Rebound relationships get a bad rap, but do they really deserve all the bad press they receive?
What Is A Rebound Relationship?
Ending a long standing relationship, or suffering through a divorce, can bring up a myriad of different emotions. From self-doubt to low self-esteem, one's confidence is usually shaken to the core. Some people find that the quickest way to stem the tide of emotion is to jump into another relationship. This jump into a brand new relationship, so quick on the heels of an old one, is called a rebound relationship.
Just like most things in life, nothing is either all bad or all good. So too is it with a rebound relationship. Here are some of the good elements of this kind of relationship:
- First, having an immediate relationship takes your mind off your ex.
Instead of reminiscing about the past and wallowing in what might have been, you are actually out there enjoying life.
- You no longer feel bored and lonely.
All of a sudden your dance card is filled, and it feels great. You no longer have to sit at home waiting for something exciting to happen.
- Your self-esteem is soaring high.
You feel desirable and confident again. Somebody likes you! And being liked always feels great.
- Good self-esteem can never come from an outside source.
At one point or another, we all come to the realization that good self esteem can never be found through the eyes of another. Having someone by your side may temporarily alter the way you see yourself, but it is not a permanent solution.
Instead, take the time to really get to know yourself, your likes and dislikes. Fall in love with yourself. Once you realize that you are a truly terrific person, you'll be able to decide if a new relationship is right for you. Making conscious decisions on what is right for you is what having a healthy sense of self is all about.
- You and your partner having nothing in common.
At first blush everything seems to be going great. You smile, he smiles. She likes wine, you like wine. To quote Moulin Rouge, "Everything's going so well!" Until, that is, you ask him to take an art class with you, or ask her to try a new, spicy, exotic dish. If your request is met with disdain, the blinders come off. You begin realize that the two of you don't really have that much in common. This is the classic conundrum of the rebound relationship. The closer you peer at your partnership, the more you realize the two of you lack similar interests. Are the two of you doomed? Not necessarily, but more on this later on.
- Perhaps the greatest pitfall of the rebound relationship is that you haven't given yourself enough time to evaluate what went wrong in your previous relationship. Moreover, you might not have given yourself time to look at how you might have contributed to that relationship's downfall. By this we mean, any patterns you may have engaged in that hastened the relationships' demise.
Let's take low self-esteem, for example. Perhaps this is something you've struggled with for a long time, but because you are currently in a new relationship, you've managed to shy away from it. The point is; dealing with some of the more difficult aspects of our personality might require a space or some time alone. Constantly being in a relationship doesn't necessarily help to facilitate this process.
Do They Last?
After all of those negatives you may be asking yourself, "do rebound relationships 'ever work'?" The short answer, and this may be surprising, is yes. The key indicator in having a successful relationship lies in whether the two of you have a similar value and belief system. Basically, that translates into the two of you sharing a similar outlook on life.
For example, if both of you value honesty, hard work, and family, art classes and new foods notwithstanding, then you actually do have a lot in common. In the real world this might translate into; a strong desire to attend family functions together, a fixed determination to work towards a common goal, or a marked desire to communicate.
So, don't be dismayed if, at least on the surface, it appears that the two of you have little in common. That doesn't necessarily mean that you are doomed. Go deeper, you may find that you have more in common than you originally anticipated.
A Final Note
The truth of the matter is, any relationship, rebound or not, has the ability to flourish into a mutually satisfying partnership. If you are currently in a rebound relationship, don't fret. Instead, evaluate where you and your partner are emotionally. From there the two of you can decide if your relationship is developing the way both of you would like it to. In the meantime, put any fears you have to the side, and enjoy your relationship.