Jul 27

Soul Mates: Do You Believe in Them?

Do you believe in the concept of soul mates? If so, here are some views you may dislike:

I don’t believe in soul mates, not exactly. I think it’s ridiculous to think there’s only one person out there for us. What if your ‘soul mate’ lives in Zimbabwe? What if he dies young? I also think ‘two souls becoming one’ is ridiculous. You need to hold on to yourself. But I do believe in souls being in sync, souls that mirror each other.
Richelle Mead, Last Sacrifice

Nothing has produced more unhappiness than the concept of the soul mate. Frank Pittman (1935-2012), psychiatrist

There’s no such thing as a soulmate…and who would want there to be? I don’t want half of a shared soul. I want my own damn soul.”
Rachel Cohn, Naomi and Ely’s No Kiss List

But I’m not going to stop at listing these negative opinions—I’m going to add even more! Why? Because I too do not believe in the concept of having just one soul mate.

To my mind, the idea of finding one’s ‘soul mate’ has about as much basis in truth as the idea that each of us has a doppelganger (an ‘evil twin’) and that if we somehow chance to meet up, a bloody duel will surely ensue, because one of us must die. Shauna H. Springer, PhD, Psychology Today

Moreover, I don’t think believing in one does you any favors. From psychologist Bjarne Holmes‘s post “Why You Should Stop Searching for Your Soul Mate” (Psychology Today):

Research has quite clearly shown that a strong belief in destiny can actually be harmful to you and your relationship. Here’s why. Having the mentality of believing that you’ve found your soul mate is related to all kinds of unhealthy thinking about your love life.

One of the main issues is that believers in having just one soul mate might skimp on doing the work needed to keep their relationship going strong. Holmes offers some tips, which I’m paraphrasing below:

  • Practice and work make for an enduring bond; just having a belief in fated romance—or in finding your “soul mate”—doesn’t.
  • When you’re with a good match, time may indeed lead to feeling that this person is your “soul mate.” But that depth of feeling comes with communication, patience, understanding, and other relationship building blocks.
  • Other beliefs often related to the soul mate fallacy include that your partner can read your mind and that the great sex will last forever. No. Couples have to talk; mates have to continually nurture their relationship.

Where do you fit regarding belief in soul mates? Holmes links you to the following quiz: http://www.scienceofrelationships.com/home/2011/5/6/do-you-believe-in-soulmates-is-love-like-a-garden-take-the-q.html