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How do you know that you have found the ONE?

Ana.J

Active Member
Modern relationships scare me...no deep emotional and spiritual connection, no responsibility...Married, divorced....I want to know how could you understand that you have found the right person? Should I just feel it? How to be on the safe side here and make the right decision? (Because I view marriage as a lifetime journey, not a 2-year challenge).

Do you believe that love can last till "death do us part"? Or is eternal love just a fiction? What makes a marriage successful?

Too many questions, I know :rolleyes:

Would appreciate your thoughts on the subject ;)
 

buddhist

Well-Known Member
I think it's an individual situation for every person.

As long as two people find that they can help one another to further their own personal growth (e.g. spiritually, mentally, etc.), then they should walk together through life - for as long as that's profitable for them together. But I also realize that situations change, life circumstances change; if such a relationship turns into a negative (where they find that their union is now retarding or regressing their personal growth), then it's healthier for them to separate in order to pursue that which furthers their own growth.

Puppy love, infatuation, lust - these are manifestations of attraction and attachment on the physical level, where one's body is instinctually attracted to another's physical attributes with the innate sense that there is an opportunity for personal growth on that level (e.g. procreation). Loving-kindness (metta), a higher and more sublime form of love, is attraction and attachment on the mental-emotional level, where the mind is drawn to another mind for the purposes of the mind's growth. Compassion, empathetic joy, and equanimity are likewise higher manifestations of "love," each existing on progressively higher levels of mind and consciousness.

IMO the above is true for any relationship configuration between any two individuals. If two individuals are entwined together because of kammic issues, they might find themselves joined in some way to work that out for their personal growth; it may last a few hours, years, a lifetime, or multiple lifetimes through multiple rebirths.
 
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YmirGF

Bodhisattva in Recovery
I hope this doesn't implode your brain, but to date, I have met 3 who were "the one". Frankly, each was remarkable in his or her own way and I am a better person for having known them. In each case, there was an instantaneous bond, and instant mutual like that was quite inexplicable... and sometimes confounding...
 

LuisDantas

Aura of atheification
Premium Member
Modern relationships scare me...no deep emotional and spiritual connection, no responsibility...Married, divorced....I want to know how could you understand that you have found the right person?

In my experience, that is to a very large extent an inherited skill. For good or worse, people do in fact use their own parents as reference points when seeking partners.

When one isn't lucky in that regard, it usually takes a measure of sorrow and bad experiences before the wisdom comes.

But to the best of my experience, it as the lyrics of "A Night to Remember" say: it is natural, not demanding. It is essential to feel at ease with one's partner. Bonus points if one feels a bit thrilled by the presence as well.

(...) What makes a marriage successful?
Mutual acceptance and commitment. And that IS a tall order, have no doubt.
 

Quetzal

A little to the left and slightly out of focus.
Premium Member
I remember having a discussion along the same lines with a theology professor. I asked him one day, "How did you know your wife is the one?" Now, he had been married for 30+ years, been through everything, the works. His reply was "I will let you know when I know." He went to say that when he was dating there were several women that he could have married and he predicts he would have been equally happy with. But he prefers to just let it progress naturally instead of thinking about it. I thought it was a good perspective, one I try to carry myself.
 

Scuba Pete

Le plongeur avec attitude...
I was married for 27 years. I can't blame her, although she's the one to divorce me. I changed and she didn't like it. She had a problem with me leaving her church.

You might find the "one", but the one has to find you as well. There is no way to control a person over time. The more you try to control them, the less control you have over them. C'est la vie.
 

Terrywoodenpic

Oldest Heretic
Modern relationships scare me...no deep emotional and spiritual connection, no responsibility...Married, divorced....I want to know how could you understand that you have found the right person? Should I just feel it? How to be on the safe side here and make the right decision? (Because I view marriage as a lifetime journey, not a 2-year challenge).

Do you believe that love can last till "death do us part"? Or is eternal love just a fiction? What makes a marriage successful?

Too many questions, I know :rolleyes:

Would appreciate your thoughts on the subject ;)

My marriage to my late wife was a till death do us part.....
I had no doubts and absolute trust.
I had no interest in her life before we met. And she never asked me about mine.
we started with a clean slate, she was twenty when we married and I was twenty six...which was fairly nornal at the time.
we did not play away...or anything like it.
we had some tough times to go through, but never with our relationship.
One thing I made a point of was always do what you say you will do.
Another was that the children always came first.
the third was to always back the other up, no matter what. ( it took me a little time to learn the importance of that one)
 

McBell

Admiral Obvious
Modern relationships scare me...no deep emotional and spiritual connection, no responsibility...Married, divorced....I want to know how could you understand that you have found the right person? Should I just feel it? How to be on the safe side here and make the right decision? (Because I view marriage as a lifetime journey, not a 2-year challenge).

Do you believe that love can last till "death do us part"? Or is eternal love just a fiction? What makes a marriage successful?

Too many questions, I know :rolleyes:

Would appreciate your thoughts on the subject ;)
Seems to me far to many people think fairy tales are an accurate representation of love and marriage.
 

metis

aged ecumenical anthropologist
Modern relationships scare me...no deep emotional and spiritual connection, no responsibility...Married, divorced....I want to know how could you understand that you have found the right person? Should I just feel it? How to be on the safe side here and make the right decision? (Because I view marriage as a lifetime journey, not a 2-year challenge).

Do you believe that love can last till "death do us part"? Or is eternal love just a fiction? What makes a marriage successful?

Too many questions, I know :rolleyes:

Would appreciate your thoughts on the subject ;)
I'm sort of a "veteran" since I'll have been married to the same woman for 50 years this upcoming March 9. Here's some advice once married:

1.Before being married, keep both eyes open, but after marriage keep only one eye open. IOW, you're not marrying into perfection, and don't expect the other person to change much.

2.Don't ever bring up old arguments-- let them die.

3.Never use personal insults.

4.Try and not complain very much at all, especially something like "Guess what your kids did today?!".

5.Do not ignore each other when they talk or want to talk. [guys, decide what's more important: the football game you're watching or your marriage and family-- you can listen and watch, and having a dvd player is very helpful]

If you are not sure you have the right person, ask yourself this question: "If push came to shove, would I be willing to die to save the her/his life, and would he/she be willing to die for me?". If the answer is no, then look for someone else.

BTW, in closing, do not believe for one minute that there's only one person out there for you that you could fall deeply in love with, and I was in a situation 50 years ago whereas I was very much in love with two women at the exact same time and they were in love with me, and it was Mother Nature that did the deciding for us-- "accidents causes people".
 

Akivah

Well-Known Member
I've been married 27 years and still going strong. I don't believe there is just ONE. There are many people that you could have a successful relationship with.

Modern relationships scare me...no deep emotional and spiritual connection, no responsibility...Married, divorced....I want to know how could you understand that you have found the right person?

When I still want to be married to her despite her flaws and she still wants to be married to me despite my flaws, then I know I've found the right person. No person is perfect. I think the right person is the one whose flaws we can live with. The one that makes us a better person.

Should I just feel it? How to be on the safe side here and make the right decision?
No one can ever KNOW. We can't know the future. I was having great fun dating her, living in the moment and not thinking about the future. She was the only woman to ask me "So where are we going with this?" When I replied "Give me a few months to think about it", she said that I was the first guy that didn't run for the hills when she asked that question.

(Because I view marriage as a lifetime journey, not a 2-year challenge).

Even more than you know. In my opinion, marriage is like a roll of the dice. Each person in the marriage will change during their lifetime. We can only hope that we still like our spouse in the future, despite their changes. I was fortunate enough that we grew closer to each other over time. But I realize (and have seen ) that it could have just as easily gone the other way.

Do you believe that love can last till "death do us part"? Or is eternal love just a fiction?

I believe it. I expect it to happen. We're old enough now that we've discussed what the other spouse should do, once we're dead.She insists that I remarry.

And what's with the goal of "no baggage". Living and life experiences accumulate baggage. I would prefer it less for a person to have no baggage than a person that does. I mean, what sort of person lives to their forties or older, never having a single serious relationship? My cousin has been single for a long time now because she has a list of requirements that no human on the planet could meet. I think people nowadays expect perfection and a universal epiphany. Life (and love) doesn't work like that.

What makes a marriage successful?
Our marriage is successful because we both worked at making it work and from dumb luck. A good marriage takes a lot of work, patience, acceptance, and communication from both spouses.
 

Ana.J

Active Member
I was married for 27 years. I can't blame her, although she's the one to divorce me. I changed and she didn't like it. She had a problem with me leaving her church.

You might find the "one", but the one has to find you as well. There is no way to control a person over time. The more you try to control them, the less control you have over them. C'est la vie.

That is sooo sad when faith ruins relationship....I think faith in god should unite people, not part them....
 

sun rise

The world is on fire
Premium Member
I've been married for 46 years now. There was a time early on where our relationship could be described as grabbing onto a red hot poker and refusing to let go even if it killed both of us. Some might call that commitment but I call it total stubbornness. We did come very close to a divorce but somehow made it through that crisis.

One night I was holding a chair and my wife a knife - true story. We stopped ourselves. After that we knew that we would never descend into physical violence no matter how angry we got. Along the way we discovered some very helpful books "Intimate Enemy" and "Mirages of Marriage" that taught us fight techniques and to put aside our fantasies about marriage. We respected each other enough to adopt those fight techniques and to stop when the other one accused each other of "below the belt" and "kitchen sink" fights. We also had couple therapy.

One night we got into a fight and we realized I was using my wife's stock phrases and she was using mine - we had unconsciously adopted the other one's style and language. We started laughing and laughing. We realized how much we had gotten under each other's skin but in a good way.

Another piece of the puzzle is that we don't insist the the other person think like we do. For example, my wife is an atheist and I strongly believe in God. I can go on spiritual pilgrimages and my wife can separately pursue her interests.

So, what advice would I give someone? Be stubborn about making it work. Don't cross limits even when white hot angry. Look for help. Respect each other's differences.

As a PS: One more helpful book we found later on was "You Just Don't Understand" about communication differences between men and women. We learned that when she tells me a problem, usually she just wants me to listen not to solve the problem. And she understands that I love solving problems and when I might offer suggestions it's my nature - two flawed human beings who don't always act the way the other one wants.

I hope this helps.
 

Scuba Pete

Le plongeur avec attitude...
That is sooo sad when faith ruins relationship....I think faith in god should unite people, not part them....
I have to say, that I am happier that she divorced me. It's hard to grow as a person with constant criticisms. There's an old joke that asks why divorce is so expensive: Because it's worth it. Although my divorce was cheap (I gave her the house, I kept my tools) it gave me back my freedom. I'm not quick to give that up anymore.
 

Akivah

Well-Known Member
That is sooo sad when faith ruins relationship....I think faith in god should unite people, not part them....

From my reading of Pete's story, I don't think faith per se killed their relationship, it could have been anything. As I stated in my post above, every person changes over time. Each person will decide if they still love their spouse after their life changes occur.
 

Wirey

Fartist
Modern relationships scare me...no deep emotional and spiritual connection, no responsibility...Married, divorced....I want to know how could you understand that you have found the right person? Should I just feel it? How to be on the safe side here and make the right decision? (Because I view marriage as a lifetime journey, not a 2-year challenge).

Do you believe that love can last till "death do us part"? Or is eternal love just a fiction? What makes a marriage successful?

Too many questions, I know :rolleyes:

Would appreciate your thoughts on the subject ;)

A dead giveaway is that he's a snowman who says "How you doin'?" a lot
 

Tarheeler

Argumentative Curmudgeon
Premium Member
I met my wife in 8th grade Art class; we were 14 and she passed me note asking if I wanted to go out. We were married before we turned 19, and are now quickly approaching our 22nd anniversary.
I've retold the story to our kids a couple of times, and they still are shocked that I never "knew" she was the "one"; what I did know was that the idea of living without her was extremely depressing, even at 18.
I didn't know if it would last or if we would drift apart as we grew, but I know that it was a chance I had to take if I was going to be happy.

And it hasn't been smooth sailing all the time. We've had our share of fights, some serious and many more minor. And we both went through a period a couple of years ago where were each considered leaving. But we've lasted; marriage takes a lot of work and a real commitment to not only your spouse but the couple you are together.

We were still kids, and we became adults side-by-side. I think that has helped us in ways that people who marry later in life don't get to experience; we're very different people, but we compliment each other and know the other's strengths and weaknesses better than we know ourselves.

I want to know how could you understand that you have found the right person?
I don't think there is one right person. I think that we are compatible with many people, and we can make a loving life with many others.
Should I just feel it?
The closest thing I felt was just the sadness I was sure I'd feel if I didn't propose; I had no clue if we would last, but I couldn't live with myself if I didn't take the chance.
How to be on the safe side here and make the right decision? (Because I view marriage as a lifetime journey, not a 2-year challenge).
Don't think you can do that. I think you could find that "right" person, but if you don't put the work into it, it's all going to fall apart.
Do you believe that love can last till "death do us part"? Or is eternal love just a fiction?
Yes, I think it can last.
What makes a marriage successful?
Work, dedication, love, work, compromise, compassion, work......
 

Smart_Guy

...
Premium Member
Do you believe that love can last till "death do us part"?

Where I live this is typically the case. Divorce is not something that we breath and take lightly here, thank God.

Love in marriage is not just a heart pounding emotion, it's mutual sacrifice, understanding, care, devotion, consideration, responsibility, obligation, longing and giving without expecting to get back as if it is debt.
 

Yerda

Veteran Member
Ana.J said:
Or is eternal love just a fiction?
Often, the way we think about love is a fiction. The modern myth of romantic love seems to lead people to expect some really daft things from relationships and that leads to disappointment and confusion.



That said, I'm positively evangelical about the redeeming and awakening power of love.
 

Acim

Revelation all the time
Modern relationships scare me...no deep emotional and spiritual connection, no responsibility...Married, divorced....I want to know how could you understand that you have found the right person? Should I just feel it? How to be on the safe side here and make the right decision? (Because I view marriage as a lifetime journey, not a 2-year challenge).

Do you believe that love can last till "death do us part"? Or is eternal love just a fiction? What makes a marriage successful?

Too many questions, I know :rolleyes:

Would appreciate your thoughts on the subject ;)

I think what you're asking for has already been answered by person's in this thread who have a long term marriage. Though, not sure if those are "modern relationships" if they started decades ago when hooking up was (or is) different than today.

As a single person that has thought long and hard on this topic, plus has spiritual awareness of Love, I'd like to add the following.

There's actual Love and there's special love. Special love is the type of love you find in someone else, and what you feel they offer to you.
Actual Love is what you give/share in any relationship (with literally anyone) that is expression of who you are, and/or who you wish to be.

I would have zero problem presenting wall of text on special love, but to keep it short with what you are asking, I would say there is zero chance of special love being eternal, and is a fiction if it is presented that way. Special love isn't actually love, but is love distorted. It takes what is the essence of you and places it outside of you, thus you are now lacking that, and the 'right' person can provide you that, if you do the right things (by them).

Thing is, actual Love is who you are, so not really possible to be in a relationship where only special love is occurring, or at work. It would be a mixture, but if overlaying the fictional narrative of "till death do us part" it can cloud own judgment.

In the successful marriages noted on this thread (so far), it is obvious in my reading that the fictional is no longer sought. In the fictional version, a fight or strong disagreement is enough to suggest this isn't the right/perfect one. Yet, in reality of marriage, how you (and the partner) approach the fight can truly make the bond stronger. A sense of forgiveness matters more than a sense of righteousness in one's firm position during the argument. Like with family and friends, you gotta be willing to let that firm righteousness go (from own mindset) if there is desire to be ongoing relationship with the person. Such that when you walk away from the argument you realize (perhaps days later), this is a person that deals with my crap effectively and I am willing to let go and let the relationship teach me things I may be too stubborn to overcome on my own.

Perhaps take what I'm saying with grain of salt, as again I think the responses from the married people are what you are asking about and answer what I read as being really sought in OP inquiry. I would just say that actual Love is lifelong journey, while marriage is perhaps best filtered as challenge that is met with periodic check-ins, foremost with your own self, about where you are at. Being truly honest with your own self first. And then sharing that in loving way with your partner, who if they are in it for the long haul will honor your honesty and let you know they are with you to support you during all challenges, and to celebrate the joyful moments, together.
 
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