Yes, soul mates exist. I have living proof of one in the kitchen right now. She's wearing sweatpants and a "Hogs and Heifers" tank top and is using a dental whitening strip that makes her sound like Gina Gershon when she speaks. She's my wife, and she's cleaning out the fridge. God, I love her. But is she "the one" for me? Are we each the one person the universe had in store for the other? Hell no. There are millions of people we could have ended up with, but it's no less romantic that we ended up as we did.
It was a blind date. It wasn't love at first sight. It was "like" at first sight. And then phone conversations that simply never ended. When she, then living in Westchester, held the phone out the window so that this then city dweller could hear some suburban crickets, I knew she would be mine for a long time. What if we met today? Would she do the same thing? I don't know. I'd like to think so, but things are different now for women. These days, it's just fine to not be married, and to be plenty happy about it. In this post-Sex and the City era, young women are enjoying an extended bachelorette-hood. It's a time in which women are allowed to be independent, outspoken ‑- even a little slutty. In other words, women are now allowed to be men. No wonder they're getting married later. But, ladies, if you are truly holding out for a soul mate, and if that, by recent definition, is "someone with whom one has a subjective, emotional feeling of deep affinity, friendship, love, strong intimacy or compatibility," then, um, I suggest you expand your horizons. That should be the entry-level, bare minimum of what you're looking for. Skip the laundry list of criteria and quit trying to check off all the requirements. The important thing is to just talk, to bare that soul of yours. Odds are pretty good that someone wonderful is going to want to mate with it.