Does “the one” exist? 

Lotte Ditzel | Monday 10 January 2022

A potential partner these days has to be all in one; funny, inspiring, good looking and have a great career. He or she must share our values, fit in nicely with our social circle and be good in bed. But above all, the other person must be a soulmate, the one. Aren’t we making too high demands on a partner? We would like to tell you in the blog about realistic expectations in love.

High expectations

We no longer need a partner to survive and therefore intimacy has taken on a different meaning: not an economic one, but an inner one. The other person must really add something to our lives, says psychotherapist and relationship expert Esther Perel. We also have more to choose from. We no longer have to set our sights on that nice girl next door, but can easily swipe ten potential matches together. Appearances have become much more important and dates can sometimes resemble a job interview. We don’t even give ourselves a chance to discover how nice, funny and sweet the other person might be. Nowadays, highly educated women have a hard time in the relationship market. After all, women don’t want to “downdate”. They want a partner who is at least as highly educated as they are. While men usually find downdating no problem. But looks are often their number one priority. And furthermore, many men mainly want “no hassle”.

Relationship Conditions 

There must be both sexual attraction and friendship. Without chemistry it quickly becomes a brother-sister relationship, but with only fireworks in bed you won’t be able to make it together. Other important relationship values include trust, attention and connection. Keep in mind that this takes time, love at first sight is rare. Although some people are a better match for you than others, there is no such thing as a soul mate, according to Esther Perel. ‘It’s about finding someone you want to build a life with and then become the one, but that can be with different people.’

So… does the one and only exist?

According to American psychologist John Gottman, there is no such thing as the one. Besides attraction, he says it is important to support each other’s life dreams and to admire and respect each other. And you have to like the other person for who they are and not want to change them. After all, changing someone doesn’t work anyway. And is it so bad if the other is a bit sloppy, can’t cook very well or doesn’t like sports very much? After all, that is also possible with a friend. We never find everything in a person and we don’t have to. So think carefully about what is really important to you and what are dealbreakers, and these should not be fifteen but rather five. If you have that clear, you will start looking for the right one with the right expectations!