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As a western women who's spent a lot of time in SE Asia, I agree with your basic idea of the economics of the situation. However, as a long term expat in Thailand, you must be familiar with the fact that the vast majority of the Western expats there are men. I completely agree with your trophy wife analogy above, but one of the reasons I came back to the States from SE Asia was, literally, the lack of Western guys who wanted to date me. I'd go out to the bar, have a great intellectual conversation with a Western guy, and then he'd go home with a local woman, and I'd go home alone.