Rebound relationships are not entirely uncommon. Globally, many celebrities have reportedly indulged in such affairs. Recently, it was reported that Halle Berry, who announced her intention to divorce her husband, Olivier Martinez, in October 2015, is now dating rapper Chris Webby on the rebound.
Even Scarlett Johansson, who divorced Ryan Reynolds in 2011, was apparently in a rebound relationship with Sean Penn for a short while. Closer home, TV actor Divyanka Tripathi recently made headlines when she announced her engagement with co-actor Vivek Dahiya.
She started dating him months after she ended her nine-year-long relationship with TV actor Ssharad Malhotra. At that time, many reports called hers a classic case of the rebound, where a person starts dating someone shortly after breaking up with his or her partner.
So, what makes people opt for such relationships? “Break-ups are hard on most people. On the rebound, you may not be looking for love, but just a substitute for your ex,” says relationship expert Vishnu Modi, adding that often, rebound relationships are less about the partner and more about the desire to continue being in a relationship.
Dr Riddhish K Maru, consultant psychiatrist and counsellor, puts things into perspective, saying, “People on the rebound want to have someone in their lives. Starting a new relationship makes them forget the anger, grief and sadness, which are residues of a broken affair. The feeling that you’re dating someone again boosts your ego and self-esteem, even though a person on the rebound may not have any connection whatsoever with the new partner.”
Is there a time frame that one should consider before getting into another relationship post a break-up? Not according to Modi. “Psychologically, grief is the normal reaction to any loss, even if it means a broken affair. Grief can last up to six months, or more or less, depending on the person. What’s important is that a person needs to realise that his or her relationship is finally over, and one should wait till the time he or she is completely over his or her past relationship,” says Maru.
Filling the void
Experts say that while different people have different reasons for getting into rebound relationships, the most common one is the need to fill the void left behind by the ex-partner. “You may get into a rebound relationship with expectations of getting back what you miss about your ex, knowingly or unknowingly. This could be sex, attention or basic care. During this time, you may ignore what your new partner can offer you because you are looking only for specific aspects, which were part of your old relationship,” says Modi.
However, Maru feels that not all rebound relationships are short-lived, and can, in some cases, become serious long-lasting associations. “If a person helps his or her partner who is on the rebound get over an ex, it may grow into a meaningful relationship. You should be honest with your partner, and not let him or her take emotional advantage of you. Don’t be suspicious. Know that comparisons are inevitable,” he says.
Celebrities who have reportedly been in rebound relationships
Katy Perry and John Mayer
Just when she was about to end her marriage with Russell Brand in 2012, Perry started dating Mayer. The two still share an on-and-off relationship, and were last spotted together in September 2015.
Jennifer Love Hewitt and Jamie Kennedy
After ending her engagement with Scottish actor Ross McCall in 2008, Hewitt started dating Kennedy in March 2009. The relationship didn’t last, and Hewitt later got married to Brian Hallisay in 2013.
Leonardo DiCaprio and Blake Lively
After ending his relationship with Israeli model Bar Refaeli in early 2011, DiCaprio started dating Lively in May 2011. But the short-lived affair ended in October, the same year.
Jennifer Lopez and Casper Smart
Lopez started dating Smart in October 2011, after announcing her split from husband Marc Anthony in July 2011. The affair lasted for three years.
Nicole Richie and Brody Jenner
Richie started dating Jenner after ending her engagement with DJ AM, also known as Adam Goldstein, in 2005. The relationship lasted only for a few months. Post the break-up, Richie posted a message on her MySpace account, which said, “Heart was never in it.”
Jennifer Lawrence and Chris Martin
Both Lawrence and Martin were reportedly on the rebound when they started dating in 2014. She and Nicholas Hoult had split up in August 2014, and Gwyneth Paltrow and Martin had announced their separation in March 2014. They were reported to have broken up in August 2015.
Ashton Kutcher and Mila Kunis
Five months after Demi Moore and Kutcher ended their six-year marriage in November 2011, Kutcher and Kunis announced in April 2012 that they were dating.