Fairytale Princes

First, thanks again to Amy and Derrick for guest posting earlier this week and to Amy for hosting my essay. I view this blog as a shared space, so please contact me if you’d like to guest post.

Don’t know if anyone has heard of the documentary “Virgin Tales” (thanks LT for the link!). I cringed when I read the promo, not because it’s yet another Christian group thumping for chastity. I think we should teach our boys and girls to be extremely selective with whom they share their bodies. The reason I winced was this statement:

The two eldest daughters Lauren and Khrystian already found, married, and kissed their fairytale princes. Next in line is 20-​​year-​​old Jordyn who is desperate for a husband at her side and – like her own father, brothers or brothers-​​in-​​law: family-​​friendly, God-​​fearing, and good looking (“he has to be easy on the eyes”).

Did you get a little nauseated, too, at the words “fairytale princes” and “desperate for a husband”? And what exactly does the character trait “family friendly” mean? Does it mean the prospective prince is rated G? Or perhaps his bachelor pad is filled with toys and kid-sized furniture? Didn’t you wonder why the adjectives “smart, funny and compassionate” weren’t on the list of requirements?

Seems that some of us are teaching our kids all wrong. Fairytale princes and knights in shining armor aren’t real, of course. They’re characters from stories. We understand how silly these descriptive terms are when we substitute Batman or Superman or Jesus Christ for Prince Charming. Yes, they’re all cut from the same cloth: heroes and saviors. They save us from ourselves.

So some of us (and we know who they are) are raising our girls to look for an idealized version of a man who is willing to role-play until he gets tired of being a puppet, gets tired of pretending. It’s not real, and it’s not healthy.

This is a timely subject since we’re two weeks away from Halloween, where we will see many little girls dressed as princesses and fairies, and no doubt, a Miley or two. And the boys? Do they dress up as princes and sex objects? No, they are busy thinking about what they want to be in the future: firemen, police officers, doctors, pirates, axe murderers. (Ok and maybe even a Justin Bieber or two.) The princesses focus on their image; they will look pretty and wait. Wait to be saved from waiting while the boys focus on becoming, on making a contribution to the world.

Back to poor Jordyn, who is desperate for a husband at 20 years old, at a time when she should be finishing her education or vocational training. At 20, she shouldn’t be in an anxious search for someone to rescue or complete her, someone she will only think she knows, who fits her idealized version of spouse material. She should be searching for herself, working on her future, learning that no one is going to make her feel good until she feels good about herself and that no one will make her happy unless she is already happy.

This isn’t child’s play, though. I hear this lament often: he’s out there, my knight in shining armor, my prince charming. I wish I could say that I hear it from naïve young women, but 40-something women say this, too. (Usually accompanied by “and a good Christian man.) I have a feeling they’re going to be looking a long, long time.

An attorney friend of mine once asked me if I knew what the biggest cause of divorce was. I imagined money issues, infidelity, abuse. No, the single biggest cause of divorce he told me was people’s expectations. They get married expecting one thing (hello, fairy tale), and they get another (a mundane marriage).

Relationships, even the best of them, are work. We marry real people. Flawed people who, even with their flaws, are still beautiful and worthy of love. There is compromise, give and take, sacrifice. Always. No one is exempt, not even princes and princesses. But understanding these realities leads to the recognition and appreciation of the extraordinary joys of sharing life with another person.

Now. That’s enough about that. Should we tackle the goofy idea of “soul mate” next?

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50 responses to “Fairytale Princes

  1. (“he has to be easy on the eyes”)

    Uglies need not apply.

    How utterly vapid.

    The website has the bride in a ballerina pose next to a soldier in BDU’s. Would the wedding be off if he was horribly disfigured?

    listen, listen, listen…if I lost a leg would you still love me? You mean from the knee down? You lose a finger nail I’ll break up with you. There’s no depth to my shallowness.” ~ Daniel Tosh

  2. I find that excerpt you shared very nauseating indeed. While I agree with you in the value of encouraging children to be highly selective and to know the true value of sharing their body with someone, I have issues with insinuating a woman is incomplete without a husband.

    News flash: If you aren’t happy single, you won’t be happy married. If you aren’t happy without kids, you won’t be happy with them.

    People think a husband will fill some empty void in your life. He won’t, and I find that to be VERY high expectations for a partner. Can you make me complete? Can you make me happy? Wow, that’s a lot to ask from another human being. It’s sort of like people who have a baby to fix their marriage… that’s quite a job description you’ve given that tiny infant….

    That’s the end of my rant on the topic, but really… I could go on, and on….

    • Good points, Molly. Too many see the role of a spouse to fill voids and provide completeness when to be self-actualized makes you loveable and able to love to a greater degree.

      “OK, now let’s have some fun. Let’s talk about sex. Let’s talk about women. Freud said he didn’t know what women wanted. I know what women want. They want a whole lot of people to talk to. What do they want to talk about? They want to talk about everything.

      What do men want? They want a lot of pals, and they wish people wouldn’t get so mad at them.

      Why are so many people getting divorced today? It’s because most of us don’t have extended families anymore. It used to be that when a man and a woman got married, the bride got a lot more people to talk to about everything. The groom got a lot more pals to tell dumb jokes to.

      A few Americans, but very few, still have extended families. The Navahos. The Kennedys.

      But most of us, if we get married nowadays, are just one more person for the other person. The groom gets one more pal, but it’s a woman. The woman gets one more person to talk to about everything, but it’s a man.

      When a couple has an argument, they may think it’s about money or power or sex, or how to raise the kids, or whatever. What they’re really saying to each other, though, without realizing it, is this:
      “You are not enough people!”

      I met a man in Nigeria one time, an Ibo who has six hundred relatives he knew quite well. His wife had just had a baby, the best possible news in any extended family.

      They were going to take it to meet all its relatives, Ibos of all ages and sizes and shapes. It would even meet other babies, cousins not much older than it was. Everybody who was big enough and steady enough was going to get to hold it, cuddle it, gurgle to it, and say how pretty it was, or handsome.

      Wouldn’t you have loved to be that baby?”

      ― Kurt Vonnegut, God Bless You, Dr. Kevorkian

      • LT that sounds to me like that baby was born into a nice, big, Catholic family! Haha.. just kidding…

        I hear you on the extended family, it didn’t seem so important until we started having kids and now I really miss not having our parents / siblings / nieces / nephews nearby because not only would it be more fun but it would make life easier in some ways. So many days I just wish I had some more HELP. It takes a village you know….

        • I hear ya, Molly. I’ve never had any kids (at least none that I know of -haha!) and it amazes me how these little Energizer bunnies drain all the energy from me. I’m exhausted at the end of the day and my one thought is that I get to give the “loaner kids” back. I do not know how you parents do it but appreciate your dedication.

          It’s been said that parenting is the most important job in the world, yet it requires no advance qualifications.

    • “News flash: If you aren’t happy single, you won’t be happy married. If you aren’t happy without kids, you won’t be happy with them.”
      Amen, Molly!

  3. I think marriage is way over rated any way! I’m in a shit hole of a mess right now with someone who I had prayed for since I was seventeen years old. Yes, for thirteen to fourteen years I prayed to be that excellent wife with an amazing husband and for us to have great kids. I finally met him, we married as virgins and got pregnant our first week of marriage. In the last nine and a half years I have put up with him continually deceiving me with lies, even right to my face and hiding information from me and at times, ape shit anger. I share this here because I can’t share it on my blog. (Debbie, MichaelB and others, you understand why.) I don’t even know if marriage is even relevant to our society or culture any more, especially as non believers. What purpose does it actually serve?

    If these holy rollers want to serve their daughters well they should teach them about biology, birth control methods, expanding their education and seeing the world. They need to do so without their controlling nature dictating their daughters’ single lives. I did a lot all those years I was single, but it’s obvious in looking back at it now that it was mostly influenced by the family I was born into, as well as the faith they pounded into me. These young women need to research all they can about their faith, the human mind, men, women and children. Some may even need to explore worlds that they may have never looked at within the oppression of their religion such as transgender issues, gays and bis, evolution, history, races and religions that are not their own. Most of all, they need to discover who they are, what they like and what they want to do with their lives, even at this moment. The world is their’s if they allow it to be by removing their blinders of bias and prejudice.

    Sorry, Debbie, you found my button.

    • @CHope – Your comment is a good counterpoint to the notion that “one size fits all.”

    • Hi CHope. I really like you. You just get it out there and I love that. I agree about marriage. I don’t see the purpose. I’m married to my best friend, fortunately for me, but she has always said she doesn’t “need” me in the sense of completing her or saving her from singleness. I love her attitude. IMO a great test of a relationship would be if there was no legal marriage ceremony/document. Two people should stay together simply because they want to. What really struck me recently about the Christian Bible is that it starts out with “God created Adam” and then God created Eve from Adam’s rib as a “helper.” WTF? How can any woman read that and be a Christian? I’m male and I can’t accept it (disclosure: I’m a feminist). The Bible is insulting to women. I’m getting off topic. I get riled up easily, I guess.

    • Never any need for sorry, CHope. You’re finding your own way now.

      • @LT. Andy and Debbie,

        I’m not perfect and I will never be perfect, it’s not humanly possible. I just know that I spent many years dealing with my emotions and finances before I married. Mr. CHope, not so much. Grant it, my dealings were predominately within the restraints of my religious years, but I at least tried. Husband still doesn’t deal with much of the shit he has been through as a kid with a messed up mom, religiously uptight adopted parents, an Army military school and his military time divided between the Marine Corps and the Navy. When his emotions do come to the surface, which is very rare, he’s so real and authentic that it makes me forget every thing he has ever done wrong to anyone, especially me. I’m just getting to the point to where I feel he is taking advantage of my forgiveness. I usually give it to him to so quickly and easily. Now that we’re no longer believers, I don’t feel like being the docile wife anymore. Being that we’ve only been atheists for a year and a half, this is new territory for the both of us.

        Thanks guys for your kindness and understanding. I hope it works out, I don’t want to fail at our marriage. I think I’m having a hard time learning how to redefine things such as hope, faith, love and marriage. When religion has had so much control over your life for so many years, it’s hard to know what things really are once you walk away. Religion has always defined those things for me, now I have to know what they are with my own mind outside of a religion, sect or denomination to influence it.

  4. Spotted this from the website: ‘I’ve just always know that I wanted to be a wife and a mother, i would hate to go off and spend thousands of dollars on an education that I wouldn’t use,’ said another Wilson daughter.

    Just makes me shudder.

    As a mother, it makes the most sense to acquire an education. You are the first teacher of the next generation. Wanna steer those offspring of yours correctly, yes?

    And, why isn’t our future bride interested in intelligence in her groom/hubby? Looks good but dumb as rocks loses its appeal after a while.

    **face palm**

  5. No one dies a virgin, Life screws us all. ~ Daniel Tosh

    xD

  6. It is heartbreaking how so many parents set up their children to become divorced, deluded, and depressed. This quote from the trailer of the documentary really got to me. A young woman says, “I’ve just always known that I wanted to be a wife and a mother. I would really hate to go off and spend thousands of dollars on an education I wouldn’t use.” Nothing keeps women in their place like not educating them.

  7. Speaking from the perspective of someone who got married at 20 years old, I know what it’s like to not have any options. To not have a choice in how to live your life. To not be allowed to go to college, get an education, and get to know yourself and other people and the world. To not be allowed to date, and figure out what you may or may not want in a life partner. Or if you even want a life partner at all. I was a child at 20, and knew nothing, about anything. I said and did what was expected of me. I feel for these kids who are raised with no say in anything. Who knows what Jordyn really wants? She may not even be desperate for a husband at all. Maybe she secretly wants to become a nun or an opera singer. Odds are she doesn’t know what she wants.
    Oddly enough, one thing I did know when I was that age was that soul mates were a myth. I loved my husband at the time, but I had no delusions that we were “made for each other”. Eventually he and I each grew up and away from each other. I loved my single years, and now I’m giving marriage another go. And again, as before, it’s a constant work in progress. I love you, you drive me crazy, you’re too good to me, you let me down…….on both sides. Isn’t that how it is with our friends too, and our kids, and our parents, and all our relationships? Either you’re in it and committed or you’re not. The sooner we realize that it’s up to each of us individually to make ourselves happy and fulfilled, the better.

  8. I have so many thoughts about this, although I’m finding it difficult lately to put my thoughts into any sort of coherent order!

    I married for the first time at the tender age of 19. I had left home at 17 – actually run away (left the state with my boyfriend, the one I married two years later) from an awful, abusive, volatile home life – so on some level I grew up way before my time. I did feel like my boyfriend was my “knight in shining armor.” He was looking for someone to save, and I wanted saving. It was a horrible marriage that ended up including alcoholism, drug addiction, physical and emotional abuse, and in the end, he died of a drug overdose twelve years into our marriage – two weeks after I finally filed for divorce. I learned many hard lessons: that young marriages like that are very, very often doomed because that young, you don’t even know who the hell you are yet, and the chances of you and a “life partner” growing apart, growing in different directions, is almost guaranteed. I also learned that nobody can save me – I have to save myself. For a long time, I retreated into a shell, convinced that I was the only person in the world I could really count on, and I was determined to never rely on another human being again. Obviously, over time that changed, and I eventually remarried, but I went into it with a completely different perspective – in large part because surviving my first marriage and the aftermath also taught me that I am much stronger than I had ever realized. The second time around, I got married because I wanted to share my life with this man – not because I was running away from something, or running to something, or wanting salvation from anything. Marriage is a lot different when you’re actually partners, and one person hasn’t been handed (and taken on) the role of savior.

    But, just as you said, marriage – any relationship, really – takes work. There are ups and downs, give and take, good times and bad times. Life isn’t a fairy tale.

    My daughters have all gone through the “princess” phase, and it does make me cringe (as do Barbies!), but I’m trying very hard to instill in them – and in my sons – that males and females are equal, that they are each strong individuals in their own right, and that they need to value themselves without looking to outside sources to make them feel good about themselves. These are difficult concepts to instill, but I will say that so far, even though my girls like to dress up as princesses sometimes, they don’t talk about finding husbands or growing up and getting married. I’m glad that stuff isn’t even on their radar at this point.

    And for what it’s worth, my nine-year old twin girls are dressing up as a vampire and a devil, respectively, for Halloween this year – their choices 🙂

  9. @Lisa Thanks for sharing. After reading your blog, I have no doubt that your girls will grow up to be strong women!
    LOL–They are dressing up as immortal evils!

  10. @Lisa –

    And for what it’s worth, my nine-year old twin girls are dressing up as a vampire and a devil, respectively, for Halloween this year – their choices 🙂

    I love that kids can see the fun, silliness, and mock scariness of the occasion and not get all bent out of shape like the fundies who see Halloween as tantamount to consorting with Satan.

    see: http://www.fillthevoid.org/Occult/TenReasonsChristiansShouldNotCelebrateHalloween.htm

    • @Deb – That fundie link is from Richardson, TX

      Get out! The calls are coming from inside the house!!

      xD

      And don’t think you can get into heaven *your* way!

      http://www.fillthevoid.org/Gospel/I%27llgettoheavenmyownwayJIL.html

      😉

      • OMG. Now I’m face palming. Why is it always Texas?!!

        • @Deb – Something in the water?

          General Jack D. Ripper: Mandrake, do you realize that in addition to fluoridating water, why, there are studies underway to fluoridate salt, flour, fruit juices, soup, sugar, milk… ice cream. Ice cream, Mandrake, children’s ice cream.

          Group Capt. Lionel Mandrake: [very nervous] Lord, Jack.

          General Jack D. Ripper: You know when fluoridation first began?

          Group Capt. Lionel Mandrake: I… no, no. I don’t, Jack.

          General Jack D. Ripper: Nineteen hundred and forty-six. 1946, Mandrake. How does that coincide with your post-war Commie conspiracy, huh? It’s incredibly obvious, isn’t it? A foreign substance is introduced into our precious bodily fluids without the knowledge of the individual. Certainly without any choice. That’s the way your hard-core Commie works.

          Group Capt. Lionel Mandrake: Uh, Jack, Jack, listen… tell me, tell me, Jack. When did you first… become… well, develop this theory?

          General Jack D. Ripper: [somewhat embarassed] Well, I, uh… I… I… first became aware of it, Mandrake, during the physical act of love.

          Group Capt. Lionel Mandrake: Hmm.

          General Jack D. Ripper: Yes, a uh, a profound sense of fatigue… a feeling of emptiness followed. Luckily I… I was able to interpret these feelings correctly. Loss of essence.

          Group Capt. Lionel Mandrake: Hmm.

          General Jack D. Ripper: I can assure you it has not recurred, Mandrake. Women uh… women sense my power and they seek the life essence. I, uh… I do not avoid women, Mandrake.

          Group Capt. Lionel Mandrake: No.

          General Jack D. Ripper: But I… I do deny them my essence.

          xD

        • TX and “Probe” ministries. That’s just like that “Ram In the Bush” Christian bookstore I told ya’ll about in Memphis some time back.

      • “Have you checked the children?”

  11. I forget which comic said it but I thought it was hilarious.

    Sure, I believe in this world that there’s somebody for everyone…but what if my perfect mate is a member of the Ubangi tribe in the middle of Africa and I never get to meet her?

  12. I’m glad I decided to follow your blog. I receive e-mail notifications when you publish a new post. As always, your posts are inspirational, thought provoking, and intriguing. I enjoyed today’s post quite a bit. As I search myself for a response to today’s post, the material forced me to consider how I would handle guiding my daughter into the right frame of mind for the same timeframe in her life (around 20 years old)?

    Obviously, I want her to focus on her education. I want her to be independent, strong, and confident in herself to succeed as a young woman in this cold world where we live. Clearly, making her feel or think she should get married at a younger age is a mistake. In my opinion, I think she should complete college before she thinks about dating let alone marriage (even if she chooses to go into the medical field and has to spend eight years of her life in Medical School).

    At the same time, I want to be able to guide her in such a way she can recognize false pretense from other people and to refuse to put up the same pretense if she chooses to get involved in a relationship. If she and whoever she chooses to date decides to be honest from the beginning then there is less room for disappointment after they get married. Because of the society that surrounds us, though, I think it would nearly be impossible to get one or both people to stop being on their best behavior and simply be who they are during the dating stage (unless for some reason they get very comfortable with each other).

    The “Virgin Tales” people are clearly living in an illusion. A lot of people on this planet, among theists and athiests alike, engage in premarital sexual activities. I think expecting ones children to wait until marriage before they kiss or have any form of intimacy is ludacris. Sure, you can have moral reasoning behind the “save yourself” speech, but because humans are sexual creatures, and curious, most likely they will explore this when they are not in our direct supervision.

    So, another question I’ve been dealing with is how do I approach this subject and convince my child to be careful so she doesn’t get herself hurt, or worse, doesn’t give herself to someone who has some kind of nasty disease? I can’t find the wisdom to deal with that at this point in my life, but perhaps those of you who have already faced this can throw me some tips or suggestions? I know I’m definitely open to them!

  13. @dqfan2012 It’s always a pleasure to read your comments. You bring up some good points. First, here: “…I think it would nearly be impossible to get one or both people to stop being on their best behavior and simply be who they are during the dating stage (unless for some reason they get very comfortable with each other).” I do think it is so important–and I tell my kids this (my younger one especially) to always be on their best behavior. That should be who you are. My mother used to say, “Treat your friends like family and your family like friends.” But I do think people get mad, lose their temper, etc. etc., and I’d much rather see people being real than putting on a show (only to blow up behind closed doors).

    As for talking to your daughter about sex–and I hope others will share their experiences– I think you have to start now. I talked to my kids about sex from the time they were six or seven and told them that their bodies are sacred, and they need to respect them. There will be people who don’t, and they will end up pregnant or possibly sick. The school also addresses this. My kids asked lots of questions, and I was as honest and informative as I could be. I never told them to wait until marriage; I just told them to wait until they find someone that they want to be in a serious, committed relationship with, someone who will be worth the physical and emotional risks.

    It’s a hard topic, though. If you start early, it won’t feel so embarrassing down the road when you want to have more serious discussions.

  14. @DQ

    I love Debbie’s response.

    I don’t have daughters and my two boys are much younger than Debbie’s sons. My kids are five and eight and I have already had discussions with them about their bodies. Just tonight we were discussing nipples. I told them that I have to wonder if men had a part in nursing or their nipples served some sort of purpose many thousands of years ago. We discussed all the animals where only the females had nipples and talked about the purpose of their nipples and human females were the same, to nurse their young. I also talk to them about the penis,and use some slang references as well when referring to all of their boy parts. I do this because child rapists try to use different words to entice children and I don’t want my kids ignorant of what he or she might be talking to them about. Why just tonight my eight year old was singing a tribute to his body “My balls” set to the tune of “My Girl”. That’s right, you know he’s my child because he’s comfortable with his body and already knows Motown music at his “tender” age. Grant it, before our profound discussion about nipples they both went on and on about what would happen if our noses, ears, belly buttons, hands and feet farted. What can I say, it’s all about compromise. None of this should surprise me, my oldest learned much about bongs, diseases and menstruation because we used to watch House together when it was on at a decent time.

    I’m the oldest of seven daughters and we were brought up in a very strict Pentecostal home. I can’t begin to tell you how damaging it was, especially with all the extreme abuse and neglect, just know it was bad. We weren’t taught anything about sex. My parents thought they did their part simply by telling us not to do it. Two of my sisters got pregnant outside of marriage within a year apart and it was while they both still lived at home in their late teens. One is still married to the dad and the other was smart enough to not marry the mean bastard. In fact, he had absolutely nothing to do with my sister’s gestation period, as well as my niece’s life at all! We did all we could to keep him away, it’s not as though he had much interest to begin with. Another sister was sexually molested by another boy at school when she was in Kindergarten. As you can see, the conversation has to begin at a young age. I agree with Debbie, little bits at a time, letting the conversation grow and build over time. I also think it’s important to not put so much emphasis on waiting until marriage and with good reason. When someone (boy or girl) has been raped as a child or teenager or even young adult, they feel dirty because Church often preaches that anyone who has had any sexual experience of any kind are already not pure for their spouse when they marry. As you can imagine, this screws with a person’s head. It’s as though the rapist didn’t do enough, the religious had to rub more garbage into an already gaping wound. My husband and I married as two virgins who were dedicated Christians at 31 years old and it really messed up our first weekend together and impacted our marriage in a negative way. Think of all of the restraints abstinence put on us for many years, but now it’s okay? This is something that all the Christian sex books never informed us about. When it comes to sex, you can’t just accept as evil for so long, then seconds later it’s acceptable. That’s not how the mind works.

    • @Chope Thanks for your input. You have great stories and suggestions! I can totally see little boys singing a tribute to “my balls” or wondering if other body parts can pass gas! LOL!

      BTW, whatever happened growing up, you must have overcome. You sound like a great mom!

      • Aw, Debbie, you are always so kind and sisterly, I believe that’s why you have such a huge following. The only way I can be a good mom with the past that I have is by always staying present with my kids. I am continually aware of how I affect their futures by what I do today. I love them with all of my heart. I always tell hubby that they’re my second chance at a childhood I never had. If we are to go through the time and trouble to have children, the very least we can do is consistently love them, provide for them and nurture them. If not, we should remain childless.

  15. Wow, I’m a latecomer on this one. As usual, you’ve covered all of the bases I would have … especially the idea that one of the most common root causes of divorce is the disillusionment that takes place when people realize that married life involves a great deal of the same, non-fairytale things that they dealt with when they were single. It’s bad enough so many of us completely lose our minds over having OMG A PERFECT WEDDING as if it has any influence on the outcome of the (hopefully) decades of marriage that follow.

    I saw their website, and dear Lord. I understand, as you do, the practicality of being somewhat selective regarding your personal life, especially when it comes to sex. But to put so much focus on it the way they do … calling themselves “unsoiled” … holding “Purity Balls” for every female in the family … they’ve basically decided that the only measure of their worth is situated between their legs. If it’s been compromised, then I guess they’re damaged goods and thrown out of the family?

    • @Senator Jason Sadly, you’re right. “…they’ve basically decided that the only measure of their worth is situated between their legs.” A woman’s worth, in many ways, is still determined by her coital history. That’s why there’s so much power to debilitate women behind the word, “sl*t,” which both men and women use against other women. I’d point you to a recent article in proof of this, but I don’t want to give the idiots who wrote it any more traffic.

    • Jason, your comment is so true! My mother continually prayed for my sisters and I to be virgins and to marry virgins. Once in a while she prayed for our current jobs, but that’s it. My parents put no emphasis, love, time or money into our education or careers. They just prayed for us marry and to be able to have kids. That’s scary when you consider they had seven daughters and we’re all from our late twenties to our early forties now. We’re talking about just within the last quarter of a century here, not a century or more ago.

  16. @Debbie Really, you covered this quite succinctly.

    Here is another tip in “How to have Fun with Theists!” Ask them to define exactly what a soul is and how it works. The head scratching gets audible after a few seconds. And the term “soul mate” sounds like religious pornography to me.

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