Marry “The Four” Instead of “The One”

In Dating, Marriage by Debra Fileta

I’m really excited to bring you this guest post by my new friend, Paul Angone! I’ve appreciated his advice to the 20s crowd lately and we’re doing a guest post swap this week! Enjoy this post, and leave your thoughts! Do you believe in the concept of “The One” or not?


Why is the search for The One so hard?

Is it because God gets His kicks by sending us on impossible scavenger hunts? Or is it because The One is a magical fairy-tale creation? Like the unicorn. Beautiful, lifts you off the ground, and most importantly, isn’t real?

Yes, you will marry just one person. Unless you go Old Testament or cult style.

However, is that one person the only person?

Well . . .

I married my wife over five years ago, we now have two baby girls, and I can’t imagine having married anyone else.

But was she the only one I could’ve married? If I would’ve taken a different job after college and met my wife at a sales seminar in- stead of a college admissions conference, would I have somehow been out of God’s will? Doomed to a life married to “The Fifth” or “The Sixth” instead of The One?

I don’t think so.

I don’t think God operates like a cruise director and if we miss the boat it leaves without us—our future husband or wife on the arm of someone else, sipping a margarita while laughing about the last real estate deal they landed.

But whether there is such a thing as The One is really not that important to me. What’s important is that you make a wise decision when deciding if this is the right one for you.

The decision of who you marry can be based on something substantial, like a sequoia tree, the roots deep into the ground.

Or the decision to marry can be made like buying that Snickers bar at the cash register—you’re hungry and well, why wait?

So instead of searching for this magical creature called The One, I propose we should be on the hunt for The Four—the four different relationships that need to be intertwined within the Right One.

And the Four Will Become One

Best Friend

Marrying your best friend simply means that you can do absolutely nothing with this person and have a blast. A trip to Target to buy pants can feel like going to Disneyland—well, at least on a day that Splash Mountain is closed.

If you don’t enjoy going to the grocery store with this person to buy eggs or changing the clothes at the Laundromat, then you might not enjoy doing marriage. Because marriage is built on a million more mundane moments than magical.

I have this distinct memory when dating Naomi of being stuck in LA traffic, looking over at her and thinking, “I wouldn’t want to be stuck in traffic with anyone else.” It was this tiny mundane moment that turned magical. That’s marriage.

However, don’t try to make this best friend an exact replica of your other best friends. I made this mistake for months, wondering why Naomi didn’t relate to me the same ways as Cody or Mike did. Well, the friendship is different. Your wife might not tell jokes like your college roommate did. Your husband might not talk for hours into the night like your best friend from home. That’s all right. Like drinking wine or a cup of coffee, they both might taste delicious, but each will have an entirely different flavor.


Attraction is super important. And attraction is not based only on looks. Personality, faith, humor, drive, passion, looks—they all factor into attraction. However, one way or another, if this person doesn’t get your motor running when they turn the key, well your car might be stuck on the side of the road at the first sign of a winter storm. Just saying…

Business Partner

Your marriage is a business. Anyone that tells you different is trying to sell you something for theirs. Budgets, bills, savings, earnings, investments, plans for growth, money (or lack there of) can become acid on your threads of marriage. Just like you wouldn’t start a business with someone without talking through the realities of financial situations, budgets and goals, same for marriage. Because if he’s a spender and you’re a saver, and you don’t talk about it—then your marriage might be spent before it can be saved.

Wartime Ally

When married life begins to feel like a war—and it will, will you war against each other or will you war together? Life can be intense—lost jobs, lost loved ones, and lost hope. So when the bullets start to fly, will you hunker down in the bunker together? Or will you be the first to turn and pull the trigger? When every- thing begins to war against your marriage, will the two of you fight for each other or will you fight against?

And this is where I think having similar faiths plays a huge role. Because when the enemy troops start scaling the walls of your marriage, it’s important that you’re both running to the same place for help.

Don’t Search for the Unicorn Any Longer

Let’s stop searching for this mythical creature called The One. Instead let’s focus on finding The Four, on marrying someone who will do the nitty-gritty details of life at our side—because that’s marriage. That’s real. And that’s awesome.

This article is an excerpt from the book 101 Secrets for your Twenties by Paul Angone. Paul is a speaker, humorist, and the creator of— a leading website for those asking “what now?” Follow him on Twitter @PaulAngone.

Want to learn more about relationships, dating, and finding true love? Check out, True Love Dates: Your Indispensable Guide to Finding the Love of Your Life!