I was 12 when I had the term “closure” for the first time.
At that time, I was living in the United States. A 17-year-old woman had gone missing after her morning jog. She was a high school student, ready to apply for colleges with her whole life ahead of her. There was an extensive search initiated to find her. Everybody was praying for her safe return. After some 15-20 days, her decomposed body was found in some forest, with her throat slit. The murderer was already caught, and he was the one who has led to the body.
The news reporter broke the news with a solemn face. She added,
“We hope that this has given some closure to the family.”
I hated the term. How could knowing that their daughter was dead, killed brutally, and finding her body bring anything positive? The reporter was trying to say was that were in trauma for the past weeks by not knowing what happened to their daughter. Now at least, they knew…
At least. Another term I despise…
As I grew up, I came to know that the term closure was used in the context of relationships very often. My next encounter with it was in an episode of Friends. Rachel falls in love with Ross but only after he is with Julie. Rachel is now at a restaurant on a date with a new guy but all she can think about is Ross.
Michael: Look, I’ve been through a divorce, trust me you’re gonna be fine. You just can’t see it now because you haven’t had any closure.
Rachel: Yeah! Closure. That’s what it is, that’s what I need. God, you’re brilliant! Why didn’t I think of that? How do I get that?
Michael: Well, you know, there’s no one way really, it’s just, you know, whatever it takes so that you can finally say to him, “I’m over you.”
Rachel: Closure, that’s what it is. Closure.
She then borrows a phone from a reluctant man and dials Ross.
Rachel: [on phone] Ross, hi, it’s Rachel. I’m just calling to say that um, everything’s fine and I’m really happy for you and your cat who, by the way, I think you should name Michael: And, you know, ya see there I’m thinking of names so obviously, I am over you. I am over you and that, my friend, is what they call closure. [hangs up and tosses phone in the ice bucket]
By the end of the episode, Ross realizes he is still in love with Rachel, and they end up kissing.
Bollywood loves closure too. Lovers almost always come back. They apologize. They repent. They want to be taken back. The heroine either takes them back and they live happily ever after or she find another guy who is so much better! Pyaar to hona hi tha, Queen, to name a few.
The best example I can think of is Jab we met (I loved the move like everyone else). I have blogged about it before in To The Geet Without Aditya Kashyap and The Queen Without the International Vacation. Geet calls up Anshuman, and showers him with abuses. He hangs up, looking traumatized. He also realizes his mistakes and comes back to Geet. Meanwhile, Geet falls in love with Aditya Kashyap. She gets to reject Anshuman, make him feel like an idiot and then marry Aditya Kashyap. What a wonderful closure!!
But real life is so messy. If someone actually says the things they want to say in an attempt for closure, they will get to hear an earful, and end up feeling worse. It could be a chain that needs to be closed for our sanity. Maybe we reach out but get no response. Maybe we decide not to call in an attempt to savor what is left of our already damaged self-respect. I don’t think we get that many closures in relationships, (unless we are a fictional Bollywood character). Quoting from my own article:
What about women who don’t necessarily find another man like Geet? What about the ones who don’t get to travel like Queen but continue their routine life feeling worthless after getting dumped? Living each day with a spout of misery with the most cherished moments of their lives becoming mere memories and evoking mixed feelings? How do they ‘get over’ someone?
Maybe closure is overrated. It is still as absurd as when I had heard it for the first time in my life. When someone is gone, they are gone. There are no ifs, buts, what ifs, how, why. There are no answers. At least not answers that we will get from another person.
The harsh truth is there may be NO closure. We have to somehow make ourselves understand. I did research to find the best thought to complete the sentence – Sometimes he best closure is…
But I did not like anything I read. So here is my list. Please feel free to add to it.
Sometimes the best closure is knowing that I tried.
Sometimes the best closure is knowing that there is nothing else I could do.
Sometimes the best closure is accepting that I may be hurting, but I am not broken.
Sometimes the best closure is knowing that I have survived the biggest pain I have ever known.
Sometimes the best closure is closing the door to the negativity within me, and I alone have the power to do it.
Adding a good one sent to me by a friend, after reading the article:
You have to accept that some chapters in our lives have to close without closure. There’s no point in losing yourself by trying to fix what’s meant to be broken. – www.stevemaraboli.com
And finally the one from ‘He’s just not that into you’ , the dating Bible for women (along with Mathhew Hussey’s videos)! It is not on closure, but it is on happy endings. Isn’t that what we are all looking for?
And maybe a happy ending doesn’t include a guy… maybe its you, on your own, picking up the pieces and starting over, freeing yourself up for something better in the future. Maybe the happy ending is…just moving on. Or maybe the happy ending is this… knowing after all the unreturned phone calls, broken hearts, through all the blunders and misread signals, through all the pain and embarrassment you never gave up.”
© 2017, Tanvi Sinha. All rights reserved.