Thai Girlfriend Advisor

Relationship advice for Western Men and Thai Women

Category: Thai Culture (Page 2 of 2)

Thai Culture and Greng Jai

Greng Jai is a practice that Thai people use in every day life. It can be very confusing for Western people..here is a brief explanation:

“Greng Jai” will leave many Westerners (Farang) a bit confused and not knowing what is right to do or not. This cultural habit is born out of Thai’s preference for politeness and dislike for direct confrontation. This could be partly because of Thai Buddhist culture as we are taught that confrontation is wrong.

When faced with a choice Thai  wives ( NOTE Greng Jai is not exclusive to women, it applies to thai men as well…it really is part of Thai character) will not always say directly what they want or what they mean. Very often it is because they do not wish to upset their partner by denying them their wish or by choosing something they may not be happy with. They may also prefer not to talk about something that can cause conflict and confrontation and so will find a way to avoid it if possible.

This does not mean they are dishonest or will lie and should not be confused with that. Of course there will always be those who will take it to the extreme or use it to their own advantage.

It can be very frustrating because unlike westerners both men and women who are much more direct in these matters, they would rather take the middle road approach and not upset and so for Western men in a relationship with a Thai woman it can seem as though she avoids difficult situations and conversations, her true feelings or thoughts may come out later on in bits and pieces and this can seem like she was holding back..which of course she was but not for the reasons westerners think.

This is where Thai culture and Western culture differ greatly and it is one thing that has proved to be difficult to get along with in relationships between westerners and Thai with many westerners taking the view that Thai people use it as an excuse. What you might find funny is that “Greng Jai” can often be as frustrating for Thai people as for Westerners! So  we do understand the frustration it can cause.

Here is an example for you:

Husband says:
Darling would you like to go out  for dinner tonight, maybe for Italian, chinese or Indian food.
Thai wife says:
Yes ok.
Husband say:
Which one would you prefer
Thai wife:
Hmmm…It’s Up to you
Husband thinks:
Why not just choose one


At the restaraunt…Chinese, which the husband chose !!

Thai wife is eating her meal with the feeling of being unhapy, as though she has been commanded to eat.
Husband says:
Is everything ok darling?
Thai Wife says:
Yes.
Back home later…

Husband says:
Darling you don’t seem happy are sure everything is ok?
Thai wife says:
I wanted to eat something spicy and I’m still hungry.
Husband says:
Why didn’t you say something then?

That’s Greng  Jai..!!!!


Let’s go! and enjoy a  Thai music video about” Greng Jai”…


Thai Girlfriend Advisor

by Angella

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Careful with showing affection in public

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

by Angella


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