Why Thai | Western Relationships are Increasing
Why are Thai – Western relationships are on the rise in Thailand. Research in 2016 highlighted that for the previous 5 years, the rate of marriages between Thai women and western men were increasing in number and the median age of both partners were getting younger.
While the majority of Thai women marrying foreign partners are opting to relocate, there is also a growth in western men opting to live in Thailand. Younger men from western countries particularly European countries are now opting in greater numbers to seek life or marriage partners from Thailand. This is occurring as more western men relocate to the Kingdom due to economic conditions. Many of these are taking advantage of the low cost of living and pleasant climate. Both of these factors are significant when considering retirement location options.
Marriages have a Higher Success Rate
Marriages between Thais and western males are mostly successful in comparison to marriage in western countries. For most seeking a multi cultural relationship, maximum effort is required in different environments to ensure success and therefore couples tend to remain together for the longer term. In some European countries, governments have strengthened rules for those citizens marrying Thai nationals due to concerns of the increasing numbers of such instances.
Some Thai women really value foreign men regardless of age and are interested in finding a foreign marriage partner. This is true. In some cases though, where alarge age disparity exists, the motivations of one or both partners is less than genuine. The woman may be from a bar and therefore is seeking the most financial opportunity available. The Internet is littered with nasty stories of failed relationships with Thai bar workers. In reality, if somebody places high value in another that sells their body for cash, then it is difficult to see any other long term outcome eventuating.
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Age Gap is an Exaggerated Western Mindset
Where there are negative judgements from Thai society when an elderly foreigner chooses a much younger Thai partner, the opposite can occur when the age gap between partners is not significant and the relationship is genuine. Genuine relationships are looked on in a favourable light when the couple are together for the right reasons. For many Thai women, the idea of a well matched foreign partner is a priority and provides a level of social status that is preferable.
The number of younger mixed couples is increasing in Thailand as it becomes not only acceptable to marry a foreigner, but highly desirable. The Internet, television and movies are the cause for this change. The success of Thai-western liaisons in Thailand is highlighted by the prominent success of their ‘Luk Kreung’ children (meaning half Thai), on both television and the music industry. The mixture of Thai features mixed with the lighter skin of a mixed child is considered highly attractive, successful and desirable. Those with children displaying these traits encourage them to develop multi language skills as early as possible to ensure their successful careers.
Many Thai Women are Looking Outward
There is no doubt that Thailand is currently consumed by desires to become whiter. On every poster and television advertisement, the only people in view are white and those that are being transformed into whiter versions of themselves. To become white, is to become more successful and more attractive. This mindset extends back to the older Thai class system. While most westerners are horrified at this, in some respects some parts of Thailand are many years behind what is politically correct thinking in western societies. The perceptions still exist and are fact, stronger than ever.
One only needs to watch a Thai soap opera for 10 minutes to observe that every actor (regardless of gender) is whiter than most Caucasians and has had facial cosmetic surgery to mimic western facial traits. Therefore it is easy to understand how a mixed child is automatically afforded a level of respect, social status and potential for success that is not afforded to Thai children.
Many Thai women now seek relationships with western males so that there is more chance of success for her future children. Additionally, an appropriately aged matched foreign / Thai couple is highly regarded if both partners are genuine in their attitudes towards the relationship. Recent research suggests that Thai / western relationships last longer than conventional marriages in the United States.