26 Jun 2017

Hearts Don’t Bounce, or Rebounding After a Breakup

Jumping into a new relationship too quickly

26 Jun 2017

Jumping into a new relationship too quickly after a breakup is known as “rebounding”.

It’s a fairly big word that describes an emotional quagmire in which the grieving party (or parties) find themselves when what was once pledged as “forever” turns out to be closer to 2.6 years, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

It’s a time for sorrow. A time for regret. In some ways, it’s like mourning the death of an old friend, and no one can tell you how long you should suffer, how sad you should feel, or how quickly you ought to “just get over it and move on”.

In this time – best simply called “after” (after the love, after the dreams and plans, after a part of life ends) – you may have more than one rebound. You may also buy a Porsche, dye your hair purple, find relief in an ashram, or take up bungee jumping. It may all seem like avoidance strategy – who even wants to feel emotional pain? – but in fact you are growing up, and here’s how you can tell.

Seeing your former significant other (SO) with a new partner doesn’t kill you, because you now realize that, just because he/she wasn’t happy with you doesn’t mean they can’t be happy with anyone else. But you might want to block your Facebook page.

When rebounding lines you up with someone who thinks they were put on earth to rescue you. Don’t go there: the only person who can rescue you from impossible expectations and fantastical presumptions is you.

The truth about most rebound relationships is that they fail, and for a very obvious reason. You got into the relationship to distract yourself from your pain. But when the glow fades and the grownup games end, you’re pretty much back to square one and asking yourself the ultimate question. If you could not tolerate a certain behavior in your ex, how are you going to put up with it from your rebound?

Finally, beware the drama queens of either sex, who simply need another pair of ears to listen to their endless tale of sorrow and woe. These people really can’t stand life without crises. They have to be the center of attention, and when they aren’t they pout and take revenge in ways that suggest arrested development.

In some ways, these needy people come across as emotional refugees. In others, they skirt the edges of borderline personality disorder, or BPD. This is a serious form of mental illness characterized by instability – in moods, self-image, behavior, and relationships.

Couples Counseling Boulder, by Therapist Christy Weller, Psy.D.  Also specializing in Psychotherapy and Psychological Assessment Services.

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