The Importance Of Giving And Getting Closure When A Relationship Doesn’t Work Out

September 25, 2014  |  

When a relationship has ended, it can be a difficult thing to handle and get over, especially if things were good but ended up coming to an abrupt end. When relationships end it can be for a variety of reasons, including infidelity, a poor communication, financial issues, and a lack of chemistry to name a few. For the most part, when a love affair has ended, each party has a good idea why, but sometimes relationships end and one party is left in the dark. Some people stop calling, sending text messages, become distant or change their behavior in general without warning. If two intelligent adults claim to be in a monogamous relationship, then one would think that if something is going on that could possibly affect their relationship in a negative way, the bothered party would communicate it. Unfortunately, many people take the easy way out by bowing out ungracefully and abruptly ending a relationship with someone without saying a word. So the other person is left out in the rain, having never received a valid explanation or getting the chance to let the person know how they really felt. They never received closure.

While many people may believe that closure is not an important factor in moving on from a previous relationship, it really is. Leaving things unfinished allows room for the same person to come back and do the same thing. It hurts the self-esteem of the person left behind and the unanswered questions can scar a person emotionally without them realizing it. So what do you do when a person fails to give you the closure you need? How do you move forward without feeling left behind? Or better yet, how do you give yourself closure when the other person failed to do so? You can do so by remembering these few nuggets:

1. Decide that you’re ready to move on and that you’re going to take the necessary steps to do so (delete messages, their phone number, all social media contacts, etc.).

2. Make one final attempt to get an explanation from the other person. Reach out to them without putting your dignity on the line.

3. Give the person a reasonable deadline to get back to you (set by you) and if they don’t, no need to make a big deal out of it. You tried and they didn’t come through. Move forward.

4. Send them one last clean-cut, straightforward message letting them know how you feel and that this is the end of the road for them. There will be no coming back. Be sure that the message isn’t condescending or makes you look desperate, but be sure that it gets your point across and that it makes you feel better about letting go.

On the reverse side of things, while its good to give yourself closure when someone else doesn’t, it may be that the other person who doesn’t know how to do so. If you left a relationship behind without being fully open and honest, do the following:

1. Be upfront and honest with the person about why things weren’t working for you. Don’t beat around the bush because doing this will only damage the other person’s feelings more than you know.

2. Tell them face-to-face. This is common courtesy and respect.

3. Cut all ties with them so things won’t be complicated.

Closure is something that is necessary to one’s relationship health, whether people realize it or not. Why? Because it can make or break relationships to come and have a profound effect on decisions made. The mistake many people make in life and love when it comes to closure is that they rely on the other party to close the chapter so that they move forward without realizing that they can give themselves the closure needed. Don’t let your happiness hinge on someone else’s treatment of you.

Liz Lampkin is the Author of Are You. Reflection of the Man You Pray For? Follow her on Twitter @Liz_Lampkin

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