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Relationships can be beautiful and totally fulfilling, or they can be exhausting and need to come to an end. When a relationship ends, we seek some sort of amicable ending. Sadly, this doesn’t always happen. Getting closure in a relationship can sometimes be even more frustrating than the relationship itself.

So how do you let things go and move on when you didn’t get the relationship closure you were expecting or wanting?

We’ll discuss that and a few more things in this article. But first things first. What is closure in a relationship?

What is Closure in a Relationship

What does closure mean in a relationship? So, let me define this as easily as I possibly can.

You and your man had a big fight and either both of you or just one of you decided it was best to end the relationship. Pretty normal. You also want some closure in the relationship. A firm handshake, a warm hug coupled with best wishes and you’re both off on your merry way to a new life and new adventures.

So, in a perfect world, that’s what an ideal relationship closure would look like. Unfortunately, they aren’t all that pretty, and some endings don’t even come with a closure.

Another example of closure in a relationship would be for either party to apologize for hurting the other or confess to a lie or something to that effect. That’s good closure, too, when you get the apology or finally hear the truth.

Unfortunately, most of us don’t even get that, though, and you’re left to move on with your life with no relationship closure. It sucks—a lot.

Now, before I go on, closure in a relationship isn’t just about a romantic partnership. It could be you and your best friend had a falling out, and you two are no longer friends, yet you still want closure.

Here’s a great explanation from

How to Ask For Closure in a Relationship

Yes, you can ask for closure in a relationship, but will you get it? I truly hope you do, but chances are, you might not. But you still have to try, at least, right?

So, one way is to simply ask for it. Ask your ex/friend/partner for the closure you believe you deserve. Let them know you would like to close the relationship in a more amicable manner.

Most of us don’t want to end a relationship angry or bitter for the simple fact that you will carry all that hate, anger, hurt, betrayal, and frustration with you for a long, long time. Relationship closure is easier on your mental health.

Ask your person if you two can sit down and discuss some of the issues you had before the relationship ended. This will lead to a suitable closure in a relationship where you both can just let go and move on.

How to Move On Without Proper Closure in a Relationship

So what happens when you ask for closure in a relationship, and you still don’t get it, or you expect closure, and that doesn’t happen either? How do you let things go and move on without the relationship closure you want?

I’m going to share a few tips with you to help you move on without the closure.

1 Accept this is the way it is

I know, easier said than done, but it’s the only way you will get through this. You have to accept that the relationship is over, you didn’t get any closure, and it’s time to move on. The alternative is not to accept it and drive yourself crazy until you die because you didn’t get the closure you wanted.

The choice is yours.

2 Forgive and Release

Notice I didn’t say forgive and forget. We never forget, unfortunately, but we can certainly forgive and move on. Forgiveness is done to give you some sort of peace of mind. We don’t forgive them because they deserve it.

We forgive because we deserve inner peace. It’ll come with time.

3 Practice Self-love

I know, every blog on the internet says that, but it’s for a good reason. Self-care is crucial to all healing, regardless of what you’re healing from. You need to take care of yourself. When we talk about self-care, it can look like bubble baths, journaling, spending time alone in nature, or curling up in a ball and crying/releasing.

Self-care looks different for everyone. Don’t compare yours to anyone else’s.

What’s most important is not to lose yourself in addictive behavior. Once you go down that path, it can be extremely difficult to claw your way out. And besides, no one is worth you damaging yourself over.

4 Write a Letter

I’m a big fan of writing. I believe it’s very therapeutic. So when I suggest writing a letter, it’s not a letter you are going to send to your person. It’s a chance for you to write out everything that’s bottled up inside that was left unsaid.

You have to accept the fact that the relationship closure you are seeking is not going to happen, so it’s up to you to close it, heal from it, and move on.

Your letter can be a ‘get it all out’ type of letter or a forgiveness letter. It’s up to you, and you can write as often as you need to.

5 Ban, Block, and Delete

I know you want to creep your ex on social media, but please don’t do that. You’ll only cause more damage, harm, sadness, anger, hurt, and frustration to yourself! I can’t stress how important it is to ban, block, and delete.

It’s called boundaries, which are crucial to your mental health.

How does it make you feel creeping your ex and then finding something that sets you off into more anger and depression? What’s the point? It’s over. Let it go and move on. Thank me later.

6 Forgive Yourself

This is a big one. We’re too hard on ourselves. After a breakup, we’ll look back on the relationship and everything that happened and ask ourselves, “Oh, how could I have been so stupid or so blind”?

Honestly, none of that matters. You did what you did for whatever reason. Learn, grow, let go, and move on. This is how we grow. From past experiences.

People come into our lives to teach us things about ourselves. Learn the lessons they are sent here to teach you, or you will just repeat the same pattern over and over again.

7 Practice Gratitude

I love gratitude. In my world, gratitude fixes everything. When we express gratitude for what we have or have experienced, we make room for more awesome things to come into our lives to be grateful for.

But in this case, I think it’s important to be grateful for the time you spent with this person, all the good, even some of the bad (it helps you grow), and is a great way to close things out.

What is Proper Closure in a Relationship?

Proper closure. Not sure I’ve ever had that, but I think proper closure would be that both parties say what needs to be said without screaming and yelling (that part is important), apologize if need be, wish each other well, and move on.

Remember, don’t expect proper closure in a relationship. If it happens, great, but keep in mind that expectations lead to disappointment.

You’re going to have to accept the fact that you may not ever receive relationship closure, proper or otherwise, and you’ll have to learn how to let go and move on. We’re going to discuss this next.

How to Let Things Go and Move On

I really wish there was an easy way to do this, but the fact of the matter is, there isn’t. You know the saying ‘time heals all wounds’? Well, it’s true, and you’re going to have to rely on time here to heal your wounds.

Now, that doesn’t mean you can’t proactively let things go and move on.

If you didn’t get proper closure in a relationship, it feels like you have an open wound that just keeps getting infected. While that sounds gross, it’s true. I can’t explain it any other way. That’s how it feels.

Here are a few things you can do to help you let go and move on.

  • Forgive – and do it often
  • Feel all your feelings – don’t try to bury them
  • Shift your focus to happier things
  • Meditate – take time just to be and breathe
  • Journal – as often as you have to in order to release the anger and hurt
  • Be gentle with yourself – don’t blame yourself; what’s done is done.

In closing

The bottom line here is that it sucks to have to end a relationship or friendship, but it sucks even more when there is no closure in a relationship. It sucks a lot.

Instead of driving yourself crazy and beating yourself up over it until the day you die, it’s so important for your mental, emotional, and physical health to learn to accept it, release it, have closure yourself, and then move on.

I know it’s easier said than done, but it’s not impossible. Do yourself a favor. Turn the page, finish the chapter, close the book, and move on.

Iva Ursano
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Iva Ursano is a solo female traveler originally from Canada and currently residing in Guatemala. After hitting rock bottom in 2013, she completely reinvented her life at 52 years old, packed up two suitcases, and bought a one-way ticket to Central America. She runs this website for women over 50 to help them make the rest of their lives the best of their lives while feeding street dogs and helping the less fortunate in the town she now calls home, Panajachel. You can follow her on Pinterest, Facebook, and Instagram (Street Dogs of Guatemala)

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