Why You Don’t Need Closure To Move On
This one might be a bit of a tough love post today. Apologies in advance, but 1) I feel strongly about this topic, and it comes up a lot. Like, a lot; and 2) I’m writing this on a plane. Since flying is not my fave, I'm not particularly funny on a plane.
So now that I’ve just given you the best. intro. ever. that would totally make you want to keep reading, let’s get on with it…
People come to me a lot with what they believe is a serious need for closure in their relationships. They yearn for that sense of completion, that even if things didn’t end how they would have liked, that they gained something from it. And we want some way to prove it, dammit.
But the problem is: There’s no such thing as closure.
“Closure” is an excuse.
Closure is an excuse to reach out. To have one more conversation. To give it one last ditch effort to see if he even cares or if he really is that big of a [insert nasty name of choice]. To know that all that time, effort, energy, lust and like didn’t go to waste. To make yourself feel better about how things went down. To gain clarity on something that will most likely be eternally unclear. To be validated. To feel like you matter. To feel human.
To seek closure is to seek external validation.
It’s another attempt to go outside yourself to try and find the answers you already know you have within, especially if—and this is most likely when you go a-searching—you don’t like the way those answers sound.
You see, you already got the closure. When he broke up with you. When he told you he couldn’t give you what you want. When you decided for the 19th time to stop talking to him because he was making you miserable. When he stopped calling. When all his red flags descended upon you in the beginning.
You have closure. You’ve had closure this whole time. You just don’t like how it feels. You don’t like how it sounded. You don’t like how quickly it happened. You needed more time. More time to process. More time to be a part of the decision. More time to get ok with what was happening and how you were supposed to deal with it going forward.
Sometimes it’s easier to rip the band-aid off. Sometimes, the band-aid gets ripped for you.
Let’s play a game. Let’s say you were to write that email, have that conversation, or have that final meet-up to talk about anything and everything your heart desires. To yell, scream, cry, question and try to get an understanding of why and how and who and what and when. And, usually, to pin-point that exact moment where maybe, just maybe, if you could have done this, that or the other, things would have turned out differently… [SPOILER ALERT: You couldn’t and they wouldn’t.]
Really think about it. Play it out in your head. You already know exactly what he’ll say and how he’ll respond. It will be the saaaaaame stuff he’s been saying and the saaaaame response he’s been giving you. How do you feel after that talk? Better? Clearer? Energized? On cloud 9?
Didn’t think so.
You feel just like you feel now. Only you’ve had to deal with seeing him again, hearing him again, reliving the pain of the initial letdown.
With or without the “closure” talk, the end result is the same. A closure talk isn’t going to change anything.
So ask yourself why you think you need this “closure.” And try, really try, to see if you can’t already give that to yourself without it. It’s not the easy way, but it’s the only way.
[Aaaand we’ve touched down. ThankyousweetbabyJesus.]