Compatability and dating

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It is, for example, a guaranteed political flash point: Exactly whose love is entitled to receive civic or religious recognition? Lawyers may dine out on love gone awry, but public policy is often left to grapple with the mess of disaffected children and poverty it leaves in its wake.

Still, anyone who has come within waltzing distance of it, read Jane Austen or Danielle Steele, or listened to Frank Sinatra or Celine Dion, knows there's no elixir like love. Of course, we want someone to share our laughter, be a best friend as well as a lover, someone who'll not only listen to our doubts and celebrate our triumphs but also jump in the car for impromptu getaways.

I always think of the phrase, "You've met your match." You really do want someone who challenges and spars with you.

— I recently asked myself: What would social science have to say to a matchmaker? Measures of personality don't predict anything, but how people interact does.

The similarities or personality traits that attract people to each other may not hold up over time.

You might be attracted to someone because you both love to ski, but then one of you blows out a knee.

We want to be one half of a couple whose personal characteristics so closely mesh that we'll remain oriented to one another in a hyperstimulating world.

Values about money and children run very deep and are important.

And increasingly, it's the lone element absent from our otherwise fortunate lives.

It's a cornerstone of our humanity; only love protects us enough to grow and change.

Chemistry is an alluring concept, but much too frequently people use it to absolve themselves of the need to consciously examine their approach to one another.

As if the muse of love will alight on their shoulder and sprinkle fairy dust on them, and then they will suddenly open their eyes and behold The Perfect Mate—without prying open their own heart, embracing an unwavering willingness to see the other in a positive light or doing the hard work of exploring, knowing and respecting another human being. It involves a dauntingly complex interplay of biology and behavior.

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