By : ASHIMA BHARDWAJ
WHAT IS REBOUND RELATIONSHIP?
Have you ever experienced a break up?
If yes, then how were you feeling post that?
Was there a void you felt from the absence of that someone?
Most likely, I believe.
Well, rebound relationships are one of the ways people use to fill the void of their ex-partner by starting a new relationship with someone who is a stranger or a friend or a colleague or with anyone who is available within a month after the break-up without taking sufficient time to heal. These relationships are temporary and are more about emotional support and physical intimacy.
As both men and women are brought up in different conditions and treatments, they tend to react and cope differently when a love relationship ends. Different coping mechanisms get deployed by both men and women to deal with the troubled emotions that are felt as the result of the break up. Rebound relationships are one such mechanism which was found to be deployed more by men than women as a distraction from their ex-partner. (Shimek C, 2014)
WHY REBOUND RELATIONSHIP IS NOT A GOOD IDEA?
Let’s take an example,
You’re riding a motorcycle with someone as a pillion rider. You both were enjoying each other’s company, and then the pillion rider realizes that their destination is not on the same way as yours and they need to go in some other direction. You don’t want your partner to go away and tries everything to make them stay but they have to go as their destination is not on your way. In this process the motorcycle gets dis-balanced and falls down. As a result motorcycle gets dysfunctional and pillion rider heads towards their destination leaving you alone. Now you’re hurt that your motorcycle is damaged; and instead of taking motorcycle to the garage for repairing we ask another pillion rider to ride with us neglecting the damage done, it is going to create much havoc.
Here motorcycle is our life; we and the pillion rider are two individuals in a relationship. If one decides to move away, life seems to get dis-balanced. Getting into a new relationship with a dis-balanced life can be taxing on mental health.
Taking sufficient time to heal from a breakup before starting a new relationship, it also ensures high level of self-love, self-esteem and balance in life. (RK, 2011)
TIPS TO AVOID REBOUND RELATIONSHIP
Cognitive strategies are researched and are found to be really effective in dealing with post breakup emotions. Six strategies are listed below that can help in overcoming breakup emotions and can also help to avoid rebound relationship.
In May 2018 and June 2018, TIMES and INDEPENDENT respectively published an article from the Journal of Experimental Psychology: General about cognitive ways to get over a break-up. In the article they suggested three cognitive techniques to the sample population and also studied their after effects upon the emotion of the sample population when showed the picture of their ex-partners. (A, 2018) (R, 2018)
Build a dysfunctional image of your ex-partner in your mind: Imagining all the irritating, disgusting and unacceptable habits and qualities of your ex-partner can help you feel self-sufficient. When the sample population from the study that was published in the Journal of Experimental Psychology: General was asked to imagine their ex-partner’s negative qualities, it was observed that the feelings of love and void have been significantly reduced. (A, 2018) (R, 2018)
Acknowledge and Accept: Without weighing your emotions as right or wrong, accept them as they are being felt. If you are feeling an emotion of love, void, anger, shock etc. acknowledge those emotions and accept them. The study showed that this technique was found to be effective in reducing the emotional reaction to the name and pictures of the ex-partner. (A, 2018) (R, 2018)
DIVERSION: As much as it is important to reflect back upon the situations and emotions attached to the breakup, it cannot be done every single second. In order to ensure that your life includes activities, things and people whom you love apart from your ex-partner, start focusing on them. Note down things you love to eat, see, hear etc. or activities you love to participate in like drawing, writing, speaking, reading etc. or people whom you love dearly like you yourself, your family members, close friends etc. The study found that this technique though helps in alleviating the mood but should be used sparsely along with reflecting on the emotional level of the situation. (A, 2018) (R, 2018)
According to other researches that were published, another three techniques were also found to be really effective in overcoming breakup.
4. Believe in the process of getting healed: Believe in everything healthy you’re doing to heal yourself; it will catalyze the healing process. Proof about the effectiveness of this technique is found in the history. During world-war II, Henry Beecher invented Placebo effect to deal with the shortage of morphine to treat wounded soldiers. After the exhaustion of the morphine supply, Henry started giving saline solution to the wounded soldier claiming it to be morphine; as soldiers believed saline solution to be morphine, their wound continued to heal. (Perry, 2012)
5. Maintain a Journal: Pour out your thoughts, emotions and feelings in your journal without any fear of being judged or misunderstood. Be true to your thoughts, emotions and feelings, they deserve it. You can journal in different formats according to your need. It can be in the form of diary entry, expressing gratitude or noting down your aims with deadline.
6. Have a support system: When you are emotionally down, you need someone to hear and understand you. Make a list of your ‘go to people’; it can include your close friends, family members and even a therapist. If you love pets and can afford one then it is the best time to have one as they are considered therapeutic and helps in alleviating the mood.
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