Dating Immediately After Breakup: 8 Pros and Cons
Your significant other might have just dumped you. Perhaps you dumped them. Maybe the breakup was long-awaited and kind of inevitable, or worse, blindsiding and unexpected. Possibly, the decision was mutual. Breakups are hard, complex and not one is like the other – each experience is unique in terms of emotions it causes, the trauma it awakens in us, and the baggage we take away from it. No matter the circumstances of your breakup, having to “undo” your future with someone and recalibrate your hopes and dreams takes time and extreme effort. So, what do you do after a breakup? Become one of those people watching “how to get your ex back” dating coach videos all day long? Or bravely try your best to let go and move on?
You know what your friends are going to say: if you want to get over - get under. This isn’t something you’d hear from your therapist, but a common and well-practiced idea in society.
Rebound can be described as jumping headfirst into the dating pool right after the breakup for a myriad of reasons: for some, it’s to avoid (or shall we say, postpone) the emotional turmoil, for others, it’s a way to escape loneliness and discomfort, and for the rest, it’s simply catching up on your sexual and romantic freedom.
But how beneficial is a rebound, really? Let’s discuss.
It’s no secret to anyone that breakups are as painful and exhausting as the definition gets – and some fun is just what the heartbreak doctor ordered. You get to dress up, go out, have a drink or two, master your small talk skills, maybe even adapt entirely new personality traits that you’re going to show to the world. There’s a certain power that comes from starting with a clean slate. You get to rewrite your own story. And making first impressions is like a good video game: never gets old.
This one is especially common for those who ended up as the dumpee. After getting rejected by someone you were committed to, your self-esteem will almost inescapably plummet. Rebounding might help you get back on track and view yourself in a more positive, loving light. You are out there going for what you want and not shying away. It’s that shiny living proof of “hey, I still got it - I’m dateable! People like me!” If you’ve been dumped, this might help.
You’re free to explore new things
Monogamous sex, at one point or another, gets repetitive – this is a known fact. You and your partner have probably nailed it down to a certain routine that worked for both of you, knew exactly how to please each other, what they did or did not like. Your sex life is now a fresh page, and new people and experiences may bring out enjoyment you had no idea existed within you. Best breakup advice.
You open up
Hurting after a breakup? After any traumatic event, we typically enter our highest vulnerability mode. Depending on how unguarded you’re willing to get, you’re almost certainly going to discuss your past with your rebounds at one point or another. Resentful talk, bitter jokes, and all the annoying traits of your ex-partner will pop up in conversations. Your date is kind of doomed to put on their therapist hat for you – whether they want to or not. If they like you enough, of course, they’ll be happy to listen. And you have someone new to vent to (because let’s be honest, your friends are already exhausted by your non-stop rants). Effective breakup tips for you.
Fear of loneliness
As your imagined future with your now ex starts to crumble and dissipate, it’s important to go back to the drawing board and draft new scenarios for your next week, year, and decade. Only this time leaving that person out of your ambitious plans. By diving into new connections straight away, be that something continuous or an ONS, you’re risking not being okay with being by yourself later on. The feeling will only grow with time and might take over you entirely, turning into a pattern of serial dating or getting emotionally attached to your flings. We see this story unfold everywhere: don’t we all have that one friend who has never been single? Taking some time to reconnect with yourself might be a much healthier alternative, even if it doesn’t feel right at the beginning and even stings.
It’s likely going to catch up
And might do some serious damage in the long run. Breakups come with grief as a core stage of letting go. It’s scary and most of us would rather not feel that way, but it’s a necessary part of the process. If you’re desperate to skip this stage by diving into the dating pool before addressing all the hurt and anger of your failed relationship, you risk facing consequences way more serious than they could’ve been - had you done that prior. Think about it carefully: when has severe emotional suppression worked out for you before? Exactly.
You’re probably hurting people
We hate to break it to you, but right after a breakup, you are emotionally unavailable and living in the past. It’s a normal and natural reaction that stems from unresolved conflict, so no judgment here, but the stakes are high. No one really wants to be someone’s rebound, especially not those who are dating mindfully and with good intentions.
Take a second to reflect on how it feels to be on the receiving end of this scenario – not that nice, is it?
You might attract unhealthy dynamics
We’ve all heard of narcissists, toxic behavior, ghosting, love bombing, and other amateur psychology definitions... The thing is, when you’re hurting, you become way more susceptible to accepting bad behavior you wouldn’t put up with otherwise, all in the name of going with the flow. Your emotional compass might be off to the point where you might not even recognize the obvious red flags coming your way, even if it’s just a brief sexual encounter. This goes without saying that the last thing you need after heartbreak is another heartbreak on top of it.
Questions to ask yourself before seeking a post-breakup rebound:
- How am I going to benefit from this?
- Is my urge to date coming from a place of fear? Or a place of genuine curiosity and desire?
- In all honesty, is this going to be healthy for me, emotionally and mentally?
- Should I take some time to heal first, and come back to the dating scene once I’m 100% ready?
- What am I missing out on?
- What is so scary about being alone right now?
- Can I promise myself I will not be hurting the people I meet out of past hurt and resentment?
- If I’m not ready, what are some alternative steps I can take in the meantime to feel better?
So, as liberating and thrilling as the concept of rebounding may seem in theory, it’s not a shortcut to eternal freedom. Everything starts with looking at your actions and the motives behind them. Is this honest desire? Or are you just hurting and refusing to acknowledge it? A topic that is perhaps too complex to unpack in one sitting, but important to reflect on. So, all of this is good breakup advice, but at the end of the day - it’s up to you. Entirely.