The (On-line) Dating Game
On my most recent trip to LOS, I broke up with my long time girlfriend. I won’t say anything bad about her, but I was developing a sense that she didn’t want to be with me, as much as I wanted to be with her. The reality is that I am not
necessarily the greatest catch aesthetically, though I think I have a lot of the qualities that most Thai women claim to seek.
In spite of what I have written in other articles on this site, I keep toying with the idea of retiring to Thailand, and I could probably get an O visa right now. I own a business where my brother works for me, and my input is mainly running the Internet side of the business, where we get most of our customers from. Business is very good, and I discussed with my brother, that I might move to Thailand in the near future, and do my stuff from there. He is agreeable to this.
I have made a decision, that I will not move, until I think I have found the right woman to be with. At the risk of seeming shallow, I am intending to come to Thailand every three months next year for about three weeks at a time to carry out what might euphemistically be called “job interviews”. The one thing I hate most about the time I have spent in Thailand is the looking, when the time has come to “change partners”. Thailand is like a fine restaurant when it comes to choosing a girl. The problem is to choose the main course. You get your main course, and you see the person on the next table eating something that you thought of ordering, and then wish you had chosen that instead.
In my earliest days in Thailand, I would try to select the most beautiful girl I could find, and then as I was walking around with her, I would be looking at other Farangs, to see if mine was better than his. In most cases, they were. In some cases, I wondered why he would choose someone so plain and unattractive.
Then I met my LTGF, and though she was beautiful, I found after a few days, I was no longer looking at the “competition”. It suddenly occurred to me, that the man with the plain girl and I had something in common. We were both happy with the women we were with. It also occurred to me, that this was what it was really all about. It didn’t matter how beautiful or plain the girl, as long as we/they were both happy together!
I admit that most of the girls I have met in my time in Thailand have been bargirls, and I would also admit to the fact that I would consider a long term or even permanent relationship with a bargirl. I can empathise with these girls, and understand that most of them work in a bar out of economic necessity rather than choice. They have a strong family ethic, and it occurs to me that if you find the right one, they will adapt that ethic to you. However, I find that relationships with bargirls usually end after two days with me because of one reason or another. Usually they fail to stimulate my mental faculties due to their lack of education.
So my next trip is planned for February, and I am thinking what can I do to get it right as quickly as possible? <Rethink this. Quickly is not a word I would use when setting out to find the right woman – Stick> The thought occurred to me to look into dating websites. I tried a few but with the exception of one, I unsubscribed quite quickly. I uploaded my picture, and wrote a fairly detailed profile. I think this is important because if I describe myself as a cross between Brad Pitt, Einstein and Bill Gates, anybody I meet is likely to be a bit disappointed when they see the real me. I tell them I come to Thailand a few times a year etc, and I am looking for this type of woman blah blah blah.
Within a few minutes of going live, I am receiving several messages on the website server, nearly all of whom are Filipinas. I write back politely saying that I only visit Thailand, and that I put it in my profile. Still the messages flood in from Filipinas. I amend my profile telling people that they should read my profile before they write to me. The next paragraph tells them that I do not go to the Philippines, and that unless they are coming to Dublin, there is no point writing to me.
I then get messages calling me racist. I write to explain and amend the profile again. Still I get the flood of Filipinas, about 15 a day. Now I just don’t bother to reply anymore. I did make an exception to this. I received a message from a girl who claimed to be 19, and had the username, “Hotsweetpussy”. I wrote back to her saying that I could never go with a girl who can describe herself this way to a complete stranger.
Of course, when you go on a dating website, a lot of what is said has to be taken on trust. I received a message from a Chinese girl who was living in Paris. I speak a tiny bit of French, and sent a reply to her. Let’s face it, Paris is a lot closer than Bangkok.
I get a reply, and now she states that she lives in Benin. The more I speak to her, the more red flags crop up. I am starting to have my doubts. The problem is, that using the website's messaging system, you can’t carry out any real checks. Luckily, she offers to send me photos, which means she has to e-mail me. When I receive the e-mail, I do a “whois” on Google. Right at the top of the page, is the IP address, and it belongs not to a Chinese girl living in Benin, but to a Ghanaian man, Osei Williams who is a well known Internet scammer. I report this to the website, and within twelve hours, the profile has been removed.
The website has its rules and regulations, and one is that members are forbidden from soliciting or sending money. They point out that if members refuse to send money, this will get rid of the scammers. Fair point. Back to the Filipinas, I have the view that if someone is really interested in me, they would read my profile. It follows that if someone is writing to me without doing so, then their interest is more likely to be economic.
Most of these messages start with one word or one line introductions. The cynic in me says that they are running a business and the shorter the message, the more hits they can make in one day. Because I don’t usually respond to Filipinas, I never get as far as being asked. However, at least one Filipina has decided to avoid the foreplay of exchanging messages with the following:
hi, i have a problem in financial problem specially in financial, are you willing to help me this coming week
I almost asked her is if she would still respect me in the morning.
As well as writing a profile about myself, I also wrote a little about the sort of girl I was looking for. I started off looking at 18-35s. After a while, I realised that the messages I got from the lower end of the age scale were such that I was hardly likely to be challenged mentally by these so I upped the age from 25-35. One of the things I noticed was that there were quite a few attractive girls who specified that they were looking for a “Male 18-80”. Some of these girls were as young as 18 themselves. I thought about this, and categorised them as “economically desperate”. No matter how good they looked, they were to be avoided. I am not mean or anything, but If I were an 80 year old man, apart from the probable health problems I would have, I don’t really see how I can make an 18 year old girl happy, other than with money. I might as well trawl the bars.
As I did my own searching and messaging, I was surprised to see the number of girls who stated that they were graduates. I haven’t done any systematic counting, but of the photos that caught my eye, I estimate that 10-15% stated that they had “some” university education, or were graduates.
It did occur to me that you had women that were both smart and pretty and had a career. What we might think of as “middle class” who were looking for husbands, partners, boyfriends etc who were specifically Farangs. It might seem judgmental to say this, but I tend to believe most of the bargirls I meet who tell me that they don’t want Thai boyfriends because they make bad husbands, but I have this image that most of these men are probably farm boys themselves. You would think that a pretty, educated career woman might move in more salubrious circles, and yet there appear to be hundreds of women in this position who are resorting to dating sites. Perhaps the bad Thai husband is endemic throughout the whole social strata?
The profile is really like a CV. Both parties fill out their details, usually add a picture, and then either scour the site, or wait for contact from an interested party. I regularly have a look through, and one of the features of the site is that it tells you who has visited your profile. As I look through the profiles, I can see that in some cases, I am not what she is looking for, and in others, she is not what I am looking for.
One particular profile that I looked at several times, was an Isaan girl, who was pretty and worked as a cashier. I thought about it, but was put off because she was 4 foot 9 inches tall and weighed 85 pounds. A couple of things disturbed me about this. On one occasion when I was drunk, I picked up a tiny girl about this size in a bar. The following morning when I woke up alongside her, I was looking at what appeared to be the sleeping body shape of a 13 year old girl. I know the girl was nearer to thirty, but somehow this gave me the horrors. The other thing I thought about was that I am 15 inches taller, 90 lbs heavier and 25 years older. Somehow or other, I had this vision of everyone laughing at the “Odd Couple”.
I wasn’t worried about people laughing at me, but I would have felt bad for my girl at them laughing at her. People laugh at me occasionally, but I am happy enough with myself, not to let it worry me. I don’t need to save face, but my Thai girlfriend probably would have to, and then I either have to get involved, or face the prospect that she will see me as having let her down.
Anyway, after I visited the profile, I got a message from her. I have to say that of all the messages I have received, this was the nicest one, and it was clear that she had read my profile and understood what I was trying to say. I thought about it, and sent her a message saying that I had looked at her profile, I thought she was a very nice girl and was worried that her being so tiny, I might break her. That is why I hadn’t contacted her.
To be honest, I was so impressed with what she had written; I was hoping that she might say something to get me to overlook my reservations about her size. If she had said something like “I don’t care you old and fat” I might have taken this further. I got no reply.
For some reason or other, I couldn’t get her out of my mind. It was more what she had written that had touched me, rather than her looks or educational attainments. I wrote to her asking if I had upset her with my reply. It’s possible to tell whether the messages have been read or not. She had read them. It suddenly occurred to me, that I had indeed offended her with my reply.
I wrote again explaining why I had written my message, and apologising, though I didn’t tell her about my image of her as a 13 year old. Somehow or other, knowing that I had already upset her once, I thought if I was to explain this to her, she might think that I was calling her a closet pedo’s dream.
She hasn’t been online for several days. Perhaps she has met someone else. I don’t know. This isn’t going to be a “Watch this space story”, but it is part of the story. All I can say is that every time I think about what she wrote, I think I have missed the chance to find a woman who may have actually understood me. That is a rare breed.
As you read the various profiles, you get to see a broad spectrum of Thai women. Some of the most common themes that you see on the profiles, is “I no want liar man” or “I not want man who play games” and “I not here for webcam sex”. I recently wrote another piece for this site (Spare Me The Misogyny), in which I was critical about the way some of us treated the ladies when we got here. It suddenly occurred to me that we don’t even have to leave home to abuse them nowadays. I suppose those of us who are into webcam sex, can truly be described as “wankers”.
At the time of writing, I am still trawling the site; sending out messages, getting acceptances as well as rejections, and vice versa for those who contact me. Usually after a few e-mails, the relationship fizzles out, and we both move on to the next one. Recently, I seem to be able to attract a better class of girl. I am currently writing to three graduates, who are more than presentable (shallow me). Somehow or other though, Tinygirl is always on my mind. She is not as pretty or well educated as the other three, but she appears to be perceptive, understanding and sensitive and unlike the competition, can send a message that makes you feel good about yourself.
Well I am just over 80 days away from my next trip. Back to the website, and who knows…?
While one may be attracted to a lady from her online profile, I would suggest that some of these ladies don't put too much thought into their profile – and some women with really basic profiles might have much more about them than first meets the eye. But for sure, when that is the only gauge you have of what they are like…
For what it's worth, having seen what some of my friends have been through recently, I am on a bit of a downer about online girls. As I wrote in a column recently, I think they share much in common with their bargirl sisters insomuch that the huge amount of interest shown in them by foreign men, the way guys fall in love so quickly, send gifts and money and even propose before meeting them elevates these girls' their opinions of themselves and can make them become much less appealing.