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Call it what you will—magnetic force, fate, the stars aligning, what have you, but Western culture is utterly entranced by the idea of the perfect soulmate that each of us supposedly has lying in wait. Whether it be enforced by worldbuilding in fantasy novels, the main conflict within a romance movie or the centerpiece of gossip-time with friends, the soulmate continues to dazzle and spark hope in us as we navigate the world in search of our own.

 

Thing is, do they actually exist? Why or why not? We turn to our Her Campus @ Geneseo correspondents now for opinions on the matters of the heart.

 

Jessica Bansbach

 

I think soulmates exist in the sense that once a (monogamous*) person finds someone that they feel close and connected with, they are the only person they will consider loving and being in a relationship with, effectively cutting off any other people off from feeling that way. For example, there may be multiple people in the world “perfect” for you (not that anyone really can be), but once you find one, you no longer would consider the others as potential partners. And if you no longer feel close and connected due to time, drifting apart, cheating, whatever, then you are no longer soulmates with that person. So I guess they do exist—with conditions? I guess breaking down soulmates to quantitativeness is not the most romantic notion.

 

* The concept of soulmates does wholly exclude polyamorous people; I am speaking from my view as a romantically monogamous person and acknowledge that polyamorous people can have multiple genuine close connections with multiple people without devaluing their feelings.

 

Victoria Cooke

 

I definitely don’t believe soulmates exist in the traditional interpretation of the term. I think it would be pretty depressing to believe there’s only one person for everyone. With my luck, my soulmate would live all the way in Uzbekistan and I would never meet them. It may just be because I’m writing this at 2 a.m., but I think that maybe none of us completely own our own souls. Maybe all of our souls are conglomerates of hundreds of other souls and we love the people we love because we can feel that we have some of the same pieces. And maybe our souls grow to accumulate pieces of our love’s souls that we didn’t have before. Freud would probably have a heyday with this theory, but it’s all I can think about that would explain why my laughing and joking with my girlfriend feels nearly the exact same as with my childhood best friend, or why my favorite professor emanates the same energy as my mom. I think I have some of the same pieces as they do, and they have some of the same pieces as each other.  But we also have different pieces, so we need to learn how to accommodate that, too. Perhaps it’s a little optimistic, but this theory leaves the possibility that maybe we can all learn to love each other.

 

Nicole Callahan

 

Nah. Probably not.

 

Madeline Reichler

 

I don’t believe in soulmates, I don’t believe in predestination at all. I think each individual person has different types and levels of compatibility with everyone they meet—and if you meet someone who fits you near-perfectly and you put in the work every day to maintain an intimate relationship with them for your whole lives, that’s one of the most beautiful things in the world. Love is the best!!

 

Kayla Glennon

 

I used to believe more in the concrete idea of soulmates. I liked the concept of there being an ideal fit for everyone; I wanted the comfort that there was someone who was a perfect complement for me. Now, I’ve been thinking more about how people are always changing, so it’s almost impossible to have this “perfect fit.” However, I do think you can have a deep connection with someone that seems very different from your relationships with other people. You still have to do the work, though! You have to build and value that trust and take the time to learn about each other. There’s no avoiding the fact that you’re going to change as people, so you can decide if you want to go through that together. Maybe not being willing to continue that journey doesn’t mean you weren’t soulmates at one point, but you’ve both moved on to whatever’s right for you. The idea of there being only one person that you can deeply connect with and share things with feels dangerous and restricting. I think soulmates don’t have to be limited to romantic partners, or that you can’t have more than one. That doesn’t make each of these people that you want to move through life with any less special.

 

Rebecca Williamson

 

Writing as an extreme hopeless romantic, I think that soulmates absolutely exist. Although marriage was originally meant as a business transaction, the idea I have of marriage equates to my idea that marriage should (hopefully) only happen once and with someone you are truly meant to spend the rest of your life with. While I do have that archaic belief that the person you marry should hopefully be your one and only, I understand that times are changing. If you do end up in marriage that may not last, that just means you haven’t found the right person. This is also coming from someone who has little experience with love. Sort of like what Jessica describes above, I think that there can be many people that you will meet and have a connection with, but you will know it in your gut and in your heart when you have found that one person you are destined to love and be with. The person that you will have this almost innate connection with. I also believe that there are also soulmates you are destined to be friends with. People, whether romantically or platonically, come into our lives for a reason. No matter what, if you feel that connection, you just know they are someone that you cannot give up.

 

Hannah Fahy

 

I think I’m some kind of hybrid between romantic and cynical. I don’t believe in soulmates in the typical way they are explained. The way I see it is that there are people who are meant to be in your life. These people may be romantic, platonic or even just someone you’re meant to learn from. I think the only explanation for my best friend is that we are platonic soulmates. We have learned so much from one another and my life has been made all the better because of her existence in it. I like to believe that I have added something good to her life as well. However, I wouldn’t say that she’s the only “soulmate” I have. I think there are so many people that I’ve had the pleasure of welcoming into my life who are meant to be there even if only for a short time because they help me learn, laugh and love. I think there are “soulmates” who I may never meet. This is so large and philosophical in my head, but basically I don’t believe in there being “the one.” I would like to think there are many people in this world that I could love and grow with whether that is romantic or purely on a friendship level. I guess it’s less of a “soulmate” idea and more of a “there are people who I have the potential to love” idea. It’s only loosely related to soulmates, but that’s my take on it.

 

Megan Kelly

 

I don’t know if I believe in the concept of soul mates, but I’ve always been more of a cynical person than an optimistic one. I believe the idea that there’s only one single ideal person for you is ridiculous. However, I do think that there are multiple people that could become your ‘soulmate(s).’ I just don’t like the idea of people being ‘made for each other.’ It makes me feel like I lack individuality, in a way. I would just much rather believe that I was made for, well, myself. To that effect, I think that the idea of searching for a soulmate is only going to lead someone to unhappiness: you should find happiness in yourself first. Soulmates come to you, whether they be friends, lovers or anything else.

 

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Jessica Bansbach is a junior psychology major who has more campus club memberships than fingers and toes. In her spare time, if she's forgotten that she's a college student that has more pressing matters to attend to (like, say, studying), she enjoys video games, thrift shopping, and ruminating. She was elected "funniest in group" by her summer camp counselor when she was nine and has since spent the next eleven years trying to live up to the impossible weight of that title.
Victoria Cooke is a Senior History and Adolescence Education major with a Women's and Gender Studies minor at SUNY Geneseo. Apart from being an editor and the founder of Her Campus at Geneseo, she is also the co-president of Voices for Planned Parenthood and a Curator for TEDxSUNYGeneseo. Her passions include feminism, reading, advocating for social justice, and crafting. In the future, she hopes to inspire the next generation of history nerds and activists.
Nicole Callahan is working towards a degree at a college. She has done some things, does other things currently, and would like to do still other things in the future. When she isn’t in one place, she can often be found at another. She loves certain books, foods, and activities.
Madeline is a senior Psychology and Women's and Gender Studies double major at SUNY Geneseo. She is the President of the Pride Alliance, Assistant Coordinator of the Safe Zone program, and a Program Coordinator in the Office of Diversity and Equity. She may not have a lot of time to write, but she loves to contribute what she can to Her Campus Geneseo!
Kayla Glennon

Geneseo '21

Kayla is a junior English major who is optimistic but enjoys exploring lots of emotions, not just ignoring the "bad" ones. They love writing silly things but also being serious, because there are a lot of things that matter and need to be talked about, but giving yourself a break is important too. They love writing about literature but also coming up with ideas for stories of their own. Kayla is constantly just trying to be themself and trying to be around people that make them happy.
Rebecca is a senior and the Campus Correspondent for Her Campus at Geneseo. She is a double major in English (Creative Writing) and Communication. Rebecca is also the Copy Editor for the student newspaper The Lamron, Co-Managing Editor of Gandy Dancer, a Career Peer Mentor in the Department of Career Development, and a Reader for The Masters Review. She hopes to work in the publishing industry and pitch articles to different magazines. When Rebecca is not reading, writing and editing, she can be found dancing with OGX on campus. Follow her on Instagram and Twitter @Becca_Willie04!
Hannah Fahy

Geneseo '20

Hannah Fahy is a junior English secondary education major at SUNY Geneseo. She is very involved on campus as the secretary of Circus Club and a general member of Musical Theater Club. She is also the social media coordinator of the Geneseo Her Campus chapter! She is an aspiring unicyclist who enjoys reading, donating blood, and knitting. She is always learning a new skill because she believes that you should never stop learning.
Megan Kelly is a psychology major at SUNY Geneseo. She enjoys writing articles about whatever interests her at the moment, so don't expect any consistency.
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