Whether it’s with a friend, family member, coworker, or in a romantic relationship, moving on from a breakup without any closure feels impossible.
How can you really move on, feel at peace, and let go when there’s no real closure and you have no idea how to get closure?
Easy! You can’t.
Why do we even want closure?
- Instead of being picky with what matters (your thoughts and feelings, the story in your head that you keep subscribing to, quality partners, mutual relationships, etc.), you’re closure picky. You convince yourself that unless you get the specific closure you deserve, you’ll never be able to move on. While it’s totally normal to want an answer in order to feel like we can move forward, you take it to an unhealthy level by not budging until you get that specific “closure” (which, even if you got, never actually leads to a feel-good, “ending.” It generally leads to more drama and even more confusion than before).
- Escapism. Plain and simple. Hunting for closure is a total escape and a form of avoidance. As long as you can busy up your time with the closure seeking, you don’t have to face dealing with your emotions and moving on. You keep yourself busy by bandaging the proverbial paper cuts on your hands, all while not addressing the fact that you have cancer.
- You want to be vindicated and you want the other person to acknowledge that what they did was wrong. You want them to empathize with you and see it from your side. You also may need them to give you closure so you can feel less guilty/bad about yourself.
The effects of not getting closure:
- As long as you can convince yourself that the other person holds the key to your emotional jail cell, you give yourself a license to continue to remain invested. I did this in the past because: I wasn’t ready to let go of the relationship. I was scared to move on and accomplish anything in my own life. It was much easier to allow someone else to have all of the power because mine had been depleted. I had endured too much and they “owed” it to me. Not only is this level of emotional unintelligence extremely unattractive, but being entitled gets you nowhere in life.
- As long as I was still waiting for a “resolution,” I didn’t have to focus on myself (which I avoided at all costs).
- Because I couldn’t cut the cord on my own, I became addicted to seeking validation and attention from the very people who I needed to give me closure. This ended up giving them enough closure to write me off.
- Self-blame. You will continue to blame yourself as long as you continue to seek closure from someone who is unable to give it to you. If someone treated you poorly enough to want closure from them, they won’t be able to give it to you.
- In my quest to get closure, I was consciously AVOIDING real closure. I comfortably resided under the umbrella of needing closure so that I could have a license to avoid trusting my gut and acting on my intuition (which was scary). I never wanted to get the real closure that I claimed to need. Deep down, I knew that if I ever got that kind of resolution, I’d have to let go, feel my feelings, deal with the pain, address my own issues and move on. “Closure hunting” had officially become my adult pacifier.
How to get closure when you have none…
- If you find yourself in a situation where the other person treated you with a consistent lack of respect, honesty, kindness, loyalty, and love, DO NOT try to get closure from them. You will just end up being made to look and feel crazy. Remember – you don’t need closure from anyone. You want it. You CAN provide it for yourself without having to engage with the very people who have hurt badly enough to want closure from them.
- Understand that closure hunting ALWAYS involves getting off of your white horse. And you never want to do that because you then, you can no longer act in dignity and be The One That Got Away.
- Provide closure for yourself by listening to the other person’s PATTERNS (which are made up of their actions) instead of listening to empty words. You’ll never get closure that you feel good about if you have to beg and pry it out of someone. This is why they teach us in Kindergarten that actions speak louder than words. If you LISTEN to the actions and patterns of others, you’ll have all the closure you need.
- Instead of humiliating yourself in the process of trying to “figure out the truth” from someone that was unwilling to be honest with you (and themselves) in the first place, answer your own questions and create your own closure by being grounded in what you do know and what you have witnessed. Little by little, you’ll start to feel better.
- Denying reality will prevent acceptance (and closure). The truth really does set you free,
You hold the key to your own prison cell. You’ve got all of the answers; they’ve been with you all along.
+ If you need further and more personalized help with your relationship, please look into working with me here.
Natasha! Your posts always come at the perfect time. Thank you so much for this. This post gave me the closure that I was looking for. I have the power now to dictate my OWN closure! Ps- where is your dress from in your last Instagram post? I need to know!! You are so beautiful ??? Thanks!
I agree with Giselle! The only one stopping myself from having closure is me, and it’s time for me to take control of my life and realize how much power I actually have in living the life of my dreams. Thank you so much for everything Natasha, I’ve grown so much as a woman because of you and your posts!!! Love you so much!
love u sister xx
Thanks from the bottom of my heart! Love you sister xx
I can’t tell you how much your blog has saved me the past six weeks. I was in such a dark cycle for two years, and I couldn’t find the strength to walk away. When he finally left me, I found PMS and the resolve to go no contact. I saw my ex today, and he did’t even acknowledge me. And I put my hand on my tribe bracelet and acted completely unfazed. It hurt, but I got through it. Thank you for being such a straight-talking angel!
Hi J! There is nothing I could say that would even begin to express how much your comment meant to me. You brought me to tears. I know what you’re going through; I know how painful and hard it is. Thank you for being a part of this tribe and remember, it takes one to know one – you are an angel too. An angel that has allowed me to see that I’m not and was never alone in my experiences, pain and feelings. All my love to you soul sister x
Great article…much needed at this time when I am struggling post break up…love your blog and all of your posts! xoxo
Hi Kristina! Thanks so much for the love and for taking the time to share. Keep coming back here to the blog; you WILL get past this. You’re part of a tribe here 🙂 All my love to you soul sis XOXO
If you were a baseball player you would be number one pick for the Allstars. You seem to get it right every time. I think the idea of closure is fascinating and is overdone. It is our desire to avoid ambiguity in life and sadly that is not possible. When we provide our own definitive answers to unknowns we take control of our lives, just as you have so elegantly described. Keep it coming Natasha, I am your number one fan.
You are so right! I never thought of it that way! Love you beyond words. XOXO
Not having closure can be a b****. I’ve spent countless amount of times trying to get my ex to talk to me about what is going on between us. I was utterly crushed, never did I feel so much suffocating pain and torture. June 10th I will never forget that night when my ex had cancelled our plans to talk about our issues to go hang out with someone else. I was literally on the floor sobbing, rocking back and forth. Calling any friend who will be willing to talk to me before I go and do something stupid. I was a hot ass mess. Never felt the need for closure until that night I was in complete desperation for my ex to just be straight up with me. Writing this is even a brutal reminder of what I went through, but eventually I began seeking help and trying to get peace within myself. Am I still a hot ass mess? Yes. But I’m understanding that the power is in my hands and I’m learning not to play the fool again. It’s been two months since my ex ended things with me unofficially..there wasn’t any notice, any signs of a break up, no talks, no warnings, no discussing, nothing! I got nothing from my ex and I thought I deserved more at least a closure. But no, that closure came from me. I came to the conclusion why would I want closure from someone as deceitful as my ex. All my ex is going to do is feed me a bunch of lies. Getting closure from a dishonest, disloyal person is like getting closure from a roach. It’s meaningless. That’s what helped me to realize I shouldn’t be desperate for it. Thanks Natasha for writing this, it’s been such a journey from where I was 2 months ago. I feel a lot stronger and a lot more at peace. It’s just that I still miss my ex after all this drama and anger stemming from how we ended and I wish I can just turn the “I miss you button” off because I feel that you should only miss people who are worth missing. My ex is not worth missing, but yet I still do and its like I just want to stop. In due time…in due time….
YES! SO PROUD OF YOU SISTER!! 🙂 love u xoxo
A quote I like to live by is “Life becomes easier when we learn to accept the apology we never got.” Never go looking for the “I’m sorry” or closure from that person who isn’t giving it to you or never gave it to you. They clearly aren’t mature enough to know their behavior is wrong and hurtful. You should never have to seek out an apology. Stay on the white horse and be that awesome, classy woman you are.
Trust me, from experience they will always wonder after you have gracefully bowed out from their lives 🙂
YESSS! I love that quote and couldn’t agree more 🙂 thanks Alex!! xoxo
I just wanted to say thank you Natasha. Your posts have helped me tremendously over the past 6 months dealing with a break-up from an emotionally unavailable person. I didn’t want to believe what you wrote at first, that he will never change, but everything you say has proven so true.
After no contact for months, my ex got my hopes up by making contact every once in a while, telling me that he missed me, wanted to be a part of my life, not to give up on him, etc…. I was ecstatic, but of course, as soon as I replied and told him my feelings of wanting to be together, he gave me the classic you’re-amazing-but-I-can’t-I’m-no-good-for-you-I-can’t-give-you-what-you-want-or-deserve bullsh*t.
This post really resonated with me, because the biggest part of my struggle with moving on is that I want to understand all the whys that never got explained. Why is he emotionally unavailable? Is it because he is physically incapable? Or is he just choosing too be? Why, if he doesn’t want to be together, is he still gettnig in touch and dropping “I miss you” bombs? Does he know he’s hurting me? Does he even care????……the list goes on and on.
Your posts have helped understand some of the whys, but this post has made me realize that none of them matter. Because at the end of the day – he chose to treat me with a lack of respect, affection, kindness and love, and made me feel guilty and crazy for feeling hurt. I deserve so much more than that.
It’s time to create my own closure: Why did he do it? Who cares. He doesn’t deserve to be a part of my life after the way he treated me. End of story.
Time to get back on focusing on me 🙂
Thank you Natasha, so grateful for this tribe xoxo
YES!!! You go girl! So proud of and happy for you. I’m honored to have played a small part in your realizations, evolution and healing. You’re doing the right thing; I believe in you. Thank you for being a part of this tribe, for motivating me and for allowing me to see that I was never and am never alone in my feelings, emotions and experiences. All my love to you soul sister. Giving you a giant hug! 🙂 XO
I just wanted to say thank you Natasha. I am so glad I found you. I was pursued by my ex in May of 2015 on social media. I was taking me time after an 11 break up. We went to high school together 25 years ago but I can’t recall him too much. We just chatted for a few months because he said he was just recently separated and that is just a red flag for me..So, we were just good friends. His wife and their 12 year old daughter moved out of the house and he was in the process of selling the home. We got closer but never intimate. Our souls connected and he said he loved but I still wanted to wait a year until the divorce was final. Well, after confessing our love in September 2015, we talked about our future. I told him he can move into my home after he sells his, it’s big enough and he could have had his own room an space. We were extremely close so I thought. Well, he got really sick due to some stomach issues and he had minor surgery. While he was recovering, I took him groceries and his medicine, just kind of looked after him for a couple of weeks. Well, his house finally sold in December 2015 and he was going to move in and he just disappeared he ghosted me for a month. I believe in the No Contact rule so, I was never going to contact him. He had a gambling problem for the past 25 years playing black jack that he told me about He apologized, said everything was moving so fast and that he missed seeing his daughter every night. He is a mans man but he does have an old fashioned side. So, he moved in February, well, that lasted a month. I came home after work and his stuff was gone. No Contact again, 2nd time. Again, he contacted me a week later this time, said the same thing, he is not good enough for me that I have everything together. His was not happy with his current position. His work life has not been the same since his company downsized in 2010. So, he basically had to start over with company after company until he found one that he like and making much less than he did so, he had financial issues but I knew he would start saving soon once we were together because that’s the right thing to do. When he was with his ex, they never saved anything. All she did was spend, spend ,spend and never helped with their home. I have a great career and I can spend and save..Yay to me for being self reliant. Well, he came home again. Fast forward and why I always took him back he left I think about 5 or 6 times throughout 2016. I just chalked it up to everything he was going thru and I was not going to nag him. That’s not my style. Here is where I am shocked. After all of this in the past year, we decided we were going to move closer to our jobs so, we both moved in with family to pay off all of our credit card debt so we could start our future in the summer of 2017, look for a house. I put all of my furniture in storage. Well on January 29 he disappeared again, it has 17 days of No Contact. I will not contact him and I believe this is it. His divorce was in the final stages of being finalized and I am thinking he went back to his wife and daughter. I am just shocked at how much of a coward this man is to not tell me to my face after this rollercoaster ride that in the beginning I did not want to get on. I knew back when we first started talking in 2015 that I should have said contact me after your divorced and are emotionally available. Now, I am left to pick up the pieces and he is gone almost 3 weeks of No Contact. I am a very strong woman but geez, this has done it foe me. The feeling of being deserted is awful. He has showed me the kind of guy he is. I believe now he was a liar and he was having more issues than he let on. I fell for all of it. It was all a pipedream. Nightmare is more like it.
Thanks for listening. Sorry, for rambling… It’s early on the East Coast..
I just wanted to say that I loved him so much but I know it’s over this time..I know I will never have closure from him.?
You are not alone <3 xo
Your posts came to me at the right time!
Thank you Natasha.
And i will get on my white horse and i will NOT get off her..
I wont let ANYONE take me off her either!
I am so hapy i found you. Oxox
Thanks Jonne! I’m so happy that you found me too 🙂 I believe in you – if I can do it, SO.CAN.YOU.
All my love to you soul sis. XOXO
Oh my God!!! U’re a heaven sent! U saved me from a low vibrational, one sided died relationship, u saved me from death, u saved me from myself, u opened my eyes, u saved my kids, u saved my life!! After reading five articles, I feel a new person is born from the old dead me! Thank u from the bottom of my heart, God bless u!
Louise, I am in tears!! It was, is and will always be my absolute pleasure/honor to help. Thank you for your love, sisterhood and support. You are incredible. Sending you love soul sister. XOXO
I come here when I need to vent when I have no where else to turn. I rekindled a relationship that ended 15 years ago. he’s married, I’m married. He ghosted me 15 years ago and came back 6 months ago telling me everything I ever wanted to hear. Apologized for everything and I believed him. Well, ghosted me again. Begged for closure and all I get is silence. Cue self esteem plummeting, off the white horse, abandonment issues coming back. He’s elicited every issue and problem I worked so hard to overcome. Trying to find the strength to find my own closure get back on the horse and move on with my life. It’s so hard, I NEVER in a million years would think I would be back here again. Let me be an example to all the ladies reading this blog. Never go back to to someone who has been consistently inconsistent, who is full of excuses, treats you like an option and then tosses you out like yesterdays trash. If this can help one person to not go back and to save them from reliving the heartache then it was at least worth it.
Hi D13! Thank you so much for sharing <3 you are loved, understood and supported, always. Thank you for being a part of this tribe and thank you for being YOU. xoxo
D13 Sad that you went through your experience and I can assure you it has 100% helped me! I am of the temperament that would be inclined to rekindle and your post affirmed it will end in tears and heartache………every single time. Thanks for posting.
It was over before it began. He was everything I wanted, and the next morning couldn’t meet my eyes and wanted me to leave. I thought he just needed space (he’d complained about “clingy” women, and I wanted to show him I wasn’t clingy). I finally reached out after four days. He texted “got your texts and email but I don’t think we’re a match. Sorry. Best of luck to you.”
I tried to woman up about it, but it makes NO SENSE. I really don’t understand why I was treated this way. I asked what I’d done before I left, and he said “Nothing in particular.” Was it guilt? Boredom? He was the most beautiful man I’ve ever seen; am I just not good enough? But I am: I’m all kinds of good enough. So why?
I’ve never been in so much pain. The article made me angry, because it’s not me avoiding my feelings. I want the guy I met to come back. I was so happy, and now there just aren’t words. He just froze me out. At least “I’m not good enough for you/can’t give you what you need” is a reason. I was rejected with no reason at all. It hurts. I don’t know how to get past it. I was looking forward to it finally being my turn. I’m really in despair. I wanted to give him my heart and take care of him. I’m attractive, intelligent, etc. Why? Why??
I feel like I need to read this every day until i get over these awful feelings. thank you.
I keep re-reading this every few weeks because I’m so frustrated with myself. When I’m honest, I can say that four months after being relationship-ghosted, I’m still unable to truly accept/believe that this man is not who I thought/pretended/hoped he was. I feel so stuck and I’m beating myself up for being so stupidly stuck. Apathetic, why bother, hopeless that I’ll ever have a mutual lasting relationship again. Knowing that’s silly, but he has attained imaginary perfection in my head and I can’t get out of that loop. Ugh.
Keep coming back here to the blog Amy. I’ve been there and if I can get out off the hamster wheel, SO.CAN.YOU.
You’re never alone. xoxo
Last month I was still dating my now ex. We were together for a year and a half and he would always talk about marriage but, I’m in nursing school and he had to move across country last month because he’s in the military so we agreed to wait one year until I graduate and was able to move with him. I was dedicated put the time effort and everything else into the relationship. When he left I could tell he was getting extremely distatnt. I tried to talk to him about it but, nothing changed. So I broke up with him figuring he was going to realize how much he screwed up and would come back to me. Nope. He’s married. In the two week time span that we broke up he’s already married. I’m angry, it makes me sick to my stomach because I trusted him completely. He’s so angry with me when I did nothing wrong. There’s nothing left to do now but, move on. Like you said I can listen to his actions. What he did was heartless and I keep reminding myself that I dodged a huge bullet. Thank you for your article because this is the craziest thing I’ve ever been through. Going from waking up to a text message every morning from someone I considered my best friend and boyfriend to never being able to talk to them again because he’s married is hard.
Just when I think I’ve heard it all. I am so sorry that you had to go through this. I went through something similar, but he got married 7 weeks later. I can’t even imagine 14 days. If anything, know that this is an indicator of his lack of emotional control/maturity and also a display of how much he is ruled by his fears and juvenile emotional impulse. You did not dodge a bullet, you dodged a NUCLEAR BOMB. We are all here for and with you. Keep coming back here to the blog – You are never alone. All my love to you sister. xo
As I sit here at 2:45 am searching for closure articles and how not to stalk your ex, I came across your blog. I am in tears and laughing at the same time. I cannot wait to read more as I know your blogs will help me heal my little ole’ heart. I do not normally comment on such blogs but yours has touched me as you are wonderfully gifted in your writing and definitely enlightened as I can tell you have been through the things you speak of through your words of emotions. So just wanted to say thank you for sharing your gift with us.
I am so happy and honored to help 🙂 Thank you for taking the time to comment and for being a part of this tribe. It means more to me than I’ll ever be able to express in words. You are never alone. xox