Bonding Over A Broken Heart (and Other Negative Foundations for a Relationship)


Some of us have ‘a type’ we are attracted to and continually date – the chic geek, the slightly-rough-around-the edges bad boy, the elderly troll/silver fox, etc. Then there are others who are drawn to people with similar interests. For instance, you both met a running club and then decided there was a more effective type of cardio ūüėČ Or you connected through your mutual interest in zombies. In any case, there are a multitude of reasons why people end up together and some are certainly more positive that others.

While I personally believe that there is something to be said for that age-old idea, ‘Opposites Attract’ (because does any girl want to really want to date the male version of herself), I will acknowledge that there are long-term benefits in entering into a relationship with someone who shares at least some of your interests and, more importantly, your outlook on life. Ultimately, I guess, these are the type of things that form the foundation of relationship and what anchor two people when the going gets tough. Generally, people who truly are polar opposites of one another find it easier to runway from one another during a rough patch – e.g. he’ll turn to God during a time of crisis and you’ll throw yourself into training for a marathon and then BOOM you end up spending more time apart than together.

However, as important as commonalities are, I think there are certain shared interests or experiences that have the potential to do more harm than good when they become the basis of a relationship. As a simplistic example, imagine two people embark on romantic relationship based on a common love of drugs and alcohol. During happy times they shoot up together and when the bad days come along they hit the bottle thereby encouraging one another on the slippery slop to destruction. Sure things are never that simple but you get what I am saying…having a partner that reflects all the negative aspects of yourself isn’t really all that healthy.

Now for a slightly less clear-cut example. Most of us have suffered as a result of a break-up. Anyone with some basic Tinder experience will tell you that many of the people you meet have a recent ex. As I’ve said in previous posts by the time we hit 30 most of us have baggage and/or a broken heart…but how about when it is that broken heart that connects you to a new potential beau? You spend your dates talking about your exes, complaining about all the bad things they did and crying on each others shoulders.

When candidly opening your heart to someone it’s easy to kid yourself into believing that you are making this intense connection. But let’s be honest, all you are doing isusing one another as a free therapist. Talking about your issues is sure to make you feel good. But the problem with sharing personal heartbreak stories while simultaneously pursuing a relationship with another broken person is that you are embarking on this ‘love’ affair when you are both at your most vulnerable.

That heartbroken person that being presented to the world isn’t the real person we’d find once all the dust settled. Immediately after a traumatic break-up it’s natural for a person to be sad, angry and generally self-destructive. In some cases, people might seize their new found freedom and party hard in order distract themselves from the sad reality of being single. Regardless, the person we meet and supposedly form a connection with during this vulnerable stage isn’t likely to be the same person in 6 months time. Bring two such people into the mix and you’ve a recipe for disaster…

In an ideal world those who had recently experienced a horrific break-up would take the time to focus on themselves and heal that broken heart instead of just jumping into the next relationship. However, this is most definitely easier said than done. So if you do end up jumping back on the dating horse instead of wallowing I would say go for it but keep those eyes wide open.Realise that you are probably not ready for anything serious and if you do find yourself attracted to another broken hearted soul try to keep it light and fluffy thereby limiting the fallout.

OK Rinsers its time for you to talk. Have you ever bonded with a significant other over something negative? Do you think it’s dangerous to get involved with someone who has recently broken up with a partner an has a brokenheart? Do you think a relationship based on ‘helping’ each other fix those broken hearts is destined to end in trouble. Answers below!




  1. I think it is dangerous when you boohoo over the recent ex as you said it is the vulnerable stage. What happens when that is over what will have with the potential new beau? Another danger is see how the person talks about that ex …they could be saying those things about you.


  2. There’s no right or wrong way to connect…nurturing that connection past the treacherous moments of doubt, conflict, boredom and incompatibility is the challenge? How could anyone possibly account for every single difference that may occur? You can’t, so focus on acceptance and understanding yourselfūüėé

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Haha!! You know my answer to these questions, but most of the readers do not, so here IT IS:


    I have been attracted to people who are emotionally f-ed, but only because my type is “unavailable,” definitely not because I want to fix them… or have them fix me! That’s what my friends are for!! Help someone try new things, not new people!


    Liked by 2 people

    • But silly people (like me) kid themselves. I think it’s nice to know you are not the only person with a broken heart. I think we just need to bear in mind these people can only ever be distractions.


  4. Breaks from the opposite are good regardless I find. Every so often you get so disillusioned from it all that a break is good. And when you a fighting fit again you are more prepared for the challenges that dating throws at you.


  5. […] Protecting a friend from a having a heart broken¬†is one thing – you may manage to force yourself to take a step back or your friend will withdraw and you’ll be forced to do so externally. Whichever is the case trying to keep a non-judgmental attitude is probably the hardly achievable ideal.¬†It doesn’t mean that you have to lie about what you think but it means that you have to do all to make sure that your friend feels comfortable enough with you to talk to you if things actually take the wrong turn and not be scared to approach because you were being judgy and they scared that they’ll hear “I told you so” from you. Not that it’s easy and not that I don’t make this mistake myself but one thing I’m slowly learning is that you need to let people do what they want to do. It gets easier if we remember that advice seeking is¬†often an attempt to find someone to just listen or even to validate the fears one has and then rebel against what he or she¬†knows is true. […]

    Liked by 1 person

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