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Sex + Relationships

Real Live College Guy: He’s Freshly Single, Should I Make a Move?

We all need a little guidance now and then, so whether you’re stressed about a fling gone wrong, a recently wrecked relationship or how to handle a stage-five clinger, Real Live College Guy Dale is here to help you navigate the college dating scene.

There is this guy that I really like. Well, he recently broke up with his girlfriend. About a week after they broke up, we made out. However, I don’t want to be just a rebound. How long should I wait until I make another move on him? –No Rebound at Ramapo


Ramapo,

Too late.

I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but you’re already the rebound. Outside of telling him that you’re not okay with being the rebound and calling things off, there’s not much you can do about that. Why? A week after they broke up, he was already trying to find new prospects. To me, that shows that he’s rushing into something new before he’s had time to really comprehend what he just went through.

But let’s move on to your question: After a breakup, how long should someone wait before making a move? The truth is that there’s no one-size-fits-all answer to that. Some people move on faster than others, and it really depends on the breakup. Was it amicable? Was it disastrous? Whose heart was broken? It also depends on another factor: How long were they together?

I’ve heard different things, Ramapo. I’ve heard people say it takes half the length of the relationship to truly get over someone, I’ve heard people say it takes twice as long as the length of the relationship… I’ve heard a lot of things, which means that there’s no certain answer. That’s just the way it is.

Now, you might be wondering, “How can I tell if he is or is not over his ex?” For starters, does he talk about her around you? If so, is he saying nice things, or is he bitter? When you’re out together, does he seem distant and unfocused? Is he trying to rush into something physical? In my experience, these are all examples of how guys who aren’t over their exes act.

As for how long should you wait? I’d love to tell you to wait until it seems like he’s ready, but that’s how rebounds happen. Sometimes, people seem ready when they really aren’t. You’re best bet here — if you really like him — is to communicate with him. Your feelings here are just as valid as his. You deserve to be with someone who isn’t just using you as a crutch to get over someone else. I’ve been in that position, and it’s not fun.

Talk to him about it. I think you’ve already fallen into rebound territory, but it’s not too late to get out of it.

Fill out my online form.

Dale Lavine is a 21-year-old college junior majoring in Media Studies & Political Science at Old Dominion University in Norfolk, VA. Outside of Her Campus, his words have been featured in publications such as USA Today College, Esquire, Fearless Men, CoolAppsMan.com, and The Commonwealth Times. When not penning his weekly columns, he enjoys hot showers, naps, Starbucks, and Jameson (neat). Want to know more? Need real-time relationship help? Readers are more than welcome to follow Dale on Twitter (@misterlavine).
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