Many years ago I met the Canadian author, Pat Joudry. She had been struggling to write and publish her most cherished idea, “Twin Souls”. Somehow the book could not find its completion – until we met and collaborated. She, the author and romantic, I the very grounded, academic psychiatrist.
The book was published and is still in print.
On the way we encountered many people who were seeking their twin soul relationship. Some just longing, some running away, and some just plunging in.
Indeed, the good match between two people is a most wondrous thing – and the discovery can lead to a long union, with fulfillment and joy. But, as one comedian (Bob Hope I think it was) exclaimed, it is the day-by-day stuff that is so hard. And indeed it is.
It is hard for two personalities to live side by side. Each has his/her own way, own preferences, own way of looking at things, and own assuredness. This leads to conflict – but it can lead to growth.
The good marriage is one in which there is a good mesh of personalities, but it requires more. Differences must be met and adjusted, not by one giving in, one to the other – that won’t last. But by building tolerance, patience, and the unique kind of understanding that comes when one (each) suspends his/her own assurety and becomes the other for a moment; then everything quiets down. More than that, there is growth in understanding, a closer closeness, and stronger psychological muscles in each of the partners. It is a growth that comes with commitment to each other, a growth that comes with stronger patience, and a growth that comes with a deeper kind of empathy.
The many years of marriage based on this kind of understanding, creates vines that grow between people.