Getting the idea
Not so long ago, I started work on compiling a set of interviews with a variety of Thais from different sectors of society. The interview below, the first of two parts, was the first one which I completed.
I originally met Yui by a chance a couple of years ago and we became good friends. She had always told me that she had a boyfriend and I would often see him come pick her up, take her to eat and buy her stuff etc…It was only after knowing her for the better part of one and half years that she admitted one evening “Steve, Yui pen mia noi na”. (“Steve, I am a minor wife). Actually, I wasn’t very surprised, perhaps she thought that I knew all along – Thai-style like…..she guessed I would find out all by myself.
As you will read, Yui can certainly think for herself; she is charming, has a fun personality and without a doubt would have no problem at all, at just 30 years of age, to find a ‘proper’ boyfriend. She prefers to live though, the life of a minor wife (mistress) – and it is that which encouraged me to encourage her, to tell her story.
In this translation of the interview, I have tried my best to keep to Yui’s style of wording – only some names have been changed. The first part concerns Yui’s life…… prior to becoming a Thai Mistress.
Maybe you could start by telling us a bit about your family.
Sure. I’m the forth of five children. I’ve got an elder sister, a younger sister and two elder brothers. I still got my mum and dad, they live in Pathumthani province – my mum used to be a teacher and my dad used to work for the local government administration. As for my brothers, one of them works as an engineer in Bangkok and the other stays near our parents home running his own small Garage business. They are already married with children, same goes for my elder sister, she lives in Nonthaburi. Now, my younger sister too, is in a relationship with some guy but she didn’t say if she had plans to get married. Anyway, I think she’s still too young for commitment, she’s just turned 25.
So, it doesn’t sound like you come from a poor family.
My family aren’t poor and they aren’t rich, but they do all right. My parents are retired now and they get a government pension. When we were younger, our parents didn’t save much money for themselves as they wanted to spend their savings on giving their children the best education. We all pity our parents though and try to send money home as often a possible, you can say it’s a kind of traditional payback. But to tell you the truth, my parents don’t really need the money – they live a simple life, like a ‘self-sufficiency economy’.
You spoke about your parents giving their children the best education. Please explain.
Except for one of my brothers, we all went to university in Bangkok and so my parents had to pay for all of that. Our dad wanted us to study hard and that meant no working at the same time. So, you can think how much he had to pay for everything. On top of that, my brother and I went to private universities which cost a lot.
How about your university days?
My university was located on Rangsit-Viphavadi road, not too far I guess from the old airport. It’s quite a famous university and most students who go there can learn to speak English well. But, not me! I graduated in Business Administration but since I liked to go out a lot with friends, go to parties, go to nightclubs, drink and stuff – my grades were low.
You sound like you were a bit of a wild student. Did your parents know?
No way, I could never have let them known, they would have been really sad.
Were your parents very strict?
Not at all, the very opposite – especially dad. When I was growing up my parents were protective of me but at the same time they would let me do my own thing, I suppose you can say I was a spoilt kid.
You are an attractive woman, so I can imagine that you had a lot of guys hitting on you during your time at university.
Hah! Most of my friends were actually guys, I always hung around more with my male friends. I guess I liked their life-styles, partying and drinking – most of my girlfriends though, as they lived with their parents in Bangkok, wouldn’t go out that much. In Thai society it’s all right for guys to do what they want, like sleeping around with a lot of girls and although I didn’t encourage such practices, I accepted it as the normal kind of male behaviour. At that time I was pretty scared of getting AIDS or something so there was no way that I wanted to get into any kind of intimate relationship with one of them.
Are you trying to say that you never had a boyfriend then?
No, I had a boyfriend, but since he wasn’t part of our circle, I didn’t bother telling my friends about him. I don’t think they would have taken to him that much anyway. He wasn’t like them.
Please explain further.
He was a really clean guy, clean on the outside anyway. He didn’t smoke, drink or do drugs. He wasn’t a student too, he worked for his father’s business in Thonburi (Western Side of Bangkok). His family were rich and he had been to study in America before.
Did you meet his family?
Yes, but they didn’t like me. Kind of looked down on me, I think they wanted their son to marry a really proper Thai girl, a girl who would bow and kiss their feet and serve their son like a maid not a wife.
You sound angry.
Who me? My dad had always brought me up to have self-pride and taught me that everyone was equal. Yes, I was very proud of all the things he had done for his family. He also taught me that I should look for a husband that really loves me for what I am, regardless to whether he is rich or poor. That’s why I didn’t like his parents, they would look at me a like I was a country-bumpkin who only wanted to marry into money. I loved my boyfriend a lot and just had to put up with his parents but I tried to meet them as little as possible. In my heart too, I was wishing that one day they would accept me.
You were really serious about this guy then.
Sure, I thought he was the perfect guy. He cared about me a lot, was very kind and didn’t fool around with any other girls. One thing I liked about him too was that he was more grown up than my friends – he was about 28 – he was more responsible and hard-working – we could have a decent conversation about more-or-less anything. He was the first guy I ever took to meet my parents and they liked him a lot, my boyfriend would buy lots of little gifts for mum and even bottles of imported wine for dad. They believed him too and so I would use him to explain that I was a diligent well-behaved student who did nothing in her free time besides reading books!
What did your boyfriend think about your wildish behaviour?
He didn’t really care that much. I don’t know why but he completely trusted me. Sure, he cared for me but just like my dad, he thought the best way to deal with a wayward girl was to just let her go but support and teach her along the way. He was glad though when I graduated from university and got myself a job.
So, what happened?
Let me say first, I loved the guy so much that I put up with family insults and sarcasm, I just hoped that they would one day see me in a brighter light. My dad would have been very upset if he had known, but my boyfriend would often come to sleep over at my place and we would sometimes go away for the weekend just him and me. I never suspected anything, I was so stupid, it’s unbelievable. His family would often call him, like he was a big baby or something, asking him what he was doing and what he was up to, so I didn’t think anything when a cousin of his ‘Tuk’ would call a lot.
The first time I started to find out the truth, was the time I accidentally found a strange mobile phone zipped-up in his bag. I asked him whose mobile phone it was and he replied that it was one of his friend’s – he had forgotten it or some crap like that. Just then while I was holding the thing, someone called in, but the phone’s sound and vibration mode had been turned off. To cut a long story short, I found out that this ‘cousin’ of his was in fact his new girlfriend – she knew about us and was waiting all along for us to split up. After a bloody row not long after, he disappeared and that was the end.
How did you feel after the relationship ended?
I wasn’t just heart-broken but I felt like a dumb idiot who had been used like some dirty rag. I felt bitter too abut his family who were probably celebrating. I was also mad about that girl ‘Tuk’ who had no heart – she just came in deliberate to destroy our relationship. After that, I didn’t have any proper boyfriends for a long time – sure, I went out with some guys, even had casual safe-sex at times, but I just couldn’t trust guys anymore. I was also really embarrassed too, to tell my parents – I knew that if they knew the truth they would be very hurt. So, I just said that he went abroad to further his studies and that he would be back one day.
You seem to be very open and frank.
My parents always tried to teach me to speak my mind and let go of my feelings. So, that’s what I do – but not always with them – I don’t wanna hurt their feelings anymore.