Why is it that rebound relationships are obvious to everyone except for the two people involved? That's easy: because rebounds are thrilling and passionate, and admitting what they are—toxic—puts an end to all the fun. Most rebounds crash and burn eventually, however, because building a new relationship upon a foundation of emotional baggage rarely ends well.
Make note of these telltale signs of a vulnerable rebound relationship and potentially save yourself some heartache, whether you're the rebounder or the reboundee.
Little time passed between the old relationship and the new one.
There's no hard and fast rule as far as how much time should elapse, but there should be a little bit of breathing room between one relationship and the next. Think about it: How can a person enter a new relationship with a clean slate if they don't take the opportunity for introspection? Unless sufficient time has passed to allow the person to grieve, reflect, and reclaim their identity and independence, they're not ready for a new relationship, plain and simple.
The relationship gets too intense too quickly.
Getting lost in the whirlwind of a new romance is one of the best parts of every relationship, but for rebounds, it comes with an added bonus: It's a welcome distraction from feeling lonely, heartbroken, and dejected. People who are fresh off a breakup might go full throttle into a new relationship because it's easier than confronting the hard truths left behind from the failed relationship. And if the person isn't accustomed to flying solo, then marathon snuggle sessions with their new love interest will be that much more appealing.
The ex is a frequent topic of conversation.
If the ex's name always seems to make its way into the conversation, whether through an off-hand comment or a dramatic retelling of the breakup, that could be a sign of some unfinished business. Similarly, if the mere mention of the ex can spur a heated rant or a sniveling sob session, alarm bells should be ringing. Allowing issues with the old relationship to infect the new one—and casting the new partner into the unwilling role of armchair therapist—isn't fair for anyone.
The relationship is one-sided.
In a rebound, the relationship is fueled by the rebounder's needs and wants, whether emotional, physical, or both. There's very little give and take, which shouldn't come as a surprise given that the genesis of the relationship was the rebounder's need for emotional support during a period of vulnerability. Once the rebounder realizes he or she has outgrown his or her need for the rebound relationship, the reboundee is left with emotional baggage of his or her own to contend with. Talk about a vicious cycle.
The new relationship is all over social media.
Errands, date nights, weekend getaways... No matter the occasion, there has to be photo documentation for social media, perhaps accompanied by romantic declarations that aren't quite proportionate to the length of the relationship. In that case, it could be that the rebounder is flaunting his or her new paramour as a way to make the ex jealous.
Your gut tells you something is amiss.
Maybe you feel like it's all too much, too soon. Or perhaps you have an inkling that you're not getting the whole truth. Trust your instincts. Speak up and get out before someone gets hurt.