5 Ways to Tell.
Here are some things to consider when trying to decide if s/he is “the one.”
1. Sex is hot
OK, this probably isn’t what most experts would tell you. Everyone knows sex isn’t the basis for a long-term relationship, right?
Or maybe it is. When you’re crazy attracted to a person, that means something. It’s not an accident. And though the heat is bound to be turned down at some point, the chemistry remains. When you simply like the way a person smells, this is good. When you like their touch, this is also good. This kind of thing tends to last. It marks a primal connection that goes beyond compatibility lists and can hold a relationship together through horrendous times. When skin loves skin, touch can trump almost any disagreement.
You should love this person’s flesh.
2. S/he is nice.
I know people make lists of qualities they desire in a prospective mate, and “nice” isn’t usually up there with the loftier qualities such as intelligent, funny, responsible, etc. But I’m telling you—“nice” is the most important quality there is. S/he can be the smartest, funniest, most industrious person on earth, but if s/he lacks common kindness, generosity, open-heartedness, and decency, those other qualities are bogus. Don’t be fooled by flash. Or cash.
S/he should be very, very nice.
3. There is some uncertainty
Whenever I hear someone say, “s/he’s perfect,” or “s/he is all I’ve ever dreamed of,” I become suspicious. Is this person living in a movie or a real life? Are they idealizing their loved one? In which case, they are having a relationship with themselves, not him/her.
Some uncertainty (Is s/he really right for me?) and everyday irritation (You hate the way s/he loads the dishwasher or always loses things) mean you’re in a relationship with an actual human, not a cartoon.
So s/he should bug you a little bit.
4. When it comes to the things you care about most, you can talk to him/her about those things.
It’s totally OK if you have nothing in common—as long as you can talk about what you do/believe/aspire to with him/her and s/he really listens. S/he doesn’t have to embrace your views as his/her own, s/he just has to care that you care about them.
S/he should make you feel that your beliefs and aspirations are of interest.
5. You can imagine loving him/her a little bit more than the relationship.
This is the kicker. This is the big one.
Once I lived in another country and was going out with someone I loved a lot. But I was young and thought I should probably go back to my own country for the long haul. When we talked about breaking up, he told me he supported my inclination to leave him, even though it made him really, really sad. Why? Because, he told me, I love you more than I love us.
What a guy.
This is the key to the whole thing, ladies and gentlemen. If you can always hold your love for him/her just slightly above your love of the relationship you have, you will be capable of creating a truly happy bond. Really. Try it.
Love him/her a little bit more than you love “us.”