It’s been five years since How I Met Your Mother kicked us in our feelings by presenting us with that twist in the finale. Viewers will never stop debating whether Ted should’ve remained with the memory of Tracy or if he was right to go back to Robin.
We’re here to take in points from both camps, although we do steer more toward Tracy than Robin over Ted’s perfect women. Still, that doesn’t mean there weren’t valid arguments for Ted and Robin’s coupling either, and we’ve brought you reasons why either women was the true love for Ted Mosby.
10 Tracy: Fate Wanted Her With Ted
There wouldn’t be any premise to the show if Ted and Tracy’s meeting wasn’t about fate. No matter what happened, these two were pushed toward each other by one act of nature after another. Every friendship they made, every relationship they had — it took them a step closer to meeting.
This kind of stuff was the reason why Ted claimed the greatest love story he’d heard was still second-best, feeling as if his tale with Tracy was the first because of all the pieces of the world falling right into place for them. That yellow umbrella clearly was meant to signify the idea of fate bringing two lovers together.
9 Robin: Her "Platonish" Relationship With Ted
The good thing about Robin and Ted was that they were good both as friends and in a relationship. In fact, their friendship became firmer after they’d broken up, leading in the “platonish” dynamic they established when they were friends but also had something of a romantic interest.
Season 5 was the best example of this where we saw Robin and Ted frequently discuss their problems and be supportive to one another, all the while carrying a feeling where you could picture them as a couple.
8 Tracy: She And Ted Never Broke Up
While Ted and Robin had a bunch of pratfalls and embarrassing times — as seen in a bunch of other sitcoms as well — where they weren't compatible with one another, Ted and Tracy had no such issues, remaining together until her death. Ted himself confessed that things with Robin were never easy, and on some level he wanted to have an easy relationship.
This is why Tracy was such a good match for him since she didn’t have a flighty mentality like Robin's, and she never distanced herself away from Ted. Tracy stuck by him throughout whatever times they had, with no problems being big enough to warrant a break-up.
7 Robin: She Was Responsible For Ted's Future
All of Ted’s happenings through the show were possible — even meeting Tracy — because he got together with Robin. Had Ted not dated Robin, then they never would’ve been together during the “Lucky Penny” episode, meaning Ted would’ve had to move to Chicago eventually.
Ted also learned what he wanted in life and where he had made mistakes in relationships because he got the proper context of things from Robin. This means Robin was responsible for making Ted the person he eventually became.
6 Tracy: She Gave Ted The Life He Wanted
The reason why we feel Barney was better for Robin was because the two were a closer match, the same way Ted and Tracy were because of their like-minded thinking. While Robin was horrified at the prospect of having children and giving up her job, Tracy happily had a family and still managed to keep her career.
Ted’s dream of “wife, house, kids” would never have been possible if he’d remained with Robin, and the two would’ve grown to resent one another eventually. On the other hand, Tracy gave Ted the family life he’d always wanted and ended his sadness of being alone.
5 Robin: She Motivated Ted To Follow His Dreams
Ted saw a big jump in his career as an architect in Season 2, for which Robin was squarely responsible as she gave Ted the push he needed in his confidence. He’d been working on an awful building for Hammond Druthers while secretly keeping a better design he created himself.
Robin encouraged Ted to believe in his own abilities, confirming Druthers’ idea was a disaster. With this in mind, Ted had the guts to use his design and usurp Druthers as the lead of the project, eventually getting his own building constructed in Spokane.
4 Tracy: She Liked Ted's Quirky Habits
Quite a lot of times we saw Robin be annoyed with Ted’s habits, such as him wanting to come up with nicknames or correcting everybody, and this would lead to useless arguments that highlighted how these two weren’t going to last.
Tracy didn’t feel the same way, as we saw her enjoy Ted’s quirky mannerisms and share this kind of thinking as well. This was evident when she liked to have a weird name for the cookies she baked, and laughed at Ted’s awful “shellfish” joke. Certainly, being mutually dorky would’ve made the Mosby household an easygoing and fun one.
3 Tracy: She Accepted His Declaration Of Love And Proposal Immediately
Unfortunately for Ted, Robin ruined both big moments in his life when he said “I love you” and when he “proposed.” Ted said those three words multiple times to her to largely negative results, eventually making him scared to say it to her. Robin made things even worse by assuming he was proposing to her later on and repeatedly saying no to him.
Perhaps this was the reason why Ted got so emotional when he proposed to Tracy as she enthusiastically accepted his hand in marriage while also earlier making his declaration of love a happy one by responding in kind.
2 Robin: Ted Never Forgot About Her
Call it being a crazy obsessed lover or whatever you want, but Ted was so deeply not over the idea of being with Robin that he came up with the whole “How I Met Your Mother” angle to convince his kids to let him pursue Robin yet again.
Even though the majority of the fans hated watching Ted once again run after Robin, you have to hand the guy for being resilient for about 25 years. Maybe if you look at it this way, the whole story could be about how Robin and Ted had to be in a certain emotional place to finally be together.
1 Tracy: Their First Meeting
While the finale made all the wrong kinds of mistakes, there’s no doubt the meeting between Ted and Tracy deserves full credit. Here you could tell they were meant to be the moment they saw one another. Bolstered by an amazing soundtrack, this was the perfect execution of a scene we’d been waiting for for about a decade.
All the workings of fate were tied up here, as Ted and Tracy recollected the things that had brought them together on that train platform. This kind of meet cute would never have been possible with a non-romantic like Robin, which should easily make this the greatest few minutes of Ted’s life as he got his fantasy meeting with the woman he would marry.