I know this surprises many westerners and it was quite funny when I told my partner Dean about this part of Thai culture because in the Western world public displays of affection are quite common. You will often see couples holding hands and kissing in public with very little restraint sometimes but in Thailand it is a very sensitive part of Thai Culture and in some cases is actually frowned upon.
Lip kissing has only recently begun to appear on Thai television in some of the latest films and quite often the kissing will be done by a double so the Thai actress doesn’t have the stigma of being seen kissing.
You might laugh too because even the famous Thai bar girls feel uncomfortable with public displays of affection as it is seen as shameful and inconsiderate. However things have changed a little as Thailand has started to become more westernized, you can now see some couples holding hands especially amongst the younger generations and mainly in Bangkok where Thai culture is more diverse and open to Western influence.
If you are a western man you might have to be prepared for a few changes in your behaviour when visiting Thailand with your thai girlfriend such as:
She may expect you to walk a few feet away from her when out in public in Thailand which to the Western man t may seem like she has lost interest in you, but this is very important to some Thai women so don’t take it personally.
Be careful with hand holding because in some parts of thailand when a Thai woman is seen holding hands with a Western man it can sometimes be assumed that she is a bar girl and that you are her customer which of course she will want to avoid.
But what you may find interesting is that in parts of Thailand it is quite normal to see two women holding hands because they are friends and are therefore allowed to show affection to each other, so be careful not to get the wrong idea about this also.
Essentially Thai culture can be quite conservative despite what you may have seen or heard about in parts of Bangkok and some other parts of thailand because this is just a very small part of the society and just like many other countries does not represent the whole country and it’s culture.
So if you have a Thai Woman please show some respect for her and Thai culture, you will find that you will get much more respect back in return.
Hope and Solutions
Thai Girlfriend Advisor