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ASK EMMA

 

How to call the police?
Dear Emma,
I recently saw a man attempting to break into my neighbor’s house. I called 191 but couldn’t make myself understood to the policeman who answered the phone. I ran outside and shouted at him and he ran off but what if he had been armed or crazed on drugs? I was just so upset after trying to talk to the police on the phone that I just ran out into the front yard screaming my head off. The burglar must have thought I was completely insane and ran away. However, I was lucky he simply ran off, I realized later on.
So, Emma, I am asking you, who shall I call if the emergency line cannot understand English?
Signed,
Concerned neighbour

Dear Neighbour,
You can try the Tourist Police, they usually speak English, but I am not certain they are open late at night when most burglars would be an issue. However, you could try calling them during the day and see if they have any suggestions for you. Perhaps one might be willing to offer a mobile number of an English speaking officer who could call the police for you. Alternatively, you could learn enough Thai to say something along the lines of burglar and the address of your neighbour.
The number of the Tourist Police here in Chiang Mai is 053-248-130.
Yours,
Emma


My girlfriend can’t say no to her friends
Dear Emma,
I have a lovely Thai girlfriend and we have a pretty good relationship except her inability to turn anyone down is coming between us. Her friend asks for a loan, even one she cannot afford to give and she says yes and gives her the money anyway. Her mother calls and asks her to drive her to the stores at noon and she takes time off of work to go pick her mother up and take her shopping. The list seems endless, really. These people are taking advantage of her, her mother, for instance, lives very near the shops and could easily drive her own motorbike (yes she can drive) but chooses to ask my girlfriend to come over from the other side of town for her. The friend spends her own wages on expensive gadgets or shoes or bags and then when she can’t pay her rent asks my girlfriend for the money. Not once has she paid her back yet my girlfriend still loans her the money. There are other instances but these two are the worst.
She drops everything at the drop of a hat, or rather at any phone call. Including things we have planned together, and usually for something quite trivial. It is causing friction in our relationship as she thinks I am selfish for not giving in and I think she is gullible!
I am at a loss as to what to do here. At the rate things are going she will have no money and no time for herself or our relationship.
Signed,
Fed up

Dear Fed up,
Honestly, you see the solution in front of you but choose not to take it, that much is obvious to Emma. The relationship will never work when she puts the entire world ahead of your relationship, indeed ahead of herself even. It will be one conflict after another as you become more and more fed up with her over generous behaviour and the greediness of her so-called friends and family.
You can certainly try to talk her out of this behaviour but it is so ingrained in her own self-worth that you most likely will be quite unsuccessful. I would suggest to you that your best option and one most likely to maintain your own mental health is to end it now before you get even more serious with this girl and the relationship progresses to a point that may be of no return.
Yours,
Emma


It’s all about ME!
Dear Emma,
I have a friend, well a couple of friends, both men, who post on my Facebook comments on a regular basis and always make it about themselves. I am not a narcissist at all but I suspect these two are. It doesn’t seem to matter what the subject is, they will turn it around so it is all about them. Sometimes, I feel like posting “Excuse me but the world isn’t about you” but don’t like to be rude.
So, I just let it sit and hope that others don’t mind their self-centered behavior. However, it would be great to just stop them cold, short of unfriending, which seems drastic in these days of social media where putting even the smallest foot wrong online leads to hurt feelings. I know there are settings where I can block them from seeing my comments but I never know which ones they will step into and hijack. It seems so random. Is there something wrong with these people or is it me?
Yours,
Facebook friends

Dear Facebook,
I read an interesting research article that said basically people who have a lot of friends, post often, post controversial items, post their own photos a lot, and like their own photos tend to be narcissistic. According to one researcher they typically have very high self-esteem but as it is quite fragile, when they are attacked their self-esteem plummets. But, take heart, one study showed that Facebook users could usually tell who was narcissistic. Narcissists will go wherever there is an audience so if you don’t give them that audience they will move on, usually to their own page where they get the feedback from their followers that they need.
So, it would seem that the best possible advice, if you do not wish to unfriend these people, or block them from seeing your page, is to simply ignore them. If one of your friends feeds their comments, remove them and message the friend that while you do not wish to alienate this person, neither do you wish to feed their egos. Emma realizes that with the widespread use of social media for connections and business it is not always possible to remove annoying people, but you may want to consider limiting the things they see online for your own peace of mind.
Yours,
Emma