Stickman Readers' Submissions June 9th, 2008

The Third Side Of The Triangle

Are you interested in hearing about the fallout from Thai girl/farang romance from the third side of the triangle, i.e. the wife whose life has been wrecked? If so, here is my story:

In August 2007 my husband and I went for a 10 day holiday in Phuket, which had been a dream of mine for a long time. We stayed in a beautiful 5 star hotel with the most magnificent swimming pool I have ever seen. It was picture postcard perfect, the weather was good and the food a gourmet's dream. After day two I found myself lazing around the pool on my own while my husband was out sampling the massage parlours, and at night after dinner he would take off again to take "night shots" of the activities going on in Bangla Road. "Oh well, it's his holiday too" I kept reassuring myself and was secretly quite amused at his nocturnal forays. "I don't have to worry", I thought, he is 70 years old and we had a 40 year marriage, two daughters, two grandchildren, a beautiful home in Australia and the rest of our retirement to look forward to — maybe another trip to Thailand next year, maybe the hill country next time.

A couple of days after returning home, his mobile rang in the middle of the night and I could detect a female voice, rather childish and high pitched. "Oh, just a wrong number" he says. When it rang again the next night and the night after, I knew it was no wrong number and when I asked him who was calling he said it was just a young girl he met in Phuket who wanted to be his pen pal to improve her English. He decided it would be a good idea to correspond with her by text and that way we would not get woken up at 2 AM and it would help her with her English better than verbal conversations. That led on to him buying his own laptop so he could continue to teach her English by email. Did he really think I was falling for that? I thought he was a silly old fool, but what was the harm in him emailing her – we were still safe and secure in our lovely home 10,000 km away with our retirement nest egg safely invested. I thought it wouldn't last long before he got bored. That is, until by mistake or in a moment of senility, he sent an email to me which was destined for her. Unfortunately for him it contained previous emails to her and from her back to him as they had being clicking on the "reply" option to each other's emails. What I learned was this:

She was a 26 year old from Loei in north-eastern Thailand and had two children to support. Her father was dead and her mother looked after her children while she worked the massage parlours in Phuket. She really wanted to be a hairdresser to get away from the bad life but could not afford to pay for training. My husband was helping her achieve this by sending money every month – yes, my money too. Of course, we had a blazing row, but instead of showing any remorse or regret, he announced he was in love with her, and was intending to go and live with her in Thailand for the rest of his life.

It is now nine months later. He has had two trips back to Thailand, both to bail her and her family out of trouble. (1) He paid medical expenses for her uncle who was injured in a motor cycle accident; (2) he gave her money for legal fees after she told him she was arrested for the self defence murder of someone who tried to rape her and would have to spend three months in jail unless she paid a lawyer.

We are divorced. Our beautiful home is sold and I am living in rented accommodation as I can't afford to buy another home. Meanwhile he is in the process of packing up and moving to Thailand in a matter of weeks. Both our daughters are distraught and embarrassed at what their dad has done, and are sad that he won't be around to see his grandchildren growing up.

Is there anyone out there who can even attempt to explain why (some) men lose all rationality when they "fall in love" with a Thai girl, and are prepared to wreck not only their own lives, but those of his family?

He Clinic Bangkok

Stickman's thoughts:

There are two sides to every story and his version of events leading up to what happened might be rather different but it has to be said that it does seem rather a shock for him to do this so abruptly after such a long marriage / and at that age.

I imagine that constant pressures for money from her family will soon bring him back to reality and it will not be too long before he starts to wonder what went wrong.

It's very sad to see families split up like this.

nana plaza