Is what you’re feeling real? (Picture: Getty/iStockphoto)
Jumping into a new relationship straight after the end of an old one is incredibly common.
When you’re left reeling after a breakup, it is normal to feel the need to attach all of those emotions and needs to a new person, immediately. Being in a relationship feels safe and comforting, so sometimes, we prioritise that familiarity over making sure this new person is actually right for us.
The risks and dangers of rebound relationships are well documented. You might not be over your ex. You might be using this person as an emotional crutch to get you through your heartbreak. The intensity of your feelings for this new relationship might be clouded by leftover feelings from your old one.
If you meet someone who has got out of a relationship incredibly recently, it can be judged as a ‘red flag’. Nobody wants to be the rebound, destined to be cast aside when your partner gets over their ex… or gets back with them.
But are rebound relationships always doomed? Or can love still blossom regardless of the perceived obstacles?
Rosie, 32, from London, met her now fiancée Daniel just weeks after breaking up with her ex – who she had been with for three years.
‘My friends, my sisters, even my mum was telling me that it was a rebound, that it wouldn’t work, that I needed to have some time on my own,’ Rosie tells Metro.co.uk.
‘But when it feels right, you just know. You can’t always plan out the perfect timings for these things.’
Rosie says she completely understood people’s worries, and agrees that you shouldn’t jump into something just for the sake of being in a relationship, but after four years with Daniel she knows that what they found was real.
‘So-called rebound relationships can work. We are proof of that. Although, I knew from the beginning that Daniel wasn’t a rebound. I just happened to fall in love with him when I did. If your intention in a relationship is about the person you have met, and not about your own baggage, there’s no reason it can’t work.’
Relationships and dating expert Callisto Adams Ph.D. agrees that rebound relationships can can work – but only if the underlying connections between the two parties is strong and genuine.
‘It takes emotional connection felt by both sides, work, effort, and empathy by both sides, for a rebound relationship to work,’ Callisto tells Metro.co.uk.
It’s important not to jump in too quickly if you’re feeling unsure (Picture: Getty)
‘Once an emotional connection and empathy for one another are there, it makes room for honesty and sincerity. This leads to an understanding of one another.
‘It makes both of the people involved in the relationship have a sense of safety, a sense of being heard and understood by the other partner. It starts feeling like something real, rather than something to fill a void that one or the other (or both) are avoiding to work with.’
So Syncd co-founder, Louella Andreson admits there is a ‘lower chance’ of a rebound relationship being successful, but says it is not impossible.
‘Ultimately, it comes down to your frame of mind,’ Louella tells Metro.co.uk.
‘If you are getting into a rebound relationship from a place of needing to heal and get over your ex, it’s unlikely to work out. But sometimes you meet an amazing match right after a breakup and if you are coming at it from a place of confidence, this is the kind of situation where a rebound relationship can last.’
How to make a rebound relationship work
Louella says it’s vital not to rush things when you get into a relationship soon after the end of another one.
‘It’s important to take things slow,’ says Louella.
‘If you’ve just had a breakup, you’ll need time to process your emotions. This means being open and honest. Talking to your new partner about your breakup and your feelings will help build a deeper connection and increase your chances of a rebound relationship lasting.’
Callisto agrees. She says building emotional connection takes time and effort and a compatibility and sympathy between partners.
‘It takes time to heal from the past wound, and effort to stick around and help one another go through the process of healing,’ she explains.
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How to tell if a rebound isn’t going to work
You can tell a rebound relationship isn’t going to work when things between the couple are kept surface-level. When there’s no attempt to reach out to one another, or no attempt to look deeper into each other and be there for each other.
Doing this is very difficult due to the emotionally overwhelming state of one or the other (or both) partners caused by their recent breakup.
Being emotionally overwhelmed often leads to unreasonable decisions, making it difficult to have a particular quality of thought processing.
All this put together, these are often the main reasons why rebound relationships don’t turn out to work for the partners involved in them.
Louelle says you will usually be able to tell pretty quickly if a rebound relationship isn’t going to work out.
‘If you are feeling anxious or insecure, it’s a sign that you need to spend some time by yourself before getting into another relationship,’ she says.
‘You need to play close attention to your feelings as the relationship progresses. Another sign that a rebound relationship won’t work out is if you bring issues from your past relationship to your new one. Again, this is a sign that you need some time alone to reset and introspect.’
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