Soulmates: Have We Missed The Boat?

11/02/2011 06:53 pm ET | Updated Jan 02, 2012

Tell me have you ever wanted

Someone so much it hurts?

Your lips keep trying to speak

But you just can't find the words

Well I had this dream once;

I held it in my hands

-Lady Antebellum

Every moment of a relationship is special, from that initial meeting to the first date and the milestones beyond. But what happens when it suddenly crashes and burns? We go from butterflies to drowning our sorrows in a tub of Ben and Jerry's.

Every little girl imagines having her Cinderella movement: meeting him at the ball, dancing to beautiful music, then going into the garden and talking until midnight, running home leaving behind the glass slipper and when he comes to find her, knowing her old life is behind her for good. Nothing can go wrong as they ride into the sunset, birds chirping; All is right with the world.

Well, Disney tends to present an idealized version of love in their films and we tend to fall for it, that belief that somewhere, somehow, if we believe enough that we'll stumble across our Prince Charming, we will. But what happens when we end up kissing a frog and nothing happens?

Every day and every moment, we interact with people, whether it's at the grocery store, bookstore or even at the dry cleaner's, but we never think of the moment that we meet " the one" because we're so wrapped up in getting everything done that needs to be done. More than often our priorities can't be shifted and when something causes them to shift, we're upset.

But yet, we're on a mission to feel complete and if it's possible to become complete with another person it's just gravy (although there are plenty of women who've gone through their entire lives without finding love and been perfectly happy).

But then there are always moments where we claim that marriage and love is "only for the birds" only to fall in love and sink like the Titanic. Take Marlo Thomas (Sorry Marlo! Still love ya girl!) and Gloria Stenhem, who each waited until they were in their late 40s and 50s to find love. For years they asserted that marriage stripped women of their identities and that falling in love should be at the bottom of the totem pole of priorities.

So what made them change their minds? What suddenly caused them to flip that switch and get married, to take a chance on love? What was the moment they realized that this person was someone they couldn't live without?

What happens when we mistake a great love for a great friendship? Are we really ready to let go of something we've wanted desperately? We make that mistake and it costs us dearly.

Or maybe we're repeating what's around us; I know for me, growing up in a house where parents were constantly screaming at each other, their public meltdowns have definitely made me cynical toward relationships. I most definitely don't want to take a relationship public until I'm sure we're on the right path.

It's like "Romeo and Juliet," except the Montagues don't know enough to shut up and let things take their course instead of making everyone around them a witness to what''s going on.

I realize that not every moment is supposed to be champagne and roses and that after 40 years, romance sort of dwindles down to the occasional "I love you," but come on, at what point does it get reduced down to an eye roll and "I hate him?" Is there such thing as being married for the sake of it? I realize that as a Catholic in 2011, the divorce rates are skyrocketing, but I'd rather be alone than with someone who's ultimately going to drive me to drink.

But what happens when the other person is loving and the counterpart just doesn't want to deal with it? How does one even react to that ? From observations around me, sometimes it's difficult to understand how a relationship's dynamic works because it's constantly changing, but sometimes you just gotta go with the flow.

I admit I still hope to find "the one," but I worry I missed him because I was so wrapped up in something that was ridiculous and from my own family life, where love was considered a frivolous emotion, I wonder if I'll even recognize it.

I had an aunt who preached about her independence for 89 years. She didn't need a man, she made her own money, traveled and was fulfilled in everything except the romance department; she never wanted it and never felt she had to explain why. She also never moved out her of childhood home and lived with her sister for 85 of those years.

To me, she always seemed bitter.

I don't want that for my life; I know what I want to do: Travel, get married, have a kid, work my butt off -- but i still want to come home at the end of the day excited to see my husband and not have moments where I look at him and say "what was the moment i began to resent you?"

It's time to break a bad mould that has held my family in some sort of vicious circle when it came to love.

What's your take on Soulmates? Are you in it for the long haul, or are you just going along for the sake of being " In love?"