When the children are growing up and come to leave the home, it is something that should feel like a massive achievement, and a proud moment. After all, although parenting is never done, you have raised them up to be adults, and that part of parenting is over. But for many people, it can leave them with a feeling of sadness, loneliness, and even grief. This is often referred to as ‘empty nest syndrome’ and it can be a real challenge as your life does change and there is a new perspective and new priorities. If your children have grown and flown, and you’re not sure whether you are coming or going, then here are some ideas to help you to transition, or to prepare if you’re not quite there yet.
Having some structure in your life can be a massive help, but especially when you are feeling a little sad or lonely. If you are retired when the children leave, then you will definitely need to find some structure in your life. This could be through work, hobbies, friends, or just establishing a daily routine for yourself.
You should also think about the structure of the relationship and contact that you will have with your children. Although having a set time and date to talk can work for some, it won’t for others. Instead, articles like this one https://goodhousekeeping.com/empty-nest-advice/, talk about establishing a routine of contact before your children leave. Could you decide that you’ll talk every weekend, no matter what, but if you need each other beforehand, then you can just call? It will be different for everyone, but talk with your children about it all, and then you can go from there.
Parenting doesn’t stop
Even when children have left the home, being a parent doesn’t stop. The only thing that can be harder is that your children may feel like they can deal with a lot of things on their own, rather than coming to you. So asking the right questions can help you to get the answers that you need. Being non-judgemental is important, so that they feel they can ask for help and advice as they navigate the adult world. If they need help with something like a DUI, then you could help them by looking up lawyers like www.leyba-defense.com, for example. You are still their parent, and being as involved as you can will make a difference.
Connect with others
If you have a partner then you can go through this empty nest journey together. But even so, meeting other people can be a big help. You will have gone to baby classes when the children were little and met other parents, so why not do something similar, but for parents with grown children? Go to classes or events, and be social and make friends. You may all just end up talking about your children, but it will add another element of fun and joy in your life.