When I was growing up we had no air conditioning. Finally, once I was in college my parents bought a window unit for THEIR bedroom and occasionally I would sneak in and let the cool air blow on my face but that was about as close to air conditioning as I got until I had my own apartment. We survived by having a big back porch and lots of trees and a neighborhood swimming pool. As a kid my day was 1) go to pool for swim team practice, which I loathed but everyone was on swim team so I was too, 2) go home and play Monopoly in the basement with friends until after dinner when 3) you went back to the pool to cool off before going to bed. Often I slept on the porch, and I do remember being hot but it was just a fact of life.
Then when my kids were young they followed pretty much the same schedule except come August, when the temps were consistently 90+, I would relent and turn on the air conditioner. We did have central air conditioning in the house but I figured I'd survived my entire childhood without so they could too, and when they complained I told them they were "storing heat for winter" when they would look back fondly at the summer heat. I'm not certain that the really bought that.
Now it is only JUNE and I have the air conditioning on! We are already having long stretches of 90+ days and, although it does cool off a bit at night, it is so humid that even the whole house fan doesn't keep things cool. This is my own personal indicator of climate change.