For the longest time, I’ve struggled with the idea of “compatibility”. I believed that for a person to be compatible with you, they’d have to like all the same things you do. It was all I looked for in a “perfect” partner.
It wasn’t a surprise that I never understood that infamous line in 500 Days of Summer. “Just because someone likes the same crap you do, doesn’t make them your soulmate.” Wrong, I’d say. Of course that would make them my soulmate. Hello? Do you realize how rare it is to find somebody who shares my tastes in music? A guy that also likes spicy food as much as I do? A guy that laughs at all the twisted jokes I laugh at? “Gosh,” I’d laugh and say. “I’d definitely love to meet a guy like that.”
But you know what? I did meet him. I met a guy that ticked off all those boxes. He listened to the same music that I did. He and I shared the same twisted humor that we’d send each other the most crude videos and jokes and get a good laugh. We liked the same food so there was hardly any disagreement in picking a place to eat. I thought I had finally found my partner. My soulmate.
The saddest thing I discovered through all of this is that I was wrong. Just like Tom in 500 Days of Summer, I had missed one key thing that made all the difference.
Compatibility in the form of how we felt about love, about commitment, about our relationship and showing how we cared about each other. Ultimately it didn’t matter if we listened to the same music or loved the same kind of food. Ultimately, we had to agree on one major thing: love. And it broke my heart to finally realize, after two years, that it was the one thing that we didn’t agree on.
My idea of love and his idea of love never matched up. I was always asking for more from him and failed to realize that he had already given me everything he could. He couldn’t care about me in the way that I wanted him to, not because he didn’t care about me at all but because the way we loved each other was different. He needed me to understand this about him yet I couldn’t.
By the end of our relationship, our mutual love for punk-rock, arcade games and good burgers wasn’t enough to hold us together. And our difference in how we perceived love drove us apart.