“Time (Does Not) Heal All Wounds”

Has there been a more impactful “lesson” we learned as children, that could’ve been further from the actual truth?

Was giving a presentation yesterday, & just in the flow of answering a question someone had abt their trauma, I was sharing how time did not in fact heal all wounds, but then this line came to me: Time accumulates all wounds…when we don’t properly care for those wounds.

When you’re younger & you get a splinter, your parents rush to get a needle or tweezers, sterilize, & then take it out. You put a bandaid on. You properly cared for that wound. When you break a leg, you go get an x-ray, you find out it’s broken, you get fit for a cast & maybe crutches to stay off it & you’ve properly cared for that wound. 

Yet, when it comes to our emotional health, we’re told “time heals all wounds.” That it makes sense that we just need time to get away from what happened, & we’ll feel better. How? Looking back now, & what we know, how’s that possible? How can it heal when we’ve never taken care of the wound?

The reason why this “teaching” can be so maladaptive is, trauma is cumulative when we do nothing abt it. It lives & grows & expands & even velcros on top of other traumas when we leave it alone. So why do we think time is the healer of all wounds? Why does that even make sense when we are younger & don’t know better? Bc the only coping strategy that comes naturally to us is to “push things to the back.” To bury them & not deal w them when they keep popping up into our conscious.

When we’re younger & have the “space” to push the trauma down, we do it.  We don’t realize it at the time, bc we have quick symptom relief, but it goes so many places in our bodies – our fascia, our joints, even to other parts of our central nervous system. It changes our biology.  It has long lasting impacts & we then have to find a way to untangle as we become adults.

I so wish this line was never used. It makes us passive. It makes us believe we don’t have to do anything abt our emotional wounds. And it comes back to haunt us as our “space available” to take on more starts to diminish over our lifetimes. Let’s unlearn it!

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