"It's better to have lost and loved, than never to have loved at all."
That's how the old adage goes, isn't it? It seems as time goes on it's a phrase we hear again and again ad nauseam. There's more to life than the experience you just got finished with, so why waste so much time hung up on what is said and done?
The thing is, as nice as it is to experience something such as love, losing it - whether it was to be expected or not - the leftover unrequited feelings can be difficult to rid yourself of. This is one of the largest hardships of moving on from a failed romance and proves to be the one that lasts the longest. Why is this? Is there anything that can be done to prevent it?
Don't allow yourself to let the lost love become your identity.
Love is such an amazing, natural thing. Even when you aren't on the receiving end of it, as alone as you may feel, it's so beautiful to look around at all of the happy people around you. Your time in the sun will come, and the sight of others enjoying theirs can be sweet, yet bittersweet all at once.
When you lose that sensation with another person, whether it was an especially damaging breakup or a blooming relationship that got cut before its time, suddenly your emotions can lock up. Almost every time (especially for your first love), you find that at some point along the way you attached your identity to theirs, keeping you from spending the proper time developing yourself. In fact, this manner of holding back your own progress in favor of putting every inch of your life into thinking about a significant other can be the very thing that causes the split in the first place.
It's not an easy thing to understand. Shouldn't you want to be invested in your partner? Yes, obviously, you should want the best for your significant other, and they should do the same for you. However, it's important to continue developing your own identity as well. There's more to experience in life than just who you're with, and the more you cling to them, the more you hold yourself back. There needs to be a balance, and when you let that equilibrium slip away, it feels that much more devastating to lose them as it feels like you lost yourself at the same time. This is quite the mess, and often ends up being what causes you to feel as though you deserve answers from them. Where is your closure at?
You aren't owed an explanation, no matter the circumstance.
Perhaps you wouldn't be left with nearly as many negative thoughts as you were if the other party in the situation had offered a simple explanation. Why did they go with the decision they did? Why end something that was presumably going to be eternal?
Nobody is going to tell you that it's polite of them to refuse to offer this information. If handled maturely, it should be considered a formality to shed some light for the person you're splitting away from if you've been emotionally invested in their existence for a prolonged period of time. Despite this, even some of the longest-lasting relationships are cut short with no word whatsoever from the initiator.
There's nothing you can do to change this, and as much as it hurts, you have to keep yourself from trying. If they didn't think you were worth sitting down with for a proper discussion, they weren't worth your time anyway. And if you had only experienced a short fling with this person, a handful of dates perhaps, you should not be so invested in them that it would hurt too much. If it does, then you were jumping the gun and letting your feelings run away from you, possibly meaning you weren't ready for a relationship yourself.
Waiting forever for closure you're never going to get will hurt you more than them.
It's time to face the music. The connection was severed, the ties were cut, and it's over. That's the fact of it. They no longer feel that special chemistry with you, so acting out of spite will do little for your favor.
Nothing you can do can win them back necessarily, and you should spend this time more worried on where your life can now lead you to. They may or may not still want to be a part of your life (something that rarely works in practice), but take that with a grain of salt. The more you cling on to the idea that sooner or later they will run back to you, whether to reignite the flame or to simply give closure to the split, the more you continue to lose yourself over nothing.
You're hurting yourself thinking about something that has lost relevance, and missing out on your own life in the meantime. You know that the one who initiated the break isn't spending their nights lying awake worrying about you, so why are you doing it for them? They're getting out and making something of their lives with their newfound freedom, and nothing should stop you from doing the same.
Regain control of your own life!
Focus your days on bettering yourself a little every day. Step outside of your comfort zone in some way, talk to someone new, or even just take a different path to your destination for a breath of fresh air. Everyone has their own pace, but you need to make this process a daily effort. Avoid any distractions that cause you to think back once more to those moments of your life with those you never got closure with.
Moving on from such a massive emotional blow is no easy feat. To illustrate that further, this article itself was essentially a year in the making, as I've had the idea floating around in my head but continually put it off because I know that some of the people reading this right now who are aware of my experience could be shaking their heads, knowing that I myself didn't follow much of the advice I just listed - at least, not until recently.
I've been through the wringer with this just as I'm sure many of you have, so I'm no stranger to the feelings and I know the pitfalls of making mistakes with those you never had closure with more than I'd like to admit. I want to make it clear that I'm not without blame and that I regret many of the ways I acted when I didn't get proper closure, for anyone connected to my situation that is picking this article up today.
Take care of yourselves. Take your mental health seriously, and get help if you need it. It's waiting for you at every turn as long as you're willing to accept. Take it personally and take it day by day. With support from others, you can come out on the other side of the fire, closure or no closure, and become a better person because of it.
It may have been the end of a relationship, but it wasn't the end of your life. You deserve a much better ending, and it's up to you to write your story for yourself without depending on somebody else to complete it for you. You can create your own closure, and the sooner you start the process, the happier you will be. Trust me.