When I was in college I had a girlfriend I’d been with for around two years. She moved one state over for her job, I stayed where I was for my job, and about two weeks into this attempt at long-distance it all fell apart.
That wasn’t the part that surprised me. What surprised me was how incredibly quickly there was another guy in the picture for her. She was one of those people who just never seemed to be alone.
So how does this happen? Why does this happen? Let’s get some opinions from Reddit people.
1. The mental checkout.
In my experience, people who are serial monogamists emotionally/mentally check out of their current relationship and start looking for their next partner (long) before the end.
Had this happen with two exes…both pulled away over the course of about 3-6 months and immediately after our breakups were dating people they knew from work/hobbies/extended social circles.
I don’t know if this is a widespread phenomenon, but that has been my experience.
2. “Vine swinging.”
Attractive works. But, the other route is what i see many people do. Which was coin by the great philosopher and poet George Costanza, “Vine swinging”.
They setup the next relationship before the one they’re in ends. Happens very often, some times it’s the cause of the break up. Some times simply a circumstantial thing.
3. All in the family.
I have a friend who does this, she normally meets people online and then goes to meet them in person. As long as I have known her, since she started dating in middle school, she has always had a boyfriend in some form.
I honestly think it was because of her mother, who treated her sister better than her and didn’t act like she wanted her around.
It was a need for affection from someone that evolved into depending on someone to be there for her.
4. Fear of loneliness.
I had a friend like this; she just didn’t like the idea of being alone and said yes to any guy that asked her out.
The dude usually ended up being the same: not wanting to be alone.
5. Planting the seeds.
The ones I know who do this plant the seeds for a new relationship before they end the old one.
They decide they want to break up, so they go huntin’, and don’t break up until they’re sure they’ve found someone who’ll date them. Or they meet someone they want to date and ditch their current partner.
They’re just very good at picking up new partners, which makes sense since they’ve had a lot of practise. And at least one of the people I’ve met who bounces from relationship to relationship is not very picky
6. Dropping hints.
The one time I left one relationship and jumped into another, I was unhappy dating the one guy and had been dropping hints that I was going to break up, and he was actively trying to convince me not to, so I caved in and waited for a good excuse or moment. Then I met a dude at a new job and felt an instant connection. That was the push I needed, so I broke up with dude A and got together with dude B.
Now that I’m not 19 years old, I know myself well enough and have enough confidence in my perception that I wouldn’t let myself be talked into staying in a relationship that didn’t suit me.
I’m also lucky enough to be able to support myself alone on one income, so I’m not forced to find someone else to share bills with before I can afford to leave a sh*tty relationship. I’m sure that plays a role for many people.
7. Social circles.
Don’t let your social circle shrink into nothing while your dating. Always have options, and having friends gives you many options. Assuming that they will set you up with other people.
General tips. Sett boundaries. Have a plan for your life. Value yourself first. Don’t be afraid to end it.
8. Not all negative.
Let’s break some of the negativity on this thread.
Humans aren’t solitary creatures. We form families or tribes. Things are easier when we’re together. There’s shared work and shared resources. Nothing wrong with being alone, but being part of a group (even two) makes life easier and potentially more rewarding.
Just flipping the script on most of these comments indicating that there’s somehow something wrong with “these people”
9. Gotta bounce.
Was in a relationship with someone who would bounce from one to the next. She couldn’t give the correct love needed and my needs didn’t matter eventually.
We had a long relationship and I broke her cycle of boyfriends but it was a struggle. I just hope I helped her honestly but I don’t talk to her anymore.
10. Places of obligation.
I used to meet people at the places i was obligated to be. School, work, friend groups, friends of exs, etc. before i decided that was too much drama.
As for bouncing between people? I made it very clear to my partners that my relationships were casual and i didnt get super attached. Of course ive at this point accidentally gotten attached a few times, but those just serve to remind me of EXACTLY why i need to never get attached again
11. Happy alone.
Honestly, I am one of these people and after a recent PROPER heartbreak, I’ve realized it’s not healthy and for the first time in my life I am going to focus on myself and being happy alone. The heartbreak has taught me so much in just 3 weeks, and I am not going to be ready for a relationship for a very long time after being led on and treated badly by someone I fell really hard for way too soon.
I’ve always had options because I’m a very kind and understanding person with a huge loving heart and listening ear, I am very down to earth, and I am an attractive woman who is super nerdy so I’ve always got gamer guy friends who adore me.
12. The waiting game.
I think a lot of people are missing one point that is very important to the equation. A lot of people find future partners that are currently in relationship and are waiting for them to become single to make a move. Have you Ever wondered why whenever you’re in a relationship you seem to be attracting more women ???
It’s because the fact that you are in a relationship shows that you have a specific set of characteristics or at least some kinds of minimum set of qualities That makes you dateable. It’s similar to buying a product because it’s popular, because it’s popular it shows that there’s some quality to it and you being in a relationship shows that you have that quality. So you might not fit with your current partner Needs but you might fulfill the needs of somebody else.
So in the end it isn’t necessarily the person that’s in a relationship that is looking on the outside to date but the outside world seeing your boyfriend/ girlfriend as a valued because you made them so
13. Emotionally easy.
I haven’t been single for more than six months consecutively since I was 16, and I’m 31 now. ?
I’ve been in a lot of long term relationships where the last year is a slow, steady decline. After each one, there’s been a gap of like, two or three months before a friend admits to being attracted to me and asks me out and generally it goes from there. None of the people I’ve ended up dating hit on me when I was in a relationship; I don’t really tolerate people disrespecting my current partner. But, historically, I get asked out by someone pretty quickly when one relationship ends.
I have a wide circle of friends, I get emotionally attached easily, and don’t like to give up on romantic partners even when things are rocky (though I am getting better at that).
I’ve never cheated on a partner since one time when I was 16 (felt horrible; zero stars; do not recommend and will not do again), but I also never stayed single for long. I think it’s more of a combination of being “emotionally easy,” willing to commit quickly, unwilling to break up without like seventy million “how can we fix this” convos, and being a fairly driven, outgoing, and semi-attractive female.
14. Follow the rules.
Rule 1: Be attractive.
15. That simple?
They’re less picky.
Whatever it is, I hope everyone gets a chance to find their one true love. Or like…a bunch of them, I guess.
Do you have insights into this phenomenon?
Tell us in the comments.