Close

What do Cambodian woman expect from their western friend?

Hello,

I am James (54) and I have a question what answer I can not find on this forum or the internet.
First, I am not a sextourist, pedophile, druguser or alcoholic.

I have read a lot about woman in Cambodia but ...

I have had 3 wifes here in Europe and I am sick of their weaning, complaining and demanding. I am a decent guy, made a good living and I tried everything to be a good husband. I raised their kids and really tried hard. But in the end, it was never enough!.

For a long time a like asian woman a lot. The way they look, move and behave. Realy nice. I have travelled quite some in Asia and have been in Thailand, Vietnam, China, Malasia, and so on. Now I am thinking of opening a business in Cambodia, the country I like the most. Via some dating sites I chat with some woman from Thailand and Cambodia.

When I move to Cambodia, I certainly would like to have a Cambodian girlfriend. Not too young, but a nice attractive lady in her 30's will be appreciated a lot. I do not want the lady ans sextoy or cooking-cleaning lady, but as a friend and companion. I know man over 50 can not marry a Cambodian woman, and that is not my intention either. I'll be loyal and want to get old with her, but I do not want kids or so.
I am not rich, but also not poor. I have enought money to start the business and survice for a while, but I will live a sober life in Cambodia till the business kicks in and I earn enough money to live nice.

So my question: What does a Cambodian lady expect when she would be my girlfriend? I can not marry her, is that not a problem for her family? The women I chat with know my age! I will/can not offer a luxerious living at start, but I am a nice, decent guy, decent and taking care of myself, and I can certainly can offer her better living conditions that she is used to. Is that enough or is this situation asking for problems because to high expectations and disappointment? A good looking woman 34 year old will not fall in love on my looks :)

Hope to get some true answers

Oh dear god, they expect a wedding, taking another nationality (yours) , kids and that you stay with her and the kids for the rest of your life and pay for everything because you are and always will be a barang. Just for that YOU HAVE MONEY. This is just the culture. So good luck with that.

How can they expect a marriage? It is not allowed because I am over 50. And therefor they can not get my nationality. And I am very clear no kids, that is not even possible anymore (they cut the pipeline)

As I wrote, I want to take care of her and be loyal, but I don't want to raise false expectations.

You do can get married..... like in China and then make it official in Cambodia. Not giving false expectations will be hard. Not getting deceived will be even harder. One of my closest friends also 50 had à 4 years relationship with a khmer women. She kept on asking money for Her family, she had "cancer", scooter "stolen", put her kids To school. To discover she had a boyfriend since 5 years with a khmer Guy. Check also the topic of Max also on expat blog.... I don't want to dissapoint you because I truly hope you will find your perfect girl. Just be carrefull

Ow and the money was for her khmer boyfriend and scooter as well

LOL

Thx, I have read a lot of these stories, and think I know there are a lot of scams, tricks and hookers, ladyboys and other traps. But I get the impression that there are also a lot of good heart girls who just want a better life with a nice decent men. I try to be as direkt as I can. Will not have KIDS . I already scared some woman away with that :).

Why an Asian woman,if you really want trust, loyalty, am love real love look no further than Ukraine women,I am fortunate maybe I'm 70 and my parter from Ukraine is 33 a makeup artist, and simply stunning,
   Ubove all I trust her with my life,

I do not like Ukrain girls, I like asian girls! I do not want to move to Ukrain, I want to move to Siem Reap. I don't think a Ukrain girl wants to live in Siem Reap :)

I can't believe the low level of responses here. Are all Khmer women scammers?

My first answer is that there is no "average" Khmer woman. As much as women all around the world there is no mutual personality, they in this case are Khmers, that's about the only shared item.

In every country in SE Asia, you will find women that go for the money, let's call them gold diggers or money seekers. If you are a bit clever you will soon enough find out that that is the main target, money, so you should end that relationship.

But there are many more women that are looking for a better life than they had when marrying a Khmer man, getting a baby or two and being left by the same man, without any money or support. Those women are fed up with Khmer men and don't want to get involved anymore.

These women are looking for a relationship with a barang, as first barang have a better caring system in case things go wrong, second barang are not the "butterflies" that characterizes so many SE Asian men, third as the barang will be older he is more relaxed, settled and looking for a nice life with a lovely Khmer woman. The women are looking for a steady relationship with a serious partner, not the kind that goes out with his friends and comes home at 5 am, totally drunk and/or stoned. They had that already and will not accept it again.

So in short, if you are a serious guy, willing to share your life with a lovely Khmer woman, go for it, they are there, plenty of them. Be aware of scammers and gold diggers, concentrate on the rest, that are good women looking for a good man.
Forget dating sites, they are filled with scammers, liars and fakes. Live in the country and get involved with the local women.

Don't forget that your major advantage is that you live "on the spot", those stories of women having a barang plus a boyfriend are the kind of long distance relationships where the man is away for a long period of time but sends money to his sweetheart. When you live here those things are impossible. Be a nice guy and you will encounter nice women.

Good luck.

Thanks Yoe, your opinion is also my impression from al the stories I have read on the internet. I have been in SE Asia several times and I have seen the hookers and gold diggers. I felt very sorry for those nice little Thai girls I have seen with asocial, beer drinking older guys from England and Germany. I have seen them a lot.
I believe the mayoralty of the Thai and Cambodia woman are decent and nice, but be aware there are a lot of gold diggers and frauds.
On the other hand, a relationship with a nice and decent Barang (or Farang in Thai) is like a winning lot in the lottery. I can imagine that it is difficult for a lady like this to know how to behave. Her life gets upside down also. I hope by being honest and open about my intentions and expectations, I could find the right lady.

People with good intentions and pure of heart are always blessed.  It may not be true most of the time, but the odds are much better than those who are not.

Reminds us of the Golden Rule.  And that's just how the universe works.  Some people call it "mirroring" -- You do good deeds, you reap the rewards; you do bad ones, expect misfortune.  Talk of good karma or bad karma or just comeuppance.

Here's hoping that your decency, truthfulness and noble intentions will be amply rewarded, especially as regards your search for a suitable Cambodian partner.

Jo is totally right ( as usual) there are many nice Khmer women , they work at stores restaurants, coffee shops street food venders , even some bar girls are looking for a honest steady man with a decent income, they are generally loyal! As everywhere you meet scammers , both men and women, you will find a nice woman , if you love her take her to Thailand and marry her , her family will be happy , but jo you must agree on this , when you marry a Khmer girl, her family will play a very important role in your life , I have a ( girlfriend) nice girl who works for the government, 42 I'm 60 , she's beautiful, nice and kind to me , so I bought her a engagement ring , satisfied her and her family , they want a lasting commitment, and they too will give that to you , but unlike most country's family is going to be involved in your life bigtime, but my fiancé I will call her, her family treats me like a king , I'm so grateful for her , and equally as grateful as being welcomed into a wonderful family , I usually give her about three hundred a month to do as she likes , I don't wait for a crisis, just tell her spend it save it , buy your mother something, I take care o f house bills , beautiful set up for me , just alittle difference because of culture , but don't under estimate the family's influence on your relationship !!

I totally agree with you Twinsguy about the role family plays in Khmer society. It is a balance and can easily go the wrong way where the family more or less rules your life.

Two ways to prevent too much influence of the family:

1. As Twinsguy did, give your girlfriend a private sum of money per month, that way she can do what she wants with it and if family needs some money she can give it if she wants. Agree with your girlfriend that there will be no begging to you for money by the family, she will understand that.

2. Another way to prevent disasters is to find a girl with a certain intelligence. Clever girls don't get involved in family greed, unless they are gold seekers themselves, which is less likely with an intelligent girl. A clever girl understands situations and is a valuable ambassador between you and her family.

Twinsguy you did it all right, I wish you a lot of happiness with your fiancee!

Most women that age has kids already. They marry young to have kids and then the husband leaves. So finding one that age without kids is almost impossible.
Most put their family first you are always second. The family always needs something and it never stops they tend to have large families.
Why would they want an old man? MONEY
They all want to marry have you buy a house, motorbike, car and everything else. They want it all!
I have lived here 5 years with the same girlfriend she has 2 boys 1 is 14 1is 16. She is 36.
I am 74. She does a good job of taking care of me. I rent have a used motorbike and try to keep on eye on my money.
Don't fall in love first romp in bed. Many are artists at getting your money. So you must set rules and make her live on a budget.
I know many stories of savings being whipped out. 1 man I know had a hotel and restaurant. His girlfriend got credit at the casinos and lost it all + $10,000.
That all said there are many nice girls in Cambodia but watch out!

Thanks for the shout out jo, but really these tips I got from reading your post, a lot of these women have no idea about budget etc, so by giving them their own money it frees them from worrying about household items , I’ve heard the same story over and over about not satisfied family’s because of money, so jo is so right on when he says make it clear to her and make sure she makes it clear to her family, you are here to help , but your not a bank, I always bring a nice gift when I return from USA for her family members to show respect, and hold doors open for the older women in my fiancé family , it doesn’t always have to be money, my fiancé is so proud to have a bank account with her name only on it, it gives her great joy , yes I do give her money monthly, but from time to time things come up , like her going to siem reap I gave another 100$ extra, I’m not cheap but trying to be practical, it’s all about you showing respect to her relatives, and being kind to my fiancé, but jo and I both say this over and over , get used to her family they play a huge role in your life here, I can’t over emphasize this!

Twins guy 20, I am from USA also. I take it you're from the twin cities. I was raised in Cleveland, Ohio.
Later I moved to Houston Texas and Dallas and resided there for 35 years. My wife passed with cancer after 42 years of marriage. Asia at 74 has given me a new lease on life.
You are more than right about their family and if you reject them no good will come of it.
I live in Sihanouk, City as they call it now. Lived in P.P. for 2 years I didn't like all the traffic there. This place is very laid back.

Hey richard you are lucky to have  42 years , I had 16 until two years ago she decided she was going to be with another, so I moved on , I’m in Phnom Penh, I’ve lived in California, in small cities, in Oregon I was in the cattle business, wow good thing land was worth something, because raising cattle certainly wasn’t getting me rich, ha, so no I’m west coast, I have twin girls 18; they visited me here July and August, last year was more cambodia, this year my twins wanted to shop in Bangkok, so go figure, 18 year old girls who want to shop? Yea so the big city always intrigued me so I just love Phnom Penh , but respect the fact most ex pats do not, not married I live alone and enjoying life , greatest of luck to you, what a beautiful spot you picked! I’m headed back to be with my twins, November and December, then back for 6 more months in pp , best wishes rod

You will be at the top of the family pyramid and treated as a gift from the gods. The dollars will be expected to filter down to cover people you did not know existed. They will come out of the woodwork when they need operations, glasses and lots of other things. You will be expected to shower them with money for Khmer New Year and on other occasions.

You come across as a new arrival as one of the worst things you can do in Cambodia is try and make a go of a business.  You will be ripped off big time. I suggest you do more research.

Well peter you must not be talking to me , I’m retired with no thought of ever working again, I’m up for anything except employment!  I’ve lived in Phnom Penh three years , love it so much , I would never consider leaving

twinsguy20

I may have been a little harsh in my earlier reply ( 1 shiraz too many ). I am pleased KH is working well for you as it does for most expats. Unfortunately everyone at some time or other will have a bad experience. This could be a landlord problem, burglary or common assault.
Take care.

Well peter I agree, and I have heard of everything you mentioned happens here, but you must admit the crime is nothing compared to most If not all larger cities in the USA , most problems seem to come from language problems, but wish you the best , I lead a different lifestyle than some expats , don’t hang out at bars , or clubs, don’t drink, but if you choose this I say great , I definitely don’t have a moral objection to any of these things, but being in at dark most nights and living simply , I really don’t encounter as many problems as I did in the USA, to each thier own, hope you enjoy your time , I think it’s a great decision you made in choosing Cambodia

0mg reading this is a little scary for me, I'm 7 months into a relationship with a Khmer girl... the warning signs are very evident with her... I am a little more than concerned... I have been worried for a while, maybe I should quit now...

Paul Griffin :

0mg reading this is a little scary for me, I'm 7 months into a relationship with a Khmer girl... the warning signs are very evident with her... I am a little more than concerned... I have been worried for a while, maybe I should quit now...

If you feel that way you might be right: quit!

You're worried and the warning signs make you even more worried. It means you know what is going on and unless you can "bend" the situation in your favour the only way is the way out.

Would you mind sharing the "warning signs" as other members can benefit from your experience?

Anyway, good luck in taking the best decisions.

Joe
Cambodia expat-advisor
Expat.com team

Yes be extremely careful, I told my recent fiancé if I am still dating you in two years I might, well it’s been two years , I’ve given her a ring, we have no desire to live together, just to make her parents accept me as a member of the family, but I realized I needed
The right signs from her she would still want me even if I didn’t have much money
And as we have talked about set some financial ground rules, it’s not that women are to dumb to handle your money, it’s just never being exposed to it, just if she goes with that and you love her, but if red flags go off , sooner than later is always best, if it’s supposed to be, then you will be with her again , if not it’s more wasted time

hi,
things have been a little difficult financially since I returned from England... the clinic I previously worked for considered me a huge threat... so they have been actively trying to stop me working, by not giving my number out and telling people I wasn't in the country etc...
this is now sorted and patients are now realising I am here.

I rented a nice apartment with pool gym etc for my patients... a long story short I have now built up my business, rented a 3-bed house, for her and her daughter but they won't move in... keeps running off home (nice place on 70) staying there for many reasons from religious days, to daughter being ill, to having a dream and can't leave the house, and as for the term "NEVER enough" to do with money,

hell yes...
but the thought of returning to my Vietnamese wife ... nahhh

Paul you can find really nice honest , don’t want your money, just stability in life, and they will give you love and respect back, not ask for more , but this is my main reason to give my fiancé just some money each month, but look Paul , there are so many fine women , with wonderful morals, just the one out there for you, but this might not be the one , I’m not to make that call, but remember there is a nice Cambodian woman out there for you, don’t do the never enough thing, look I did that twice in my life , it was a huge mistake, don’t be stupid like me, learn from others mistakes, just tell her your having a few bad months , and cut it to a minimum for two or three months, how she reacts to this might tell you exactly which decision to make , and save you a buck or two, or ultimately 1000s , my old man advice

twinsguy20, thanks, I am no way a newbie expat, been around a bit before landing here, but the African culture of the Amazon was much easier (8 years) a five euro bottle of Rhum was the family price. I will be unavailable when she next goes home, hopefully, this will make her think... she is the only woman that can keep me calm, but her nonchalant attitude sucks... no hasty decisions but she is on notice

Good to hear your on it, I was at the point where I think you are , and it worked out so, you don’t really need advice I’m thinking your going to make the right choice for you

You started out asking what Cambodian women want from their friend, and then used the word "boyfriend." There is a big difference in how a friend and how a boyfriend are expected to behave by the two people involved and also by the people around them.

I've been in SR for 30 months so far. My advice would be to look for a woman "friend" first before you get tangled up in the "boyfriend and "husband" stuff. I have been looking for "true love" in the Western style here, and I advise you not to pursue that or you will be as unhappy as I've been.

You see these t-shirts here that say: "No Money No Honey," This is a Golddigger attitude shared by many women around the world. It's a trap. Personally, I want a "best friend" and "partner," not a girlfriend or wife. LOL....:)  Would they print up a t-shirt that said: "No Money No Friendship" ? No, because everyone knows money is not a basis for friendship.

Friends first....then see what grows out of that.   :)

Paul Griffin:   Took me 30 months...older is not always wiser.  My daughter, 46 with her MA in psychology is always telling me to set up boundaries to protect myself and make sure I get what I want out of a relationship. LOL    :)

An ATM.

Hi, I've lived in Cambodia for 11 years. Don't even think about a relationship with any Asian woman. They and their families wrote the script. They'll rip you off and leave you for dead. They know all the lies, all the answers, all the sarcasm and how to manipulate. Generally speaking, most Westerners think we're smarter than them ............. NO WAY. They're always one step or a few steps ahead. You won't find love, romance, sympathy, empathy, caring, sharing, honesty or loyalty. Only pretense.

Have a nice life here - it can be done - set yourself a budget. How much would you be comfortable being ripped off by? It matters not what you do here or how smart we think we are; you will get ripped of here. Woman or no woman.

Learn the rules - some the hard way - and you can have a nice life. Best wishes. Pedro.

P.S. First question to ask a Khmer girl, "where is Cambodia?"

thanks,
I asked her ... maybe I should employ a cleaner? hoping she might take the hint. her reply was how much are you paying?
her level of laziness was impressive... I asked her to go home, and she did... hasn't taken anything with her, so I expect she'll be back at some point... I am interviewing a cleaner today... 
much cheaper...
all good.

petercambo :

Hi, I've lived in Cambodia for 11 years. Don't even think about a relationship with any Asian woman. They and their families wrote the script. They'll rip you off and leave you for dead. They know all the lies, all the answers, all the sarcasm and how to manipulate. Generally speaking, most Westerners think we're smarter than them ............. NO WAY. They're always one step or a few steps ahead. You won't find love, romance, sympathy, empathy, caring, sharing, honesty or loyalty. Only pretense.

Have a nice life here - it can be done - set yourself a budget. How much would you be comfortable being ripped off by? It matters not what you do here or how smart we think we are; you will get ripped of here. Woman or no woman.

Learn the rules - some the hard way - and you can have a nice life. Best wishes. Pedro.

P.S. First question to ask a Khmer girl, "where is Cambodia?"

Sour grapes Petercambo?

Gosh, the last posts were pretty hard. I had 3 seperations with wifes/girlfriends here in Europe though I am a pretty decent guy. From what i read on a lot of pages on the internet that Khmer woman (not the golddigging/barladies) are nice and loyal. Less bitchy than western ladies.
Ofcourse a beautifull girl in het 20-30's is not falling in love with a white guy in his 50's for his looks. What is that guy thinking? If this guy is nice and friendly, she could have a much better life and of course they expect you to do something for the family.
Therefor I found the idea of giving a amount per month for this purpose is a good idea.
I must say I have seen a lot of awefull westerners with nice ladies and if I was such a asian lady, I would leave such a creature too and I would take what I could get.

So, What could be the succes rate of western guy with Khmer girl? Decent guy with normal Khmer girl? Not bartype + hooker!

I don't expect to be that relationship for ever (would be nice) but a wise man said to me a long time ago: You should have a wife/partner for every stage/phase in your life. Say one for every 10-15 years. There is something true in it!

james1963 :

Gosh, the last posts were pretty hard. I had 3 seperations with wifes/girlfriends here in Europe though I am a pretty decent guy. From what i read on a lot of pages on the internet that Khmer woman (not the golddigging/barladies) are nice and loyal. Less bitchy than western ladies.
Ofcourse a beautifull girl in het 20-30's is not falling in love with a white guy in his 50's for his looks. What is that guy thinking? If this guy is nice and friendly, she could have a much better life and of course they expect you to do something for the family.
Therefor I found the idea of giving a amount per month for this purpose is a good idea.
I must say I have seen a lot of awefull westerners with nice ladies and if I was such a asian lady, I would leave such a creature too and I would take what I could get.

So, What could be the succes rate of western guy with Khmer girl? Decent guy with normal Khmer girl? Not bartype + hooker!

I don't expect to be that relationship for ever (would be nice) but a wise man said to me a long time ago: You should have a wife/partner for every stage/phase in your life. Say one for every 10-15 years. There is something true in it!

Well said.

Relationships between older men and younger women are based on mutual respect, trust and the will to make the partnership work. The majority of relationships are like that.

Those that fail are partially also the fault of the man, I have encountered that as well and have seen my faults and considered it as lessons of life.

Cheers
Joe

Hi Joe.

Ha ha. No, not sour grapes, it's just a fact; you can have a nice relationship with a Khmer woman but you just have to play by their rules and watch your back and be prepared to spend on them - they'll do what they want regardless of what we want. My wife is Thai and she isn't much different. Too much to go into but I've had a nice life here but many, many friends and people I've known have 'bitten' the dust and some are still heading for Tombstone.

In fact, I've done quite well here and have had many great times; I have lot's of Cambodian 'friends' - two great ones in particular. I'm not a pub crawler, I don't mix much with Barangs much - some Barangs can be just as bad but I have a few good and loyal Barang friends.

I've dipped my toe in the water a few times, married though I may be and............ well, it's each to their own is it not? Anyone who has found the ideal partner is very lucky and my hats off to them. Some of my married friends know what their Khmer wives are up to but they accept it and protect themselves as best they can.

I don't know everything Joe but after 14 years in Asia, I have an idea what goes on.

I suppose I should have posted - "Don't expect what you've been used to in the West". No, not sour grapes; I'm very happy .......... "Watch how some others bite the dust and don't do what they do!"

Regards, Pedro.

Petercambo, I respect your personal experience and view.

Just it's not the general experience with Khmer women. There are plenty of stories about wrong or gone wrong relationships, but the good stories are never published. Bad news sells.....

I know many relationships where the woman is not in charge and the family have a modest role.
It is about how far you let it come as a man, given that "beginners" make mistakes :)

Hi Joe,

I think we're basically using the same hymn sheet but singing different verses at the same time. There's good and bad everywhere. I can be harsh at times with 'beginners'; I do it basically because I was given some harsh advice when I first moved to Asia and believe that long sermons and speeches giving advice with a softly, softly approach don't work. I took some of the advice given to me on board, some I didn't. The advice I did take on board stood me in good stead and the advice I didn't caused me a few problems but I still remembered it and did my best to cover my back. Advice is only advice anyway - I guess we all have our different agendas.

I'd have to say that there are wiser 'beginners' here than I was but I have seen so many people - some of them good friends - get into trouble because they/I don't/didn't know the ropes. I covered my back the best I could and despite a few set backs and a lot of watching and listening, I began to learn.

You know the score; I never want to piss on anyone's chips so I generalize and then, as I think you said, it is our responsibility as men to deal with things as they come along. We make up our own minds. I'm lucky; I've had a whirlwind life with women and been married six times. Now I'm at an age where I just look at the menu but don't place an order.

So, life is good for me but I know that could change, I just don't want to see ex-pats bite the dust and I'm certainly not qualified or have the right to interfere with anyone's relationship or possible relationship so I don't. Posts are a different matter; better safe than sorry and I'm not hard hearted at all. We are in Cambodia after all.

Regards, Pedro.

New topic

Expatriate health insurance in Cambodia

Free advice and quotation service to choose an expat health insurance in Cambodia

Moving to Cambodia

Find tips from professionals about moving to Cambodia

Travel insurance in Cambodia

Enjoy stress-free travel to Cambodia