Rebound Guy: 19 Signs & Ways to Avoid a Girl Who’s Hooked to Her Ex

Being the rebound guy is every serious guy’s worst nightmare. But how do you really avoid being a rebound? Keep reading this feature to find out!

Rebound Guy

We’ve all been in relationships that broke our hearts and left us feeling like nothing’s going to happen in our lives from here on out. The good news is that it does get better. But right after a breakup, we enter a period of insecurity and sadness. This is where girls tend to go for a rebound guy. She jumps into another relationship.

We completely understand why. Who wants to feel heartbreak? Who wants to be alone? So, instead, she picks someone out of the crowd she thinks will be good for her. She finds a rebound guy to distract her from the fact that she’s grieving over the relationship that didn’t work.

This feels terrible on the receiving end, especially if her rebound guy actually likes her and is falling hard for her. So if you want to know you’re the rebound guy, don’t worry; we’ll be discussing everything you need to know in this feature. [Read: 15 rebound relationship signs to watch out for]

What is a rebound guy?

From the word itself, a rebound guy is someone you help yourself to get over a breakup. Since the end of a relationship hurts that much and you want to avoid feeling it or dealing with it, you bury yourself with the next guy you find. When you’re the rebound guy, don’t expect any kind of emotional or mental intimacy.

All you’re ever going to get is sex in the relationship, and that can be both a bad and good thing. It’s good because, well, it’s sex.

It’s bad because if you genuinely like her, you’ll never get anything more out of her than anything physical. Basically, you’re what she needs in the moment of her heartbreak because she doesn’t want to miss her ex or think about him. [Read: What is a rebound relationship? 12 ways to know you’re in one]

Why do girls get into rebound relationships?

If you’ve never experienced a breakup, it’s one of the worst feelings in the world. You want things to work out with this person but life happens and suddenly, you’re forced to live a life without them. So girls will find a rebound guy simply to distract her heartbreak and devastation from the breakup.

The crazy thing is, rebounds always work. It’s a powerful enough of a distraction to help her stop thinking of her ex or missing him. When a girl gets into a rebound, it helps her avoid everything she doesn’t want to feel, and that’s the core of why she gets into rebound relationships. Is it healthy? No, not really. But it does help.

The only awful thing about a rebound relationship is when the guy she chooses actually likes her and has genuine feelings for her. That’s when it gets overly complicated.

So it’s essential that you’re aware you’re the rebound guy because chances are, she won’t look at you the same way. She will keep seeing you as the rebound guy and nothing more. [Read: Rebound relationships and why it’s good for you]

19 ways to tell if you’re the rebound guy

Of course, it’s an asshole move to make, but we all make it. We think we need someone else to validate us. In reality, you need to process your feelings without someone new by your side. But, being the rebound guy happens to the best of us.

1. Though you’re together, there’s a piece missing

People say men aren’t intuitive, but that’s a lie. Everyone is intuitive, and you just have to pay attention to those feelings. If you feel that something is missing, then there’s something missing.

Don’t second guess it; listen to this instinct. So if your gut instinct is telling you that you’re the rebound guy, listen to it. Most likely, that feeling of yours is accurate. [Read: How to start listening to your masculine instincts]

2. You’re moving fast… too fast

One of the common signs of a rebound relationship is when you’re skipping phases and moving too fast. You just met and suddenly, she wants to bring you to this event or even travel! She already told you that she loves you, she holds your hand, you’re going to move in together… and you just met.

Woah, isn’t that a red flag? We know you think that maybe she just likes you that much. But if she’s rushing through things, really ask yourself why this is the case. Though it’s moving quickly, you have a feeling that it’s not progressing at the same time. [Read: 10 speedy signs your relationship is moving too fast]

3. When she talks about her ex, there’s anger

It’s normal to mention your ex in specific conversations. If you’re over your ex, you should be able to talk about them without any resentment. However, if her face turns red with fury, well, she’s still not over her ex.

Clearly. If she keeps trash-talking her ex to you and ranting about everything her ex did wrong, this is an evident indicator you’re the rebound guy. Also, watch for the frequency she talks about her ex. If it’s all the time, there’s your answer. [Read: How to get over an ex: 17 steps to heal ASAP in the healthiest way]

4. There’s a lot of sex involved

Sex isn’t bad in a relationship; it’s actually healthy. But when you always have sex without developing any kind of emotional or mental intimacy, that’s when it becomes a red flag. You’re just the rebound guy – nothing more.

She needs to forget her ex-partner, trying to do that through sex. She wants to feel a connection. However, she’s emotionally not capable. She can’t provide you with anything other than physical intimacy. [Read: Too much sex? 15 signs to know if your sex life is well balanced]

5. She focuses on making her ex jealous

She takes selfies with you or post-romantic statutes not because she actually feels that way but because she wants to make her ex jealous. Of course, she follows them on Facebook. How else would she creep them?

She also knows her ex sees her posts, and what better way to make someone jealous than to post a photo of her kissing someone else. Basically, she’s using you as leverage to make her ex jealous.

So before you get thrilled that she loves taking photos with you, look at her intentions behind this action first. She’s not doing it out of admiration but for jealousy. [Read: How to make your ex jealous & leave them begging for forgiveness]

6. She was freshly single before meeting you

If you ask her about her dating history, she mentions she was in a relationship and they broke up, but next, ask her when that happened. Our guess is that it’s pretty fresh, a couple of weeks or a month or two. If she’s freshly single, it’s not enough time to process emotions and feelings.

While there’s no specific period to get over an ex, dating too soon indicates you’re a rebound guy. Particularly if they broke up only weeks ago, it’s impossible to get over someone that quick. [Read: How to get away from a toxic lover]

7. Generally, she seems lost in life

Basically, she doesn’t know who she is or what she wants. It’s almost as if she’s only able to identify herself as who she was. And now, she seems to be floating without really understanding herself. When someone goes through a breakup, they often feel lost without knowing who they are anymore.

So if she’s using you as a rebound, this is one of the things you need to watch out for. She doesn’t want to feel pain, and she doesn’t want to grow. She just wants to be comfortable. [Read: How to move on and deal with a break up with a smile]

8. Her breakup came as a surprise

If you know your relationship will end, you grieve and mourn the end of the relationship, and you need less recovery time. But, if your relationship suddenly ended out of nowhere, you’re shocked.

This leaves someone in a more extensive state of sadness and constant analyzation. And if she just ended her relationship last week, well, you know straight away she’s not over her ex.

9. She’s creeping them on social media

Social media is the best place to stalk your ex and also how to find out once and for all if you’re the rebound guy or not. Out of the corner of your eye, you see her creeping her ex’s Facebook or Instagram. Trust us; she’s not doing it because suddenly she wonders how he is and if he’s happy. Nah, come on.

She wants to know what he’s doing and who he’s with. Why? Because she’s not over him. She’s desperate to keep up with his life, even if they’re no longer together. [Read: 14 subtle signs your girlfriend is not over her ex]

10. You actually don’t have anything in common

Aside from the copious amounts of sex you have, you don’t actually have anything in common. In addition, you don’t really do things that involve deep conversations. Sex is great and we highly recommend it, but if she was over her ex, she wouldn’t have a problem opening up to you.

You’re evidently a rebound guy if she’s still seeing you despite having no common ground or emotional intimacy. It’s because she needs you to distract her from her heartbreak. [Read: Do couples always have to like the same things?]

11. They bring up their ex… a lot

We’ve all talked about our exes, one way or another. But what differentiates a girl not over her ex from one that is comes down to the frequency of talking about her ex.

She tells you she’s over her ex but is she really? Because she brings her ex up in conversation whenever she gets the chance. If her ex was entirely out of her head, well, she wouldn’t speak about them.

12. She wants to commit, but she doesn’t

When you’re her rebound guy, her indecisiveness to commit will be evident. You might see her possess mixed signals or how her behavior switches from one to another. She clearly doesn’t know what she wants.

She wants you to be with her, but she doesn’t want to be in a committed relationship with you or make it Facebook official. Though you two spend a lot of time together, her need to commit to you is non-existent. This is because she doesn’t actually want to be with you. [Read: What is commitment in a relationship & how to know if you have it?]

13. You’re way better than her ex

Like, waaaay better than her ex. You know how we know that? Because she’s been telling you this every day since the first day she met you. Everything you do is better than her ex. Her ex would never pay for dinner but see, you do, and that’s why she likes you. She’s also not over him… if you get our hint.

You’re the exact opposite of her ex and yet, she doesn’t see herself being with you seriously. Why? Because you’re her rebound guy. [Read: Love triangles and the confusing complications it can bring]

14. You feel as though you were picked out of a line-up

We know you probably thought it would be a good thing to be the first guy she’s dated after a breakup but not necessarily. In reality, it’s probably better if you were the second or third guy she dated after the breakup. You’re the first guy she laid eyes on, and that’s now who she’s with.

It’s a horrible feeling being a rebound guy. In fact, if you feel this in any amount, run! This means you’re the first person she’ll project her heartbreak and unhealed issues to.

You might even have a better chance with her if you were the second or third guy she dated, but sadly no, that’s not the case. [Read:15 signs she’s leading you on and taking you nowhere!]

15. Your intuition tells you that if they had the opportunity, they’d go back to their ex

It is not necessary to be a rocket scientist to figure out whether someone is still not over their ex. Do you believe the person you’re seeing would accept the return of your ex if it ever came to that point?

There is no more explicit evidence that the person with whom you’re dating is seeking your company as a transitory healing phase if the response to your question is “I don’t know” or “Maybe.” If you ever get this feeling when you’re with someone, it’s positive that you’re a rebound guy. [Read: How to get your ex back & convince them it’s the right] Thing to Do

16. You feel that they’re too distant or won’t open up

As a rebound guy, you have the impression that you are unable to connect with that person emotionally and that there is a significant disconnection between you, even if you spend a lot of time together.

They don’t do this because rebounders aren’t usually invested in the relationship and don’t connect emotionally. Rebounds are always very casual, empty, or only about having sex. [Read: How to recognize an emotionally distant partner & deal with them]

17. Social media statuses are still sad

You should be aware that if the person you’re seeing is posting depressing content or updates on social media, it is possible that they are still living with the effects of their previous relationship.

This might suggest that they are not ready to start a new relationship at this moment. Whether or not you are a rebound guy may be decided by how you behave in this particular situation. [Read: Social media and relationships: The good, the bad, & the ugly]

18. She acts very bitterly

There’s nothing wrong with not having moved on yet when it comes to your previous relationship. The fact that you’re behaving so bitter in front of your current boyfriend or girlfriend, on the other hand, is a significant concern.

Obviously, if the girl you’re seeing is only speaking negatively about their ex and radiating bad energy around them, there are still powerful sentiments that are being channeled.  This is a clue that she is still attached to her ex, and you should consider talking to her about it in order to prevent making the situation worse. [Read: Letting go of someone you love – minus the bitterness]

19. They’re a little too eager to publicize your new relationship

There is nothing wrong with being enthusiastic when you meet someone new, but if your new partner already announces their love for you in public, it’s not the best sign.

A new relationship may be exciting, but only if you’re confident it’s solid before you flaunt it out to the world. The sequence might seem out of sync when working with a new partner coming off a breakup. Before you get a chance to get to know each other, they’ll want to show you off.

[Read: Facebook official relationship: Is your guy ready for it?]

How to avoid being the rebound guy?

It’s easier said than done, but you can only avoid being the rebound guy if you spot the signs early on. The minute you know you’re the rebound guy, don’t hesitate to walk away. We know this wasn’t what you wanted to hear, but it’s true. No matter how much you like her or adore her, the fact is she’s still hung over her ex.

It’s also not your job to fix, save, or change her into someone ready to commit to you. You deserve someone who has your full attention and not someone whose heart is still beating for their ex. So if you want to avoid being the rebound guy, just walk away and find someone better. Don’t settle for less.

[Read: 18 foundations of a relationship that separate the good & the bad]

So, are you the rebound guy?

Being the rebound guy is one of the worst feelings in the world. She doesn’t want to feel anything from the breakup, which is your purpose in her life. She’ll never commit to you, so it’s best to walk away from her if you’re developing serious feelings for her.

So, here’s the big question: are you the rebound guy? If you are, we’ve all been there so you’re not alone in this. But you do need to stop hoping you’ll ever be something more. 

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Natasha Ivanovic
Natasha Ivanovic is an intimacy, dating, and relationship writer best known for her writings on Kiiroo, LovePanky, Post Pravda, and more. She's the creator and ...
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