The Idea of Closure

3 years ago
This article was written by a member of the SheKnows Community. It has not been edited, vetted or reviewed by our editorial staff, and any opinions expressed herein are the writer’s own.

We have all experienced this at one time or another in our lives. The heartbreak of a relationship that wasn't meant to be but in our hearts we really felt it was. A crush that we had really hoped would like us back and we find out they aren't interested. It is that crushing feeling that makes us human and brings out that vulernable side. Sometimes the relationship or crush was short and yet the powerful feels of rejection makes it seem like it was way more. After it all comes crashing down the questions begin to come to mind. Why did it not work out? If it is not clear, what did I do wrong? What is wrong with me? Why wasn't I enough? Why did they do that to me? Why did they treat me that way? Why..Why..Why. 

Some people believe that the only way to move from a relationship ending is by getting closure. Others believe that closure is just something people use as an excuse to hang on to something or are hoping the answers to their questions will suddenly make things clear. The people who believe that believe that it is an excuse to hang on when instead you need to move on and not keep searching for something that won't really matter. There is no right or wrong way on how a person views the idea of closure. That might seem strange to say because it can hang people up and how is that a good thing? It is not a good thing by any means. The thing about it is there is no point at trying to convince someone to do something they don't want to do.  We all have been there before...a friend who is dating someone who is just plan scum. They hurt them and treat them badly...maybe they neglect them or make them feel less than they are or maybe they just cause your friend drama. They don't trust them...or the friend doesn't trust the significant other..maybe they fight a lot..the list can go on an on. I think you all catch my drift on this point.

The fact is at the end of the day no matter how much you advise the friend otherwise. Chances are your words are wasted because it won't change anything. The friend will continue to see this person and continue to have issues. We all know why that is because when we give at advice it is not really advice. Friends give friends opinions that we think is advice and rarely do friends actually follow through, why? Because we look at our friends and want what is best for them...but we dont' think about what is best for them through their eyes. We see what is best through our own eyes...our own values..our own wants and needs. We are bias because we think we know how things are suppose to be and what is best. The truth is though what our values and thoughts are...doesn't always match our friends. For example..I think it is important to go to college...start a career..once you are settled then look for the serious relationship. I have friends who don't believe that when I advise on things about this stuff..I advise based on what I think it right, just like everyone. While the friend doesn't always take it because they have a different mind set than I do. So telling someone to break up with someone is the same as telling them you don't need closure or closure won't help you after a break need to move on.  The person isn't ready to move on so they use closure or other excuses to hang on.  The only way for them to truly heal and move on successfully is to allow them the time they need to heal. They need to see things clear and think what they need to until a light bulb goes off for them.  If a person doesn't do that..they most likely will destroy the next relationship.

The only way to heal from a relationship is just to allow yourself time to process everything. If there are things you feel you need to work on do that because that is what will help make each relationship more successful than the last. 

I am the type who sometimes play the devil's advocate when it comes to thoughts and ideas. In a way I side with both sides of the closure agruement. I believe that closure can be a great way to see as much of the truth about a relationsip and the person you were dating as a person can get. I don't believe though that you can't move on unless you have it. I don't think you should seek it out or wait for it.  I don't think closure should be the reason you stop your life or you stop dating. I feel closure can be great therapy because it provides you with the answers you seek. The risk is that those answers could end up hurting you more, create more questions, catch you off guard or it could give you answers..but you still feel the same before them. 

So why do I think that it can be therapy? I think of it that way because ultimately closure is about you. Closure is a word masked by general think...the idea is it has to do with the person in the break up and what happened. When that really is not the truth...what it is is general truth..what people want to believe. The reason having the answers that you seek might not help is because it was not about them.  It is about you, the person who is struggling to move on and feels the only way to do that is to seek answers from another person. The problem is that is never the truth and that is never helpful. The answers everyone seeks is always within them. The other person isn't going to provide you with what you seek because they aren't you. They don't know what you are looking for or why you are held up. Only you know why you are truly held up and can't move on from certain things. The reason most don't want to admit it is because we are scared of what we will find out. We are afraid of what we may discover about ourselves and so we remain stuck.  

This is why I don't believe you can't move on without closure. In all reality closure never comes when we feel we need it the most. When a relationship ends we want the closure right we asked the questions. Maybe the ex answers them or maybe you aren't on talking terms. Fact is no matter what happened in a relationship both people are affected by it.  Others are just better at pretending like it meant nothing or that they are fine than others. The point is that you both are suffering in your own ways after a break up and not thinking clearly. So why would that be a good time to seek closure? The reality is it is better to get it months maybe even a year after it happens. It is ideal to wait till you feel like you could hang out with an ex and not have any want to be with them. Then you know that you won't get emotional and that is when a clear conversation can happen. There is nothing to lose or gain by the truth at that point...there is no real way to make things worse..because it is in the past. 

Until you are ready for that I feel it is better to seek the closure within yourself. Ask yourself why it is that you really feel like your ex can provide you with the things you seek? If you don't know..ask yourself again sometime later...eventually you will be able to answer. Eventually when you are ready you will be able to see the answer and be able to heal more rapidly than before. You have to be ready for it...the only way you will know is when it just happens. When one day you ask yourself the question and you answer it. Don't force yourself to answer it because that won't help. All that will do is lead to more frustration and angry..then you will say this doesn't work. If you can't answer..just don' day you will. That is when you know that rapid healing is not far away...and to stick with it. 

Closure is a personal thing that is defined by each individual on their own terms. Healing is healing and people need to heal during their own time and in their own way. It doesn't mean that closure is a right or wrong type of thing.  It just really depends on the person and what they feel they need. My hope is not to convince people that I am right or to make them agree with me. My hope for all the readers who read my blogs is that it makes them think. Just think for one moment and go "interesting".  That is all...just take a moment and ponder and if you get something out of it great. If not than that is just the way it goes. 


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