Have you noticed how, when you start to miss your ex even a little bit, everyone tells you that you "need to move on?" I couldn't agree more, but that phrase is usually followed by my motto: "get under to get over" and a wink.
A rebound is, to put it bluntly, a crutch to soften the emotional blow of a breakup. Now, I'm not a fan of using another person as my personal mop, but let's be realistic.
In light of the dating world we're a part of (dating apps and social media literally throw beautiful people at us 24/7) it's inevitable we're going to have rebounds.
So, I feel it is only fair that some ground rules are applied and it's my duty to share them:
1. Set an expectation.
For the love of this generation, make yourself clear from the beginning. Ladies, men tend to prefer a straightforward woman more. And men, women are less likely to be psychos if they know where they stand in the relationship. Also, you're giving the other person the chance to decide if they're on board or not.
Don't spend too much time together. Talking all day and seeing each other every night isn't a rebound; it's basically a borderline relationship. Also, you might actually start falling for this person. If you're open to that, great, but if not, put some distance between you and respect boundaries.
Keep some mystery. Personal information and venting should be kept to a minimum and replaced with flirting and light-hearted dates. Don't expect this to be more than it is.
2. Choose wisely!
Don't date an ex, I can't stress this enough. Why take 10 steps back when you want to move forward?
Don't date someone you actually like. Post-breakup you're a mess, you're hurt and you're selfish; chances are you're not in a position to give someone else the best version of you.
Don't date someone who likes you. Chances are you'll leave them heartbroken and things will end on bad terms.
3. Mix it up.
Date outside your "type."
OK, so you might not have a type. But avoid a carbon copy of your ex. You don't want a Ross vs. Russ situation ("Friends" fans, you understand me). If you're into athletes, date an artistic type instead.
Remember, avoid places you went with your ex.
4. Rules of thumb.
Don't introduce them to your friends, especially if this is a short-term situation.
Make sure you're ready. Of course, the only way to really know is to get back out there. But, if you find yourself crying mid-fumble then a) you're not ready and b) you've probably emotionally scarred the other person.
Keep it private. Tell your friends of course, but keep it to a minimum. You don't want to have that awkward conversation where you explain to your friends that the guy/girl you were mad at last week is no longer relevant to your life.
I'm not saying these rules will stop you from getting hurt or hurting someone else, that's 21st century dating for you, but an honest conversation and realistic expectations can go a long way.
This post was originally published on the author's personal blog.