Soulmates don’t always have to be romantic partners; these five Nigerians have platonic soulmates: people who’ve been there for them in good times and in bad.
“He’s invested in my safety and constantly fights for me”
— Frank, 23
My platonic soulmate and I have known each other since we were kids, but we started talking when I was sixteen. One day, about a year into our friendship, we were at a church camp meeting and we stayed up talking throughout the night. We talked about a lot of things: family, existence, love, our friendship. After that night, there was a shift we both recognised — we were always going to be in each other’s lives. It’s as if we’d unlocked a new friendship level that night. Since then, it’s been the most beautiful friendship of my life. As a queer person, I was a bit scared to come out to him, but when I did, it changed nothing. If anything, he became more invested in my safety and has constantly fought for me.
There were some bumps in the road in our friendship. For example, we both go to different schools. At first, our communication suffered because I didn’t know how to communicate my feelings properly, but I’m getting better now. I honestly can’t map out exactly how we worked it out, but it involved a lot of honest conversations and setting ground rules. Now, we text everyday and call each other every week when we’re in our different schools.
Also, towards the end of 2021, we had an argument when I complained that he wasn’t opening up to me, but after some self-reflection, I realised I was being selfish. He needed someone to be there for him, not someone to prod him about things he’s still working through. He’s told me that my existence in his life makes him constantly happy, and I’m grateful to have him.
“I’ve outgrown so many people and so many dynamics, but not her.”
— Cynthia, 20
My platonic soulmate is my best friend, and this year makes it our 10th year of friendship. We met in secondary school, but we also managed to have a relationship outside of school because we also went to the same church. She was everywhere around me, so our friendship was bound to happen.
Even though we had a friend group, we’ve realised that our friendship had a different dynamic than the rest of the group. We’ve been with each other through a lot. For example, five years ago, I had a car accident. After I called my mum for help, I immediately called her and cried into the phone. It just made sense to call her because she’s like my sister.
When she got admission into her dream university, she told me about it before she even told her parents.
I’ve outgrown so many people and so many dynamics, but not her. We’ve seen each other through so many transitional periods. Even when she started dating a mutual friend and we had issues because she tried to keep it from me, but it didn’t last up to twelve hours. The littles we do for each other and how deliberate we are about our friendship, convinces me that she’s my soulmate.
“They’re the yin to my yang”
— Morenike, 21
We were in the same year and same class in uni but we didn’t properly speak till our second year. I had tweeted some depressing thoughts and they asked if they could come see me since we were in the same hostel. Since then, we’ve been extremely close.
I really feel like myself with them. Externally, we’re really different physically, but I feel like we get each other. They’re the yin to my yang because through our similarities, we’re still the same person. They even got us matching earrings where I’m the sun and they’re the moon.
We don’t even have to speak every day, but it just works. I can always tell them how I feel, no matter how terrible or confusing that thing is. I’ve never been one to be comfortable expressing feelings for my friends, but one time we were at this party and I was super anxious so I called them. While we were talking, we called each other soulmates and that’s the perfect description.
Sure, there are disagreements because at the end of the day we’re different people who handle things differently, but our friendship helps me to look inwards and just see things differently.
“We FaceTime each other just to stay on the phone and breathe”
— Anita, 25
I consider the person my soulmate because we have had moments where our conversations fizzle out, but we always find our way back. The only thing disrupting us is distance, but even then we find a way to make it work. We FaceTime each other just to stay on the phone and breathe, and sometimes I watch him read for his exams.
We talk about everything even when we both had romantic partners, and it’s still the same now that we’re single. It feels good having someone who’s always there for me even when I’m unstable. We’ve fought a couple of times, but we also calm down and address our issues so we don’t say things we don’t mean.
“I think I’m in love with her”
— Adaeze, 21
I met her on Twitter and although we’ve not known each other for long, she’s easily the other half of my soul. She gets me in a way even the people I date don’t.
She loves me the way I’ve always wanted to be loved, and I love her right back. We try to talk as often as possible and have girl dates where we just talk, eat, and remain beautiful.
I could be having the worst day possible, and her voice is all I need to feel better. I’m always there for her, even when I’m not ready to be there for myself. Showing up for her is the easiest thing I’ve had to do, and I’ll keep doing it for as long as possible. I think I’m in love with her — not in the way lovers fall in love, but in the way two people whose souls are intertwined do. That’s the only way to describe exactly how I feel about her. We’re the same person in different fonts, and I’ll be forever grateful for the day she reached out to me.