Why I Started We Could Happen
8 years ago in Singapore, when I was 16, I chanced upon a 6 part series on “Choosing The Right Partner For Life”, in which it summarized the key principles in choosing the right life partner for ourselves and how to build strong lasting relationships in a comprehensive set of principles such as “The 8 Types Of Relationships That Won’t Work” & “5 Compatibility Time Bombs To Look Out For In A Relationship” etc.
STUMBLING UPON A SET OF RELATIONSHIP TRUTHS
At first, probably like what you’re thinking right now, I was skeptical.
I mean, relationships are complicated right?
Each and every one is unique.
How can you have a comprehensive and definitive guide to relationships such as “The 8 Types Of Relationships That Won’t Work” & categorize relationships into such “types”?
It just sounded impossible and too good to be true.
But out of curiosity, I listened anyway.
PRE-IDENTIFYING RELATIONSHIP PROBLEMS AMONG FRIENDS
However, over the years, as many of my friends started getting into relationships (I happen to have many friends across all ages, from friends my age till those in their 30s and 40s); sometimes, when two people whom I know personally got together, I would start realizing things like “Oh no, they seem to fall under these few types of relationships that won’t work, or would be caught in this relationship time bomb”, or that one of them wasn’t ready etc, and according to the guide, their relationships won’t work or are in danger of not working should they not diffuse the “time bomb” in time and so on.
OBSERVING BUT DOING NOTHING ABOUT IT
But of course, since I was still skeptical about the truthfulness and practicality of those principles, I just kept quiet, congratulated my friends and just moved on with life.
THE SHOCKING DISCOVERY
But true enough, a few years down the road, those very couples eventually did break up, and some ended quite badly. And somehow, my friends tend to confide in me, and what really shocked me was that the reasons why they broke up was exactly those few that I’ve identified right from the start based on those set of principles, and I mean exactly.
Now, it is perfectly normal for couples to get together and break up, especially for people around my age from 16-24, but to be able to identify and PINPOINT exactly why a couple would or would not break up in the end and WHY, right from the start was another thing altogether!
CONSISTENCY IS SUCH DISCOVERIES
Furthermore, this wasn’t just one couple, it was many many couples from those around my age till those much older than me, and the guide and set of principles has proven to be 100% true until today.
So I thought to myself:
“Wow, there must be some truth to this thing!”
FINDING OUT MORE
Curious, I went on to do some research on the set of principles (read more here), and I realized that many other research and sources supported them, and most of it was simple logic and common sense.
Believe it or not, it is actually possible to logically analyze relationships by taking into account the often illogical and irrational emotional factors often involved in a relationship.
WHY PEOPLE GET HURT IN RELATIONSHIPS
The problem with most of us is that we would simply be too overwhelmed by our emotions when it comes to things such as love and relationships, and also because we do not have a set of guiding principles to help us understand our emotions and what is truly happening.
Most of the time, we are still in the midst of discovering ourselves and our way around relationships, embarking on a process of trial and error.
THE NEGATIVE EFFECTS OF A BAD RELATIONSHIP
The danger however is that most of us get hurt in the process, and as a result of us not having a set of guiding principles to help us understand what actually happened and what went wrong, often let our emotions get the better of us and end up developing a skewed or unhealthy mindset towards love and relationships that could eventually hurt ourselves or others further in the future.
Some of us become more selfish in the process, some of us more defensive, more un-trusting, some grow more resentful against the other sex, or some might just lose hope on love and relationships altogether, which shouldn’t be the case if we truly understood what went wrong in the first place, or even better, knew enough from the start to not have to go through all that hurt because we could see it coming or do something about it in time.
THE IMPORTANCE OF FINDING A RIGHT PARTNER
In that 6 part series on relationships, it was also highlighted that:
“If we manage to find the right life partner for ourselves, life can be like heaven on earth; but if we’ve found the wrong one, life can be a living hell”
WITNESSING HELL FIRST HAND IN MY PARENTS MARRIAGE
This phrase meant a lot to me, because I’ve seen how bad that living hell can be first hand in my parent’s marriage over 24 years.
Now, my parents are still married today, but they have been trapped in a living hell for as long as they were married. Let’s just say that the only reason why they’re not divorced yet is because they did not want me, being their only child, to have a broken family.
Honestly, after seeing what kind of life my parents were going through for the past 20 odd years of their marriage so far, I would rather stay single for the rest of my life rather than getting married unless I manage to find someone who is truly right for me.
UNDERSTANDING WHY THEY TURNED OUT THAT WAY
When I first heard that 6 part series of choosing the right partner for life, I immediately understood why my parents marriage turned out the way it did, because they were clearly not the right partners for each other!
It was spot on!
FALLING UNDER 2 OUT OF 8 TYPES OF RELATIONSHIPS THAT WON’T WORK
In a sense that out of the 8 types of relationships that won’t work, my parent’s relationship fell under 2 of them, among other principles that clearly pointed to their incompatibility.
Furthermore, they actually realized them before they got married, just that they could not identify them because they did not know of these principles and were misguided by their emotions and all the myths and concepts about love that our friends and society has influenced us with that might not necessarily be right. I know this for a fact because they would confide in me individually.
To not bore you about the details, I shall not divulge any further; but if you would like to know more, do feel free to ask me personally.
Right now, my parent’s marriage is slightly better, because I was able to pinpoint and identify the exact reasons why they were locked in a living hell together for so long and through much hard work, help them work towards a solution on each of them ever since I came back from Singapore.
However, sometimes, some damages and emotional scares can be too deep to heal completely, especially if two people are fundamentally incompatible from the start and the damage has been done over so many years.
A COMMON PROBLEM
As I got to know more people, I realized that my parents are not alone in this.
There are many other couples out there who are fundamentally incompatible with each other who got into relationships, got married and have kids.
PARTNER VS A RIGHT PARTNER
This made me realize that even if you’re in a relationship, married or have children; it doesn’t necessarily mean that you have found the right life partner.
This is even more dangerous because such relationships often result in much heartbreak, broken hearts and emotional damage, and if the couple got married, divorce, broken families or being stuck in a resentful and unhappy marriage (a living hell) for the rest of their lives; and if they had children, could severely affect their children’s emotional well being and outlook on love and relationships.
THE CHAIN OF HURT & HEARTBREAKS
If you think about it, these could be the start of multiple chains of heartbreak and hurt that is being circulated in our society today.
Now, if only more people were aware of these set of relationship principles and had tools to help them find & identify their right life partners and go on to build strong lasting relationships, imagine the amount of hurt and heartbreak we could help avoid, how many happy and loving relationships and families we can help create.
THE “RELATIONSHIP TRUTHS”
At this point, you might be wondering what’s so different about this set of relationship principles that I’ve stumbled upon from all the stuff you find on the internet like Elite Daily or Times or even relationship books?
FUNDAMENTAL VS GOOD TO HAVE/PETTY
If you ask me, the difference is that many of the stuff you find on the internet these days are mostly made up of merely good to have tips that point out the petty issues in relationships and quite frankly, some of which only applies to people who are extremely picky in nature or good to have tips on how to spice up a relationship which are true and good to have, but mostly not core to finding the right partner or building strong lasting relationships; whereas this particular set of principles represent the very core fundamental guiding principles of finding the right life partner and building strong lasting relationships, a comprehensive and definitive set of universal “relationship truths”, if you will, that I have found to be true and applicable to any relationship that I’ve come across over the past 8 years.
Now please don’t get me wrong, I am not saying that you will have to find a perfect partner; or that with these set of principles people won’t face relationship problems anymore.
That is far from the truth because the fact is that none of us are perfect, no two people are perfectly compatible with each other and there are bound to have arguments and huge problems in any relationship.
That is just a fact of life.
THE CORE DIFFERENCES
But there is a difference between normal relationship problems which you can overcome with the right mindset, tools and guidance and fundamental ones that are irreconcilable and just won’t work.
These set of principles would help you identify and hopefully avoid the fundamental ones and provide a guide for you to navigate and overcome the other non-fundamental ones.
CAN UNNECESSARY HEARTBREAK BE PREVENTED?
I was thinking, wouldn’t it be good if there was a reliable guide for people to turn to when they’re facing relationship problems; or a set of tools that will make it easier for people to find the right partners for each other or to maintain and build a relationship?
Wouldn’t we be able to prevent many unhappy relationships & unnecessary heartbreak?
WE COULD HAPPEN’S MISSION
Hence, through We Could Happen, I hope to build a relationship guide with tools that are built on these principles to help people:
- Find & identify their right life partners
- Build strong lasting relationships after they’ve found him/her
THE PROBLEM WITH EXISTING DATING APPS & PLATFORMS
Besides this, I also started We Could Happen because I think that most dating apps and sites out there are either getting it all wrong or still have a long way to go to solving the problem thoroughly.
SUPERFICIALITY & CORE FOCUS
I think that popular dating apps out there right now like Tinder & Skout are great for meeting random strangers, but are too superficial and too focused on sexual attraction (though an important part in romantic relationships, shouldn’t be the only consideration) to help us identify and find the right partner for ourselves.
Yes they are great for us to find random partners to have some fun with, but very rarely the right ones for life; yes there will be some lucky ones who turn out to be the right ones, but it is rare because the focus is set up wrongly.
HOW MOST SUCCESSFUL RELATIONSHIPS ACTUALLY START
Furthermore, I have also realized that most successful relationships in real life start either as friends or friends of friends.
Think about it, of all the happy couples you know who have successfully found their soul mates; most of them would have already known each other as friends back in school, in college, at work or at an event/friend party/gathering in the past before their paths crossed again or before they eventually discover how amazing they truly are and start hitting it off right?
Either that, or they would have met at a mutual friend’s party, event or in some way been introduced by a mutual friend.
MEETING THROUGH MUTUAL FRIENDS
Guess what, according to a study by scientists at the University of Rochester, meeting through mutual friends still tops the list as the most popular way to meet a romantic partner, as reflected by what actually happens in our everyday lives.
Be it bumping into your friend’s friend when you’re out for dinner with them and getting introduced, meeting at your friend’s birthday party (note that friend who invited you two is your mutual friend) or meeting at a business event or random outing, it is still very likely that you were introduced by a mutual friend in some way or another.
The fact that you’re both being invited to the same event or same outing (e.g paintball or lasertag) by a mutual friend is already in some way an introduction by a trusted source, in this case your mutual friend or friends.
TRUST, SECURITY & COMFORT
There is just this level of trust, security and corroboration that makes it easier for people to open up to each other and begin a relationship if they somehow met through a mutual friend or have crossed paths sometime ago in their lives. That is also why it is the most natural and comfortable way for people to meet their romantic partners and is exactly what has been happening for the majority of us for the longest time.
But of course, there are also those rare few who met as totally random strangers at an airport, a random backpacking trip, or a result of chatting each other up at a bar or a café and ended up being the right ones for each other.
But then again, if everyone was comfortable enough with doing that, why do we still need something like Tinder?
Those of us who are comfortable enough to do that would probably find it easier and more efficient to walk up to someone we like at a bar or a café and just say hi, rather than swiping through profiles and waiting for a match. With the former, at least you’ll get a response and a chance to make an impression.
The only benefit of using something like Tinder is so that you can avoid outright rejections, but most people who are comfortable enough to approach a totally random stranger would also tend be confident enough to handle such rejections.
MORE TO IT THAN MEETS THE EYE
I also believe that there is definitely much more to meeting through mutual friends that made it the most common, natural and successful way to meet a romantic partner all these while.
I suspect that it has probably got something to do with a combination of a few factors such as the similarities people in the same social circles or extended social circles have with each other (cuz birds of a feather flock together), knowing enough information about each other to start off as a result of the warm introduction, having a convenient platform of mutual friends to start building a friendship from, and the level of added trust people have for someone from their extended network as opposed to a complete stranger, among others, that made it the most natural way of meeting a romantic partner.
WHY IT’S HARD TO FIND A TRUE LIFE PARTNER ON EXISTING PLATFORMS
It is also a lack of these factors in the online dating platforms out there today that I suspect contributed to study results such as:
“married couples who met online are 3 times more likely to divorce than those who met face to face”
according to a study by the Michigan State University as reported by The Telegraph, and the negative side effects of online dating such as the “shoppers mentality” that psychologists have raised concerns about, and how it is likely that:
“You’ll find dates online, but they likely won’t be the type you will grow old with”
despite the rapidly rising popularity of online dating.
SO WHAT’S THE SOLUTION?
I believe that the solution lies in strategically combining the ease of connectivity and reach that an online platform could provide us with and carefully merge it into the age old and natural way we have been meeting our romantic partners through friend introductions and natural human interactions.
LEVERAGE ON TOOLS TO BETTER FACILITATE NATURAL ROMANTIC INTERACTIONS
I believe that we should use technology to build tools that would help better facilitate natural human behavior just like how facebook built tools around our natural human interactions to help us better connect with friends.
To me, dating, finding the right life partners, and building successful romantic relationships is the natural next frontier.
BUILD THEM AROUND A SET OF RELATIONSHIP TRUTHS
In addition, the tools should also be built around a set of relationship principles to make sure that relationships are built in a healthy way that is most likely to result in a long lasting and loving relationship instead of casual flings (there are already enough platforms out there that do a very good job for casual flings).
WE COULD HAPPEN’S PLAN
That is precisely why We Could Happen is essentially a relationship guide with a set of tools that are specially built upon a set of relationship principles and around natural human interactions to help better facilitate romantic interactions between people and solve the challenges people face in finding their right romantic partners and building successful relationships.
We have a set of tools that we believe would be able to:
- Help people discover potential candidates from their existing and extended friend’s network
- Get warm introductions with the help of mutual friends
- Make it easier to confess feelings & discover mutual interest
- Turn down someone politely without hurting them
- Get reliable relationship advice & consultation anonymously
- Help spice up, maintain and build romantic relationships
- Provide a reliable go-to platform that would help people navigate through any relationship problem
Right now, we are still prototyping and perfecting these tools, and we will start with a friend discovery and introduction app that we plan to launch soon.
(Do sign up here if you would like to receive updates or participate in providing feedback during our prototyping process)
STARTING SIMPLE & THE PATH WE NEED TO TAKE
Some of you might think that we are trying to achieve too much, or that we have too many features and are too cluttered. As a start, I agree with you; that is why we are going to start with a simple friend discovery & introduction app.
But I believe that the number of features or tools needed to solve a problem would depend on the type of problem that you are solving. If it is to organize the world’s information and make it easily accessible like Google, then it is not about features, but about continually optimizing and engineering the algorithm to do so.
SOLVING A PROBLEM THAT INVOLVES COMPLICATED HUMAN INTERACTIONS
But if the problem you are trying to solve involves complicated human interaction and behaviour, like facebook in trying to connect people, then it requires a unique combination of different optimized tools to facilitate such interactions, such as photo sharing, tagging, likes, comments, status updates, news feed and so on.
But of course, you should always start simple, just as facebook did, and continually optimize each tool/feature, gradually roll out and test new ones and scrap those that don’t work (superpoke, poke etc) until you reach a unique optimized set of tools and features that thoroughly, and I mean thoroughly solves the problem.
If you ask me, We Could Happen is trying to solve a problem that involves complicated human interactions just like facebook did, and hence would need to embark on a similar path.
THE LONG JOURNEY AHEAD
It is going to be a long and hard process, but I think that it is a problem worth solving, because of the countless hurt, heartbreaks, unhappy families and bad relationships we can help avoid and the amount of loving relationships and families we could help catalyze and build.
I NEED YOUR HELP
I can’t do it alone, so if you believe that it is a problem worth solving too, I hope that you’ll help support me in any way you can, by providing your valuable feedback, sharing the word out whenever we are prototyping or launching a tool, joining the team and contributing your expertise in programming, marketing, content writing or investing in We Could Happen.
Let’s help reduce heartbreaks and catalyze more lasting and loving relationships together.
” Let’s help reduce heartbreaks & catalyze more lasting & loving relationships together!”