Devinder's blog: Time Doesn’t Heal

clock Released On 27 February 2024

Devinder's blog: Time Doesn’t Heal

They say that time heals and I’ve believed this for years…until recently. 

I had an arranged marriage over 20 years ago.  It is what our culture makes us believe should be our next goal after graduation.  It didn’t end well.  We parted ways after I tried every convincible thing I could think of to avoid being labelled a “divorcee”.  

Although divorce within the South Asian community was more than frowned upon at the time, my family were supportive of my decision to end the marriage.  In this culture and community, news travels fast.  Everyone revels in other people’s failures; it makes them feel good about themselves.  I was surrounded by gossip about myself by people who didn’t even know me.  My personal life was being discussed at venues where I would expect a sense of reflection and calm and where I would still be expected to attend, such as the local temple.  This was soul destroying and I had nowhere to run to.  There were some intense moments, with accusations flying around and people adding their own spice into the mix of rumours.  I ended up distrusting everyone.  

There was no time to think and certainly no time to heal.  I was told by my parents I must get married again.  No parent would want their bachelor son to marry a divorcee and so my pool of candidates was limited.  I was introduced to other divorcees in hope for a second marriage proposal….   

…Fast forward 20 years, I would have expected to have “forgotten” about my first marriage and although, there have been small pockets in my life where that past experience has temporarily erased from my memory, it rears its head…. much more recently than before.  Surely, after such a long period of time, time would have healed me? Unfortunately not.       

I never had the opportunity to respond to what was happening in that moment 20 years ago and so, I remain wounded.  It is not about blaming someone else or bringing up past conversations but I feel like I am abdicating responsibility for that marriage if I continue to stay wounded in this way.  I don’t want to be stuck in this way nor do I wish to remain a victim or a slave to this wound.  Time didn’t heal me and I won’t be healed until I recognise the woundedness.  That’s the first step and it has been a big one for me.  

It has taken me over 20 years to recognise the pain of that past experience.  I cannot simply pretend that those years of my life did not exist which is exactly what I have been doing all these years.  I am beginning to recognise how that past wound has navigated my life decisions and how I feel about things, people and places and why I do and don’t do certain things.  I have had to recognise and acknowledge my marriage and divorce and all of the feelings it brings up inside me.  I don’t think there is anyone in this world who can understand the impact it has had on me and how much my naivety has cost me.  And some may say that bringing up painful past experiences could cause more damage than good.  The pain will never go away but its acknowledgement gives me a certain comfort.  It was the denial that was killing me.      

Time didn’t heal me but recognising and acknowledging my own woundedness is helping me heal from that past experience.   

Remember, you cannot keep putting plasters over an old wound. The plaster keeps falling off. 

Devinder works in the financial services sector, is mum to a beautiful boy and is on a constant quest to understand the world and everything in it.


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