Is She the Right One? See Compatibility 101 Part 1 HERE
So, thirty years ago, at the beginning of our relationship the incompatibility between Kim and me would have been detected very fast by Match.com, giving us warnings about each other. I gave a few examples in my last blog: Kim has a hot temperament and can’t stand heat. I am exactly the opposite, which has caused us plenty of misunderstandings, and you can imagine that neither one of us has been able to share her dream vacation. Kim’s joking about wanting to marry me on the spot revealed a Jewish sense of humor which my German upbringing had not prepared me for. I was outraged! While she would have U-Hauled on day three, I needed six months and many tests (and still kept my Paris apartment, just in case). When we hosted friends, Kim would buy three times as much food as anyone could eat, pitching Jewish exuberance against German restraint. When we got lost in a crowd, Kim would go back to where we had seen each other last; I would move on to where we were planning to go. And while she used to make clean breaks with her ex’s, I started out driving her nuts with mine, who all needed to be “taken care of”…
Looking back at the many temperamental and cultural differences between us I can’t help smiling at the potential explosives that littered our path and had to be defused. But I am also a bit puzzled. I wonder: Can one be soul mates and not be compatible?
I turned to Wikipedia to help me figure it out.
What is compatibility?
Wiki: “… the state in which two or more things are able to exist of perform together in combination without problems or conflict.” Really? “Without problems or conflict”?
In telecommunications, compatibility means “to function in the same system or environment without mutual interference.” Like, in the same couple or family system? Or the same work environment? (We were both writers, editors and therapists.) Or would the environment simply be the living quarters we share? No mutual interference? Hmm…
In structural analysis, compatibility is: “the continuity or good fit of materials or members or components while being deformed.” Okay, could that refer to “members of a couple” being squeezed and brought out of shape… by stress?
Well, there must be more to two human beings, two lovers, for being able to function and fit and perform together “without problems or conflicts,” even under stress. We aren’t machines or telecommunications ; we are in many STATES, and sometimes we are “in a state.” We could wonder if compatibility is even applicable to us. Or is compatibility just a metaphor?
See Compatibility 101 Part 1 HERE
Renate and Kim are the authors of Lesbian Marriage: A Love & Sex Forever Kit. They are relationship experts in the SF Bay Area.