soul mate ˈsōl ˌmāt/
noun a person ideally suited to another as a close friend or romantic partner
This is the concept that there is one person… one… out of 7.6 billion people on earth that is your “soulmate.” That one person is ideally suited to you.
Those 7.6 billion people are scattered all over the world.
What if your soulmate lives 3,000 miles away? Or 10,000 miles away on a different continent? What are the chances that the one person who is “ideally suited” to you lives within, say, a 30-mile radius? Those are worse odds than winning the lottery.
I have had this disagreement with multiple people, multiple times over multiple years and every time I have it, it pushes me further away from ever being able to believe something so childish and stupid.
Now, don’t misunderstand me; I’m not saying I don’t believe in true love and that you can actually completely and totally love someone you do not share blood with. While I personally haven’t experienced that feeling, I do think its possible to be completely in love with another person. But that does not make them your soulmate.
A soulmate, by definition, is someone you have to have a lot in common with. So you not only have to love this person, but you have to have similar interests and more than likely a similar background. I have friends that I have a lot in common with, over a broad spectrum, but that does not mean they are my soulmate(s).
I have been in two long-term relationships (each lasting over two years) and both of them broached the idea of being “soulmates” to me. The first was the closest to an actual soulmate I have ever had. And I would go so far as to say that was my only experience with, or the closest I have ever come to “true love,” which is sad considering that ended when I was 19 years old. I’m 40 now.
The second was probably the furthest from a soulmate that I could imagine, I had enemies that I had more in common with than I did that one. We hated each other but stayed together for several years, for reasons I can’t even begin to describe. There was a palpable dislike between us, in addition to having absolutely nothing in common besides a strong dislike for each other. The day she mentioned “soulmates” to me I laughed in her face. Without an ounce of regret.
Getting back to the first one, the closest I have had, we were able to revisit things 14 years after we split up. It was then that I realized that, while she was the closest thing I had to a “soulmate” and to the experience of “true love,” that wasn’t what it was, because there were no feelings of “love” when we reconnected. Lust, yes. But not love. We had incredible sex in the mid-1990s and again when we reconnected, but that does not make for a soulmate or a true love, that just makes for a good sex partner. Nothing more.
Sometimes people will say “you just haven’t met ‘the one’ yet,” which is fine if you believe in that kind of thing, but suppose “the one” moved away 30 years ago, or died, or married someone else? Is there some kind of guarantee that you will actually meet your soulmate or is it just the luck of the draw that you can find that “one” person?
All of us are unique individuals, with various likes, dislikes, interests, feelings, thoughts, morals and personalities. We are not made to fit together like puzzle pieces. I’m not saying that it’s not possible to find someone that you have a lot in common with (though I am also saying it’s extremely unlikely to find anyone that similar) and from my experience I’m lucky to get a 50% match, let alone anything on a “soulmate” level.
The older I get and the more experience with people I get, the more I believe I am 100% correct in my feelings on this. At my age, the pool of potential “soulmates” has shrunk considerably from where it was when I was, say, 18. And I absolutely know my soulmate was not in my past, which means if such a thing existed, she would have to be somewhere in my future. Now, in the event that I move, as I am planning to do, does that mean she is already in the area I’ll be moving to or will I meet her here before I leave?
Also, let’s look at this: If someone wants you to change who you are, could they possibly be a “soulmate?” The very idea that you would have to change yourself to fit into someone else’s idea of what they want you to be should automatically disqualify them from being a soulmate. That goes completely against the concept. Both of my former relationship partners wanted me to change, some a little and some to the extreme, and the fact of the matter is I’m not changing for anyone, and if I find someone who accepts me as I am, then I may be willing to be more open-minded. That hasn’t ever happened.
I know people will say that there are couples who were married 50, 60 even 70 years and died minutes apart because they couldn’t live without each other. That’s fine, but that doesn’t prove “soulmate” to me. My parents have been married for 41 years, they can’t function away from each other and the only time they aren’t within speaking distance is when one of them goes to the bathroom, and they do everything together, but they have nothing in common. Not the TV shows they watch, the music they enjoy, the movies they enjoy, the food they like or their hobbies. They are not soulmates. By any stretch.
Which brings us to the point of people who think they are with their soulmate, but they just either (a) don’t want to be alone or (b) they think they are in love. But if they were to sit down and list their partners traits, in terms of things they like about them and things they do not like about them, they might be surprised at the end results.
I need to say that I’m not trying to deter anyone from trying to find someone to spend their life with, but do it with a little common sense. There is no one out there that’s a “perfect match” for you. But if you can find someone that you have a lot in common with as well as a strong connection and attraction to, by all means, go for it. But don’t assume that because you both like pizza and you both have socks on at the same time that you are soulmates. Use some basic human intelligence and just enjoy yourself.
In closing, I just want to say that I will go to my grave believing that soulmates do not exist, that true love may be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity that not everyone gets, and lust is a lot more prevalent than either soulmates or true love, and there’s not necessarily anything wrong with that, because if we all waited around for our soulmate to find us, the human race would have ended centuries ago. Be smart about it.