Closure without Goodbye

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-06-2013
Closure without Goodbye
Sun, 01-06-2013 - 11:47pm

I am so thankful I found this board!  I have been a wreck for 6 weeks since the end of my affair. Just reading through the posts makes a huge difference.  Someone mentioned that it is really hard to find someone to trust and talk to- since affairs are generally secret- in my case the man was someone my close friends and family all knew (know) very well.  My difficulty is closure- my own closure on a relationship I thought of as a loving friendship as well as an intimate love affair.  I have known this man for over 15 years. We worked together, very closely- at one time our families were friends.  We were very good friends and colleagues for years before we were lovers.  We were attracted to each othere, flirted harmlessly (it seemed anyway) and then over a period of about a year, some 11 years ago, we became lovers.  We were both married. We had a wonderful relationship- and no real expectations that anything more would come of it but a good freindship. Things began to change- we became more entangled with each others lives- began to count on each other more. He had trouble in his marraige- mine seemed fine- the whole thing seemed an abberation of what I believed myself to be; a loving wife and mother. I was conflicted- I began to pull away- but not hard enough.  Then tragedy struck my family- my husband died suddenly- I was completely devastated- and he was at my house when I arrived home from the hospital, stayed in contact iwth me- was just my best friend for the longest time. We picked up our intimate relationship and it was complicated- at one point he told me he wanted to spend the rest of his life with me- and two weeks later told me he was reconciling with his wife- we didn't see each other much for about 6 months-but I just didn't want to lose someone else I loved and cared about- he pursued, I gave in, and slowly I just got to the place where it was ok- he loved me, I knew he wouldn't leave his wife- it just was that way.  In an odd way I was happy.  We talked nearly every day- emailed, texted, shared thoughts, ideas, dreams...saw each other a few times a month (we were no longer working together).  I moved to another city when I got a new job- and he visited me here- while this relationship was not without its ups and downs it was more up than down, Still- looking back, there were lots of times when he hurt me badly; refusing to talk, or telling me half truths, or not making good on promises he made.  We talked about ending the affair and just holding on to the friendship- promised we would-but neither of us could do it.  He was here in early Novemer and then a week later called and told me he couldn't talk to me anymore for awhile- not much explanation except he'd had a conversation with his wife.  Then a week or so after that he called and told me he had promised not to see me again.  I was devasted at the abruptness, and the lack of conversation- no goodbuye, no closure- nothing- just like 15 years evaporated in 24 hours.  I guess he is practicing NC- but he wasn't honest about it- I would not have begged him to stay- I think we both knew the day was coming- I just really thought we would part, sadly, in a more humane way. I never believed a 15 year relationship and friendship could end so harshly. I feel rejected, discarded, soemtimes guilty, ashamed- angry...I don't even know. I miss him terribly-I obsess over what happened to create this final rift. The last time I talked to him he promised to call "when he could talk to me."  He told me he loved me, would always love me, and hung up.  He sends me text messages every week or so and says he misses me; every once in awhile I send an email back- last week I just asked point blank- are you ever talking to me again/ ever going to see me, even to say goodbye?  How sad is that?  I had typed out a whole letter to him- and now I am reconsidering what to really say.  It seems like the best strategy- as difficult as it is- is to just let it go- but I can't seem to do that without creating some kind of closure for myself. I have lost a colleague (we still work in the same business, have lots of the same freinds), my best friend, and a lover.  How can I get some control over my feelings and take care of myself without obsessing about the whys and hows of how this relationship ended? 


Avatar for ratherbeme
iVillage Member
Registered: 04-23-2010
Mon, 01-07-2013 - 9:22am

You are looking for something very complicated. You have reasoned out how complicated your A is/was. It wasn’t. All affairs are the same. They are just different in the details.

It wasn’t any more complicated, any deeper, any more important than any of the A’s here.  It’s just that you were involved in it. That’s the difference.

All A’s have an ending and an ending date. Just as sure as childhood ends, and life ends, so do A’s. The reason is because they are NOT real. Someone didn’t love the other enough to actually do the things that real love and commitment need.

The Good/Bad news…………’s not done yet.

It’s simple to see what happened here. He chose his wife over you. He is throwing you under the bus. Sticking with what works for him. Rejection isn’t pleasant, no one likes it. Millions of good reasons to do what we do. We have all been on one side or the other of rejection. You aren’t accepting that part of it yet. YET!!! It may be because you haven’t realized that’s what really happened. You are both still hanging on to this fantasy.

That’s why it isn’t over yet. It’s just in the serious trouble, in the disintegrating stage. Wife knows/suspects something, he’s cooling it by protecting himself, you are still communicating, he’s hoping things die down, he’s hoping you will hang in and be his extra, and you want some type of commitment to you making you feel that you are important in his life.

That may be an over simplification, and hard to hear but I’m sure you will find a lot of truth in it.

Why do you need someone to knock you over the head with closure?  Can’t you see what’s coming? Either it ends, or you go deeper underground to hide it from everyone. That’s the choice.

You have accepted being second best in his life, and yet you still hang on wanting to be even less. It doesn’t make sense.

You may want to do some soul searching to determine what you do want. Evidently what you have is what you wanted, but that isn’t going to happen or continue. At least not while wifey is on point. Remember, this could all get a lot worse. You could have an embarrassing DDay if front of all your friends, work mates, and family.

So where do you go next?

Professional help is the best course.  You may need to explore why you are like what you are. Sometime you are going to have to make up your mind what YOU want. It won’t be a simple decision, and as you leave the affair fog that you are in, you may change your mind a million times. It becomes a journey.

We are all here to help you. If ending is what you choose, and they are all choices, then No Contact is the 100% guaranteed way to ending it. It’s tough. It’s only the first part of the journey.

Come here often, we will give you support in ending it.


We only miss what could have been. I know I don't miss what it really was.

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-26-2009
Mon, 01-07-2013 - 4:34am

Hi Gecko

Welcome to EAS, I am glad you found us!

Closure has been discussed many times on this board. And I guess there will be a few different points of view. I personally see no reason for closure. When my A ended, there was nothing more to talk about. My mind was made up, and talking to my xAP about it, or saying goodbye properly would just prolong the pain, or make the whole situation impossible.

I think you should see it as a blessing in disguise. Give yourself closure, by blocking him from your life, and starting a new life of your own. Delete his e-mail address and phone number, and start looking into how you can do more for yourself. From what I understand you are single and are free to be with who ever you want. Why no focus on forming a frienship with a man who can be available to you all the time, who doesn't have to lie to be with you.

I know you feel like you a loosing a wonderful friendship, and there are others here that will hopefully chime in and help you put this into persective. I was not friends with my xAP - we were work colleagues... and even though I really enjoyed his company when we were together, I did not feel I lost a good friend when we ended. I don't think he ever wanted to get to know me... even though 3 years we mailed, sms'ed throughout the day .... that was a hard habbit to just stop over night... but I picked myself off the floor and decided to improve my life and be a person that I could be proud of.... I'm getting there :-) :-)

And you will too - if you accept that closure is not necessary for you to turn your life around. No matter what his explaination is, its still over.... not matter the reason.... its still over.... noone has won or lost.....its just over... you have reached the end of your A, but its not the end of your life.... its a painful start to something new.... but believe me, its a wonderfully empowering journey if you take it on with your whole heart and do it for yourself.

Best of luck, and keep writing... it really helps :-)


Every recovery is a kind of rebirth