Having children and seeing them grow up into wonderful people is a truly marvelous adventure, which is why it can be challenging after they leave home. Although this can signal a job well done, their absence often leaves an emptiness that many people refer to as empty nest syndrome. Suffering with this means you’re going through the natural grieving process, which can bring with it sadness, irritability, anxiety, depression, and fear. Here’s what you can do.
Spend Time with Your Partner
Raising children often means there’s little room to enjoy quality time with your significant offer, which can lead to distant growth in relationships. As your children have now left home and there’s a lot more time on your hands, it’s the perfect opportunity to rekindle that spark and get reconnected. Instead of dealing with household chores and relaxing in front of the TV, book a child-free holiday and enjoy life to the fullest – just make sure you spend time together regularly when you return.
Being a parent often comes with a shift in identity because every action and decision becomes centered around raising children. However, now they’ve left home, you’ve got time to reclaim part of yourself. You can do this by getting stuck into new (or forgotten) hobbies.
Hobbies are a great way to spend time and alleviate many mental health issues including low self-esteem, depression, and anxiety. Therefore, we recommend joining local clubs and engaging in activities you’re truly passionate about.
Discover New Careers
Having children may have meant putting your career on hold. With your newfound freedom, you can look into different careers and even go back into education. Alternatively, you can harness your skills as a parent into a worthwhile cause like foster care. To answer the question ‘what is fostering?’ and find out if it’s right for you, explore a reputable agency’s website.
Loneliness is one of the driving factors when it comes to empty nest syndrome, which is why withdrawing from the world will only make everything worse. Therefore, you should make an effort to connect with friends, family, and even new connections. If you speak to local parents, you may discover other people going through exactly the same process.
If you keep your mind tuned into the past, you’ll struggle to make progress. Therefore, you should set some time aside for goal setting, which can help channel your efforts into productive activities. Doing this will allow you to rediscover your identity.
This is all easier said than done, especially when you’re still overcoming the emotional hurdles. Therefore, you should know that it’s okay to seek out professional support, which can equip you with the tools to overcome the empty nest emotions and get back to a fulfilling lifestyle.
Children moving out is an achievement that should be celebrated because it means you’ve performed your role as a parent well. Even though the process can be painful, you will overcome it with plenty of self-care and forward-thinking.