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why do we need a partner in life

Love and belonging are part of Maslow's hierarchy of needs. This pyramid was created based on Abraham Maslow's view of what humans need in order to grow and finally meet "self-actualization". Once one's physiological needs such as breathing, water, food, etc. and the feeling of security and safety are met, a person needs to feel love and belonging in order to grow. I think this is much because of the drive love gives us in order to reach the next levels of esteem and then to be content with our lives.

Love comes more from a physical drive than an emotional one. The need to love in a romantic sense comes from the animal instinct that we need to procreate and keep our race alive. We also have a natural instinct to love and care for our children just like most other mammals who raise their children until they are ready and able to venture out on their own. Without the fulfillment of feeling loved or loving something else a person does not have the motivation to achieve anything.

When people are not motivated in their life the drive meet basic needs is not as strong and self-actualization cannot happen. Even non-social people need to love and belong to something before they can achieve esteem and lead happy and motivated lives.
The root cause is almost certainly procreation. Our relationship tendencies developed along with our biology. Humans tend to have one child at a time, and human children mature very slowly.

This suggests that during most of human history, it would be advantageous for a female to keep a male with her, helping to provide food and protection for herself and her children. The strategy for the male is either to play along, or to breed so quickly as to outweigh the devastating effect of a long maturation without sufficient protection. Others species, many of which breed in greater numbers, have different mating habits.

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