Thai supermodel gets help

Rojjana ‘‘Yui’’ Phetkanha was found disoriented in the Phetkasem Soi 42 area and eventually persuaded to get treatment at a Bangkok psychiatric hospital. Post Today photo.

By Terry Fredrickson

Rojjana ‘‘Yui’’ Phetkanha, an international supermodel during the 1990's, was found wandering aimlessly in the Phetkasem Soi 42 area Friday morning, clearly in need of help. Now she is getting it.

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Thai supermodel gets help

Yui during her days as a presenter of Allure perfume by Chanel.

Last Thursday night, police recieved a report about a woman who was annoying people at a petrol station in Phetkasem Soi 52.

The next morning, they received another report that the woman was wandering along Phetkasem Soi 42, dragging along a large bag containing old clothes and food. She seemed disoriented

The woman it turned out was Rojjana ‘‘Yui’’ Phetkanha, who was once one of Thailand's most famous models, a superstar during the 1990's.

The dark-skinned girl from Isan, not your typical model, won the Supermodel of Thailand 1994 competition when she was only 18.
Yui went on to work as a professional model in Milan, Paris and New York and became a cover girl for Vogue Asia and a presenter of Allure perfume by Chanel.

But the life of a highly-paid model also had its dark side. Yui began drinking heavily and taking drugs, problems that would force her out of the modelling business within eight years.

She returned to Thailand and got small jobs but continued to battle her addiction She received treatment but still suffered from delusions

At one point Yui attempted to make a fresh start locally gracing the cover of Touch magazine, whose editors found her story of struggle and redemption inspirational

Now, Yui is getting help. She has been admitted to Somdet Chaopraya Institute of Psychiatry for treatment Social Development and Human Security Minister Paveena Hongsakula visited her at the hospital yesterday.

Yui at the height of her career in 1998.

Ms Paveena said later Ms Rojjana wanted to meet her brother. The ministry would contact her family about taking care of her once she is released from the hospital.

Adapted from stories in today's Bangkok Post and from

Here is a 2008 interview with Yui in which she discusses her attempts at overcoming a drug problem and the loss of her wealth.


    addiction: a strong need that someone feels to regularly take an illegal or harmful drug - การติดยาเสพติด
    annoy: to make someone angry or upset - ทำให้รำคาญใจ
    battle: to try very hard to achieve something difficult or to deal with something unpleasant or dangerous - ต่อสู้, ดิ้นรนต่อสู้, มุ่งมั่นฝ่าฟัน
    competition: a situation in which people or organizations compete, i.e., try to be more successful or better than somebody else who is trying to do the same as you - การแข่งขัน
    delusion: a mental condition in which you believe things that are not true; a false belief or opinion about yourself or your situation - อาการหลงผิด (ทางจิตวิทยา), อาการหลอน
    disoriented: unable to recognise where you are or where you should go - สับสนและไม่เข้าใจว่าอะไรเกิดขึ้นรอบตัวเอง
    dragging: pulling - ดึง
    eventually: at the end of a period of time or at the end of a process - ในที่สุด
    inspirational: making you want to be better, more successful, etc - เป็นการดลใจ, ที่สร้างแรงบันดาลใจ
    locally: in or related to the area that you live, or to the particular area that you are talking about - ในท้องถิ่น, ในประเทศ
    persuade: to make someone agree to do something by giving them reasons why they should - โน้มน้าวใจ เกลี้ยกล่อม
    professional: doing something as a paid job rather than as a hobby - ที่ทำเป็นอาชีพ
    psychiatric: connected with the treatment of mental illness - เกี่ยวกับจิตวิทยา
    redemption: saved from evil, i.e., to repair what you have done wrong - การไถ่ถอน, การซื้อคืนมา
    struggle: a very difficult task that you can do only by making a great effort - ความพยายาม
    suffer (from): to be badly affected by a disease, pain, sadness, a lack of something, etc - เป็นโรค, ประสบความทุกข์
    treatment: the process of providing medical care - การรักษา
    typical: having the usual qualities or features of a particular type of person, thing or group - เป็นแบบฉบับ, เป็นสัญลักษณ์
    wander: roam; to travel from place to place without a particular direction or purpose - เดินทางไปโดยไม่มีจุดหมายที่แน่นอน, ร่อนเร่

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