The old adage "once bitten, twice shy" may hold true for some people after a relationship fails. However, some people jump quickly into new relationships instead of taking the time to heal from the pain and anguish of being left or feeling rejected. The need to feel loved, and worthy of being loved, overrides the caution of being hurt again.
Without taking stock of what happened in the previous relationship and what role each person played in the demise of the relationship, it is highly likely that the same patterns of relating and behaving will plague the new relationship. The rate of second marriages ending in divorce is higher than the rate of first marriages, likely in part, due to repetition of mistakes made in the earlier marriage. Jumping into a new relationship too soon is not unlike putting a band-aid on a deep infected wound without examining it.
Much as examining and cleaning out the metaphorical wound might hurt and sting in the short run, keep in mind that an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Continuing with the metaphor of the need to examine the old wounds, here are a few questions you may want to answer honestly:
While you are looking at the problems that infected your last relationship, don’t forget to look at the healthy parts of you and take stock of your strengths:
For the next relationship to be more successful and happier, here are seven ways to stack the odds in your favor:
Becoming aware of your vulnerabilities and your tendency to react unconsciously can be made easier with the help of a mental health professional. The objectivity of someone who is not a close friend or a part of your family is helpful to gain a fresh perspective. For keeping track of your journey use the help of therapists, journaling, or apps like Divorceworks to monitor your emotional journey.