Rejection Of Ideals
I find it rather surprising that in this day and age, people still want to get married.
Divorce rates are ever increasing, women's education only serve to your detriment as divorce laws still favour mother and child (not to mention land title deeds…). Has the merciless sun fried your brain cells?
I agree with Stick that the dowry is distasteful and downright greedy. Another straightforward case of family milking the husband. Why is face so bloody important anyway? I challenge everyone here to justify this. Who are those strangers to you? Have they given you money? Are they in any way going to help you later on in life? If the answer is no, then f@#$ them. Why should you care about them? Face is such a joke; societal pressure to conform to stupid ideals such as the dowry and having children. Don't end up being a dog doing show tricks for strangers. This is your life, not theirs.
I am of the personal belief that if you truly loved someone then marriage is not necessary. Love is someone you display on a daily basis; not once a year on Valentine's and certainly not "once in a lifetime" such as a wedding. Co-habitation and free love is gaining traction amongst youth globally.
We live in bad economic times. Credit crisis, unemployment, inflation and political uncertainty. And you take out a loan or savings account to pay for a ring, overpriced dinner and dowry? I suppose you really are taking a cue from Nero; who played the harp as Rome burnt. The end is nigh, my friends.
A marriage certificate is only a god-damned piece of paper. Sure, it is a legal document but not one towards your benefit. Other than assisting you in getting a visa, there are few benefits of a marriage certificate in Thailand (for the husband anyway). I find that Thai women are happy to be in a state of temporal flux as long as they don't have to deal with the details and hassles of the matter. You do it for them so you can be sneaky about things. See example below.
A friend of mine managed to hold off buying a home for her (by securing a 1-year lease in Bangkok for a condo) and whenever the issue is brought up, he re-extends the lease. The reason why he does so? To avoid lawyer fees and nasty situations where the spouse runs off with the house and another Thai guy. He's been doing it so long that the spouse is getting confused as to whether or not he owns or rents the place.
Property investment is better off being done in your home country… do not subscribe to the theory that everything that you buy will only rise up in the future. Crashes do happen and if you had your money parked in Thailand in 1997, you would remember the pain. It’s so interesting that everyone in Asia who buys a property thinks of themselves as “investors”. If you have no other residence and the home you’re buying is your primary one, you’re a consumer NOT an investor. Don’t forget that property is NOT liquid at all, despite what the developers and agents have you believe. When you’re cash-strapped and your Lat Phrao condo is all you have and the economy takes a hit, you could find yourself sitting on your ass for months waiting for a buyer. See how that feels. Another reason to add to the list of not buying a property in her name.
Trial period. If you really have to marry a girl, shouldn’t you at least live together for a period of time BEFORE you decide to get committed like that? 3 months is a good time to see a person’s character and spending habits. You will get to see whether she snores, smokes, gambles and the type of friends she hangs out with. This type of insight is priceless and more interesting to find out yourself as opposed to hiring a private investigator find out for you.
Also, is she lazy? Is the sex really good? How is she around the house? Keen on cooking? Diligent with laundry and doing the dishes? So many under-valued observations and insights to be gained during this trial period. If you really want to stick with someone FOR LIFE, then what’s a couple of months to see how it goes before rushing in?
Finally, I wish to make the point that marriage imprisons and binds you to a woman legally. I also wish to remind you that you're in Thailand, one of the highest concentrations of hot women on Earth. Women will get older and uglier as time takes its toll. Are you sure marriage is that smart a choice? What happens when your current girlfriend gets wrinkles, gains weight and her boobs start to sag? Will you still love her when she's 64?
Has all of us forgotten the Summer of 1967?