Over-lapper, definition: Someone who puts out feelers, dates, or begins a new relationship before ending an existing relationship. The status, or extent, of an over-lapper's existing relationship is often kept a secret from the new love interest.Habitual over-lappers don’t like to leave a relationship until they’ve got another one to go to.
Some signs and habits of an over-lapper:
- Habitual over-lappers are always lining up their next option, so it’s ready to use when needed.
- They reopen negotiations with their ex behind your back.
- They’ve got someone at work/the gym/club that they flirt with.
- They’re confiding their problems, real or imagined, to someone at work (or elsewhere).
- They’ve got someone mooning over them and becoming an indispensable "friend".
- They stroll down memory lane on Facebook with someone from high school or college, aka "The High School Sweetheart".
Let’s be real, some people don’t do being alone very well. I know a few people who’ve never had a clean break between relationships.
Some people need to have their ego stroked elsewhere when they experience relationship problems. It gives them reassurance, because getting attention and possibly the offer of another relationship from someone else must mean that the problem isn’t theirs.
Over-lappers don’t gain any insights from their relationships, and they will repeat the same mistakes over and over again. They just transfer feelings and emotions to a new partner and assume that new surroundings and a clean slate means old problems are solved, as if to suggest that they had no contribution to failed relationships and have nothing to learn.
It’s safe to say that sometimes the new partner is/was unaware of the existence of their relationship with a current partner when they became involved. When the over-lapper is caught, a common excuse used is: “Oh we were pretty much over by then!” or “Baby, I was afraid I’d lose you, so I lied."
To be clear though, regardless of what state a current relationship was in at the time a new relationship was started... over-lapping is cheating.
Even if it didn’t get physical, overlapping equals an emotional affair.
The over-lapper's new partner may feel flattered while they are enjoying the honeymoon glow new stage of the relationship. But they don’t realize that your average over-lapper is demonstrating that when faced with problems and conflict in a relationship, they don’t do problem-solving. They will simply repeat the pattern and begin to look for a new partner.
Note: If you’re with an over-lapper, ask about their breakups. If this pattern of behavior is habitual, know that you could be the next victim as soon as the over-lapper feels unhappy or discontent within your relationship. Also, bear in mind that when an over-lapper is questioned about past relationships, they may not be honest about the numbers.