Key Characteristics Of Thai Men
Thailand is known as the "land of smiles", and justly so: Thai men and women seem to smile more than any other nationality.
On the whole, Thai people are friendly, easy going and quick to smile. They place a great importance on having "sanuk" (fun) in their lives.
The attitude of men towards women has evolved over the years, and what was once a traditional stance has become an accepting one. Men and women are now seen as equals; much more so than in many other Asian countries. They are also a tolerant race.
Thai men will spend between 3 months and 3 years in the Buddhist Monkhood (indeed, some will commit to it for a lifetime).
The reasons for entering monkhood range from ‘merit making’ to gaining a deeper understanding of the Buddha's teachings. This spiritual commitment shapes the values of men, who are, on the whole, kind and respectful individuals.
It is fair to say that in the past, women were viewed as the weaker sex. Just 20 years ago, it was considered acceptable for men to have several wives at the same time, whereas women were expected to have only one husband in a lifetime, and even if she were widowed, she would find it hard to be accepted by a new man.
Western values of equality between the sexes have been gradually adopted by Thai culture and this has resulted in radically changed attitudes towards women.
Thai women are nowadays encouraged to receive education, to go out to work and to enjoy social benefits, just like men. More and more women now work, rather than rely on their husbands for a salary. A husband is expected to have only one wife at any given time and it is now acceptable for women to divorce and remarry.
In spite of the progressive changes regarding equality of the sexes, it is still not uncommon for some men to cheat on their partners.
Unfaithfulness is one of the reasons that some Thai girls look for Western husbands. However, this is something of a misguided belief, as in reality, monogamy is no more a given in the western world than it is in Thailand.
Lone Female Travelers
Western women who are traveling alone should have no reason to worry about approaching Thai men to ask for assistance, for example.
Shyness is a common trait of Thais and they also have a fear of shame; this means there are very few incidences of sexual harassment – something that is fairly common in some of the more fundamentalist countries.
While it is rare for Thai men to hassle Western females; it is wise to dress conservatively, particularly ensuring legs and shoulders are covered (except on tourist beaches) and to avoid any prolonged eye contact or flirtatious behavior.
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