How was your summer?

Some experiences may be hard to describe in short answers to friendly questions.


After summer vacation many teachers like to hear about their students’ adventures. To be friendly we often ask, “How was your summer?” We easily forget that some experiences may be really hard to describe in short answers to friendly questions!

This year during summer vacation one of my students lost her father. As this young woman struggles with the pain and confusion of her grief, she faces a long, hard emotional and spiritual journey. There is no way for her to reply casually to a question like, “How was your summer?”

Each person has her own way of sharing life-altering experiences, whether happy or tragic. People need time to adapt to big changes in their lives, and many don’t want to talk about their experiences until they’re ready.

Before we ask, “How was your summer?” we might want to remember that for some people it may be a really hard, serious question. (152 words)

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