The million dollar question is; Are rebound relationships something to strive for or something to shun away from, and do they create emotional destruction or a healthy distraction?
Have you ever broken up with someone and dived right into a new relationship?
Do you tend to overlap partners, finding it difficult to leave someone unless you already have someone else lined up to distract you from the breakup?
Or perhaps you’ve never done either of the above, but you tend to take your time to get over an ex, thus making you shy away from new interactions until you’ve completely recovered?
What’s a Rebound?
First off, let’s define what a rebound is. A rebound is a dalliance you embark on even before you’ve completely gotten over your previous relationship. It’s a distraction that lets you to focus your energy on something new instead of thinking, learning and processing the heartache and pain of your last relationship. Others may see it as using another person to help you get over your breakup. But it may also be seen as your genuine attempt to connect with another person after you’ve had your heart shattered by your last flame.
A new romantic affair doesn’t automatically fall into the “bad relationship behaviour” category, but it still helps to be cautious. You never know if you might be hurting your new love interest (or yourself) by jumping right into a new relationship before you’re ready. But then again, others may feel that it’s the crucial step to finally breaking free of your ex’s hold on your heart. Not something I would advocate, yet’s this topic is not so cut and dry. Every situation is different.
Now, you may be wondering…
“Why do people still bother with rebounds when they can find other ways of dealing with a recent breakup?”
For those who have never considered having a rebound relationship, “Is there anything I can get from having one?”
And for those who genuinely find rebound connections helpful, “Why do rebound relationships have such a bad reputation?”
The Pros and Cons of Rebound Relationships
Skip the rebound phase because…
- You need to deal with your sadness first. It’s tempting to skip the moping and jump right onto the dating scene… but that might mean the issues you’ve chosen to sweep under the rug may haunt you later on. If you don’t deal with your pain, you risk bringing it into your future relationships.
- You may end up dating someone just to prove something. You can date the smartest, richest, hottest and sweetest guy on the planet just to show your ex that you can do better. This kind of behaviour is ego driven and has nothing to do with healing and your heart. Power-playing is not going to allow you to recover. Wouldn’t that just be a huge waste of your time?
- You might hurt the person you’re rebounding with. A rebound relationship is often a quick fix to help you heal. But when the guy you’re currently dating finds out that he’s just a quick fix, he might end up being crushed! You have to be clear and honest about your feelings to avoid hurting someone on your quest to get over your last relationship.
- Sometimes it’s seems like the best option. Some women will go on a binge eating spree, a drinking spree or a retail therapy spree after a bad breakup. However, when your attention is focused on someone who seems to care about you, you resist the urge to go on a spiral of other unhealthy post-breakup activities.
Is a rebound ever a healthy thing to do…
- Hooking up with someone casual could be perfect for you. BUT make sure that the person is aware that you’re not up for anything serious. Of course, you may still be running away from your feelings and from doing the work to grow and heal. This is the time to be honest with yourself and also with your new partner.
- You’re open to meeting new people. Saying yes to a date with someone new could be a progressive step for you towards getting back on your feet in terms of relationships. It depends on the break up. Some relationships are over long before D-day! Sometimes the pain, hurt and recovery takes place largely prior to the relationship breaking up. Allowing yourself to explore and find out what’s out there after you’ve been out of the market for so long could be perfect for you.
- Not all rebounds are rebounds. A rebound relationship can turn into true love. Who knows, maybe that cute officemate who asked you out has actually been in love with you from afar! That guy you’ve been bumping into at the coffee shop might have been waiting for the perfect time to ask you to dinner! You never know what the universe is devising for you, and sometimes you just need to grab on to that opportunity.
So what do YOU do after a break up…
Do you take some time to heal solo or do you rebound for some attention and affection? I suggest that you give yourself the love, attention and affection you desire on a deeper level FIRST, then think about dating someone new…
Of course, it’s up to you! It’s your life, I’m simply here as a healthy love advocate so please make some sweet lovin’ decisions that support the all of you, the big picture (not fear and insecurity).
What’s your take on the precarious rebound territory? Is it a go or a no? Share your stories and opinions about rebound relationships in the comments below.