Rebound Relationships in Lesbian Dating

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Rebound relationships are important because heartbreak is important.

And rebound relationships are relationships that start while we’re still heartbroken over someone else.

 

Rebound relationships are easy to fall into.

 

When we feel rejected, it’s tempting to want to find someone else to fill the void. Because the heartbreak would hurt less if someone else was there. But jumping straight into a new relationship just to avoid feeling the pain of losing the last relationship can lead to bigger problems down the road…

 

There are four main ways rebound relationships can go wrong.

 

I’m going to go through each of them one by one…

 

The first way things could go wrong in rebound relationships…

 

The first way things could go wrong is if the rebound turns into a long, serious relationship with the wrong person.

 

Because even if we intend for a fling with someone to be “just a rebound thing” – lesbians have a reputation for getting attached quickly… and this can be extra true in the aftermath of a breakup, while you’re still used to having a partner and since the partner is now suddenly gone – there’s a huge space left in your heart and in your life…

 

But we always want to make sure that when we choose a new relationship we do so for the right reasons. And avoiding the pain and loneliness of a breakup is the always the WRONG reason to get into a new relationship.

 

You see – when our priority is simply to avoid being alone, we are probably not asking serious questions about our long-term compatibility with that other person. Questions like – do we work well as a couple? Do we have the same values? Do we want the same things? – when we are simply trying to avoid being alone, we’re not asking those questions…

 

When you choose someone just to avoid loneliness – Is that truly the person you would have chosen for yourself if you were working from the center of your confidence and power?? (as opposed to doing so in the wake of a breakup, when you’re just trying to use connection and intimacy to rebuild your confidence…)?

 

An example of this is a woman I used to know when I was working as a litigator… After a terrible heartbreak (that left her brokenhearted for months), she started getting messages from a much younger woman on Instagram. My friend has a big social media following, because of her prominence. And usually she dates other women who are equally powerful. (because historically it’s been hard for her to fully respect a partner who isn’t on her level.) The much younger woman on Instagram wasn’t what friend usually goes for. But she was sexy, kind and had an adorably tremendous crush on my friend… My friend was so hurt and lonely when they met, but the feeling of being wanted and appreciated by someone new reinvigorated her and helped her finally stop crying and obsessing over the one who left…

But weeks with that younger woman turned into months. And months turned into 5 years… And even though my friend has a lot of affection for her girlfriend, she doesn’t genuinely respect her, the way she respected prior partners. And that gnaws at her. so does the fact that deep down she knows she never would have chosen this girlfriend as a partner had she not been heartbroken when they met. But she doesn’t know how to leave, because breaking up is hard…

 

And that’s the first risk of rebound relationships. It’s far too easy to get stuck long-term with someone you wouldn’t have chosen if you weren’t heartbroken when you chose them.

 

The second risk…

 

The second risk is the opposite of what happened to my friend I just told you about…

 

The second risk is that, instead of meeting someone who isn’t really a good match, you find a rebound that is *perfect* for you.

 

And this is a risk, because when we first get our heart broken, it takes time to recover and get back to our full independence, confidence, and strength. It also takes time to get over someone and mentally/emotionally process all the things that went wrong…

 

Because breakups are incredibly painful and disorienting.

 

Just like how we’re disoriented when we wake up in the middle of crazy dreams… We wouldn’t want to be woken up in the middle of intense dreams and be expected (right then and there) to deliver an important presentation to our most important clients or (right then and there) to drive a car up the side of a steep mountain.

 

When we’re disoriented we need a minute to recalibrate.  And in that same way, it’s very hard to go from being in the middle of a bad breakup straight into being in the middle of a happy, brand-new romance… It’s very hard to be both at the same time because they are opposite states of being.

 

In a brand-new romance everything is fresh and exciting and hopeful. But in a breakup there is sadness, frustration, regret and so much emotional energy still wrapped up in the other person. The only way to fully experience the excitement and joy of the brand-new romance would be to fully deny and ignore all the unprocessed baggage from the breakup. But denial is not healthy…

 

The truth is: sometimes in life we need a minute…

 

Breakups are a great time to recalibrate – to remember who we are and what we like and how we move through life when left to our own devices… Because up until the breakup we weren’t a single individual moving through life – we were part of a couple. And if we go from being one half of one couple directly into being one half of another couple, we show up as only a half self. And trust me – when you meet the woman of your dreams, you do not want to show up as a half self. When someone amazing comes into your life, you want to be able to give her your full and complete, independent self…

 

When your confidence is so wrecked that you feel you need a rebound, that is NOT the right time to go on a first date with the woman of your dreams. Sometimes what we really need is a time out. And that is the second risk of rebound relationships.

 

The third risk…

 

The third risk is that, because it’s so soon after the breakup, the person you attract as your rebound is someone who either reminds you of your ex OR they’re someone who feels like the opposite of your ex. In other words, the risk is that you end up choosing your next partner 100% based on your last partner. And that’s a problem because it perpetuates the same dysfunctional patterns that messed up your last relationship.

 

I remember a party I went to, less than two months after my girlfriend of five years moved out… I met someone I thought was cute, and she told me she was bi, and she seemed interested in hanging out. So I was pumped. But before it was time to exchange numbers, I realized I was being insane. This woman literally looked exactly like my ex, except she had different hair. She was from the country bordering my ex’s country, and they were both artists. I’m sure she was a perfectly lovely human being – but clearly whatever was attracting me to this woman had nothing to do with her and it had nothing to do with me – in that moment whatever was drawing me to her had everything to do with my ex. And so I laughed at myself, said goodnight, and went home.

 

Because what we all deserve, especially after a tough breakup, is a fresh start.

 

It’s unhealthy for us to choose our next partner simply as a reaction to our ex. Because choosing based on our ex means basing our next relationship on the last one, which means either staying stuck in the same dysfunctional pattern (if you choose someone similar) or otherwise being stuck in the inverse pattern (if you choose someone because she ‘s the opposite)…

 

The ideal way to choose a partner is 100% based on you and 0% percent based on your ex. But that’s a lot harder to do in the aftermath of a breakup. And that is the third risk of rebound relationships.

 

The fourth risk…

 

The fourth risk is that the person we connect with as a rebound falls in love with us and gets hurt, because all we wanted was a rebound while she was wanting much more… 

 

That’s why it’s so important for us to be clear about our intentions and desires, when we are in a rebound phase. If it’s not safe for someone to expect a future with us, we have to let her know.

 

However, even if you let them know – the truth is that there are some people in this world who say they are ok with having a casual relationship (with no expectations about the future), even though deep down they want much more. And the only reason they agree to accept less is because they know it’s the only way they’ll get to have you at all.

 

So even when we’re honest, people can still get hurt, and that’s a risk.

 

And this is something we should all be aware of, anytime we meet brokenhearted women. Because brokenhearted women are far more vulnerable than usual. Whether it’s a friend you’re attracted to or a person you just met, connection can come faster when a person is brokenhearted because she’s deep in her feelings, extra emotional from the painful loss she’s going through. And this can create a heightened sense of emotional intimacy that wouldn’t have otherwise existed… If she starts confiding in you and you start making her feel better, the closeness can feel intoxicating and intense, even though you’re just getting sucked up into the emotional tornado of her pain and healing. The important thing to realize is that her intense emotions weren’t originally about you. The emotional intensity was about the person she broke up with. You’re just riding the coattails of that…

 

So while it can be very tempting – if we see someone we’re attracted to, who we can swoop in and “rescue” and get close to that way – we have to be careful and remember that being someone’s rebound could mean that once our affection and attention has nursed back her confidence, she’ll leave and start dating again. Because she didn’t choose us based on thinking we are the best match, she got close to us in order to avoid being alone. And now that she doesn’t need to avoid being alone anymore, it’s time to take a chance and find the best match…

We all deserve to be chosen for the right reasons, and so it’s important to be careful not to end up as someone’s rebound.

 

So those are the four main risks of rebound relationships…

 

And that’s why, if you’re currently nursing a broken heart, the best thing you can do is focus on yourself and the people you love and the projects you’re passionate about.

 

Use the time to improve the areas of your life you couldn’t give your energy to while you had a girlfriend. Doing that will be so much better for you, in the long run, than dating while heartbroken, just to avoid loneliness.

 

The good news is that broken hearts eventually heal. And if you’re lonely and looking for love, there’s someone perfect for you and she’s out there right now, missing you just as much as you miss her…

 

So until next time, keep remembering that hot lesbians are everywhere, that love is real and that the woman of your dreams is on her way into your life in perfect timing.





With softness,

Jordana Michelle

P.S.

If you want lesbian dating advice from me more often, follow me on Instagram @jordana.michelle.

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