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Busola Adedire: The Soul Mate Theory

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I read an update from Humans of New York and my heart sank a little. The man Brandon had interviewed said, “I think if we were all being honest with ourselves, very few of us ever meet The One. The vast majority of people just marry because they’re ready. I never really felt like I met The One. I don’t think my wife is The One. I mean, she’s a nice lady. But I don’t think she’s The One for me. And I don’t think she’d mind me saying that, because if she was being honest, I don’t think she’d say I am The One for her either.

Although, he was being brutally honest, I can’t really tell if I was sad because I felt sorry he had settled, or the fact that he had referred to his wife as an ordinary ‘nice lady’ or rather because I still believe in fairy tales. I do have to admit that I have probably watched too many Disney movies for my own good, but a part of me believes God had designed someone special for everyone. My parents have been married for 26 years, and I absolutely believe they were destined for one another. My Dad said the first day he met my mother, he knew that was his wife without uttering a single word to her. When he finally spoke to her, the first thing he said was that he wanted to marry her, and till date my mum believes that move was shocking 😀 . Their journey is an inspiring one which gives me a lot hope despite the high divorce rates surrounding me.

I thought deeply about ‘the soul mate theory’ and why a number of people cannot find their soul mates. I also read a number of articles giving conflicting views about this phenomenon. Some believe that whoever you choose to be ‘the one’ is who you make your soul mate, others believe there are thousands of match out there for everyone with whom you can live reasonably happily with, I believe there is a level of satisfaction and accomplishment you can only attain with a particular person (PS : Not someone else’s husband or wife oh!)

I know enough to understand that no relationship is handed to anyone on a platter of gold, and no relationship is perfect. However, I struggle to understand the term ‘irreconcilable differences’ (which is a very common phrase that somehow convinces me that everyone who had mentioned it is clearly not irrational), or why we have to date series of people before we finally make up our minds.

Too many people have stated that ‘when you know, you know’, clearly life is not random and there are no coincidences. Another set of people will argue that you can only discover something lasting from friendship which can make you guilty about those you’ve locked up in the friend zone. But why should we choose to settle in the first place with someone whom we know is not our perfect fit?

There are a number of reasons as to why people settle into a relationship that they know is less than ideal for them. This happens for financial reasons, starting a family, family pressure, social status, or, more often than not, we simply don’t want to have to go through the hassle of breaking up, having to feel sad, going through a healing process, and then people start dating all kinds of “interesting” creatures all over again before they finally find one decent person. But ‘decent’ does not necessarily equal ‘right’. We reason, “If I’ve come this far, why would I want to go through all of that again and start at square one?” Most people have a very real, subconscious fear of being ALONE, and the word itself is dreaded. Simply put, no one wants to be alone.

At other times, some of us just fall in love too quickly and think “this is it!” Is it really? We often lose our logic when it comes to love. But, I strongly believe in reading the handwriting towards, and after an event, I believe in asking in prayer when somebody wants you, I believe in paying attention to what people around me say about a love interest. Eventually, everything makes sense! I believe that everyone possesses that inner wisdom that guides them about every individual they meet in life, but too many people are not still enough to hear what the spirit is saying.

I read a comment on the Humans of NewYork post which had my attention: I AM A DIVORCE ATTORNEY! I’ve been doing this work for over ten years! I BELIEVE in LOVE! With all of my heart! But I know that this guy is 100% correct. I “interview” all of my clients. Have long talk with them. Prior, during, and months AFTER the divorce. Mostly men. About how it started, what happened, when the “love” really ended (it’s normally YEARS before the divorce is actually filed), the feelings, thoughts, etc. Women (especially) create things in their head and want to see things the way they want to! Often one of the parties is “out” of it emotionally, spiritually, etc., but is “afraid” to leave or say something. It may be because of fear to lose access to their children (a lot of women use children to keep men), or fear of financial ruin, etc. Women get married because their clock is ticking, or they want children, or someone to take care of them, or they want a princess wedding …sometimes because they think it’s love…And men, if the sex is super good they lose their head. Or hey want to get married because they feel they are in “love.” Or it’s time to finally settle down because they’ve played long enough.

Most people don’t even know WHAT Love is! Everybody thinks they are in love! But it’s passion–or heat! Many men whom I speak to have been “done” years and years ago, but continue to stay…and their women are unsuspecting. Some women know, but just ignore the signs. Or people are just comfortable! They stay because it’s easier to stay. No love. Is there true love? YES! Are there people who are truly married to their compatible “love” partners and MUTUALLY feel the same? Not many. That’s literally a true RARITY!

“Love is a temporary madness, it erupts like volcanoes and then subsides. And when it subsides, you have to make a decision. You have to work out whether your roots have so entwined together that it is inconceivable that you should ever part. Because this is what love is. Love is not breathlessness, it is not excitement, it is not the promulgation of promises of eternal passion, it is not the desire to mate every second minute of the day, it is not lying awake at night imagining that he is kissing every cranny of your body. No, don’t blush, I am telling you some truths. That is just being “in love”, which any fool can do. Love itself is what is left over when being in love has burned away, and this is both an art and a fortunate accident.” (L. de Bernieres)

Do you believe in the soul-mate theory or do you believe you can make a relationship/marriage last with just anyone?

Photo Credit: Dreamstime | Michael Zhang

I am sand magnet and sun seeker. Instagram : b__quaint I blog at https://onequaintrelle.wordpress.com/blog/

42 Comments

  1. Nur

    November 10, 2014 at 3:13 pm

    Unlike you, I dont believe in the soul mate theory. I believe there are various individuals out there who one can be reasonably happy with.

    Like the saying goes, as you make your bed so you lie on it… same goes for marriage and ‘soulmates’ ..it is what you make of it.

    If you call it settling… so be it.

  2. makeupbyebi

    November 10, 2014 at 3:24 pm

    I don’t believe in soul mates, i dont believe anyone is a 100%, i dont also believe that you can make it work with just about anyone. I do believe love is real and its measureable, its starts from you as an individual, how well do you love you, the not so perfect you? only then can you translate that to loving someone else who is definately imperfect and find some peace been with that individual..
    Marriage its not always about “i love you”, there are real issues that will need addressing and at heated moments “I love you” is the last thing on your mind!
    When i decieded to be ME, the real me, settled in the real ME, facing my battles and stopped day dreaming, i found peace and seized to search for Mr. Right. I decieded to be Miss Right for me 🙂 . In doing that Hubby came along, he too with his own battles and stuff and we talked about everything in the 3years we dated, fought, reconciled, fought again, reconcile again! till ds day that we are married we havent stopped talking, fighting and reconciling.. like a cycle 🙂 in all we want this for the rest of our lives….. Beautiful Imperfections 🙂

  3. TANTRA

    November 10, 2014 at 3:25 pm

    I believe in making a partner my soul mate. It may not be a love at first glance thing. Even if I marry the devil’s younger brother, he can still be my soul mate. Marriage just like any long-lasting relationship is a 100:100. If you consciously make it work with your partner, it will work. That is why it is very important to align your expectations, values and set rules with your intended partner before going into a relationship. If you have no other option and do all wisdom requires you to do in any relationship, my dear, you are with your soul mate. How can you explain living for months/years with someone, seeing their nakedness (and also fondling with their naked weapons), and still refer them as ordinary? When you have options, you end up seeing your partner as a housemate instead of a soul mate. Men will always be men. Women will always be women. There is no new brand/edition. All na the same.

  4. D

    November 10, 2014 at 3:34 pm

    First I love Humans of New York too!!! and I remember reading that comment and thinking well not for me. I can say and my family will tell people, that I am truly married to the person meant for me. My brother asked me last Christmas how do I know that my husband is the one for me? I told him because the thought of something happening to him makes me bring out in cold sweat and I can’t imagine what would become of me (My brother grinned at this, he is looking for true love he he he and has been reading a lot on relationships and I guess he was impressed by answer) . I will sure not remarry because I know no one can put up with my BS like he does. He completes me to a point that we have a joke in our family that we are “le po”- we are joined at the hip. Does it take work??? Yes. I tell people when you are married to the right person even when you argue or fight there is a sense of well being and love that is still very tangible. I remember telling my husband once early in our marriage after a misunderstanding that I want to get to a point where even we disagree we are still confident in the love we have and so we take comfort in that, so that we our reaction is fully focused on the cause of disagreement not on some sense of insecurity. It takes work to get to that point when you are confident in the love you have built and worked on that you both know that no matter the disagreement you would both never purposely hurt each other and even when said partner hurts you it is not done intentionally. Does that make him my “soul mate”? I don’t know I don’t give what we have some kind of definition it is what we both agreed we wanted and started working towards achieving even before we got married and Yes we spelled it out. The initial jazzy love brought us together but we worked and built on that over the years and still building on it on a daily basis to get what we have today and what we want for the future.

    • makeupbyebi

      November 10, 2014 at 4:04 pm

      Now i smiled when i got here “Does that make him my “soul mate”? I don’t know I don’t give what we have some kind of definition it is what we both agreed we wanted and started working towards achieving even before we got married and Yes we spelled it out” …. Enjoy 🙂

    • Cynthia

      November 10, 2014 at 4:57 pm

      Hook us [email protected] your brother hehehe

    • Nisa

      November 11, 2014 at 10:05 am

      Please how long have you been married. I had to ask… You comment puts you on a pedestal as a marriage counsellor. What I want to know is what exactly are the things you do… It would help if you give real life scenarios n how u came over came the “i” syndrome for the “we” sydrome

  5. D

    November 10, 2014 at 3:36 pm

    ***break out in cold sweat*****

  6. efe

    November 10, 2014 at 3:36 pm

    Really Nice One.

  7. Jamie

    November 10, 2014 at 3:52 pm

    I read that post on HONY and it made me think. I agree with the man and I also don’t agree that we have one soul mate. I believe that there is more than one person who we were made to be compatible with. For instance, some people lose their spouses to death and they are able to re-marry and still love their new partners and feel as strongly about them as they did about their first partners. I feel that there are people who we are supposed to be with at various points in our lives and for some lucky ones they are able to find those people and be with them forever but for others it’s a different ball game.

  8. honest one

    November 10, 2014 at 3:57 pm

    While some people believe in the ‘soul mate theory’ its basically about making it work. A lot of people don’t put up a fight for love that’s why divorce rates have increased. its about hard work and perseverance.

  9. boon

    November 10, 2014 at 4:05 pm

    What I find interesting is the ‘confirmation bias’- how we as humans interpret information to suit our preconceived ideas and desires. God knows how many broken relationships and divorces started with a man walking up to a woman (or vice versa) and saying words to the effect of ‘you’re the one i’ll marry’..but because we only hear about the successes we think its some sort of divine setup whereas its more likely to be pure luck

  10. Bliss

    November 10, 2014 at 4:22 pm

    I believe the man was very honest. My problem with situations like this is why doesn’t he just leave. I’m sure his wife feels the exact same way about him too. Why doesn’t she just leave? Life is too short to remain sad with one person for the rest of your life.

    • Idomagirl

      November 10, 2014 at 7:54 pm

      The man never said he was sad tho…Just because he doesn’t think she’s “the one” doesn’t mean his marriage is unhappy…

  11. Doxa

    November 10, 2014 at 4:54 pm

    Hmmm…. if soul mate means that person it just clicked with without effort, the one you couldn’t stop thinking about, the one who made a terrible day at work endurable because you’d see him at the end of the day, the one you’d want to give your body to if not for God, the one you didn’t mind having to ‘grow’ with in hope of a brighter tomorrow, the one you could just be your true self with, the one when you looked into his eyes you saw “it” (whatever it is, lol!), the one you looked at with pride, the one you prayed for, the one it broke your heart to say “no” to, the one you wish you could have said “yes” to, the one … if that’s what a soul mate is, then I believe. What I just don’t get is how you just know your future is not with that person even after all the above. How when you open your mouth wanting to say yes, your head screams at you “are you crazy? Do you want to jeopardize your future?”
    I just couldn’t shake the feeling that if I marry him, I’d have myself to blame. Still can’t. So I decided to scrap the soul mate theory since it didn’t give me the desired outcome.
    I probably won’t have the initial sparks with the one I marry, but it will be a great marriage, because we will make it so.

    • loverboy

      November 11, 2014 at 7:25 pm

      Now thats deeper than the ocean..hmm

  12. i cheated and i aint sorry

    November 10, 2014 at 5:07 pm

    I believe in soul mate theory
    I got married cos every body pressured me too , i invested financially on husband but the guy na predicament,
    whilst i was pregnant i started talking to my soul mate(an ex) , then we progressed he was far way in port Harcourt but i felt his presence, when i put to bed i named my son after him my son is 1 year now
    he came over the week end we had sex it was beautiful i played dress up i was feeling sexy
    he is getting married in three weeks
    i bought mask, he brought adventure cards we drank, ate and chop yam like 8 times per day

    his Babe is busy forming CIA for nothing and we were both giggling
    as for hubby when he is ready to be a man we can now continue for where we stopped

    • Beht why

      November 10, 2014 at 6:30 pm

      Wawuu

    • Daisy

      November 10, 2014 at 6:35 pm

      Wow!!

    • Idomagirl

      November 10, 2014 at 7:55 pm

      So you didn’t know this ex was your ‘soulmate’ while you were together?

    • Iris

      November 10, 2014 at 10:07 pm

      WTF kind of story is this? If you are so sure guys are so made for each other why don’t you leave your partners and be together instead of skulking around and pretending? Methinks you are just tiltillated by this risky adventure you have going on and are trying to sugarcoat it with excuses of soulmate talk. You now named your son after him on top. You go fear liver!

    • anon kwenu

      November 10, 2014 at 10:38 pm

      Na wa the devil is def using pples head to play drum

    • Oluwabusola Adedire

      November 11, 2014 at 3:45 am

      You have just opened another can of worms 😮

    • Personally

      November 11, 2014 at 9:08 am

      Hey dear,
      just wondering what your reaction would be if you find out he is doing the same thing.

      1. If you knew he was your soul mate, why didnt you marry him?
      2. You are causing yourself pain, your husband pain, your ex pain and his wife-to-be
      3. It has started and it will only take God to finish it
      4. I hope you don’t come back with stories that touch after your can of worms is opened
      5. Why did you marry this man when you knew he wasn’t yours or your soul mate? he didnt force you to agree right? you would have spared him this pain by marrying him
      6. it is obvious it is the sex part you enjoy with him. spice up your sex with your husband
      7. nothing as cruel and wicked as naming your son after your ex.
      8. If you cant go any further with your husband, divorce him.
      9. Infact with what you have done, biblically he has a legal ground to divorce you.
      10. Please allow to bride-to-be enjoy her marriage\family. It is not her fault you are not enjoying yours. Leave that guy alone now!
      11. When your husband starts his own, dating side chicks openly, please dont come here crying
      12. Chai, diaris God!

    • Idomagirl

      November 12, 2014 at 11:48 pm

      LMAO @ “Chai dia ris God o”

  13. *Real* Nice Anon

    November 10, 2014 at 5:50 pm

    Soul mate or not, there are just very few people who one can have total mental compatibility with. Someone who shares your core values and is willing to put in the work required to make a marriage last. Plus we all have different experiences and outlook on life. They say “don’t grow up; it’s a trap” I certainly don’t want to remain a child forever. I’m glad to be an adult who can do things for herself. I love life and no matter how disappointing things can get sometimes; I rather be alive than dead.

    It is really all about being with someone who is in it to stay. Makes the choice to keep choosing you. No matter how difficult things get because they believe being together is better than being alone/with someone else.

  14. Toyosi

    November 10, 2014 at 6:23 pm

    I believe in soulmates, but I also believe that there are many people out there that are compatible with you and you can reasonably live happily with. I believe that God is a God of purpose and destiny, hence my belief in soulmates; thus, when I say ‘soul mate’, I refer to that person that God destined for you to marry before you were born, for you both to be a dynamic duo and be 1000x more fruitful together to accomplish His purpose in your lives. However, I also believe that there are a lot of people out there that you can have a happy marriage with; because of temperamental compatibility, compatibility of values and beliefs, compatibility of even wants and financial needs. It’s just the way many people don’t end up being everything they were destined to be. There are definitely a lot of people who will be compatible with you on many levels, and with those people, you can live happily. I think this explains why the man in Humans of New York said what he did about his wife… “She is not the one”. Those people who find “the one” know it when they do, and those people who don’t either don’t believe in it or just accept their fate and give up on finding “the one”, especially if they have been waiting a long time.

    Let me try to explain what I’m saying better: imagine you have the potential to be the next Oprah Winfrey, but you settle for a job as a newscaster and give up on chasing your dreams (whether or not you are aware of your potential). Being the next Oprah Winfrey is like finding and marrying your soulmate; settling for a newscaster’s job and giving up is like being with someone you are very compatible with. Settling does not mean you are not happy or you don’t find a sense of fulfilment and peace (which is the case sometimes), and you will not be known for being a great newscaster; it just means that there is something greater that you could have attained. I think that’s the best way I can explain my soulmate theory.

  15. Toyosi

    November 10, 2014 at 6:31 pm

    I also agree with you on your understanding of love… and I recommend the book ‘5 Love Languages’ by Gary Chapman. Love is not a feeling or some situation we find ourselves in. It is a conscious decision and it takes effort.

    Let me quote Gary Chapman, because I think he captures is beautifully:

    “Our most basic emotional need is not to fall in love but to be genuinely loved by another, to know a love that grows out of reason and choice, not instinct. That kind of love requires effort and discipline. It is the choice to expend energy in an effort to benefit the other person… it does not require the euphoria of the in-love experience. In fact, true love cannot begin until the in-love experience has run its course.

    We cannot take credit for the kind and generous things we do while under the influence of “the obsession”. We are pushed and carried along by an instinctual force that goes beyond our normal behaviour patterns. But if, once we return to the real world of human choice, we choose to be kind and generous, that is real love.” (The key word in this excerpt is ‘choice’)

    I hope this helps or blesses somebody.

    • Yrimu

      November 10, 2014 at 11:42 pm

      I read the book and I loved it. At least now i know my love language and that of my husband.

  16. Kakra

    November 10, 2014 at 6:59 pm

    .Point of correction, “love” can never be “a temporary madness or erupts like volcanoes and then subsides”. To my knowledge, the Bible defines “love” as “something” that suffers LONG, is KIND and NEVER FAILS (1Cor. 13:4-8). I think the kind of love depicted in this present generation is “lust” or better still “infatuation”. I believe a partner with the true and BIBLICAL love of God is the right one and this might not even result in being in numerous relationships but if these qualities are portrayed by both partners then they’re definitely meant for each other since creation because it was destined by God.

  17. Idomagirl

    November 10, 2014 at 7:59 pm

    I have never believed in the ‘soulmate theory’ same as the ‘love at first sight’ theory. I do however believe in degrees of compatibility, some people you are really compatible with, others not so much.

  18. jennietobbie

    November 10, 2014 at 9:00 pm

    Humans of New York in BellaNaija!!! I’m smiling to the bank, baby.

  19. Olori Tari

    November 10, 2014 at 9:40 pm

    That Louis De Bernieres quote just reminded me of the book Captain Corelli Mandolin. Such a nice and beautiful book. Enjoyed reading that!.

    I

  20. MDee

    November 10, 2014 at 10:30 pm

    I don’t believe in the “soulmate” theory. To me, in a lot of ways it is why the divorce rate keeps increasing. As in you meet someone, you think he or she is your soulmate, you marry, you findout he or she is not your soulmate, you divorce because you wanna be free to find the soulmate. This means you don’t work on your marriage. Once there is a problem you consider too serious you run because to you if he or she was your soulmate then you wouldn’t have that problem. Love according to me is a choice. I see you with all your qualities and flaw and I choose to love you and all. Not because of some indigestion that makes me think butterflies are floating in my belly.

  21. Gorgeous

    November 10, 2014 at 11:49 pm

    I believe in the soul mate theory. I really do. But the thing is sometimes, your mate may not be where you are. And this difference in readiness is what forces people to be with other people whom they endure. No matter the age, if you know in your heart that this person completes you. Please go for it, because you may never find that again and will just live your life managing. Very common with guys. They are not ready when the woman for them is ready, and they are scared that “this is it!”. When they are ready, they end up settling for Mrs. Ready, not Mrs. soul mate. Hence the miserable marriages.

  22. J

    November 11, 2014 at 1:31 am

    I believe in the Soulmate theory. Who is a soulmate? The one that’s clear of compromise(the non-settling choice). Can you have more than one soulmate? Yes.

  23. Ijebu Boy

    November 11, 2014 at 3:56 am

    @ “i cheated and i aint sorry”: Good Girl.!!!
    To give one person just one “soul-mate” would be a cruel thing. There are options, call them all soul-mates if you want but they are people you are really compatible with and with love and the required work, any of those individuals can be the best partner you ever had!

  24. OY

    November 11, 2014 at 11:57 am

    i believe there are many people for many people. I dont believe in the 1 man -1 woman theory, however God forbid that I’ll refer to my husband as “ordinary nice guy” who i just settled for….he’s so much more than that. The moment I chose him, he became “the one” for me. Let all other “the ones’ go and sit down somewhere.
    also, that’s not to say that if “the one” messes up, you wont find somebody else.
    MjustSaying*

  25. Meerah

    November 12, 2014 at 2:32 am

    I agree with the soul-mate theory. But i do have something different to say about love.
    We all claim love, everlasting, forever, unending and unconditional. We basically put people on a pedestal, we give them a part of ourselves, a devotion and adoration that they cannot live up to. And of course, they cannot live up to it because no one is worthy of that kind of devotion and adoration, except our Creator. He is the source of love, He is Love itself. So a mere human cannot possibly give u back all u want or live up to being worthy of that pedestal u put them on.
    In a nutshell, all i’m saying is, seek and find God. Only He has the power to give u that soulmate that will make u a better person, in both this world and the next. Find God, and he will save u from being soo devastated in the event it does not work out with someone. Find God, love, adore and honor Him, not a mere human. From there, the love u will feel for a soulmate that comes from Him, will not be the unhealthy and devastating kind, but the pure one.

  26. barthy

    November 12, 2014 at 9:52 pm

    I don’t believe in your “soul mate theory”
    No single person is meant for the other.
    There are various people to chose from. It is when you are married that you become soul mate to each other.
    Moreso, there are married couples of today that never thought they would even be friends.
    Nobody is specially created for the other. Marriage is a continuos work-in-progress.

  27. Queenette

    November 17, 2014 at 8:20 pm

    Growing up as a girl reading novels makes you want to believe in the soul mate theory. However a throw back to our parent and grand parents era where there was no dating but happier marriages, I have come to the conclusion that whatever your beliefs be ready to work towards achieving what you want in your relationships.

  28. Pascale

    January 22, 2015 at 2:56 pm

    I never did believe in the ‘soulmate’ theory until I met my fiancé. We first met when he was engaged to another woman at an event….our paths crossed a couple of times after he was married. Then we met again at an event, 2years after our first encounter and this time he was separated, and getting a divorce. We started talking a couple of months after that and after about 2 years of dating, we are engaged.
    My point is, there were a lot of odds against us ‘being together’ looking back at it all and maybe to some it might just be coincidences(which I try to convince myself sometimes that it really is) but then again he compliments me in such a way that no other man has ever been able to (explain that other than the soulmate theory)
    But I also do believe we do not have just ‘one soulmate’, I believe there are a few for us running around this world waiting for the right moment and circumstances (that is if it really works that way).
    This isn’t my first love or second, he is my 3rd, those other 2 were just as much in love with me as I was with them, but circumstances, inexperience, ignorance, childishness all played a part in ruining it. Meeting a ‘soulmate’ doesn’t mean you need not work at each other; everything will workout perfectly on its own like a fairytale. Like the saying goes,”it takes two to tango”.
    Working on yourself, loving yourself and being a better person goes a long way to attract the right people towards you(talking from experience).
    There’s a ‘soulmate’ out there for each and everyone of us, you finding happiness with them all depends on the angles you two take it after you meet.
    It takes two to tango after all!

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