HIM: "I hate the word chemistry! I think women just use it as an excuse not to get to know more about someone..."
ME: "... Why? You don't think that's a valid reason?"
HIM: "I just think it's a cop out. Like, what does that even mean, anyway? Chemistry?" (rolls his eyes)
ME: (Thinks seriously for a moment on how to start my soliloquy...)
The conversation above is one I've had on more than one occasion, in different formats, when trying to get to know a dude. And, it could just be me but often, whenever I've been hit with that question, it seemed to come from somewhat of a defensive place - almost as if the other party is preemptively reacting to an impending rejection. And in most instances, the mere fact that they've brought it up in that way, just gives me a reason to question if there even is any chemistry between us right off the bat.
Call it a Catch 22 situation if you will. I mean, on the one hand by asking "what chemistry means (to me)", I can appreciate that the person may be trying to understand my likes or dislikes so that they can adjust their own behaviour towards me. At the same time though, the answer to that question can often be found, not by asking the question but by just actively listening, observing body language and being present.
Trying to describe chemistry to someone can be like trying to describe a nonsensical but wonderful dream you had the night before. You know you had a great dream by the way you feel when you wake up the next morning, but for the life of you - you just can't seem to fully articulate or capture the real essence of said dream...
Nevertheless, whenever I'm faced with the "define chemistry" question (despite the sometimes disingenuous tone of the request), I generally make an effort to answer. Here's what I've concluded, after thinking about it some:
Chemistry to me, is what results when various combinations of the following basic attributes between two people vibrate on similar frequencies: cerebral/intellectual, emotional, physical/sexual and non-verbal/aura. This doesn't necessarily mean that these two people think or express themselves in the same way, or that they share similar interests, or even find the same traits attractive. It means that a distinct mix of any of these attributes within one person plays comfortably with the distinct mix of these attributes in another person. Chemistry is not restricted to one particular arena such as "emotional chemistry" or "sexual chemistry". As human beings, we are such multifaceted creatures that it would be ridiculous to assume that chemistry is purely based on just one dimension of our beings.
I can tell you first-hand that I've experienced a few chemistry combos thus far in my life. I've had physical/non-verbal chemistry, where I felt just as much enjoyment from the raw energy/aura of a person as I did engaging with them physically. I've had cerebral/emotional chemistry, where I was drawn to a person's thought process, and was invested emotionally in their well-being, but physically - they were out of reach. I've had physical/cerebral chemistry where I was attracted to someone's creative mind and their physical appearance, but could not connect with them on an emotional level. I've also experienced non-verbal/cerebral chemistry that later developed into emotional/physical chemistry.
... And that's just speaking to the experiences between myself and the few guys who've caught my interest over the years! Of course, different chemistry combinations also exist between friends (of the same gender or not), between family, etc. On several ways, chemistry seeps into every relationship that we have with another person. It explains why we sometimes have different "sets" of friends, or why certain family members are easier to gel with than others, or why we're open to hanging out with only those one or two co-workers outside the confines of our 9 to 5. It's chemistry! It's about the transfer of certain kinds of energies at specific moments. Well... that, and a certain amount of shared experiences, I suppose.
My point is that limitless combinations of basic human attributes can equate to good chemistry among two people. And on the off-chance that you're fortunate enough to come across someone who clicks with you on nearly all of these human attribute levels... then, you might just want to do yourself a solid and consider lockin' it down, lol!
Whether we choose to acknowledge it or not, chemistry plays a huge part in our daily interactions with people. As much as we tend to think of it as a 'science' (complete with exact equations and Bunsen burners) - chemistry also falls into the realm of artful magic. Why? Because it can never really be replicated. Each person experiences it uniquely, and in so many different ways over the course of their lifetime. As soon as people subconsciously latch on to something within each other that the naked eye can't see... that's the quintessential sweet spot. That's when the magic happens!
Now... did I explain all of this to the dude above when he asked me what I meant by "chemistry"? Nope. Unfortunately, at that point, he had somehow already killed my vibe, and all I had for him was a half-assed: "It's just a gut feeling, I guess."
Perhaps, if I had felt some type of chemistry towards him, I would've hit him with a more classic and flirty line, like:
... It's sexier, right? Maybe next time. Maybe if I cared. Sigh.