Rebound relationships are tempting for many reasons. Here’s how to avoid the mistake of a rebound relationship and create a clean slate with someone new.
Here’s a great book to read: Better Love Next Time: How the Relationship that Didn’t Last Can Lead You to the One that Will by J.M. Kearns. She describes how to deal with the “wall of pain” that is a broken heart, and why falling in love too often doesn’t lead to love. She shares how to choose the right partner, how to replace what you’ve lost after a breakup, and why good relationships go bad.
Rebound relationships happen when you fall in love too fast, make rash decisions, and tolerate people and behavior that you wouldn’t normally. One of the best ways to avoid the temptation of falling in love too fast is to learn as much as you can about rebound relationships. If you find yourself dwelling on your past relationship, read How to Free Yourself From Obsessive Thoughts.
How to Avoid a Rebound Relationship
“When you’re on the rebound, your new relationship isn’t about itself,” writes Kearns in Better Love Next Time. “It’s about the old one.”
Figure out what went wrong in your last relationship
To avoid falling in love on the rebound, make sure you understand why your last relationship didn’t last. Try to be honest and objective, and don’t make a hasty diagnosis. Kearns writes, “You misidentify the factors that made the last relationship sicken and die, and armed with that false vaccine, you set you to avoid the same infection in the future – and you walk right into it.” The best way to start a new relationship is to face the truth about why your last relationship fell apart.
If you aren’t over your last breakup, you need to heal before you start thinking about a new relationship. Read 5 Stages of a Breakup.
Remember that rebound relationships are often about hiding from the past
Unhealthy rebound relationships happen when you use the new guy to run away from your past relationship. “We plunge into a new relationship, not because we are paying attention to the past, but to avoid listening to it,” writes Kearns in Better Love Next Time. “We use the new relationship as a distraction.” This tip for avoiding rebound relationships is similar to the last one, but it’s not the same. This tip is about a pattern of relating to men, not about how you processed the breakup of your last relationship.
Take at least 50% ownership for the failure of your last relationship
The beauty of accepting responsibility for your last breakup is that it puts you in a position of power. You can change you, but you can’t change others. Most broken relationships are caused by both partners – it’s rarely just one person who is to blame. Instead of blaming your ex-boyfriend or ex-girlfriend for causing all the problems in the past, accept the role you played. This will help you achieve your goals by increasing your health, self-confidence, and ability to relate to others.
Also, make sure you’re really ready for a new relationship. You will find the questions in Am I Ready for a Relationship? helpful.
Deal with your desperation
We’ve all dated people we have nothing in common with or who we don’t even like – and who may not even like us. Are you dating out of fear, desperation, insecurity, hopelessness? Be honest with yourself. You can avoid the pain of rebound relationships if you admit your desperation and defeat.
Start working towards healing, finding your identity, and becoming a healthy, happy woman who can be fulfilled without a man in her life.
Let go of the past
This final tip for avoiding rebound relationships is about making sure you’ve moved on from your last relationship. Only you know if you’re over your ex-girlfriend or ex-boyfriend, and only you know if you’re emotionally healthy and ready for a new relationship. Listen to your heart. Deal with your emotional, mental, spiritual, and physical issues before you start a new relationship.
If you’re still in love with your ex, read How to Let Go of Someone You Love.
“You have to walk carefully in the beginning of love; the running across fields into your lover’s arms can only come later when you’re sure they won’t laugh if you trip.” ~ Jonathan Carroll. Are you tempted to fall into the easy trap of rebound relationships? Take a long-term perspective on your life, and go slowly.
I welcome your thoughts on these ways to avoid rebound relationships. I can’t offer advice or counseling, but it may help you to share your experience.
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May you move slowly into love – and not be affected by love on the rebound.