What was the first thought that entered your head when you learned that Amber Heard is divorcing Johnny Depp after 15 months of marriage? Did your reaction have anything to do with what you think about the perils of rebound romance? Did you recall that Depp met the actress on the set of their 2011 movie and then soon made their relationship public in 2012 after announcing a split from his partner of 14 years? We’re learning that a lot of turmoil surrounds this sad story. Maybe now is a time to hear what the experts have to say about love on the rebound.


If someone gets involved in a romance shortly after the end of a previous relationship, we tend to think they are feeling sad and angry. We question their ability to make good decisions in choosing a new partner.


Women who date men who are on the rebound may have a lot of doubt about whether they are only a substitute for a lost love. Is it real attraction and a genuine emotional connection that draws the rebounder immediately to a new partner? Or is he just looking to fill empty space out of a fear of being alone?


Most of us tend to think the broken-hearted should get over the last relationship before moving on to the next one. Little research has been done on rebound relationships. However, experts say the limited study suggests that turning attention to someone new actually does help recovery.


Men and women need connection. A considered length of time between relationships isn’t a requirement, and going forward actually can help one heal. The speed with which he finds you doesn’t mean he values you less than his ex. His romance with you actually gives him a chance to judge how much more the new relationship meets his emotional needs.


The bottom line is this: Don’t let the sad end of the Johnny Depp-Amber Heard marriage scare you off if a man on the rebound approaches you. Remember that you never know what goes on inside other people’s marriages. The Depp-Heard story may have nothing to teach us about the chances of rebound relationships succeeding.


For a closer look at love on the rebound, check out what Mary C. Lamia, Ph.D., has to say about rebound relationships.