Walking Along the Razor’s Edge
In some ways, I’ve got a pretty good life that most would envy. Good credit, not many obligations and a business of my own that’s doing ok, despite the recession. I have the freedom to come and go as I please, as I do not have children or family obligations. My parents passed away a few years ago and I have no siblings. My wife is one of the “Thai good girls” and we have been happily married for 12 years. She has a college education, speaks English fluently and has a great career at a financial firm. When we met, she was drop dead gorgeous but over the years she has put on a few pounds but still looks good. Sounds like the perfect life, right?
So why after many years of visiting the Land of Smiles, am I leaning ominously towards the dark side? More about this later.
Over the past dozen years, I’ve discreetly partaken in a naughty massage on occasion. No matter how beautiful the girl or how friendly things would get, I’ve always treated such liaisons as a business transaction. I’m well aware of the dangers of getting emotionally attached to one of these girls. Sure, I’d have a favorite or two, I’d look for on a return trip but that’s as far as it would go.
Life in the Western world can be predictably boring without friends and family to provide the necessary moral support. Owning a business comes with demons that are difficult to exorcise. There really are no “friends” in business. Whether it is Western business or pay-for-play business on the streets of Bangkok, the same holds true. Business “friends” are in it for the money or perhaps looking for an opportunity to take advantage. The perfect life doesn’t sound so good when the only friends you have are people you do business with. Sometimes, I yearn for the old days of working with the other working Joe’s, collecting a paycheck and going out for a beer and a bitch session.
The beautiful Thai wife has become too familiar and the guarded romance is long gone. Even Angeline Jolie could become unappealing if she decided that simple polite manners were no longer necessary. Farting, burping, nose picking, using the toilet with the door wide open are not things that I find appealing (though for some it may be just the opposite). Even though I love my wife dearly, the romantic attraction is literally down the toilet. For better or worse or so the saying goes.
The last trip to Bangkok was different from all the rest. Maybe because of the above reasons, it became the catalyst towards something riskier and more dangerous than previous trips. As usual, I was out and about getting a massage or two and picking up a freelancer at one of the bars. For some odd reason, I met one particularly enticing girl at a beer bar who really caught my interest. Like none of the others before. Oddly enough, she is very “business” like with none of the “I like you too much. You are my only customer” BS. I am her customer and I get the full range of services and she also considers me her friend. I also made it clear that I take out other girls but will stay with her when she is around. So why this time, am I going nuts when it's time to get back on the plane and head home? She gave me her number and I resisted calling for a few weeks, hoping that the temptation would go away. It didn’t. I have called her a few times and she says she is anxiously waiting to see me again. She knows I’m married and I know she has other “customers”. We are business friends indeed with all the trappings that go with it.
Returning home was worse than ever before. Boring, day to day business and life with a farting Thai diva. You’ve probably guessed that I’ve already planned another trip back to Bangkok. I’m sitting at the crossroads and wondering whether it might be best to avoid my new “business friend” at the beer bar, lest something more complicated develops. The temptation is almost unbearable, as I think about her every day. The point of all this is to indicate how temptation and circumstances can weaken the defenses of those of us who really should “know much better”. This is going to be one hell of a rough trip.
These trips to Bangers would appear to be symptomatic of issues in the marriage. You could go on as you are now, or you could address the issues. That's a a decision only you can make. For what it's worth, if you were to leave your wife and get involved with someone else, things may well end up much the same a few years down the track. As you have described her, your wife does not sound like someone easily replaced. And the issues you talk about don't sound like the most challenging to resolve…