In A “Rebound” Relationship

By Kristina Randle, Ph.D., LCSW

I am 47 and she is 49 [now] I met Sherri at a place we both worked at ,we always got along great .she was married andwe were just friends.Then she ended up getting seperated then finally divorced.once she was at the end of her seperation we started just casually datting ,once the divorce was fnal we datted exclusivly .NOW four years later [this happend 3 weeks ago ]she came by my place we ate dinner she seemed distant i had to throw out the garbage she was eaving through my back door .i asked her what was going on she never gave me a valid response.she left,i came back inside and found the jewelery i have given her over the years in a box on my counter.I’ve called trying to nderstand what’s going on and why .I ask what did i do? she replies i didn’t do anything she just doesn’t love me anymore or is not in love with me anymore ,i sy their must be a reason she tells me their doesn’t always need to be a reason .i have called and e mailed only to be ignored ,mentioned maybe it would be a good idea to sit with a pastor and discuss this at first she said yea the day o the meeting she called me and said to just cancell the meeting it wouldn’t change anything anyways .BEEN trying to get her to just sit with me and talk help me understand what she’s going through , she doesn’t want to .Last night she finally stoped by to hear what i wanted to say i spoke she arely has ,i said maybe we need a re start in the past i’ve given her chances so i said now i’m asking for just one chance to keep it together and not just throw it away like this .

I have seen her with anotherguy and told her i did ,she said just ecause you seen me with someone doesnt mean i’m seeing them .i believe she was seeing him before this issue.i thik her friends are getting in her hea about me [when theydon't even know me ] i haven’t really eatten or slept for days here i just can’t figure out why i don’t get a reason …….

Some friends told me maybe she’s in a re bound relationship right now and those do not last ,after all the kind and loving things we’ve said to each other and all we’ve done together how can she just one day say no like this ? it’s eatting me up. Last night as i read her what i wanted to tell her it didn’t even seem she was paying attention….i went to give her a hug she said no i would only read more into that .i have said i loved you , always have she admits i never lied,cheated or disrespected her or toyed with her emotions in any way ,i ask to compromise she doesn’t want to ,asked for tat one more chance she doesn’t know if she has one for me .YET i get told i did nothing wrong.

A. I am not certain what your exact question is so I can only provide you with a general response. I am very sorry that you are struggling. Unfortunately, when one person in a relationship decides that it is over, then it is. You wrote that your girlfriend suddenly decided that she no longer loves you or is in love with you. This surprised you. It may seem as though her feelings came out of “nowhere” but that is unlikely. It seemed that way but there were likely signs of her growing disinterest in the relationship that you missed.

You were there for her during the period in which she ended her marriage. I am sure that you were a great help to her during this stormy time in her life. You are probably aware of the old saying “any port in a storm.” This saying references the fact that when you are in very trying circumstances, you cannot be and will not be too choosy about your port of comfort. This is why rebound relationships are described with great caution.

During this stormy period of her life, you were her comforting port. Now that the storm has ended, she can continue her journey and look for the port of her choice. Let’s not believe that she was aware of her intentions when she pulled into your port. She very likely was only concerned with the immediacy of her situation. You served as a good friend, boyfriend, during this period of her life. She probably thanks you and is thankful in her mind for your being there when she most needed you.

Rebound relationships are very tricky and usually do not have good outcomes. When she pulled into that port during this stormy period in her life, she was most concerned with immediate relief. She did not have the luxury of long-term planning.

From her actions it is very clear that she is very definite about you and the relationship you had.

Unfortunately, you would like the relationship to continue. In most breakups, only one of the parties wishes for the relationship to end. Yes, sometimes both parties agree to a breakup but that is not usually the case. The person who wants it to end is happy and the person who does not want it to end, feels as you do now.

The breakup of a relationship is often undesired and torturous. However, every ending allows for a new beginning. You still have the opportunity to find the woman who will bring you great happiness and, unlike this past girlfriend, will value you, respect you and love you. That is the kind of woman you want in your life. Put very simply, someone that you want as much as she wants you.

You mentioned that she is involved with another guy. That may be the reason why she has ended her relationship with you. She did not tell you that information directly but, given the evidence, it is a reasonable conclusion.

I know that you are in pain right now. This is very understandable. It would have been better if she had been more honest with you about why she is ending the relationship. She could have provided you with a more honest explanation but unfortunately she hasn’t. Psychologically, at this time, it would be in your best interest to try to move on with your life. I know that is easier said than done but you can’t force someone to stay in a relationship. In addition, it would be helpful if you surrounded yourself with supportive friends and family.

You are not alone in your struggles. Breakups are to be expected. Unfortunately, most people have experienced or will experience a breakup at some point in their lives. It is the norm rather than the exception.

If you would like to write back and ask a more specific question, or additional questions, I would be happy to assist you. I wish you the best of luck. Please take care.

Dr. Kristina Randle

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Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 10 Jul 2011

APA Reference
Randle, K. (2011). In A “Rebound” Relationship. Psych Central. Retrieved on September 20, 2014, from http://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2011/07/10/in-a-rebound-relationship/