My girlfriend of three years suddenly ended our relationship last weekend. I asked a girl out this week and she declined saying that she didn’t want to be my rebound relationship. What is a rebound relationship?
The post-breakup danger zone is the rebound relationship. If you start dating too soon, your chances of entering this danger zone increase. But so many people are drawn quickly into a relationship after a breakup. Why?
A rebound relationship is often a distraction to keep you from experiencing the emotional pain of a recent breakup. You may simply want to avoid any sadness, guilt, and anger you are feeling, or anxiety about being alone. Or it may be a misguided attempt to move on quickly with your life. In time, you see it as a little desperate, after jumping into a bad relationship that you would never have chosen if you weren’t feeling reckless.
Here are some clues that you may be in a rebound relationship:
- Breakup one week and dating the next? That speaks of urgency – probably borne of a natural desire to simply get it right next time around. However, that urgency may cause you to rush in the wrong direction.
- Dating an exact clone of your ex? Are you trying to get back a relationship that didn’t work? Ask yourself, “Why?”
- Dating the polar opposite of your ex? You may have sought out this opposite, not for specific qualities you like about him or her, but simply because he or she is not your ex. Perhaps you expect a partner to make up for the pain you experienced in your previous relationship. Maybe you are looking for someone to save you from your heartache.
- Dating just anyone who comes along? If you are pretty sure you just took the first person who came along, it may be that you are trying to fill a void with intimacy and security, even if it is a poor match.
- Taking your new date to places you and your ex use to go? You may be using this person to fill a space in your life so that you can relive the past. Is that wise?
- Feeling indecisive about relationship commitment? That makes sense. You are likely still adjusting to a single life by keeping your options open because you settled the last time. Maybe you started dating too soon.
- Dating to distract yourself? Finding distractions from the pain of a broken heart or simple loneliness can be helpful in getting you through the rough patch, but if you are dating someone to do it, think twice. You may be simply using someone. When that person has served the purpose, you will move on, leaving him or her to pick up the pieces.
There is no formula I can offer to calculate the perfect amount of time between relationships. Everyone adjusts differently. But the magic word is time – give yourself plenty of it. Use it to evaluate your previous relationship, and learn from it, so you won’t repeat the mistakes of your past. Use it to know you are okay, so that you have something genuine to offer the lucky person who gets to date you when you’re ready.
Most importantly, use that time to get to know the new you. Figure out what you want and need in your life and your relationships. You will come out on the other side stronger, more confident and ready to open your precious heart to someone new.
The rebound trap is such an easy one to fall into after a breakup, consider seeking the help of a dating/relationship coach who can guide you to the right relationship for you. Having that support as you navigate this emotional time of life can be hugely reassuring. And believe me, your perfect match will be there when you are truly ready.
As always, I’m available to help you find your true love and build a relationship that lasts. Let’s get started! Schedule your complimentary coaching session with me today for more help and ideas where to find romance. I am always here to help.