Author: Kyrsta Anderson
Wondering about the signs of a rebound relationship?
It can be a daunting moment when you have to wonder whether you’re in a rebound relationship or not. Most of us don’t want to be considered the rebound girl or rebound guy.
We want to know that our relationship is authentic and real. So let’s get a clear definition first.
A rebound relationship is when a person that has recently gotten out of a long term relationship quickly enters a new one, usually without being completely over their ex.
Rebound relationships sure do get a bad rep, and for good reason.
Usually rebound relationships aren’t made to last, as the rebounder hasn’t fully healed from their past relationship and is not fully invested in the new relationship.
If your new partner recently ended a long term relationship, you may be wondering if it’s the real deal or if you’re just the rebound.
So here are the fourteen definitive signs of a rebound relationship to help you decide if you’re in one, and one that is not made to last.
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Since a recent breakup is part of the inherent definition, this is the first of the signs of a rebound relationship.
But how recent does the breakup have to be?
It usually takes people about three to four months to be ready to start dating again, but it does really vary. (Here are 5 signs you’re ready to start dating again after a breakup).
If they just got out of a relationship within a month or two and the relationship lasted years, this is a possible red flag that they could be on the rebound.
It’s never a good sign when your significant other repeatedly brings up their exes, but even more so when they literally just broke up with them.
This is one of the big signs you’re a rebound.
It is not your job to lick their wounds and be the bearer of their heartbreak, even if it may feel good that they’re trusting you with their feelings.
If you know that they just got out of a serious relationship and they just won’t stop bringing them up…
..it’s clear that they haven’t moved on.
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On the other hand, what if they outright refuse to talk about their ex?
You’re starting to like this person, but you know they just got out of a relationship and you want to know more about it.
But they completely avoid talking about it.
This is a total red flag! If they had moved on from their ex they would be able to talk about it in a mature manner.
This refusal is a tell-tale sign that they haven’t come to terms with the break up and have lingering resentment towards their ex.
Full speed ahead!
While this can feel like the fairytale love story we all dream about, there’s a good chance it’s just a rebound.
As a little clue, it’s interesting to note that sex therapist Vanessa Marin states that people recently out of long term relationships “‘aren’t in the habit of acting casually’”.
They’re used to treating someone like a partner, not someone they’re still getting to know. So this could be the telltale sign that they’re not up for taking it slow, and instead want to “replace” what they had, in a way.
Which in this case happens to be you.
If you just have this feeling that they picked the first person who gave them the slightest attention after their breakup, your gut is trying to tell you something.
Or if you had a past with this person before their relationship, there could be a chance they looked to their old roster for an easy pick.
The Feminine Woman calls this the act of “picking a low hanging fruit”. And this is actually the first of the typical rebound relationship stages.
While it’s normal to show off a new relationship to the world, it’s only normal once the connection has been established.
It feels like your partner is advertising your relationship too soon, when you don’t really know each other.
This is a big sign that you’re with a partner who is on the rebound.
While there’s many other possible reasons for having tons of sex, rebounders tend to use sex as a way to distract themselves and avoid going deeper into the new relationship.
If the relationship feels very casual and your main activity together is.. well, sex.
Take it as a sign that they aren’t that serious about the relationship.
For the ladies, it’s important to figure out early whether he’s serious about you or not.
You’re a month or two in, and the relationship seems to be moving at a rapid pace.
They’re calling you The One, you guys are basically living together, I love you’s have already been exchanged.
But if you take a moment to look underneath it all, you may realize that you’ve skipped a lot of the basics - like actually getting to know each other first.
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(Why is this important? Because men and women perceive value very differently and you don’t want to be making mistakes that would cause quality men to dismiss, abandon or alienate you.)
…And you can’t keep up.
One day it may feel like they’re totally obsessed with you and invested in the relationship.
The next day they couldn’t be more distant and seem less interested.
If your partner is up and down like this after a serious relationship, it could be for several reasons, but in the case of a rebound relationship, it's often because they don’t know what they really want.
Emotional unavailability can look like:
Lack of emotional vulnerability is a warning sign in any relationship, but it’s especially important if they’re fresh off a breakup.
This one is an important component that should be talked about if you think you may be a rebound.
If the relationship was dying for a while, they probably had more time to mourn the relationship and come to terms with it.
On the other hand, if they got dumped out of the blue by someone they thought was the love of their life… that’s a different story.
It’s one thing for your significant other to constantly bring up their ex.
It’s a whole other story if they're constantly comparing you and their ex.
If you find that you’re experiencing this, then you may be in one of the most painful but typical stages of a rebound relationship, often called “the comparison stage”.
This can sound like “wow, I love that you don’t do ____, my ex used to do it all the time” or “well my ex used to do ___, why can’t you?”.
Every action you make being measured or compared to their exes can make you feel AWFUL.
If it feels like your partner is keeping tabs on everything you do and making these comparisons, it’s time to slow things down or even get out.
You don’t want to end up being the rebound, or if you’re a woman, you don’t want to be in what The Feminine Woman calls “the one of many” basket.
The one of many basket is the basket that men put multiple women in - and they invest minimally in these women, even if you’re in a rebound “relationship”.
On the other hand, if you’re a woman, you want to be in the other of the two ONLY categories that men place women in: the ‘one and only’ basket.
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Did anyone say commitment issues?
If your partner won’t commit to any plans that aren’t in the near future, this is a sign they aren’t that serious about the relationship.
Whether it be a few weeks or a few months, reluctance towards future plans is something to take note of.
Anything that feels like they’re trying to keep it casual could be signs of a rebound relationship.
Usually serious relationships follow a natural course that includes reaching certain milestones, like:
Meeting family and friends.
Starting to post about each other on social media.
Going on your first trip together.
If it’s been awhile and you feel like these milestones haven’t been met when they should have been, it could be because they aren't that serious about the relationship.
Not only is this rebounder only making short term plans, they’re also only seeing you as a short term option. (Ladies: remember the category of “one of many” that men place women in? Yeah, this could be that category).
Rebound relationships are usually very short lived.
Most rebound relationships last from a few months up to a year, with the average lasting around 5 months.
Usually, the rebound relationship starts to dissipate after the honeymoon phase.
In normal relationships, the honeymoon phase can last anywhere from two months up to two years.
In a rebound relationship, the honeymoon phase lasts around two to three months.
The answer to this question is both yes and no.
As mentioned previously in the fourteen signs of a rebound relationship, it is very common to feel like the relationship is rushed and moving really fast.
This is because the partner that just got out of a previous long term relationship often jumps to grandiosity and may be calling you “the one” right off the bat.
This, of course, is a byproduct of the lack of healing this person has done surrounding their past relationship.
Sometimes, however, the rebound relationship can feel stagnated.
This is when the rebounder is keeping things casual, is emotionally unavailable, and won’t make any future plans.
While rebound relationships definitely have their downsides, they can be really helpful in moving on from an ex, and there’s research to prove it.
Research gathered by an empirical investigation into rebound relationships shows that people who dive head first into a new relationship can:
Move on more quickly.
Feel more confident in themselves post breakup.
Have higher self-esteem and greater well-being.
Have more respect for a new partner.
Maintain feelings of safety in relationships and comfort of intimacy.
For those who just broke up with their ex and are trying to avoid going for a rebound, here are some ways you can avoid rebound relationships:
It’s clear that the future of a rebound relationship doesn’t sound all that promising.
I mean, the relationship is literally a way for someone to get over their ex, and that normally doesn’t make for a meaningful connection with someone new.
But can it lead to love?
The truth is, it can!
It is rare, but sometimes rebound relationships do work out.
You may find that your “rebound” not only helps you move on from your ex, but also helps with your healing and gets you to open up emotionally.
A rebound relationship can work out if:
To increase the chances of falling in love and having a deeply committed relationship, you need to build real emotional attraction and emotional connection.
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Kyrsta is a graduate from Chapman University, where she majored in Business Marketing. She resides in Los Angeles with her boyfriend. In addition to blog writing, she is currently working as an agency signed model and a nanny. Her passions are fashion, health and fitness (especially yoga) writing, reading, and spending time in nature.
Author For National Council for Research on Women
Author and Editor For National Council for Research on Women. Founder of The popular women's dating and relationship website, The Feminine Woman.
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