symbiotic in a very limited sense but can be exhilarating. No reason to avoid this as long as there are two mutually-consenting adults that collude in silence or explicitly on playing out an early-adolescent style of infatuation. Variety is the spice of life!

Individual differences rule. Each phuying is to be dealt with as unique – not as a member of a stereotyped class (p4p pro v GTG). This maximizes probability of compatibility. Win-win ethics can enhance the high of encounters with phuying baa bia and GTG.

When developing a win-win relationship, what are the issues to address? The aforementioned relationship topics are a good starting place. Particularly early on, the following are critical to weeding out the incompatibles and discovering compatibility: Are each of you on the same page? Are you two seeking

a) puen (friend), b) gik (boy toy or playgirl for infatuation fling),

b) teeruk (lover), d) panrayaa or sami (wife or husband),

e) sopanee (p4p Sheila)? Yes, people can change their proclivity from one category to another in mid-relationship. If one of you turns to another page, communicate about termination v re-invention. What are your relationship expectations, agendas and preferences? What style and parameters suit each? Do you prefer an open relationship permitting each to butterfly? If you want to be a jao chuu, do you want a don't ask – don't tell policy or mutual disclosure? Honest deliberation at the outset will promptly eradicate incompatibles and save tonnes of time and frustration. I have met Caucasian and Asian birds who refuse to date any bloke unless he is seriously marriage minded. This means willing to confer about marriage plans on the first date!

Gender Bias Each gender has a typical genetic bias, reinforced by culture. Birds are driven to seek long-term stability, re$ource support from Mr. Right and reproduction. At least in the recent history of homo sapiens they also prefer monogamy. Blokes often call this monotony. Blokes are driven to sow their seeds in a diversity of fertile fields (serial or simultaneous polygamy), accumulate re$ources to make themselves more appealing to birds and be a provider for the whole family. Both genders seek out the fittest specimens for mates. To up your popularity, become more fit in all aspects.

This differing bias creates big time problems. It leads to phuying faking orgasms and phuchai to faking relationships: Damage control is required early on in a serious relationship.

Another bias-related problem occurs during the get-acquainted stages. Blokes are driven to score quickly whereas the Sheilas are seeking verification of his re$ources and commitment to long time (a lot longer than twelve hours guys)! Each gender is aware of this stereotype and often contends with agenda clash via deception, lies, avoidance and prevarication. Phuying say something like, "you are cute" to flatter the phuchai about his sex appeal and compliment his successes, hoping to learn more about his re$ource inventory/potential. They minimize the importance of the "m" word so as not to scare off the potential ATM. Phuchai exaggerate their re$ources (unless they read Stickmanbangkok!) And initiate sex play. The most antisocial ways this difference plays out are: a) the phuchai proclaims that he is committed to the "m" word, is madly in "l" with her and finds her to be suay maak; b) the phuying fakes interest in sex when she does not yet feel ready to be intimate or she 'accidentally' becomes pregnant. Both of these ploys are ways of attempting to trap the phuchai into "m" when he is not ready. The translation of a) for many a suitor is that "m" and "l" are far from his mind but he has the hots for her body as well as the bodies of many other phuying. Some scoundrels will promise "m" by a certain near-future date but they must first be sure about their carnal compatibility. He further persuades her that he cannot set laew whilst wearing a party hat. If she is impregnated, he sends her 10,000TB and tells her to abort. She informs him that she will have their offspring and requires 10,000TB monthly until delivery and 20,000TB monthly thereafter. However, she may not actually be pregnant or she may have been impregnated by another bloke. She may threaten legal action or far more ominous, unleash Detective Stickman on him! Both genders hear what they want to hear. Let the uproar begin!

Preventing gender-bias problems requires identification of disparate agendas and exploring how each can get their needs met honestly and without exploitation and coy game- playing.

Harmless Dating

I regard this as an unattainable ideal, which exists only in theory. However, the closer the relationship is to mutual harmlessness, the higher the sanuk level. Glamourized images of romance are portrayed in the arts as being attainable. Many are disappointed and frustrated when their relationships bear little resemblance to these idealized media images. It is important to regard these as fantasies rarely realized. This realization would prevent the current state of jep maak (gargantuan epidemic of pain).

Each homo sapien harms many others inadvertently on a daily basis. Resource use contributes to environmental degradation. Neglectful health habits destroys or at least degrades one's quality of life and functioning and places many forms of burdens on society (higher health insurance premiums for all, diminished productivity at work, requiring more help from others in their geriatric years). Each spreads thousands of types of microbes around the environment daily, increasing communicable disease incidence.

Numerous posters have addressed the topic of whether bareback play is ethical with p4p or GTG or both simultaneously. The more bareback promiscuity in which one engages, the higher the risk of STDs and unwanted pregnancy. E.g. p4p phuying can contract STDs from phuchai who were exposed by barebacking with one or more of their GTGs. IMHO barebacking outside of a monogamous relationship is inconsistent with win-win ethics. There may be extenuating circumstances justifying promiscuous barebacking but I cannot conceive of such.

As long as a party hat is always worn, promiscuous lustful activities with p4p, GTG or both simultaneously can usually be ethical. This is providing that you and your gik or teeruk are in agreement about having an open relationship. Absent such agreement, playing around on the side is unethical. Tell me blokes, if you have a teeruk but also wish to be jao chuu, are you willing to grant your GTG permission to butterfly? What say – you object? How jealous, possessive and selfish you are. Are some things better left unsaid? Are you under the delusion that sneaking around will not have a deleterious impact on the relationship? Perhaps you are not ready for a teeruk and its time to switch back to p4p. Think you are a trackless jao chuu? Wait until your teeruk retains the services of Detective Stickman who photographs you in the act!

Is BDSM unethical? Not if it is engaged in by mutually consenting adults who stop short of inflicting fractures, burns, lacerations. OK call me a prude for suggesting that hospitalizing the teeruk is unethical.

Harm prevention in relationships with anyone requires identification of the causes of harm within yourself: greed, ignorance, delusion and fear. The journey of insight is the most difficult challenge in life. This is a monumental topic for other submissions.

Relationship Demolition Can a couple part without the destructive drama commonly instigated by phuying Thai? One approach is to change your ways so that she has no interest in you – without her being aware that you are orchestrating the demolition. Skilful surreptitious execution requires that you have the aforementioned insight, empathy, knowledge of what pushes her buttons. It also entails using dysfunctional communication skills. Yes, such a ruse is harmful game-playing but it is usually less harmful to the couple than a ballistic finale'. Hey, people change and often grow apart. Clinging on to a dead relationship is toxic for both.

Win-win Mixture of p4p and GTG Dating

It is common knowledge to both genders that prior to marriage, simultaneous dating of multiple giks is typical if not the norm. In Siam, having multiple teeruks simultaneously is also common as is having one teeruk and multiple giks and / or (for phuchai) p4p action. Both genders engage in this and usually do not disclose such to the other players. This is unethical because it engenders many types of harm in addition to STD risk. It is ethical to carry on in all of the above permutations of promiscuity as long as a party hat is always worn, one is not too intoxicated on substances to use the hat effectively, you do not have an active transmissible infection, there is no needle sharing and there is mutual consent to butterfly. Also, keep up on your immunizations (pneumonia, hepatitis A & B, DPT, perhaps dengue, HPV etc.). However, multiple simultaneous dating partners will dilute and retard the development of a primary teeruk (main squeeze) relationship. For those with aspirations of having a family, this is delayed by such carrying on. Thus, it is not without harm. One ethical option is to engage in p4p whilst casually dating one or more GTGs yet keeping one's hands off the GTGs. If you try this, many of the GTGs will attempt to tear off your clothes. Please write up submissions on how you handled this (a p4p short time just before each GTG date?).

Wrap Please tell us your take on the above topics and rationales for your opinions. I am obviously not in agreement with the view that all is fair in war and love. The current state of dating and relationships is disastrously harmful, which contributes to many social problems. Tell us how it can be improved and the sanuk level elevated for all.

Stickman's thoughts:

I REALLY enjoyed this submission and thoroughly agree with your second to last sentence in the last paragraph.