Dear Belle and Beau,
I had a 3 year relationship with this guy. When we finally called it quits it seemed to be hard for both of us. He kept calling to talk late at night and sent several heartfelt emails, then less than 2 weeks after our break-up one of my friends told me he was seeing someone else. What!? Here I was avoiding jumping back into a relationship turning down dates and taking time to listen to Adelle with a big box of Kleenex and he’s already hitting the town with some new girl every night? I couldn’t believe it - according to him ‘we had 3 amazing years and he couldn’t think of loving someone as much as he loved me.’ There is no way he could have healed from our relationship already, could he?
- Old News, 27 yr old, Nurse
Dear Old News,
To answer your question - No, there is no way he could have healed already from your relationship. This is a rebound relationship. Men unlike women, rarely take time to actually recognize their emotions - if they did maybe we wouldn’t see so many of them hopping from relationship to relationship. Men are taught even as boys that being a man often means not showing emotions. So what do they do instead of actually sitting around listening to sad music and thinking of the good ole days and how they might improve themselves - they take Mr. Johnson out for a walk and voila they easily find a new girl (there are plenty out there ready to cling onto to an eligible bachelor who could give them attention and possible a ring!) This takes their mind off any hurt they may be feeling. Rebound relationships usually last just few months and they are tyically with someone who seems the opposite of the ex. It is an escape to take his mind off missing someone he had a long relatioship with. Unfortunately, the rebound relationship enables him to avoid growing himself and discovering how he can improve to have better relationships in the future. Take it with a grain of salt, rarely does the rebound relationship mean anything other than temporary entertainment, and instead find it flattering that it probably hurts him too much to be at home thinking about you.
Dear Old News,
As a guy, we do not like being alone and we certainly do not like actually having to understand our emotions. It is just easier to find someone else to take our mind off any true feelings we may have. This coupled with the fact that after a break up all your friends start trying to set you up with someone new, just adds to the avoidance of actually having to deal with any pain. Your friends see you are sad and they want to lift your spirits, no harm there, but how profound if instead of immediately opening their contacts and going through them to set you up with Linda and Jenny, they acknowledged that you are probably very hurt and emotionally drained and suggested you take a trip by yourself or go camping or even join a singles group so you could think about how you could grow from the past relationship. All more adult options than hopping back into another relationship in which your ex can just avoid having to deal with any real emotions. Wisdom comes with age and sometimes, especially as men, we don’t learn how to effectively deal with emotions until we are much older.