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  • Writer's pictureMarianne Wieland


One of the hardest and most necessary things to do when something ends is giving closure. This could be with anything, from a relationship that has ended, leaving a job either by choice or by force, or a death, particularly with a suicide. With the exception of suicide, there is always an answer or reason that the situation was terminated. But so many choose not to give it. A good majority of the time it is because the answer will hurt the other person. But they have already been hurt.

With the end of a job, there is usually an exit interview. This gives closure to both the employer and the employee. If the reason for leaving was for the benefit of the employee, it gives them the chance to say what they liked about the job or what they didn't. It is a chance for the employer to improve based on suggestions the employee might have. If the job loss was termination, the employee has the chance to hear what may be lacking in their work skills or behavior. If taken as constructive criticism, they have the chance to improve for their next job.

In the case of death, a lot of people have time to prepare, as they know the inevitable outcome of their illness is death. Many use this time to reconcile with estranged family members and friends, as well as get their final affairs in order. With a case of death by homicide, sometimes there may be years before the family gets closure, and with a suicide, maybe never. This leaves the family with unanswered questions and serious self-doubt. Anxiety and depression may result from having no closure in these cases. Many vacillate between hope and hopelessness, always wondering. I would suggest seeking help in these situations.

At the end of my book, 'Meeting Henry', Missy is numb over the unexpected death of her love, Henry. This state of mind and some of the ramifications is explored in the beginning of the sequel, 'Missing Henry'. Missy goes through many months of just surviving as she shuts everyone out of her life. But, as a sudden incident, shocks her back into the present, she is forced to deal with her grief.

The end of a relationship, be it friendship, family ties, or the end of a boy/girl relationship, even a marriage, would greatly benefit from closure. This alone can prevent more serious problems. True, it hurts to hear what another person thinks about you, but it also frees you to improve or to realize that the choices you make are not necessarily the best ones. It is the opportunity to be better and more prepared for the next relationship of that kind.

Closure can lessen depression and anxiety, possible drinking and drug use, thoughts of suicide or homicide and help a person to move on to a better place. If you struggle with confronting issues that are uncomfortable such as these and you cannot tell a person why you are ending the relationship, then at least let them know it is over. Don't just drop out of sight. Have a heart. Give someone you cared about at one time the closure they need to begin the process of healing.

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