Stickman Readers' Submissions May 31st, 2012

Nightmare Thai Situation, Help Needed!

I've read your website for a while now and am impressed by your care and concern for total strangers. My story was avoidable and most of it boils down to my own foolishness and recklessness with a Thai girl. I cheated on my wife who's back home
while I am in Bangkok working and the results have been disastrous. In a chance encounter which I will eternally regret, I picked up a Thai girl and have been in a relationship where X (the Thai girl) oscillates between periods of serenity and
goes crazy when things don't go her way i.e. I don’t give in to her demands. Readers may already have concluded that I must have lost my backbone and balls along the way and I would not discount the possibility that I have indeed been
beaten into submission by X and the curious phenomenon that is Thailand.

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Some background to my mess: X stays with me and she moved in early on in the relationship, even though I managed to get her out of my apartment once in the not too distant past. She works as a cashier and does not appear to be involved in
vice, despite coming from a poorer background (less poor after fleecing me, my fault again). She takes care of me while I live here but we get into serious fights over suspicions of my non-existent womanising ways, which was a pretext in which
she forced herself back into my life. She has taken over my life and I feel totally trapped. Nowhere else have I met someone this suspicious nor possessive, not over my possessions but over my thinking and behaviour. Even if this was a legitimate
relationship I'd consider it extremely unhealthy but logic seems to have left my life for the time being.

I'm working in Bangkok but I have been compromised to an extent where I think I cannot cover any more bases with regards to my work life and my personal life in my country of origin. My life has been exposed like an open book and I feel
totally vulnerable to several forms of attack. X had gone through my personal belongings when I did not notice, including my phone contact lists and emails which she has threatened to use against me in any way possible. She knows far more about
me than I do about her and is willing to make a mess of me when things go south. I’m unsure what possessed her to do all this but at some base level it could be linked to the paranoia of losing me eventually, and also to inflict the maximum
amount of hurt when the situation calls for it.

The odd thing is, she seems reconciled to the fact that I have to leave in a year plus when my contract ends but has a fantasy where we stay in touch and still love each other. I find myself utterly confused from all the developments in my
life given that feelings have indeed developed between us. While I want to live an honest life with my family when I go back, my constant lying to them perversely appears to be a shield to prevent X from hurting them. I actively live a lie every
single day to escape the consequences that might be. On the other hand, I also recognise that this is a form of cowardice and that I am just escaping from the consequences that may unfold.

What can I do? X has threatened going straight to my family, my employers, the media etc whenever things go wrong or an argument arises. And the worst thing is that my family was previously aware of her existence having gotten rid of her
once in a painstaking process. They believe she has left me alone but this is far from the truth and I feel a bit of myself dying all the time. On how X came back, she dug up something else to twist my arm with and has also covered her traces
rather nicely.

I have many weaknesses but being in such a bad predicament is going to drive me to the edge, with the real possibility of losing it all. I've survived this for over a year and been through many trials and tribulations. My marriage almost
fell apart, but I salvaged it but oddly ended up being at square one. My job is neither flexible nor mobile and I am stuck in Bangkok for another year plus. I cannot afford to shame my company nor let my family down again. I don’t want
to lose my family and career.

If I had to be cold-hearted about it I'd have taken it to its logical end, called in the police and sued her for every cent. But the repercussions against myself would be quite large and I am very unfamiliar with how criminal law works
in Thailand. I admit I have feelings for her despite all that has gone down and hope that I can leave amicably when the time comes, but this may be wishful thinking on my part. I am exploring options to find a way home and although it may work,
this could take time and I would constantly be looking over my shoulder as she may not be able to let go. There’s no skin off her back to send emails to people who matter to me, damn the consequences. Deception and betrayal was my way out
and I'd never come back to this place, but I'm uncertain if the consequences and lies can be defended when I'm back in my home country..

Stickman's thoughts:

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This is indeed a very nasty and difficult situation.

First of all, this is NOT a relationship you're in at all. You're the victim of control and are only there because you're facing blackmail and extortion. You are being forced into a situation you absolutely do not want to be in and that is not fair. You have to get out of this situation as soon as possible.

There are a number of possible options to deal with a situation like this, but it has to be said none of them are ideal. I would urge you to deal with it now. Life is too short to go on like this and until you meet this head on, it's going to be horribly detrimental to your mental health, your work, your relationships and your quality of life..

I would suggest there are two primary options available to you:

A) Explain the situation to a genuinely influential and powerful Thai person who you know and trust, and have them, or allow them to organise someone, to act on your behalf. Such a person could be an extremely successful business person, a high ranking policeman or militaryman, or a politician. If they were prepared to help you, the approach could see any of a number of tactics used, from an older Thai woman paying this lady a visit and explaining the situation and asking her to stop, to some very, very nasty people visiting her and explaining to her in no uncertain terms, and giving her a very clear understanding that if she does not stop right away then what follows will make her life unbearable. I know of situations where exactly these approaches have been used and they can be very effective. What needs to be understood, however, is that just raising this whole issue with an influential and powerful Thai person – and that is assuming you know such a person – will result in MASSIVE face loss for you in that person's eyes and they will almost certainly never look at you quite the same again. You will also "owe" them big time – but then I think you're prepared for that. If they are a genuine person of influence and they are prepared to get involved (and quite often they are not), they will have the contacts to resolve this for you.

B) Get a VERY good lawyer i.e. get in touch with one of the top firms, outline the situation with them and lay a criminal complaint against this woman. She will be arrested and charged and if you see it through she WILL go to jail for this. Blackmail and extortion are viewed very dimly by judges. You will need a good deal of fortitude to see it through to what could be a very bitter end. The idea with this approach is not that you prosecute her, but that charges are dropped after your lawyers negotiate with her to leave you alone and never bother you. This approach would require you to go to a police station and make a statement for which you would get a "bai jaeng", but you would either not lay charges or you would later withdraw the charges. The difficulty with this option is that you're dealing with a scorned woman, a very unpredictable beast. If you were to choose this option then going for the jugular and following through with a prosecution may be the only way. This is not a great option…but it is an option than needs to be considered.

Of course there is also the option of disclosing the whole debacle to family and friends and then throwing the woman out on her ass. That would totally depower her. If you wish to keep things secret then of course that is not an option.

This is a really nasty situation and I really hope it works out for you.

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