After a divorce or split from a long-term relationship, many individuals try to make up for their emotional losses by rushing right into another relationship. This is because divorce feels like such a personal failure.
Although you may have had no control over the situation, you might still blame yourself for the course of the events and long to prove to yourself that you will not repeat this pattern. If your partner left you for someone else, or if they were demeaning or critical you might also desire the approval of the opposite sex to the extent that you become "blind" to logic.
Rebound relationships can also be the result of trying to make up for "lost time" spent mourning the previous relationship or an attempt to compete with the ex by finding a new partner before he or she does.
No matter what, when a marriage or long-term relationship ends, you are likely to go through the five stages of grief: shock, denial, anger, sadness, and acceptance. There is no underestimating the enormous impact of these reactions, even if you had a gut feeling that you knew about the affair all along.
Your relationship will also probably go through three phases. The first is the reaction to the affair, the second is the decision as to what to do about it and the last is a recuperation phase (whether or not you decide to stick it out with your partner in the end.) If your partner is not willing to be part of the decision and recuperation phases, you may find yourself subconsciously searching for a relationship that will participate in these phases of grief resolution with you.
Rebound relationships, which never last long, seem to occur as the result of two people projecting idealistic notion onto each other. A delusion occurs as one person creates an understanding of the future of the relationship that differs from the new partner. Usually these issues are about commitment. However, both parties feel a great sense of temporary relief from being with each other. They may also be getting companionship, emotional support and attention that they feel that they can't get elsewhere.
Usually, both participants in a rebound relationship are completely blind to obvious evidence that the two of them are actually incompatible. The glue that holds the two of them together is along the lines of the phrase "Anything is better than being alone."
Some people embark on rebound relationships, as they can't release the past until they are put through the process of trying to build a new intimacy with someone else. Blocked or repressed emotions that were not expressed towards the ex partner may now be "acted out" on the new partner.
The new partner offers them a comfort and an emotional security that makes it easy to act out anger and other toxic emotions that could not, for reasons of emotional inaccessibility, be acted out on the former partner.
Emotional issues and needs that were not brought out during the divorce or split will often rise to the surface and affect the new rebound relationship. As one or the other or both partners in the rebound relationship work out these issues, usually a process of emotional transformation occurs that frees the grief-stricken individual from the past.
As the person is healed, they have no more need for their rebound relationship. The partner in the rebound relationship can't grow, as it was only there to provide temporary emotional support and allay grief and pain. Rebound relationships don't have long term potential simply because the needy person will have embarked on a process of emotional recovery.
Relationship counselors recommended that a widowed or divorced individual should wait about a year before they begin looking for another committed relationship. This gives you the time to work through the shock, anger and despair that probably accompanied your loss.
Before embarking on another relationship, it is important for you to do some soul searching and make sure that you are actually ready for another commitment. If you were the perpetrator in the split some serious self-examination might reveal that your real goal is to work on some other area of your life such as your creative side or career.
It can also prevent you from initiating a long-term pattern of going from one chaotic emotional situation to another in the future. Many people have a series of bad relationships, not because they are a perpetual victim or have bad luck, but because they have not taken the time out that they need to ground themselves and heal. In some cases, an individual can rebound several times on ONE relationship simply because they are looking for a substitute for their previous partner as opposed to a relationship that will work. One sure sign that you are about to enter a rebound relationship is if the new partner seems somehow "familiar" to you.
Another indicator that the relationship is rebound in its nature is if you see your new partner as somehow rescuing you from the last situation. You might think this because the new partner might be encouraging you to see him or her in this light so that they can feel powerful. Helping others or being an emotional "rescuer" is one way that emotionally injured individuals can boost their self-esteem.
Rather than look at a split or divorce as a loss, you are well advised to look at the glass as half-full. This is the time to take stock of your life as well as an honest accounting for your responsibility in the debacle (no matter how much you think your partner is to blame). This will help free you from the kind of desperation that leads so many into a rebound relationship that also ends in disaster.
Taken from: http://www.forbeginners.info/dating/rebound-relationships.htm