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Do you have any Thai guy friends?

I've been living in Thailand for nearly 3 years straight now (except the 4 days I went back to Australia and 5 days I went to Cambodia). The past 3 years have been awesome, I've learned to speak Thai fluently and I've met so many awesome people, and weired guys to boot. But after 3 years I still only have 1 Thai guy friend.

The Thai male friend I do have I think of him like a brother and he thinks the same way. He is younger than me and I think when I took him to his first Go Go bar solidified our friendship lol. But why is it I can't seem to make any Thai male friends here?

I know so many foreigners but the main problem with making friends with Farang here is they always seem to be leaving so you make a good friend and then they have to go back to the states Australia etc. There are plenty of guys I know that live here in Chiang Mai and I have my own circle of friends none of which actually include Thai guys.

It's not that I don't like Thai guys or anything it's just harder to make actual friends with them. I'm not talking about drinking buddies I'm saying a real friend you know, the kind of guy who would come to see you if you were lying in hospital you know.

I'm a very friendly outgoing guy, I can talk to anyone and everyone. I have no self interest when talking to someone either so why is it that Thai guys are so hard to make friends with? I know plenty of women I'm friends with but I wouldn't call them good friends either I think there is self interest within that relationship either I'm using her to get at her friends and vice versa, I'm a real guy you know, It's not possible to have a best friend that's a girl who you are not intimately involved.

I had a conversation with my mate the other night about social circles in Thailand which was quite interesting. See unlike in the west when you have friendships in Thailand it's based on your social class. If you're rich you wouldn't have a friend that lays bricks for example and same if you laid bricks you wouldn't have a friend that drives a Mercedes to Warm Up. When Thai's are young and going to school the social circles might be more mixed but once people start working it seems that their social circles change and they only mix with people of the same social class.

Have you noticed that when a Farang has a wife apart from old school friends the friends she has also have Farang husbands and vice versa. It seems there is another social class in Thailand which I'll call the Farang class.

Is it due to the social class system that I'm unable to make Thai guy friends? Maybe it is, maybe it's because when I make friends with someone I don't care what they do or how much money they have I'm just looking for friendship but the Thai guys just don't see themselves on my level or more likely are above me so they couldn't possibly be friends with me?

Sure when you get older it's harder to make good friends because people already have their circle which they are comfortable and happy with. Bringing a new person into the group would have to gel with everyone and it takes a long time to establish that kind of friendship not with one person but the whole group. When you come to Thailand you basically have no friends and don't know anyone so your open and willing to make friendships but for those that live here already they already have their friends and circle.

I don't think language is the problem since I speak Thai well and interests arn't a problem either I love Thai chicks and beer which is the same for Thai guys. I don't hang out at Farang places most places I go have 95% Thai patronage and yet making friends with Thai guys are still difficult. Maybe I spend too much time talking to Thai girls?

If I have any Thai guy friends or not doesn't bother me so much but it is weired that Thai guys are difficult to become friends with. So I guess this article is really a question, do you have any Thai guy friends? I mean good friends how did you meet etc. Curious to know.


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About Chris

Chris founded LivingThai.org in 2011 and has received over 3 million visitors. He has lived here for over 10 years and speaks reads and writes very good Thai.

15 Responses to Do you have any Thai guy friends?

  1. charlieboz February 15, 2012 at 1:15 am #

    Nope, but that’s because I don’t speak thai. But I did find it interesting when talking to my American mate who speak/reads/writes thai fluently and has been here 20 years. He says thai and farang friendship is different. A thai guy would never tell his friends that he is having trouble at home/work etc. Just not how friendship works for them, they bottle that stuff up. Where we westerners never seem to stop talking about that stuff ha ha. So maybe we just have different expectations about friendship?

  2. Neale February 15, 2012 at 2:21 am #

    Interesting to here “social circle” theory, kinda makes sense. I too have also noticed the fact Thai women with farang husbands all seem to group together.

    I have been in Thailand 21 months and have 0 Thai guy friends its a weird thing, the only way I can think of jump starting this is to create some kind of tech group that meets monthly.

  3. Buttercup February 15, 2012 at 7:05 am #

    Yeah, I am not here since a long time but I noticed that already. Women are really outgoing but men doesn’t seem to be interested and won’t talk with me.
    To the point that my current girlfriend asked me once “why you have only girl friends?” I replied “I don’t know, you tell me!”.
    I guess there’s also an issue of opportunities, I am a freelancer and work alone, I met other men during my errands. Women are much easier to met because most of the customers facing positions are held by women.

  4. Gashbell February 17, 2012 at 5:13 am #

    hey Chris,

    Fist time poster, longtime reader… I find it somewhat funny that you and other farangs dont have any or many male Thai friends and have trouble making friends with them. First off Im positive if you put in even a quarter of the time you spend chasing random Thai Girls into making a male Thai friend, you’d probably have a lot. Granted it would be a lot easier if you were in Bangkok tho. A big majority of the Thais in Chang Mai are very traditional Chinese, and dont even want their children to associate with or much less even marry a regular Thai person. To marry or even associate someone who doesnt have Chinese ancestry would lower the status of the family. Fucked up I know, but that’s just the way most traditional Chinese people are. Also on your comment about Thai guys thinking they are better than a farang, is really not the case. Try looking it at from their point of view. They see most farangs come to Thailand, time after time, to hook up with girls and do things here they would never even consider or get away with in their own country. All they see is farangs coming to thailand to use and abuse thier country with little consideration for the people that live here; and not only that, but they are the ones that have the mentality of being better than a poor third world Thai person. So, until Farangs show a little more respect for Thai people, dont be shocked if your going to have to put more effort into making a real friend with a Thai guy. Lastly, I also think you would benefit greatly if you made a few real friends with Thai guys, cause it seems to me most of your information about Thailand and Thai people come from your point of view ( a Farangs) and a Thai female. So, you dont need me to tell you how girls and women tend to be bias on everything, especially when it comes to men. But if your still having trouble with it or ever come down to Bangkok Im pretty easy to befriend. 🙂

    • Chris February 17, 2012 at 7:14 am #

      I really appreciate the comment and I’m very welcome to your suggestion, i’m going to put in a real effort now to make some more Thai friends.

      • Popeye October 18, 2012 at 1:23 pm #

        So how many Thai M friends now?

      • Krissana February 6, 2013 at 8:51 am #

        Hello Chris, Have you got your real Thai friends.

        Let me tell you the story about me and my Farang friend.

        I’m 36 years old Thai male. I’ve been learning English via distance education university in Thailand. I live in the rural town near Chiang Mai called Wiang Pa Pao. About 3 years ago, some seventy-year-old American walked in my internet shop to hire me to make his book for him. Then he found out I was interested in English. He asked me if I help him made his book, he will help me improved my English. We helped each other. After that he comes to use free internet at my shop and sometimes teaches me English. Now we’re friends. He has his internet at his house. But we keep in touch. When he needs my help I will help him as much as I can. And If I need him to help me about English study, he comes anytime he can.

        • Chris February 7, 2013 at 3:32 am #

          Now that I run a blog about Thailand mainly for foreigners I have mostly Farang friends. I have a few Thai male friends but not as close as my farang friends. Good story though thanks

  5. jack February 19, 2012 at 12:00 am #

    it must be your location, i,ve made friends with some decent thais but in central and the south.It takes more analysis and time to recognise good from bad, asians are more difficult to read than farang.Bars and such places are a bad place to start.And never trust an alcholic or meth user in any country, in thailand it can,t be underestimated how widespread drug use is.

  6. Gashbell February 19, 2012 at 12:22 pm #

    In my opinion you should only invest your time trying to make a good lasting friendship with a university educated middle class and up Thai person. These type of people usually aren’t stupid, so you can get some decent conversation and information from them, and since they have money as well you probably shouldn’t have to worry about them asking you for money or screwing you over for it. Most have decent jobs and social standings comparable to yours, so there wont be any feelings of animosity or jealousy issues to worry about. And not only that but in Thailand it is really all about who you know, so having friends or family members of good friends in key positions in Government, the Police force, or certain industries can help you out and make your life here in Thailand so much more easier. Having said that, there are always exceptions to the rule and bad people are in all walks of life, so also use your common sense and don’t trust everyone right away. a good long lasting friendship and trust takes time.

    Of course you can also make friends with your local cab drivers, bartenders and such, but I wouldn’t put much stock into those types of relationships cause more times than not, you’ll gain nothing but problems from it (misunderstandings from lack of education or language) and probably lose your wallet as well. Eventually since they don’t make enough money, and see you as the rich Farang, they will ask you for money, either to barrow or just charge you more for their services. And in most cases they wont be able to pay you back or just screw you over eventually. So be friendly, but also weary. Generalize as much as possible about the type of people you meet without discriminating them. Because what you hear about certain types of people, in most cases are true, and its better to be safe than sorry. But, again, also remember there are exceptions to everything, not everyone is bad. And if you think I am being callous, all Thais do this and more. Every Thai person when they meet someone sizes them by their social status and unless you match up or can be of use to them, they don’t even bother, and now you know why. 🙂

  7. ChiangMaiGuy February 27, 2012 at 9:18 am #

    Thais will never really accept farang as a ‘true’ friend – we will always be ‘outsiders’ – friendly yes… real friends? can’t see it

  8. Gashbell February 28, 2012 at 3:09 am #

    Im a Thai and American citizen, born and raised in the states, and lived in Thailand during the summer months. Now I live in Thailand and work in the States doing contracting jobs. So I know both countries and people very well and consider myself mainly American, but never forgetting my Thai heritage and proud of it. My best friend is a Farang (Bulgarian/American), and in fact I mainly have only Farang or white friends. I treat both just as equally as I would any real friend and dont prefer one over the other. People are people, and Im sure my Farang friends feel the same. Thailand is a developing country and just isnt a melting pot yet like America, England and that other place down under, so it will just take time. 🙂

  9. HappyInBKK August 14, 2013 at 9:13 pm #

    Do you have any Thai (male) friends – No. After living here 5 1/2 years, speaking Thai a fair amount, reading/writing a little bit, frequenting mostly Thai extablishments I’ve concluded that Thai males are not open to friendships with farangs. Most are polite and try to be helpful – but I can tell that I am always the “Rich Farang” and an outsider. This society is similar to the one in America at the dawn of the Industrial Revolution. – Self-centered, paranoid, nationalistic,… – just sayin.

  10. Newcomer September 15, 2013 at 4:36 pm #

    Firstly,sry about my english. Accidentally, i found this interesting title while i looking for farang to teach me english. By the way,Different place, different culture as well as different person, different thought. R u really sure that any thai guys you have met can be representative of every thai guys in thailand. In my view, if i’d like to have a real friend i wouldnt look for them in the place such nightclub, bar etc.
    I dont mean that people who hang out such that places is bad or people who love drinking, smoking is bad. Perhaps as you still have no thai guy friend, that might be your lucky. In my view, if you need a real friend or whatever you need from the other ,you should first perform to them, be his/their real friend first instead of waiting him/them to be your real friend. I strongly belive that thai people easy going, kindness and sincere. It’s not very hard to find one.

  11. tab December 16, 2013 at 12:54 pm #

    I’am Thai guy and want to make friend for everyone.my name teerayut my English not good. welcome to Thailand my email address is keptavan@gmail.com

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