Whether you’re loved up, single or kind of seeing someone with no definitive labels in sight (you do you), navigating the world of love and relationships can be challenging.
It’s all the more confronting if you think you’ve met your soulmate already… and you’re not together anymore. Maybe you’re back to the swipe-heavy single life and can’t help but wonder if you’ll ever find someone that perfect again, or maybe you got coupled up again quick-smart but still hold a candle for the one that got away.
Timing is a bish and things don’t always work out. To talk us through this particular kind of heartbreak, we enlisted the help of our Kids Helpline podcast, H R U?, hosted by Marty Smiley. He spoke to advice legend Emeli Paulo, founder of Collective Potential, to help us process what to do when your soulmate isn’t your endgame.
“You’ll meet someone at a time in your life where they have resonance,” she says. The right timing for you as a person, them as a person, and a ‘click’ that works for both of you. Because ultimately, as Emeli makes clear, “love is when two people meet each other’s needs”.
Before getting into another relationship, Emeli advocates taking a break of 3-6 months — which isn’t actually that long if you think about it in the scale of your entire life — and just take that time for yourself. Hang out with couples that give you positive relationship vibes that you’d like to emulate, instead of whinging to your mates about how you’re so single your crevices have dust mites.
It’s all about having a really conscious sense of self, and acknowledging that just because something felt right, doesn’t mean it was.
Honestly, at first it almost felt trite for me to be writing about how single people need to just have hope when I’m happily in a relationship with someone who gave me that resonance. But one thing Emeli said really stuck with me, and that was in talking about her own experience.
“When you’re in a relationship you have to give and receive, and I genuinely think it was really difficult for me to receive that love,” she said.
Whether that’s a question of timing, openness or personal circumstance, it’s important to remember that just being soulmates in love doesn’t mean that it’s always going to work — and it certainly doesn’t mean it’s always going to be easy. So even when you’re with someone who you see as a potential soulmate, you’ve gotta work.
That’s the crux of it all really. From love and relationships to sex and dating, you have to be open and ready for it. You have to feel worthy of it instead of feeling like a bridge troll who miraculously convinced someone special to stick around. It has to be the right time with the right person.
And honestly, whether you’re on the hunt or you’re shacked up with someone special, you’ll probably still experience anxiety and uncertainty about lovey-dovey stuff. It’s human nature.
In fact, I believe it was the renowned poet Avril Lavigne who once thoughtfully quoted:
The podcast episode closed out with a chat to Kids Helpline specialist Josie, who stressed that it’s definitely a normal thing for young people to be concerned about. Love is a huge factor in our lives, and she reminds us that, “It’s something that young people are navigating and grappling with.”
So you’re not alone in wondering what the go is when it comes to love. It’s a scary concept to feel like you’re not worthy of love, or that you’ve missed your chance. But there ARE resources out there to help you through.
If you want to hear more about all things identity, love, sexual health and mental health, we’ll be tackling more big topics over the course of the podcast.Image: La La Land