I recently had a lively discussion with an engaging young lady by the name of Lynda (yep its a shout out). We ruminated over a variety of topics and ended up discussing views on love. She posed the question of whether I believe in “soul mates”. My answer was lightning quick and it provided fodder for further discussion. I have since reread my answer and like it enough that I wanted to share it. The message below contains the whole answer although I have fleshed it out now that I am not constrained by time:
"Yes I think that for some there is that magical connection. But the chances of actually finding this love doppelgänger is remote. So for the rest of us we will hopefully find people that we truly love, although they may not be the mythical "soul mate". Instead we will have a person with whom we share common beliefs and values and we will give ourselves over to them in the hopes they do the same and that this special bond continues in perpetuity. However it may not be the "one and only till death do us part variety". For just as siblings may grow to grate on each other over time so alas do couples. It’s simply damn hard to live with other people. It involves constant compromise. People, as a a rule, really don’t do well with compromise. We are innately geared to seek perfection, to correct that which we perceive as lacking or faulty. It is the trait that has spurred us through millennia to achieve greatness and to innovate. Unfortunately it is a less desirable trait for romance. We tend to gloss over the faults of the person we have been smitten with due to the first blushes of love or lust. As time progresses and the headiness of that first blood rush wanes we become more and more aware of the other person’s idiosyncrasies and we seek to correct that which we find imperfect. Compromise is in order but seldom achieved for we are all guilty of some form of OCD and simply cannot walk away gracefully from a constant irritant in our lives.
The same holds true for sex in a relationship and as you may know I commented on monogamy in a previous post. Sex is a thrill. It is also a wonderful experience to share and explore in all its facets with someone you truly love. However…its still the THRILL that makes it so deliciously appealing. It may stop being so after you have engaged in it with the same partner for an extended period of time. The length of time varies for all but at some point it will not be a THRILL anymore, satisfying yes…thrill not so much. The vast majority of the human race, if left to their own devices, would gladly seek out new frontiers. To boldly go where they have not gone before so to speak.
If you are one of the lucky few who can compromise; can maintain a strictly monogamous, satisfying and thrilling sexual relationship; can grow old together united in facing and sharing life’s joys and tragedies and never stray emotionally or physically then by God you have found your soul mate! I doff my hat and rejoice in your happiness for you are the true winner of life’s lottery. If you meet most of the criteria above you have a loving relationship and are fortunate as well given the high turn over rate in relationships. If you have only some or few of the listed criteria, well, lets just say you have a lot of company given the vast amounts of angst in Tumblr blogs!”
And so Nelson Mandela exits the stage. A man of peace, courage and dignity.