02/21/2012 05:42 pm ET Updated Apr 22, 2012

Closure After a Breakup

When you go through a breakup, one of the ways to move forward is to find closure. Closure has different meanings for many, but to me, it is a process. In that process you allow your feelings, hurt and pain to surface. As much as those emotions are unpleasant to deal with, you embrace them. Because only when you allow yourself to fully feel those emotions can you let them go. I wanted to make sure that after such a devastating experience that I healed in a healthy way, which would ultimately leave me a better, wiser and stronger person in the end.

So I did just that. My heart was broken and I allowed myself to go through the motions of mourning. I broke down... a lot. The control freak, composed side of me urged me to keep a poker face and forge forward. But suppressing is toxic. And if I was to push off feeling the aftermath now, I'd just have to deal with the same emotions but in a more intense form at some point in the future. My process of mourning wasn't pretty. I had no appetite and had to force myself to eat. I had a looming black cloud over me constantly. I dreaded the night, because that's when my breakdowns would be at its worst. My heart was broken, and I tried everything I could to fix it.

But nothing did. And to be honest, what I wanted deep down inside was for the man that I loved to fix me. Then finally it dawned on me - the person who breaks your heart cannot be the same person that fixes it.

That was one hard pill to swallow.

In my experience, I felt like I came undone. For the first time in my life I truly fell deep in love with someone and at the end had my heart completely shattered. Not many people could understand why I couldn't just move forward and "get over it". But I think it takes a lot of courage to choose a path of healing and closure that is healthy. It takes courage to face your emotions dead-on, to talk about your insecurities and pain, and to embrace your vulnerability instead of being ashamed of it. And lastly, it sure takes a whole lot of courage to set aside your pride and ask for help.

I've learned that nothing and no one can give me closure. There's no magic pill. There's no yoga retreat that cures. There's no set guide of instructions. There's no allotted time that suddenly makes the sadness go away. Closure is a process, and often a long, drawn out one. And during that process, the only things that heal are time, reflection and going through your emotions. And hopefully, as healing progresses, you reach a point of forgiveness and compassion. I still have a long road ahead in this journey of getting back to good, but I know I'll get there. Slowly, but surely.

Amy Chan is a relationship and lifestyle columnist. To read more of her blogs, visit