6 Tips for Empty Nesters

empty nest

When they were little, it felt like our children were underfoot every moment. So why is it sad to see them move out just a few years later?

It's not uncommon for parents – especially mothers – to struggle with empty nest syndrome when their birds fly off after high school or college. And those feelings are understandable, as a parent shifts from being an active participant to a more distant observer.

Let these tips help ease your transition this fall:   

1. Talk through communication expectations with your child. Would he prefer a text or call? How often are you both comfortable connecting?   

2. Encourage younger siblings to stay in touch with the child who left. Don't discount how difficult that change can be on other family members.   

3. Establish quality family time – dinners, fun outings – when you do have time together.   

4. Reinvest in yourself and your marriage. Consider that you've spent the past 20 years investing in another person, and give yourself some time to get to know yourself and your spouse in a new way.   

5. Let yourself be sad. This can be a difficult transition, allow yourself to mourn the change and seek support from others in this position if needed.   

6. Focus on the positive: You've successfully launched a child. Great job, mom and dad!