Select Page

How Are You?

by | Feb 1, 2024 | ComLine, Voices of Recovery

“Good!” I feel the need to summarize.


“Good!” The exclamation point is to create interest without divulging anything. I do not plan to give any info. I do not plan to offer any details. This is due to an assumption that the other person is not actually interested. Or to an assumption that I probably don’t want them to know anything about me. So, I just say, “Good!” with a bit of mystery embedded in that exclamation point.

Part of me worries that if I then ask them how they are, I will have set up a competition: whose “Good!” or “Great!” is better? But what can one really say? Is “How are you?” intended to start a real conversation or just a synonym for “Hello”? If my reply was “Puzzled” or “Defeated” or “I’m not sure” (which is highly likely if I’m dissociating), would that annoy the questioner? Would I annoy myself, drawing unwanted attention to my private internal state? Would I feel unsafe? The attention I’d experienced in childhood was either absent or intrusive and that wiring still governs this interaction today.


I recall the people in New Orleans greeting each other on the bus that went along Magazine Street, their greeting always expecting a story and usually getting one.

“How’s your mom and them?”

“Better today, thanks. My aunt is poorly so I’m bringing her a pie. And how’s everyone your way?”

I admired these exchanges from a distance, delighted, admiring, and amazed by interactions that implied connection. People showing genuine interest in each other and not for the purpose of assessment or comparison.


My “Good!” offers no story, only the briefest of summaries, and is usually a lie.

Christine O

Submission Policy

We welcome blog submissions of articles and other content from ACA members.
To keep this blog a safe place, before submitting an article or other content please read our submission policy

Submit Content

Feedback

Posting of comments for others to see is disabled, but we encourage you to provide feedback by clicking on the “Submit Feedback” button below.

Submit Feedback

Authors List

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,
Translate »