I had a client ask me recently about the old adage “opposites attract.” She told me that she is in a relationship and it’s so much work because they are both so different. She expressed that she thought the relationship should be able to work because everyone always says that opposites attract. The truth is that opposites do attract… sometimes. In order for opposites to attract and successfully work it’s important that the opposites in question be complimentary.
As an example of opposites attracting but not being complimentary think of vacation destinations. If you’re adventurous but your partner is more laidback, you may want to backpack through Europe while your partner wants to go to an all-inclusive resort in Turks and Caicos. Another example is if you prefer to budget your money and save up for bigger expenses but your partner wants to splurge on things whenever they can: This can lead to fights. It could also be as simple as you like to go out several nights a week and try new restaurants but your partner likes to stay in and make dinner. These opposites will all result in some clashing in your relationship.
However there are opposites that do attract and do so successfully. For example if you tend to be a more serious person and you meet someone who is more of a jokester who brings out your playful, goofy side that would be good thing! Or if you’re super organized and your partner is more go with the flow then you can be the who pays the bills but you don’t mind because you know you’re better at it and you may even like doing these detailed tasks. It could even be as simple as you hate to cook but your partner loves being in the kitchen.
So next time you are on a date and you find this person in front of you who is so different from who you, ask yourself if this person’s opposite is complimentary to you and your lifestyle or if your differences will likely lead to stress.