There’s a ton of tips covering how to be in a relationship with a Thai woman. If you’re following this blog, you’ve probably seen a few articles here and there about dating etiquette in the Land of Smiles. However, many of those articles on the internet don’t touch on the subtle nuances that come with the commitment.
With that said, this begs the question: what’s it like to date a Thai woman? Is it any different than dating women of other races?
When dating a Thai person, it’s important to include Thai culture when discussing the nuances. Although some of their practices aren’t written in stone, it’s best to do what the locals do for a less stressful experience. Over the following few paragraphs, we’ll let you know the reality of having committed romantic relationships with Thai women. It’s going to take more than a few dates to sweep her off her feet, so stay tuned!
Women in Thai Society
Before we get to the dating part, let’s talk about how Thai society perceives women. This section will make the next segments a little easier to understand since there’s context.
Thailand is a stickler for its traditions, even in gender roles. Society expects them to play the caregiver role, especially for kids and grandparents. Not only do they have to take care of the house—they have to look good while doing it too! Talk about a tall order, no?
Thai women are generally conservative. Men usually make the first move, so be earnest about your pursuit. They’re pretty averse to physical contact on dates, so please respect their preferences. Don’t be too aggressive—you’ll scare them away!
Nowadays, progress gradually happens on this front. Thai women currently hold legislature and cabinet positions. They’re also some of the country’s best professionals in their respective fields. And most of all, they can easily access education and enroll in the best programs and schools. While they still face discrimination every now and then, modern Thai women know what they want and how they’ll get it.
Dating a Thai Woman
With its vibrant nightlife and crowds, people tend to peg Thai women into specific stereotypes. Now that we’ve touched a bit about their culture, it’s safe to say that those types aren’t 100% accurate. How about we get to know them as romantic partners?
#1: Physical affection is kept to a minimum
Thai women aren’t showy partners. Most of them tend to be the shy types, so don’t be surprised if they pull back on the PDA when you two are out in public. Don’t take it the wrong way either, so don’t worry—she isn’t giving you the cold shoulder! Your partner’s just being traditional and restraining herself.
If intimacy’s what you want, you may have to wait and stretch your patience to get there; traditional Thai dating only allows it when you two are nearing marriage.
#2: Expectations await
Social expectations aren’t unfamiliar in Thai society. Families expect the man to be financially stable to support the woman and her family throughout their marriage. On the other hand, the woman must let her man meet the family to discuss dowries. Why? This practice ensures that their daughter won’t marry a man beneath her class.
Fortunately, dowries aren’t as required as they were since the start of the 2010s. If some families present them as wedding gifts, others won’t expect them with little to no thought.
#3: Talk isn’t enough
Thai women tend to express themselves calmly; loud conversations aren’t their cup of tea. Master great body language through nonverbal communication! Whether you’re upset or not, use nonverbal cues to show and tell her how you’re feeling at the moment.
In general, Thai society is reserved and quiet. Public spats and other acts of shame will just make you become a hot gossip material, so try not to lose face when going out. Not only is it embarrassing, but it’s also forbidden!
As cliche as this sounds, actions do speak louder than words. Talking isn’t enough to back up your intentions.
#4: Faith and spirituality runs deep
Most Thais are ardent followers of Buddhism. Their faith and spirituality are major parts of their lives, influencing their decision-making.
Did you know that Buddhist monks don’t preside weddings? Instead, couples who wish to get married are encouraged to donate to monks at temples to give their blessings. This practice is called a merit gift.
#5: Family is forever
Thais are a family-oriented bunch. Children view parents with great respect, and extended families are treated as part of the nuclear branch. Family is always one of Thais’ top priorities and suggesting that they switch that up mean’s you’re looking for trouble.
So, how can you earn brownie points here?
Make a mark on your partner’s family by getting close to them! This means you’re serious about your relationship, ready to take it to another level. Keep the patriarchal structure in mind during interactions. Trust us—you don’t want to mess with the family’s head! You should respect her elders at all times to avoid awkward situations.
#6: Soak in the culture
As we’ve said in the intro, Thai culture is important in this discussion. If you’re going to date a Thai girl, you may as well get to know her culture. It’s only right, yes?
Take time to look up Thailand and its ins and outs. Remember: Google is your friend! You can start with the major cities and work your way from there. Want an even deeper dive? Explore the food, art, and other traditions for extra insights! Learning basic Thai phrases also helps.
Familiarizing yourself with the culture will surely leave a lasting impression on your partner. If you’ve taken the time to understand her home country, she knows she’s in good company!
How to Keep Your Relationship Healthy and Happy
Do as the late, great Aretha Franklin sings! You can’t expect a self-respecting woman to accept disrespect from her partner, yes?
Thai women are (obviously) not an exemption from this. When asking one out, make sure to do so politely. Any overly aggressive effort from you may scare her off, so please don’t do that! Be patient and give her a few days to decide. If she says no, don’t push her into doing anything she doesn’t want to do.
Many Thai women fear judgment from society; if they’re spotted going out with foreigners, many can’t help but wonder if they’re just playthings. Ease their burdens by respecting their space and well-being.
Take things slow
Speed dating isn’t for everyone, and things moving fast can take a lot out of someone. Remember: we’re not in the West. Please don’t rush things as much as possible, especially if you’re just starting out. It’s not a contest!
Don’t even think about making sexually suggestive advances as your first moves. They’ll just turn her off and leave negative perceptions of you. Also, they’ll believe that you’re just in the game for sex and nothing else. Not only are they publicly embarrassing, but they’re pretty rude too.
Remember that Thais are naturally conservative people, and they frown upon even the slightest hints of PDA. Learn your limits, okay?
Learn to read beyond face value
Remember point #3 in dating a Thai woman? Talking alone isn’t going to cut it! Since saving face is a Thai culture essential, people learned to say what they want to say through indirect communication. Words cut deep, so don’t take what people tell you at face value alone. For every word they say, there’s a context behind it.
Are you getting mixed signals? Talk to your partner if you have any questions or clarifications. Social cues vary from country to country, so she should be able to help you out on that end. Don’t get too down if you can understand everything right away!
It’s not about the money
[cue Jessie J’s “Price Tag” here]
Folks unfairly stereotype Thai women as materialistic people. Just so we’re clear, this is simply untrue!
Thai women can fend for and reward themselves just fine. If she’s going out with you, it’s because she likes you. While giving small gifts every now and then (especially on occasions) is fine, constant gift-giving is not what she signed up for. Your time, commitment, and affection are all she needs to make her heart happy. In the words of Miss Jessie J herself, forget about the price tag!
What’s a relationship without fun? Sure, there’s Thai culture to think about when you’re together. However, it doesn’t have to be a Debbie Downer. Who says dating is boring? Nobody, right?
Getting to know each other shouldn’t be a daunting experience for you both. That’s what dates are for, yes? You two can do whatever you want together, all in the name of happiness. Take your girl out for a good time! She’ll love more for it.
Now that you know the reality of being with a Thai woman, you should be good to go. Be the best partner you can be with these no-nonsense tips!
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