Closure after a Breakup: “I Want a Sit Down With My Ex”

closure after breakup

By Jackie Pilossoph, Creator and Editor-in-chief, Divorced Girl Smiling site, podcast and app, Love Essentially columnist and author

I need some advice for closure after a breakup. My husband and I are divorcing after 16 years of marriage.

After our oldest son turned 1 the decision to stay at home to raise him while my husband rigorously pursued his dream of starting a company was made. 

Fast forward through the birth of our second child and the company thriving and then facing financial issues, life happened and he just wasn’t interested in being at home with the children or me for that matter.  I saw the writing on the wall and asked for a divorce when it became clear to me that there was always going to be something at the office or in his own personal life that was more important than being involved in our married and family life. 

There were nights when he wouldn’t return to our home until 2 and 3 in the morning.  Always with the same justification that he was at work.  My trust dwindled when I started finding evidence that he wasn’t being truthful or faithful for that matter.  Of course, he denied it.  Things came to a head, but he never wanted to talk about what happened between us and I feel that I need to release the feeling that I have about how things ended with us.  I approached him about just sitting down with me so that I could do just that and he gave me 5 minutes to say what I felt then walked out with his ear glued to his phone.

I want a sit down now that the divorce is evident.  It’s for me to tell him how I felt about everything now that much more has come to light.  A part of me feels that he won’t agree to a sit down because he won’t have to face my feeling and emotions.  But I need to do this for me.  I need to speak my truth to him because I still think about it.  What do you think?


My advice for closure after a breakup:

I’m going to be brutally honest. It might be hurtful (which is not my intention) but I think it will help you.


You can’t see this because of your emotions but from the outside looking in, here is what I see. Your ex is emotionally checked out. For some reason (and I realize it is beyond hurtful and awful and seems cold and evil), he’s completely done with your relationship and ready to move on.


In your email you write, “Things came to a head,” which I am assuming means that the feeling you had of his cheating proved to be accurate, and that the two of you decided it was best to divorce.


My question to you is, why do you feel you need/want the sit down, the closure? Is it because:


  • You want him back and want to try to work things out?
  • You want more information from him? For him to fill in the misses pieces of his story?
  • You are angry and want to vent?


Or, the healthiest/best reason:


You are trying to move on.


If this is the reason you want the sit down, then I can completely get it.


In my opinion, there is nothing more cleansing to a person than to sit and tell someone how they feel, perhaps apologize for things, express their regrets/how they would have done things different, talk about what they’ve learned, tell the person the things he/she did that hurt them, and perhaps wish the person well.


Why is it so cleansing? Because everyone wants to feel heard. It almost gives you a sense that after he/she hears what you have to say, there’s really nothing else you can do but move on (which is a good thing.)


Now, will your ex give you a sit down? Doesn’t sound like he is interested at this point. Who’s to say what will happen in the future. Maybe your divorce will hit him later (when his current relationship ends or when he’s had more time to absorb the reality) and then he’ll want to talk-maybe even reconcile. But for now, from the looks of things, he’s out.


So, if he refuses to give you the sit down, or the sit down seems rushed on his part, or he seems disinterested, I’d say you can get your same desired results by writing him a letter. Write and write and write everything you want to say to him. And then, either give it to him or not. You might decide that simply writing the letter to him and stuffing it in a drawer gave you the closure you need to move on. Another option is just to save it. Read it again in a month, two months, six months and then give it to him, or you might laugh and be really happy that these feelings are so far in the past.

* a word of caution when giving your ex a letter. You might want to show it to your attorney so it doesn’t end up hurting you in court. It sounds callous but you must protect yourself.


In closing, I hope you get your sit down. But if you don’t, at least you know you have options. Lastly, if someone is unwilling to give you a sit down, then it might help speed up your recovery process, because I think it’s a lot easier to walk away when you know someone really doesn’t care. Who wants to love someone who doesn’t love YOU? You deserve more.

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    Editor-in-chief: Jackie Pilossoph

    Divorced Girl Smiling is here to empower, connect and inspire you. Jackie Pilossoph is the creator and Editor-In-Chief of Divorced Girl Smiling, the site, the podcast and the app. A former television journalist and newspaper features reporter, Pilossoph is also the author of four novels and the writer of her weekly relationship column, Love Essentially. Pilossoph holds a Masters degree in journalism and lives in Chicago with her two teenagers. The author of the novels, Divorced Girl Smiling and Free Gift With Purchase, Pilossoph also writes the weekly dating and relationships advice column, “Love Essentially”, published in the Chicago Tribune Pioneer Press and the Chicago Tribune online. Additionally, she is a Huffington Post contributor. Pilossoph holds a Masters degree in journalism from Boston University.

    One Response to “Closure after a Breakup: “I Want a Sit Down With My Ex””

    1. Michael E

      great post. Don’t worry about someone who does not feel the same about you. However you have to get it out.


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