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To be concerned by my brothers choice of partner?

(20 Posts)
mightybright Sun 19-Jun-11 21:13:23

My brother is 29, good looking and intelligent. He was teaching English in Thailand and had a long term Thai girlfriend who spoke fluent English as had been to uni in the US. They split up and he met someone else who can't speak much English at all, they were dating for 2 weeks when he was deported for working without the correct visa.

He'd been back here in the UK for almost 2 years when he split up from someone he'd been seeing and started speaking to the woman he'd been dating in Thailand.

They arranged to meet in Malaysia as he's not allowed back to Thailand and started up a long distance relationship, seeing each other every 6 months or so for a month at a time.

She came here to the UK twice, then the third visa they applied for was turned down as it turned out she had lied on here application claiming she was working when she wasn't, which in itself is not too bad but she had also been lying to my bro about it, even detailing her days at work!

He finished with her and she apparently tried to kill herself, somehow they got back together and now he says they are applying for another visa (fiance visa) so she can come here and they can get married.........

I am concerned about this on a number of levels, aibu?

Pictish Sun 19-Jun-11 21:14:49

No yanbu to be concerned...but I don't see what you can do about it. It's up to him.

firemansamantha Sun 19-Jun-11 21:16:11

Fine to be concerned but he's a big boy!

mightybright Sun 19-Jun-11 21:17:48

I'm not planning to do anything, although may try and steer him in the direction of some eligible women! I've just heard the latest news today so am still a bit shock

kayah Sun 19-Jun-11 21:24:45

I can only guess with the Home office getting tough on visas and her lying she may not get it.

TattyDevine Sun 19-Jun-11 21:29:44

I came in on a Fiance visa, you have to marry within 6 months and you can't work in that time (or until your "further leave to remain" has been approved after the wedding)

So he would have to support her. They could break up between her coming in and the wedding, of course. Depends how long till the wedding, they could do it quickly.

He might get cold feet when it comes to booking the wedding. I'd just bide your time. You are right to be concerned, but what's the worst thing that can happen? That he has a short, ill fated marriage? I dont' know what assets he has but to be honest its a bit of a myth that she can take half if they've only been married a few months or a year, and if he doesn't even own a house, he's even less to lose in the event it goes wrong.

He could end up having a child he doesn't see much of I suppose but that could happen regardless of visas, within reason.

YANBU but are just going to have to take a step back and hope that it either works out and he's very happy or it all goes to pot without anything to terrible happening.

mightybright Sun 19-Jun-11 21:30:26

I hope she doesn't, if they had children and split up she could return to Thailand and he would never be able to see his children again

pinkie00 Sun 19-Jun-11 21:39:14

Why should you be concered. There is no harm in this is there? Just relax.

Pictish Sun 19-Jun-11 23:15:03

Pinkie - when the OP's brother decided to end this relationship, the woman in question allegedly attempted suicide.

I think that's very harmful. Emotional blackmail is disgusting, exploitative and lower than a snakes belly.

If it were MY brother, I'd be chewing my nails as well. Not that it would do any good of course.

mightybright Mon 20-Jun-11 09:40:20

I understand he needs to make his own mistakes, I had a short and ill fated marriage too, but I can't help feeling concerned.

Do you think I ought to talk to him? I do feel my parents should, not to critisise him but just to talk it through, but they won't.

fastweb Mon 20-Jun-11 10:06:12

Do you think I ought to talk to him?

You can try, making clear there will be not "told you so" if he goes ahead, it all goes bent and he needs somebody to lean on.

My first husband was Thai and I lived over there with his family for some years. I left an awfully long time ago and things may have changed radically, but threatening to kill yourself if somebody ends a relationship is a red flag to me because it reeks of dysfunction from somebody of a culture that places such emphasis on "never mind" and "put on a smile to save face". Although it might simply be that she is enjoying the release of the above restrictions given that he doesn't have those cultural expectations.

Thai women (back in my day) faced a lot of opposition from their families if they had a relationship with a farang, not least because the concern was that out and about everybody would assume their female relative was a prostitute. Did he get a sense of how her family might feel about her seeing him and if that is impacting her behavior ?

If it is any consolation my family were worried sick (not without reason) about my relationship, it did all go horribly bent, and I came through the other side once I worked out that perhaps life wasn't meant to be spent lurching from crisis to drama.

fastweb Mon 20-Jun-11 10:07:15

will be no "I told you so" even.

LyingWitchInTheWardrobe Mon 20-Jun-11 10:11:14

I think fastweb has a good point - just reiterate to your brother that a 'threat to kill themselves' is a real red marker to anybody's relationship - nothing to do with the history of this girl, just that - a suicide threat just because he ended the relationship could be the start of a pattern as the threat 'worked'.

I feel for you, OP, nothing you can 'do' about this, but it doesn't stop you worrying, or wanting to do something to try to protect your brother.

SenoritaViva Mon 20-Jun-11 10:16:16

There has been some good advice on here.

I would talk to him, but I would come from the angle of 'if this is what you want I cannot stop you and will support you but I want you to have thought of everything. I'd start with some of the legalities like can her support her whilst she can't work, what does he expect her to do work wise once she can work, how is she planning to learn English (can they afford this?), as a poster clarified, if they have children and then separate will he be able to see them if she takes them back to Thailand'. And any other functional questions people come up with on this post. Can he set up a pre nup for instance. Have they discussed what kind of wedding they'd like and can he afford it. etc.

If all that goes well then I think you can gently talk about her mental health as well, relating to the suicide attempt and her general trustworthiness about lying re: the job etc.

I'd also be concerned, but in the end your brother's choices are his. Still you will be a good sister if you have at least made him think about some important questions - then if he goes ahead with it it is his choice.

redexpat Mon 20-Jun-11 10:17:23

Practical stuff: She probably is marrying him for a better life, but a lot of women have a very different idea of what marriage is. The chances of her going back to Thailand should they split are slim because there is a better quality of life here.

She might not get a visa if she has lied on a previous application.

Emotional stuff: attempting suicide. Hmm can see why you are concerned, but don't really know if there is much you can do about it. Sorry.

fastweb Mon 20-Jun-11 10:48:50

The chances of her going back to Thailand should they split are slim because there is a better quality of life here.

Actually that is not necessarily true. While there is some validity in the assumption that poor women\men or prostitutes get involved with farang as a calculated choice as opposed to romance, it is far from universal.

Out of the six (doomed to divorce) Thai\British couple I knew who went off to live in the UK, four of the Thai spouses returned home shortly after the relationship broke down. For two of them I honestly think it was their homesickness that pushed the relationship over the edge.

I met and married husband 1.0 in the UK, he had leave to remain and work in the UK but he was the driving force behind us emigrating to Thailand after five years together in the UK. When we (predictably) went belly up, I left Thailand, he stayed out of preference. The Uk simply couldn't offer him the lifestyle and opportunities that Thailand did.

I can't assure the OP that this isn't a case of exploitation of her brother for the sake of a passport\better way of life. But it is not a given that the woman is motivated by lifestyle opporutnities as opposed to very real feelings for the OPs brother.

If it is the latter it is a bit more complicated because people are more willing to walk away from a business deal that didn't pan out, than they are to walk away from a failing romance that they are still deeply invested in emotionally.

mightybright Mon 20-Jun-11 16:08:15

I truly believe she has feelings for him, he's her age, good looking, kind and has money, all of these things are pretty much universally attractive I would imagine! I'm sure she would love to live here as there would be far more opportunties for her and she would be able to send money home to her family, this doesn't bother me atll, it's entirely natural. It's more the 'attempted' suicide, her insane jealousy, the lying, the fact they don't know each other very well and the fact they find it hard to communicate due to the language barrier.

dreamingbohemian Mon 20-Jun-11 16:26:13

She is very unlikely to get a fiance visa, between lying on her previous application and the new English language standards they are trying to put in, not to mention your brother will have to provide a lot of evidence proving their long-distance relationship. It's probably a good idea to talk to him, but you could let it lie for now and deal with it on the off chance she does get a visa.

fastweb Mon 20-Jun-11 17:10:03

I'm wondering also, if his name on her visa application when handed in to the BE will red flag him as having been deported for visa infringements and thus put an almighty great spanner in the works.

If it didn't catch them out at the BE it might still prove to be an issue at Luna House when they go for something longer term.

It is a fairly tough process as it is (or was when I had to do it) without something screaming "we are not adverse to a little bit of visa flouting" on a couple's application.

Whether or not the info will be noted by the British agencies kind of depends how his deportation came about ie a raid, a dobbing in, or just get caught out on a visa run and having to come back from Malaysia without ever getting back into Thailand, cos depending on the circs he might have needed consular assistance, which would make the chances of him being red flagged in their system relatively high.

Has he brought up the potential difficulties being deported might have on his chances of ever living in the same country as her again ? Maybe getting him to look into the practicalities of visas rather than just imagining how they work could focus his mind on how much it will NOT be a walk in the park, even if his deportation hasn't blighted it from the start. If nothing else, if he feels in over his head and not up to making the decision in his own right, it could look like an attractive "blame free" out. As in "of course I want to be with you, but the nasty border agencies will never let that happen so I must set you free to love again".

You could point him to this forum to get informed about the process, or even post yourself and find out if basically they have no chance of being together anyway, which might take a weight off your shoulders.

MightyBright Mon 20-Jun-11 17:52:19

They did get her a visa a couple of times, she was also turned down twice before they finally let her in then on her next application they found out she was lying, so yes I hope it has red flagged the application!

After being deported he tried to re-enter about a year later and was arrested at teh airport and deported again so they have definately got more sophisticated border controls than I had assumed!

I had a Thai boyfriend for 5 years too although he wasn't the guy I had the ill fate marriage to! We did look into him coming to the UK quite a few times but it was so complicated and I think it's even harder for Thai women due to the amount of internet brides.

I think the whole 'star crossed lovers' thing has made her seem even more attractive iyswim, it's a fantasy and if she does come and live here the reality won't live up to their expectations

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