Okay, I’ve only seen Pacific Rim once (so far), and haven’t read the novelization, but have been wonderfully immersed in the fandom by tumblr. So I have this little headcanon and I don’t know how plausible it is, or if people will like it, but here it is:
Jaegar pilots have a bond that is inexplicable to all, save those who have experienced it themselves. Whether they are spouses, siblings, parent and child, or just friends, there is something so deep and powerful and incredible between them. I feel that, if their bond is particularly strong, then they have this desire to be close to one another and to touch whenever possible, because that is as close as they can get to the incredible experience of drifting.
They walk together, hold hands, wrap an arm around the other’s shoulder, give kisses (platonic or not), and are generally as tactile as they can be personally comfortable with (which, of course, is perfectly understood by their partner). I even believe that sometimes they share a bed. They don’t do this to have sex (unless they’re a romantic couple) but because the sensation of being in contact with that literal other half is something wonderful and they don’t think that’s weird at all. Not having that other person there is not exactly the end of the world, but it is distracting, unsatisfying, and lonely. It defies articulation.
They truly love one another in a way not defined by normal terms. In fact, it becomes a commonly used term in that era. To love someone like you are drift compatible.
I can imagine post-canon Mako and Raleigh moving in together and sharing their amusement when people try to guess their relationship. Their co-pilot isn’t just someone they can move away from, maybe catching up every now and then. No, they come as a single unit. Romance, I imagine, would be somewhat strange for them, because even if they don’t necessarily have romantic feelings for one another, no one will ever know them better or care more about them. If one of them found another person to be romantically attached to, then their co-pilot would always be always be sort of a affixed third wheel because that’s just how it is. You do not seperate Jaegar pilots. You just don’t.
Even Newt and Hermann feel this way after their brief time connected, because now they know evey thing about each other, and have been the other person. Every flaw and virtue and quirk, they understand and accept and love because they have experienced it for themselves.