Love. Soulmates. My first entry in Diary of a twenty-something was about what I learn from my first job after graduation. I realize it’s time to make a bit of a life reflection again. But this time will be on the topic of soulmate.
I’m no professional. I’m definitely the worst person to be writing this. I’ve never been in a relationship with someone longer than 8 months. But you know what. I’m learning. And I don’t regret a single relationship I was in. Every time I go through a heartbreak, a separation, it’s like more flavour put into this stew I called life. It brings out many lessons and things that change me in a way that makes me who I am today. That’s experience, that’s wealth that can’t be measured.
What is “Soulmate“?
I have been thinking since coming out of my latest relationship a few weeks ago and approaching my 25th birthday soon in August. What is a soulmate? If you ask my younger self I would say, someone who is perfect for me. Someone who when I meet him for the first time, I’ll know this is it. He’s the one. This is all from the influence of movies, songs, novels and a load of crap ideas of love that were fed to me growing up.
But then growing up makes me realize what the fuck? There’s no such thing as perfect. Not even you. You can’t expect someone to be your everything when you even different friends for that sometimes. You can’t expect your significant other to play all sorts of roles and fulfil whatever insecurities you have coming into the relationship and blaming them for not being perfect when you yourself is nowhere near. I remember listening to a podcast that says, you can’t expect your soulmate to be that fun-loving party friend that goes out drinking with you on a Friday night and the shrink that gives you amazing life advice midweek.
If you expect that much out of one person, then let me tell you.. you’re going to be super disappointed. Because not only will you find out you will never meet that one perfect guy, but you will also find out that one perfect guy does not exist.
Let me tell you a secret, I absolutely love Matthew Hussey. I’ve been listening to his videos since my first heartbreak 5 years ago I think? And he has the best amazing way of making you understand life. He has a way of putting unexplained words into a beautiful sentence that makes it easy for you to get it. In this video, he explains why he believes there is no such thing as “the one“.
There are 7 billion people in the world, half of them are men. Let’s make this easy by narrowing it down to 1 billion who can potentially be the one. Take a woman who will meet 3 new guys every day for the next 50 years. We already know that’s absurd but let’s do the maths for fun anyway.
3×365 = 1095 guys a year x 50 years = 54750 guys in her lifetime.
That’s like a 0.005% chance that she’ll meet the one in a lifetime, and that’s meeting 3 new guys a day for 50 years.
Then we look around and realize that anecdotally that we find far more women that found a guy who they want to spend the rest of their lives with.
The idea of having a soulmate is programmed into us as human beings. We crave simplicity. We do not like the idea that many people out there could be the one. It’s neat and tidy because if there is just one person out there you just need to find that person. And when we do, we’ll know about it.
But what happens when we’re in a relationship with who we think was our soulmate and they start disrespecting you? Treating you badly? Stick around because they’re the one? Or leave because they’re not the one? That’s such a start of a very long chronic and toxic relationship hopping. And I think this is me. When I find out something is not perfect, I start to go on a long analysis of convincing myself this is not it.
Instant Gratification Embedded into Today’s Dating Culture
I think this comes from our instant gratification culture and online dating. A time where you feel there are endless possibilities and people to meet at the tip of our finger. This is why marriages do not last as long. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a great time to not be in an unhappy marriage or relationship that does not serve you and have the choice to leave. Imagine how that was not the case, how divorces were uh-uh. But I also think the fact that we know we can find someone new as fast as downloading an app and swiping, makes an insult to long-term relationships that take years to build. It shows just how easy people are able to think that sometimes that might be a better option than working things out with the one in front of you.
What if Soulmate is not found but made?
If we believe that our soulmate comes ready-made, that just shows how entitled we are. How we think we don’t have to work for it. We’re entitled to meet our soulmate and everything would be perfect. We’re going to be so compatible, every day is going to be passionate and happy. What is a soulmate is not a person with all these “pre-destined compatibilities, but the choice to stay together”. I’m starting to believe that a great relationship is built, not found.
Of course, this does not mean everyone can be our soulmate and can be right for us. But it’s better to think there is more than one person that can make it work.
Going through each relationship though short actually taught me more and more of what quality I should be looking for and raising my standards. A guy not texting me back? not asking me out again? giving mixed confusing signals? Fuck that. I know better now what commitment and investment look like. What a guy who is interested and put in the effort looks like.
Exactly how I should be treated. I would go as far as saying, each relationship taught me the good and the bad. It’s like writing a novel and having feedback. You realize ok you suck at this, this one part you’re really bad. Being impatient for example. But hey, you’re good at this one thing like communicating and confronting problems. Talking things out. If you meet someone who hates that one thing you’re good at and even find it annoying or intimidating, then fuck them. You learn from other past relationships that this is a quality that other people would be dying for their significant other to have.
I found this video about the relationship between Lily and Marshall from How I Met Your Mother, and I loved it. Ted and his quest to find his soulmate are us in our early years thinking there is such a thing. Finding out after being disappointed again and again that real love is what you make. Not a set of list of things you want a person to be.
It’s the journey that makes it true.
After all, is it an exciting idea that there is more than one person out there that are willing to make it work with you? Through thick and thin, through the ups and downs and still, love you? Just like your friends accept your flaws and love them anyway, your soulmate, despite the many imperfections, will want to be in this journey with you no matter what.
So until then, don’t be afraid to try and try again. For now, stay single and stay fabulous my queens.