If you’ve ever been involved with someone who was at best, narcissistically inclined and at worst, an actual narcissist, or you’ve felt utterly flummoxed by it having started out so great and then wondering, What happened to that great guy (or woman)?, then you can understand why some people are very gun-shy about new relationships. They find it difficult to trust themselves because they feel that they’ve been misled (or misled themselves in the past). This is why so many people ask me, ‘Natalie, how much does chemistry matter when you first meet someone?’
The first thing I ask anyone who is confused about chemistry is, Have you felt chemistry when you’ve first met someone before?, and of course, the answer is yes.
I then ask, How much has chemistry played a part in 1) your perception of someone, 2) your decision to get involved and 3) your decision to remain? Invariably, chemistry has played a significant role, to the point where some, with the benefit of hindsight, would say it accounted for over 90% of of their involvement (and their problems).
Then I ask, Was this a healthy, mutually fulfilling relationship with love, care, trust and respect, or were there issues with emotional unavailability (intimacy and commitment), balance, consistency, progression or shared core values (basically, The Landmarks of Healthy Relationships)?, and every single time, the answer is yes.
Believe me when I say that you wouldn’t have your doubts about chemistry or have been misled by chemistry, if the net result was that you were in a loving relationship.
I then have to ask, Where are these partners now?
It’s all very well having what you might regard as ‘off-the-charts chemistry’ but it’s zero use if it renders your relationship unable to function.
It’s like riding a roller coaster all the time and wondering why it’s difficult to stand on solid ground, why your stomach’s lurching, and why it only feels ‘normal’ on the rollercoaster, chasing a feeling that you haven’t been able to recapture at quite the same level that it was on that very first ‘high’.