How Did You Know You’d Found “The One”?

I remember the moment I knew Drew was it. (I’ve told this story before so bear with me if you’re an old-time reader and remember it.) We’d been (long-distance) dating for about six months and I’d just spent a few days visiting him in NYC (I still lived in Chicago at the time). I had decided that the long-distance thing was too much for me and I was scared, and so I told him it was over as I left for the airport. I was heartbroken. All the way on the bus ride to LaGuardia, I worried that I had made a mistake. At the airport, I met my friend at the gate; he’d just spent the weekend in NYC, too, and we were booked on the same flight back to Chicago. I told him what had happened and how sad I was.

We were so distracted by the conversation that we didn’t notice that our flight had boarded and left the gate before it was too late. There were no other flights back to Chicago that evening, so we both had to spend one more night in the city and catch the first flight out in the morning. I knew then, when I was flooded with relief, that Drew was it. I couldn’t wait to get back to Manhattan and see him and tell him that I’d made a mistake. The long-distance thing still scared me; I was scared about a lot of stuff. But as long as we were in it together, I knew I’d be ok. And I was, and we were. And that was the moment I knew for sure.

How about you? How did you know you’d found the one?


  1. RedRoverRedRover says:

    Is it bad that I can’t remember? 🙂 When I first met him, I did remark to my best friend that I thought he could be the one. That’s the first time I’d ever actually thought that. But beyond that I don’t think there was any “moment”. It just kind of happened slowly over time. I guess maybe when he proposed that was the kicker, lol. 🙂

  2. Avatar photo Addie Pray says:

    I love reading Wendy-Drew stories, even if I’ve heard them before. I haven’t found “The One” yet, but I can tell you about the many “This Guy Isn’t The One” moments I’ve had. Another time. Fill this comment section with love stories, guys!

    1. Avatar photo Moneypenny says:

      Ooooh, yes, can we have a “This Guy Isn’t the One” column too?

    2. Avatar photo Guy Friday says:

      Don’t worry, AP. I’ll always be “The One You Say ‘Meh, Why Not?’ To” if you need it 🙂

  3. Funnily, it came from when we had our first fight. I was mad at him for doing something I didn’t want him to do, and while I hesitate to use this word, he handled me perfectly. It was exactly what was needed for me to not ramp the whole thing up, and when I’d cooled down we had a grown-up discussion. Sometimes it’s about how the person reacts to you when things get ugly or stressful and you’re not your Best Self at all. That’s how you know they really have plugged into your wavelength.

  4. I first met my husband when I was volunteering at my university, and he had transferred. I was helping out with the new student orientation. He walked in the room and I thought he was so cute, so I made a beeline over to talk to him and ‘welcome him to the university’. He helped with a few things there and I remember (atypically) thinking to myself, ‘I hope the man I eventually marry has those qualities.’
    We were acquaintances for about a year after that, then started talking more and dated. Within the first few months of dating we discussed intentions and were both on the same page–neither of us wanted to date casually, we wanted to be exclusive and both wanted to date with the potential of getting married (if things worked out). I had high standards for whom I dated exclusively, and looked for someone with chemistry but also good character, etc. So pretty early on, I knew he could potentially be The One.
    I knew for sure after we had gone through our second round of long distance over 2 summer breaks. Long distance and being apart was really difficult. When he came back, I actually broke up with him for about 5 minutes because of some circumstances that would put us in long distance again in a few months. But as soon as I said the words, I seriously regretted it and thought about not having him in my life and I just didn’t want any part of that future. I knew then that he was it for me.

  5. girltuesday says:

    No idea if I can pinpoint a time, but I can tell ya that whenever I think of life without this dude, I get a pit in my stomach.

  6. dinoceros says:

    I feel like a child who asks for the same bedtime story over and over, because it never gets old hearing this story. 🙂

    1. Ah yes, I always read with anticipation, even though I know how it turns out. Wendy has such a nice way with words that it always makes me go “Aww”.

  7. Northern Star says:

    I think I knew my fiancé was the one when I brought up an issue that had been bothering me, and he took care of it, period. It wasn’t easy for him (for various reasons), but there was no screwing around or hoping the problem would magically resolve itself. I realized that I could trust him completely—with everything—more than anyone in my entire life. Done and done. 🙂

  8. Avatar photo Crochet.Ninja says:

    i dont know if there was just one moment. everything was just so easy with him. even the really hard stuff. we never had an awkward stage, it was like we were just perfectly matched and probably would have immediately moved in together if the situation was different. we’ve felt married from the first few weeks of dating, to the point that the wedding was nice, but it was just a nice party – we were already married in our minds.

    1. That’s how I felt too, it was all easy and we just fit into each other’s lives like we’d always been there. We didn’t officially move in immediately but we spent every night together from the start and it was never weird.

      1. Juliecatharine says:

        Same, we were spending just about every night together within a week or two of our first date. He pretty much went home to check his mail. It was just so dang comfortable from the beginning.

    2. Avatar photo Stonegypsy says:

      It’s a little weird but this is how I’m feeling with the guy I started seeing a couple months ago. Not awkward for even a minute, just feels like we’ve known each other forever and we’re super comfortable around each other. We’re already cautiously talking about long term stuff and it feels both crazy and completely natural.

  9. Before I went out for the first time with my now-husband (we had mutual friends and were on a committee together, so I had seen him around but never hung out alone or thought he might be interested in me), I was dating people super casually and keeping them all at arms length sort of, working my way out of a deep funk/gaining back my sense of self after a bad relationship ended the year before, and going through 6 months of spending every spare minute with my grandfather after he became sick and then sadly passed away (boy this is a real heartwarming story so far! Yikes). Over that time, I had a guy who reminds me of Kare’s FWB (which is cool to see, cuz none of my friends understood the relationship for some reason)–he was about 40-41 to my 26-27 (though we met when I was 23 for the first time), really got along well, could talk about anything, and I just found him so attractive–he had been a pro soccer player and was still in great shape. He was understanding and made me feel more like “me” again, and there was a lot of love there but it was very clear that he had no intentions of getting married or having kids, which was fine with me since I just considered it a great more-than-friends, less-than-relationship arrangement ha.
    So I went on this first date, not even being sure if it was an actual date. It was, and by 1 week later we had started finding reasons to see each other for a bit every day and he asked me to travel to wedding (that required purchasing flights) with him 3 months in the future. Without even thinking about it I said “Definitely!” I had never made a decision like that easily or lightly in my life, but it felt right to commit to that. The next day, I was in a car accident, and he was the first person I called and he rushed over, took pictures, dealt with the police officer, and followed me home and then picked up dinner for me since I was shaken up. I was like, I think this is it. I don’t know why. That week all this happened, my FWB was out of the country, and as soon as he returned a couple days later I called him and said I had to talk to him about something, and he immediately knew that I had met someone else. I just burst into tears, telling him that I realized I could see a future and a family with this person and if not I would never be ending it with him, and that really drove the point home to me that in a couple weeks of knowing this person I was truly invested in this being a long-term thing. I would not have made future plans or ended a FWB situation with someone I loved being around after a few dates with anyone else I remember meeting in the last 10 years. I’m sure timing also contributed–being ready to be exclusive after needing a lot of time to NOT do that, but I guess that instinct worked out because a year later we were engaged and we’ll be married 2 years this May!

  10. Juliecatharine says:

    I don’t know exactly when I knew but….Every time he pulls into the driveway the thought that pops into my head is ‘baby’s home!’. When I had food poisoning he held a bag for me to vomit in with zero hesitation and I didn’t care he was seeing me that way. He spoils the shit out of our dog and cats-the fact that she’s *our*dog not *my* dog now. Basically a million little things that add up to him being an incredible man who I can’t wait to marry. ?

  11. Am I weird that I don’t have a “moment”? It just…happened over time. *puts on sunglasses* It was inevitable, Mr. Anderson.

  12. I never really had one particular moment but a series of moments when I knew he was the right person for me. And I continue to have those, because being married, it’s nice to have a reminder that you did indeed choose “the one.”

  13. I feel like I probably knew before, but a specific moment certainly solidified what I already knew. I was dropping my now husband off at the airport for him to go back to Afghanistan (he was working as a contractor) and we had no idea the next time he would be home. I found my self crying my eyes out in a drive-thru car wash when I noticed the time and that his flight had officially taken off. I am not the type to cry over things, so I think that’s why I knew.

  14. Anonymousse says:

    There were so many small things that he did that made a huge impact on me. I had dated such disasters and he was just a good man. One thing I noticed right away- how many friends of his that when I met them, they’d tell me something thoughtful he had done for/to them. He helped people and mentored them. It sounds super corny, but there you go. He was a good guy.
    The big moment was before we were dating and he moved away. It was so hard. I was super depressed about it, and I knew I had to follow him, even if it meant leaving behind my friends and the town I’d lived in and loved for years. I started a job search and thankfully found one, And we started dating after I moved and …here I am.

    1. Anonymousse says:

      Ha- he was against my bad boy type, and is a bit older than me. There you go!

  15. I remember the moment I knew he was something different, the moment I knew I was in love, and when he was in love. I remember knowing when he was all in and dedicated to making it work and made us a priority, even if it meant giving up some opportunities. I remember when we needed to work things through and had a lot of tough conversations. But there was really no this is the one moment. I just kinda felt that this was different from the beginning. I did have a private freak out moment about 4 months in, and in hindsight maybe that was it, but it was mostly fear that he didn’t feel as strongly as I did.

    1. Then again, when we started dating, I was 19 and not looking for someone to spend the rest of my life with. I still can’t believe my parents were cool with 20-year-old me backpacking through Europe with a boyfriend of less than a year. Maybe they saw something I didn’t…

  16. For me, it was when I accidentally left my key ring in my now-husband’s car. I only realized it when I was about to leave for work and couldn’t find my car keys – and he was already a half hour away on his way to meet a friend. I was so worried that he’d be furious with me, as my ex would have been, for having to turn around. While I waited for him to return, I sat on the curb and cried (mostly out of guilt for being late to work and for inconveniencing him). When he drove up and saw me in tears, he just smiled sympathetically, gave me a big hug, and asked, “Baby, what’s wrong?” And it was then that I knew he was something special, because he was compassionate and understanding (and generally a pretty fantastic guy).

  17. FannyBrice says:

    We were driving somewhere with friends, he was in the front seat and I was in the back. I looked up & saw the back of his head, and it made me happy – like giddy, dizzy, butterflies happy. Right then I knew he was the one!

  18. Trixy Minx says:

    I never get tired of hearing your stories. 🙂

  19. Alas, mine is a story I’ve told too many times on this site, and it has lost its charm. Instead, I’ll tell about the first time I met her. She was a newly minted Teaching Assistant in English, and I a self-important second year grad student with a year of teaching under his belt, and we met on opposite sides of an argument about teaching composition. At first blush, we both found each other a bit too brash and self-assured (we later realized we were both covering insecurity with overconfidence). She was wearing, like, a short-sleeved cashmere sweater-dress, bright red, with red pumps. (You know, the kind she won’t wear now because they kill your feet, but man are they hot.) We went for a coffee and became friends. We were friends for a few months. Then we were more than friends. It slowly got deeper every day for 27 years. Our first kiss was at a St. Patrick’s Day party in 1989. Weirdly, another woman of our acquaintance, who was known to be a bit “open for business,” tried to join in (certainly, the closest I ever got to the fabled threesome). We gently demurred. Sometime, maybe after a few drinks, I’ll tell you all the story of why I’ll NEVER get over those cute little black sneakers.

  20. laurahope says:

    When I met his parents. Seriously. When I met them I knew he had to be much more grounded than he was letting on. (And he was).

  21. Well,this thread is fun to read! There are many reasons,hard to pinpoint one moment,but number one has to be how utterly reliable and always “having my back” he is. Plus,I literally never have to ask twice or remind him of anything!
    Maybe,after the first date when he drove home through a bad snowstorm and told me that “our magic kiss” made it worth every mile…

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