5 ways to get closure after a relationship

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Getting over a failed romance, or divorce, or losing a loved one in any way is difficult enough, but when there are unresolved issues, it becomes even harder. If the other person in the relationship can’t or won’t answer those questions, there still are ways to get the closure you need to go forward.

5 Accentuate the Positive

This extends to all areas of your life. Go out and meet new people, but try to avoid negative people. Spend time with good friends who will give you the support you need. If you have work you love, throw yourself into it. Focus on your hobbies and interests. If you’ve been thinking about adopting a pet, this might be the perfect time to do it. Be good to yourself.

4 Give It Time

The process of closure is just that—a process, and it takes time. Just like you can’t hurry love, you can’t hurry healing, either. Take it one day at a time, and if you have to, just go through the motions. Imagine you’re feeling better, and after a while (maybe a long while), it will be true.

3 Write About It

Writing about your feelings and experiences in a letter to the person you lost can be a powerful release. You can, of course, send the letter, but it sometimes works even better if you don’t, because then you can express yourself with no inhibitions. After you finish the letter, you can put it away in a drawer, or you can tear it up. Tearing it up may sound extreme, but for some people, it helps them feel they’re severing their final ties to the relationship.

2 Acknowledge Your Feelings of Loss

Take the time you need to grieve the loss, whether it’s the death of someone you love, or the death of an important relationship. Acknowledge what you’re feeling, no matter how ugly or raw those feelings are. There’s a reason why people call it the grieving process. It’s something you have to go through or you’ll be stuck in one place indefinitely.

1 Be Honest With Yourself

You cannot force your former partner to give you the closure you need. You are the only person you can change or control. Be honest with yourself about why it’s so hard for you to let go of the relationship. Examine your own feelings and motivations. What do you need to know, and why do you feel you cannot move on until you do? Are these answers you truly need, or are they at some level an excuse to avoid moving on, or to mask deeper feelings and issues?

Kathy Kattenburg has been a writer for more than 30 years. Her articles have been published in "N.J. Jewish News" and "Suburban Essex," and she is a contributing writer at the political blog The Moderate Voice. Kattenburg has a B.A. in English literature from Drew University in Madison, N.J.

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