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All About Rebound Relationships

by Melissa Bell
5 minutes read

A rebound relationship is a common way for someone who is freshly single to cope with a breakup, and it has an infamous reputation of not working out. Let’s look at rebound relationships, signs of one, and whether or not they can work out.

What is a Rebound?

A  rebound is when someone gets into a relationship shortly after a long-term commitment, such as a marriage. Rebounds often have a negative connotation, because most people in them tend to lack any emotional connection to the person they are dating.

There are many reasons for this. One reason is that they are dating the person simply in an attempt to fill in a void left behind in the previous relationship. Quite often, the person may choose to date someone who looks or acts like their ex, and they may soon leave the relationship when they realize that the rebound isn’t their ex. Rebound relationships tend to be harmful towards the person on the receiving end, since they may believe they aren’t a rebound.

couple rebound hand

Signs You Are in a Rebound

Not all relationships that begin shortly after the end of a previous one are rebounds, but that is the most common sign. Now, what constitutes as “shortly” is a little subjective. Most people will say that a relationship that begins a week after a major breakup is too soon and a little suspect, but what about a month? Six months? A year?

It depends on the person’s mental state. Some people can recover from a breakup quickly, while for others, it can take a very long time.

Other ways to tell you’re in one include:

  • You resemble the ex in appearance, personality, or other aspects.
  • On the other hand, if you’re the complete opposite of the ex, this could also be a sign of a rebound.
  • The person you’re dating won’t stop talking about their ex. Alternatively, they may refuse to bring them up at all.
  • Things start to move fast. The person soon wants to move in with you, and marriage is on their tongue. Usually, this is because the person wants a return to normalcy.
  • Despite all this, the person is quite emotionally unavailable and doesn’t seem to care about you.

Why Do They Happen?

They happen because the person has been in a relationship for a long time, and it’s difficult to adjust to life without their ex.

This is a case where people can vary. Some people, when they end a relationship, may celebrate the single life and they don’t want a commitment for a long time. This can happen when the relationship was toxic for quite a while.

However, if the person misses their spouse, they may feel like they need that love again. They cannot take some time alone to heal or to find another way to cope, and they think that getting into a rebound relationship is a quick and easy fix.

Other times, it may be due to financial reasons. If a person was not the breadwinner in the relationship, they might seek another relationship ASAP to get some of that financial stability back. It can be tough to adjust to your income being cut in half, sometimes more. Even if someone has the option to move back to their parents, they may not do that out of shame.

Is it Possible For a Rebound to Work?

With rebounds, the question you may have is do they work? The answer is usually a no, and for reasons we have already discussed. Rebounds are often used as a crutch during a terrible breakup, usually with a person who has no emotional attachment to you.

With that said, is there any hope for the rebound? Can a relationship begin as a rebound, but blossom into something more?

Anything is possible, including a rebound. Yes, it’s possible to be healthy during a rebound. Here are some ways to do it.

  • Date casually. A casual date with someone can boost your confidence and give you something to do, but if both of you are swearing by the date’s casual nature, there is less of a chance that there will be too much commitment. If things get serious organically, then rock on. The most toxic aspect of rebound relationships is when you rush it.
  • Date someone who is an upgrade. You like their personality, looks, or something else about them better than the ex. Don’t date someone on the same level, or worse than your ex.

And that’s pretty much it. There’s a small window for a healthy rebound relationship, but there is one. Be mindful, or try to do other things to recover from a relationship that was toxic for you.

Other Ways to Cope

When you’ve broken up with someone, you’re usually in a crisis. Because of this, you can make some bad decisions, such as getting into a relationship you aren’t ready for. Here are some other ways to cope with relationship grief:

  • Don’t be afraid to ask for support from your family or friends. Don’t go into a relationship simply for money.
  • Try getting into some new hobbies. If there was something you wanted to do, but couldn’t due to your relationship, then now is the time to do so.
  • Practice mindfulness and meditation, two techniques that can stop you from dwelling on the past.
  • Eat right, exercise, and drink sparingly. When you are in relationship grief, it is possible to make unhealthy choices, which can make your suffering a whole lot worse. By eating right, exercising, and drinking on occasion or not at all, you’re decreasing your chances of depression.
  • Finally, don’t be afraid to talk to a therapist, especially if it’s been a while and you’re still not over your ex. A local therapist, especially one who deals in relationships, can help you. For those who cannot visit a therapist in-person, online therapy platforms like ReGain can help.

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