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Warning for Naïve Male Expatriates

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"Dear Aida, I wonder if you can write an article regarding this matter. I believe that it would be helpful for foreigners to be warned of the ways many Indonesian women behave. They are so manipulating mainly in terms of breaking up happy marriages, convincing naïve male expatriates that they are pregnant with their child and need financial support, etc. Truly yours, Ann."

This message came to my inbox while I was working on my next article. I read it over several times, and the gray cells in my brain were sweltering trying to figure out how I should reply. There's no way I can approach this issue for The Jakarta Post without it being heavily censored by their so morally concerned editors. I know it's also impossible to post the article in the newly launched 'Aida Speaks Out' without creating controversial bitter debate from the would be highly educated white society.

Let me expand as subtly as possible.

Well yes, there are some morally questionable women out there whom I believe were born specifically to find naïve male westerners to date or possibly marry. Money, free vacations to temperate countries or the dream to sleep with somebody who looks like an aged version of characters they worship in 'Baywatch Nights". You can name a thousand other reasons behind their behavior, except love. But as they always say, love will come eventually, or not.

I have a lot of male expatriate friends and some of them did date or are currently involved with local women. Every time I bump into these mates in a party somewhere and they're coincidentally hand in hand with suspicious looking twenty-something-year-old local girlfriends, I really enjoy playing games with them such as asking the following questions.

"So, where did you two meet?" This is my favorite inquiry.

If she says;" Uuuh, I met him in a club... uh... what was it called... I can't remember... but I had never been there before in my life... I swear!"

"Tanamur?" I quickly ask. She usually can't look at me straight in the eye, but nods quietly. This is 'beware' number one. She's probably been hanging out there half of her life waiting for somebody brainless enough to think that she is a ready to rescue Indonesian version of the Holy Mary.

Or, when they say that they are students I ask them which school they are attending. If they answer with names you've never heard of like 'University of Aesthetic and Body Language' or something, then you have to be cautious. An otherwise, fake-schooling fee is the next thing their boyfriends will find on their bedside table.

You don't have to have an MBA degree to understand how these women operate. Playing the shy 'What is a nice girl like me doing in a sleazy place like this?' scenario is the first thing they will do until the guys are totally blind with love. Some of them even leave their long-term spouses. Hey, who needs a long-term faithful supportive wife if you have a twenty-something-year-old ego-boosting chick in your arms!

Secondly, the poor family stories come up. They have various excuses to make you empty your bank account; including stories about siblings education, frequently dying relatives, advanced rental for their overpriced kost in order to avoid eviction, or even their mothers who need extra capital to expand their bule-priced souvenir shops, whatever!

Eventually, some guys realize what is actually going on, some don't. Or maybe some guys are at the stage when they feel really bored of saying; 'You look great darling, nice nail polish!' in Tarzan's hand signals.

Having less pocket money and less sex (they complain almost like real wives too), these women suddenly realize that their men are planning to leave them. A new strategy must be prepared in no time. Then: Voila! They reveal a home pregnancy test kit with a positive sign on it. The story goes on and on.

I remember when a Caucasian friend of mine, told me that he had been paying medical bills for his pregnant ex-girl friend. When the D-day finally came, he was horrified to see the yellow skinned, narrow-eyed newborn bore absolutely no resemblance to him. He tried really hard, but to no avail to convince the doctors that his baby was suffering jaundice.

He asked her what actually happened. She said," Well, it was about the same time. I was also dating a Japanese man while we were still together." What do you know! That's what I call double income!

Regarding the happy marriage breaker mentioned in Ann's email, I really don't know what to say! I mean, morally lacking women are everywhere in this world. If your husband is willing to leave you just for a younger woman who gives him tropical fantasies, don't you think that you should be glad to get rid of him anyway?

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Practical Information for foreigners, expats and expatriates moving to Indonesia - find out about housing, schooling, transport, shopping and more to prepare you for your stay in Indonesia

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