May 6, 2024

Giving up “The One”—In Defense of having Multiple Soul Mates.

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Some people spend their entire lives searching for “The One.”

The peanut butter to their jelly. The macaroni to their cheese. The Yankee to their Doodle.

It’s a charming idea, but in practice it feels like a tight shoe, exerting immense pressure on both parties involved.

Here’s my hot take: in the relentless quest for a “sole” mate, many miss out on encountering a lifetime of “soul” mates. Chasing this mythical perfect partner fills our world with emotional what-ifs and unnecessary drama. After all, banking on one person to fulfill every emotional need isn’t just statistically improbable—it’s pretty limiting.

Imagine if your emotional needs were a tangible item, perhaps a literal ton of bricks. Handing that hefty load to just one person and saying, “Here, you deal with this till death do us part” is basically like making them the modern-day Atlas. I may not have known him personally, but I’m certain Atlas would’ve liked a coffee break. (Shoutout Atlas, you really got that dog in you!)

This thought experiment highlights the unfair expectations we often place on our romantic partners.

What if, instead of loading this immense weight onto one person’s shoulders, we spread it across a network of people—namely our platonic friends—each capable of bearing a part of the load? This approach doesn’t just lighten the burden; it also enriches our lives with diverse, meaningful connections.

I’d like to clarify that elevating our platonic friendships to the same level as our romantic relationship isn’t the same as practicing consensual non-monogamy. We can absolutely maintain a monogamous romantic relationship while also deeply valuing and prioritizing our friendships.

It’s about approaching these friendships with the same level of love, care, and tenderness that we would a romantic partner. In fact, I believe that it may actually help to further nurture our relationship with our romantic partner.

Each of our soul mates will fill our love tank in different ways, providing us with an abundance of love that we are more easily able to pour into others, including our romantic relationship.

Consider the richness of having a network of friends, each of whom understands different aspects of your personality. One gets your bookworm habits, another is ready to scale mountains with you, and a third can wax philosophical until the sun comes up. Each friendship contributes uniquely to your emotional support system, enhancing your well-being in ways that a single person could not possibly manage alone.

Having friends with whom we share a deep connection can make us feel seen, understood, and loved in ways that might differ from the emotional dynamics of a romantic relationship. Each friend mirrors a unique facet of who we are and echoes back parts of our personality with which they resonate most.

This level of understanding and affirmation from various corners not only helps in fulfilling our diverse emotional and social needs but also significantly relieves pressure from our significant other. They no longer have to be the sole custodian of our happiness or personal growth. By distributing our emotional investments among a variety of relationships, we ensure a more balanced and enriched life, making each interaction more meaningful and less burdened by unrealistic expectations.

It encourages us to grow and stand on our own two feet, free from relying on just our partner for all our happy vibes. By embracing this vibrant community of soul mates, we open the door to a life that’s fuller, more balanced, and seriously fun.

I hope our collective culture will someday embrace this philosophy of love and life. Until then, I’m thrilled to share that the peanut butter to my jelly is not the same person who Yankees my Doodle—and that’s just the way I like it.


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