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"So . . . dinner tonight at eight? My place?"

"Sure. What're we having?"

"Tomato soup and veggies, what else?"

"Gotcha. Who's all comin'?"

"Well, it'll be me and you, my roommate might hang out, and after you I'm calling up Bill--and Phlally will be there."

"What? Who's Phlally?"

"Phil and Ally, remember?"

"So they're one entity now?"

"Well you really think one's gonna come without the other?"

"Fat chance. Okay, see you at eight."

Is this cute or is this just pathetic?

I can't decide if it's really cool when two people do everything together, or if it's kind of sad and bizarre. Sometimes I can't tell if it's a good thing or if it's cause for alarm. Our society is based pretty heavily on the institution of couples, and though the couples themselves act differently than in the past, the fact remains that people have always paired off and they continue to do so. People are "united as one" in marriage every day, and are considered one person by many government institutions. Every aspect of life seems to encourage these mergings of two people into one. So why should it seem weird to me?

Because when people break up, each ends up with half a soul.

When couples allow themselves to become ONE person, instead of two linked by an important but selective bond, they are no longer whole people alone. Our minds process the idea of having "another half" or a "soul mate" as romantic, something to strive for if we don't already have it, but I believe it is dangerous. To find a "soul mate," so many people unconsciously give up parts of themselves, trying to fit into a little puzzle piece that their jagged edges don't quite mesh with. Having been socialized to believe this is healthy, a large percentage settle, and convince themselves they're happy. When it doesn't work out, they pull apart and feel rent, torn from the seams, because their old wounds are suddenly in the open air again.

Trying to find someone to fill you up is not going to help.

If you've a void in your life, it is part of you, not an absence that can be filled by someone else. People who couple out of need for "someone" to be there don't honestly love each other, because when one craves a "someone" long enough or desperately enough, any "someone" will do, and will look just perfect through pain-smeared eyes. Entering into a relationship of this kind causes both parties to feed off of each other out of need, not love; instead of being nourished by waves of love that erupt out of a true relationship, they simply fight over each other's limited energy. Actual love creates "soul-food" above and beyond what either party had alone; this other type of coupling, this "we are one and alone we are nothing" philosophy, is damaging to both souls, because they share the life force of a single person, which is insufficient to nourish both people. If a relationship takes so much work that it drains both parties, this is a warning sign.

My grandparents have the real thing.

"True love" does exist. People are out there who really belong together, and feel completely full when intermeshed with each other. But these people are full puzzles in themselves; they kept all their pieces when they became a complete picture with someone else. Some of us are full puzzles by ourselves, or need three or four people total to be a pretty picture. "The couple" is not the only way to go.

And I certainly do wish that once in a while I could have seen Ally without Phil. I met "them," but I never met either one.

They're no longer together.

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