Monday, August 22, 2011

On Soul Mates

Note the word "especially"...

It's been a while since I caught up on Dear Abby (I don't watch soap operas, but I'll read advice columnists; go figure). Someone in one of the articles mentioned having met her "soul mate", but that soul mate wasn't her spouse. What to do?

Abby handed down the usual "don't break up your marriage" advice, along with the definition of a soul mate. Neither definition she posted mentioned love, sex, or anything like it.

Merriam Webster defines a soul mate as:
1: a person who is perfectly suited to another in temperament
2: a person who strongly resembles another in attitudes or beliefs has a similar definition:
a person with whom one has a strong affinity.
The Cambridge Online Dictionary does mention romantic partners:
someone, usually your romantic or sexual partner, who you have a special relationship with, and who you know and love very much

Note the key word here: usually. A soul mate doesn't necessarily mean that person will be in your bed and sharing your day-to-day life. For instance, I happen to know someone with two soul mates, one of them his spouse, the other...not.

Dusty approves

Picture this: a man goes to college and meets someone. That someone becomes his best friend, his comrade, the one who completes his sentences and gets his jokes when no one else does. He follows this person a thousand miles to a new city, a new life. They get jobs together, play together, live together. There are very few people on earth he'd rather spend time with, and the other person feels exactly the same way.

Sounds like soul mates, right? Keep reading.

The man meets a woman, and that woman has many of the same characteristics as his soul mate. He marries her, has children with her, builds a happy life with her. The soul mate also meets someone with many of the same characteristics as the man, marries her, has children with her, etc. Their children are taught that they are family in all respects but one: blood.

Our children call Dusty's other soul mate Uncle Bob.

In other words, they're brothers in every way but biological, soul mates even though they were never meant to be together romantically. A lot of people forget that a soul mate isn't always someone you have sex with, and roll their eyes when they hear the words. But for me, a soul mate isn't just some romance trope; it's more than that. It's a connection between two people that can't be denied, sisters and brothers of our hearts, and not always the person we go to sleep next to each night. I'll bet you've met people who are soul mates and just didn't describe them that way because we always tend to think in terms of our soul mates being our romantic partners.

Trust me. Neither Dusty nor Bob want to see the other naked. 

Well. Now that I've got that off my chest I should get back to my day job, hmm?


lanchid said...

I believe the illustrious Kevin Smith refers to that relationship as "hetrosexual life partner". ;-) I agree completely.

Dana Marie Bell said...

Oh, that's a good one! :D We've actually discussed retiring near each other because A. and I want to see Dusty and Bob rocking on a porch neither of us has, complaining about "darn kids!" while we laugh our butts off at them.

Favorite Quotes

"I had the right to remain silent, but I didn't have the ability." Ron White

"So let me get this straight. You want me to kill the little guys, kill the big guys, crowd control those I can't, buff the team, debuff the boss, keep myself alive, AND keep you alive, all while waving a stick and dressed in a towel?" - Anonymous Role Playing Gamer

"I think that statue over there is a statement on modern life. The statement is, "Well, shit." - Varric, Dragon Age II

"Why is it all claws and guns? Can't we piss off a fuzzy planet? Still dangerous, but hey. Bunnies." - Joker, Mass Effect

"Last night, I lay in bed looking up at the stars in the sky and thought to myself, "Where the heck is the ceiling?" - Dilbert

"Aim at the high mark and you will hit it. No, not the first time, not the second time and maybe not the third. But keep on aiming and keep on shooting for only practice will make you perfect. Finally you'll hit the bull's-eye of success." - Annie Oakley

"It is only when you fall that you learn whether you can fly." - Flemeth, aka The Witch of the Wilds, Dragon Age 2

"The very existence of flamethrowers proves that sometime, somewhere, someone said to themselves, 'You know, I want to set those people over there on fire, but I’m just not close enough to get the job done.'” - George Carlin

"I hear there's a wild bridge tournament down the street. And you know Bridge. It's a lot like sex. If you don't have a great partner, you'd better have a good hand." Barry Weiss, Storage Wars

"You know, I used to think it was awful that life was so unfair. Then I thought, wouldn't it be much worse if life were fair, and all the terrible things that happen to us come because we actually deserve them? So, now I take great comfort in the general hostility and unfairness of the universe." - Marcus Cole, Babylon 5, "A Late Delivery From Avalon"

"I aim to misbehave." - Capt. Malcolm Reynolds

"Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid." - Albert Einstein

“If you think you can or think you cannot, you are correct.” - Henry Ford