troubles back home
Tham has since gotten married again, to a neighbor in her Vietnamese town, but remains unhappy because of the stigma that is attached to her experience.
Four months after Tham returned in 2000, she gave birth to a girl and ran into problems registering the infant.
"His parents did not accept such a person like Tham into their family," Tham's tearful mother said referring to the new husband.
UNICEF says Tham's reception is common.
"If the women manage to return to Vietnam, discrimination is widespread. Children fathered by Chinese men are not always registered," a statement from the agency said.
Tham now collects crabs each day and is slowly trying to get her family on firmer financial ground.
But she has learned a hard lesson and warns others.
"I have made the mistake, having believed in my adopted mother. I wish friends and other women would never make such a mistake as mine."