Discuss culture, living, traveling, relocating, dating or anything related to the Asian countries - China, The Philippines, Thailand, etc.
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I try to surround myself with ethical people when I am in the Philippines. I would say that most people I deal with there, are honest.
It’s just that sometimes they do things that fall into a gray area of what I call “non-sins”.
Just like with the Undead- these are not really this nor that. Not alive and not dead.
In other words, I still feel that what they did was unethical, while they don’t seem to think so. And there are no commandments which prohibit what they do. I am left with a strange aftertaste after each one of such manifestations of these “non-sins”.
They have upheld all the Ten Commandment and they didn’t lie ( which is the unspoken 11th Commandment.) Their conscience is clear. But I still feel I was not treated fairly. And that they were not being ethical. This is what they do:
Non-Sin 1. They don’t lie, they conceal. Aka: “If you don’t ask, I won’t tell”.
One girl I dated for quite many months suddenly felt it was time to tell me that she couldn’t have kids. After all those months?
Why are you telling me only now- after I spent so much time and so much money on you?
You didn’t ask!
Also, I’ve been taking care of a child whose single mother was my former house helper. I have no kids, and the child called me “Daddy”, so I did decide to kind of adopt the kid and help raise her.
I’ve been sending about P5000 every month for all the school expenses, the nanny and the transportation to school- the nanny would take her and bring her back. She did.
Suddenly, the nanny quit ( or was fired), and they decided to “hire” the kid’s own grandmother to do the job. I also learned that the child was now going to school alone and not using transportation.
They didn’t tell me.
I felt that a grandmother should be doing it for free- it’s her flesh and blood. My grandmother took care of me for free. Why not her? I only found out about it recently.
Why didn’t you let me know? I should now pay less money, should I not?
You didn’t ask!
There are always all kinds of secrets and secret machinations going on in silence, and these are not made known to me. Smiles abound, but secrets lie beneath. Why not be open about them?
Not in the SE Asian culture
Non-Sin 2. Beg and switch.
This is a variation of the “bait-and-switch”, but in a slightly different form. And it’s not a scam.
A friend asks me for some money to help her kid with a field trip, or with payments for job requirements. The friend was not lying, she needed it. I sent the money. Suddenly, there is a change in plans, and the field trip is canceled by the school. Or she/he decides not to apply for the job, but instead, do something else.
But the money is not returned to me, but instead, given to some relative for some other need. Or spent on something else. Hey, if there’s been a change in plans, should you not give me back the money?
They don’t think that it was unethical to do what they did, though. It was not their fault that the field trip was canceled. And so what if I changed my mind? And the money is now mine, so I can do anything I want with it.
Non-Sin 3: Unforetold Additionals.
They announce a price to you on some service, but when you are in the middle of receiving it, there’ s a sudden additional cost which they did not tell you about. If you don’t pay, they will not continue providing the service. For example, you enroll in a course and they give you a list of costs, but they keep other costs hidden in secrecy. They hit them with you over the head when you are in the process. Why weren’t you upfront about the whole thing?
You didn’t ask.
Same with taxi drivers- who are nice guys, and give you the fare, but don’t mention the toll costs. What are you going to do when at a toll gate, and they are all smiling at you and waiting for you to pay?
They did not lie, did not steal. No commandment was broken. You didn’t ask, they didn’t tell. But you pay.
Non-Sin 4. They don’t steal, they just don’t pay back the debt.
There is nothing in any religion about not paying back the debt being a sin.
It’s not theft, it’s not lying. The person gave me the money at his/her own risk, I have other needs now and I can’t pay. It’s not my fault. I need money to pay for my rent, my phone, etc. I’ll pay when I can. (Which is usually never).
Both wealthy- looking locals and foreigners who are in the PH are constantly hit with requests for loans. And in the majority of cases, these are not paid back. Ever.
I belong to a religious organization, and after the service, I went home. Suddenly emails from members of the religion came to me, as well as phone calls asking for me to loan them money. I was in shock and refused.
But one foreign lady was nice and generously helped with a P 100,000 loan. Needless to say, she never got her money back. She felt cheated, the debtor member hid somewhere, would not answer phone calls, then escaped and was gone for a long time. Both were educated people.
Why? So much bitterness resulted from it.
But all the commandments were upheld, no law was broken, no sin was committed.
Non-Sin 5. They don’t lie, but they tell you half-truths.
A leader in a religious organization asked me for a donation to help that person open a religious center. She would pay a part, I would pay a part. Fair enough, it is for a good cause.
What the leader did not tell me was that she and her family would be living in that religious center, too. It had many rooms, a room for prayers and lectures and then, bedrooms. They made it their home, as well. Hmm, why not tell me?
You didn’t ask.
Did they lie or cheat? Did they steal? Did they do anything illegal? No. But why do I still feel that I had been cheated and treated unfairly?
Such non-sins are very common in many SE Asian cultures. Thailand is also famous for them, although, there, they are “deeper” and more sophisticated. In Christian counties, these are not much part of the culture and people appear to be much more upfront about such things. But in SE Asian nations, you need to watch out for all these non-sins which nevertheless make you feel like you have been used. And you lost money!
A brain is a terrible thing to wash!
I totally get what you mean. People pull shit like that all the time here, at least if it's somehow occupation-related. Face-to-face, dealing with someone outside of a work environment, they'll probably be up-front. The medical & legal shit seems to be the worst. Included in legal shit is passport/driver's license/business license type of things- there will be a price for something, but then there's an "execution fee." How the f**k is this thing present without that particular situational component? It's like buying a burger & the only thing you get is a fuckin' bun! If the ingredient is missing, it's not that thing- right?
I suspect that Ladislav knows the answer to all these "sins" - don't give out money. Now, he is clearly a caring and generous guy and wants to help. So he gives money, gifts money or loans money.
The problem is that once the gift and/or loan has been given, it's no longer our money. We don't know how the gift was used, whether it was used for its original purpose or whether the original purpose has changed (as in the grandmother now transporting the child).
This is not a problem unique to Asia or the Philippines.
Check out my blog @ www.marriedafilipina.com
I think a lot of the problem revolves around the fact that most expats in the Philippines don't know how to be rich, because they don't have any experience with it. Western expats, I've noticed, are almost always middle class. Poor Westerners can't afford to go spend time in Asia, and rich ones have too much going on and not enough incentive to make the trip. So you have some guy that makes 50-100k a year, who goes over and spends a month or two a year; or an older guy that gets a few thousand a month in retirement income; or a young guy with an internet business making a few thousand a month. In the US, these guys are NOT rich, and they don't consider themselves such. No one in America tries to ask him for money, there are better fish in the sea for that.
Then these guys go to Asia. Wow! Locals there who make 250,000 pesos (5k) are doing well. A white guy making 25k is a *baller*. Filipinos making that kind of money have servants. And being white, they stand out in a crowd, so people zero in on them. But these guys aren't used to being hit up for money. They're used to family members coming to them as a last resort, only when it's really serious. So they say yes, because they don't know how to say no, or at least say no without feeling like an a-hole. And in a lot of ways, these guys are doubly screwed, because if they had experience being poor in America, they'd be better at sussing out what was a real need and what was shaking the foreigner money tree; and also how to phrase their "no" in a way that didn't offend the person asking them (no losing face).
LMAO ladislav great post. great points
But again, there is no such thing as "lending" money, i don't know why that word is even in the dictionary lol, there is only "handing out"
*Hey ladislav, would you lend me a couple of grand for a project I have planned here?
But seriously, I must comment that it is different here in Vietnam, at least in my experience. In two and half months nobody has asked for any money, heck nobody even expects tips in restaurants or the like. The girls I've been seeing even try to help save me money. No weird emergency stories or anything like that.
1)Too much of one thing defeats the purpose.
2)Everybody is full of it. What's your hypocrisy?
I am a terrible person.
This is a great analysis and not often thought of; that is that the guy who has spent his entire life as middle class, and is therefore rarely an object to be hit on for cash, is now "rich" and is the target of others.
I have a blog and a guy recently commented that he'd gotten beat out of $150k, proving that Filipinas are all scammers. My response? That it was a "you problem." I would never have (nor could have) such a problem, since I know how to say "no" and don't have $150k to piss away.
Check out my blog @ www.marriedafilipina.com
"One girl I dated for quite many months suddenly felt it was time to tell me that she couldn’t have kids. After all those months?
Why are you telling me only now- after I spent so much time and so much money on you?"
It should say, "Why now? After all this time. I could have been blowing loads in you all these months!"
@Droid - girls try to save you money in the hopes of getting shoes later.
In all seriousness, I kind of agree with what was written above. Foreigners must both learn how to say no, and realise that once the money is handed over, how it gets used is beyond their control. I do understand Lads position though. I tend to lean on the kind and generous side as well. I never expect to get anything back, though, especially from the person. I figure karma or the Universe, or what have you, will return it to me some other way.
“b***y is so strong that there are dudes willing to blow themselves up for the highly unlikely possibility of b***y in another dimension." -- Joe Rogan
Well, after a little bit of experience from online chatting with (rather) good filipina girls, I can say that the problem with filipina girls is not aboyt lying, it is about what they usually hide.
The hide thing from the fear that may lose the man?
But how can I trust a girl, if I discover a little later, that a serious topic is never mentioned to me?
Should I ask 'everything'? Is it possible?
The common sense God gave us, it is that we should inform the other part for important topics. Not telling 'you didn't ask!'
Make a list of everything that you want to know. Then, every time you meet a girl, work your way through your questions.
Good advice, and I am ready following it, as it was one of the best things I learned from here.
But, you can't predict asking for answers for everything.
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