The time is coming when you need to let grown children out of the house – to university or to his own young family. Many do so with a sense of sadness, loss, and emptiness. They no longer need their child in the same volume as before. How to help your child enter adulthood, let him go, but at the same time remain always close?

Normal and disturbing reactions of parents

Feel some sadness and emptiness – natural for parents. The child was always present somewhere nearby, demanded participation and care, upset and pleased the parents, filling this part of their lives. In fact, it is quite normal to cry from time to time or sit in an empty nursery to feel closer to your child.

Don't be ashamed of your feelings!

They are familiar to most parents. However, if you experience any of the following symptoms for more than two weeks, you should seek professional help. 

Worrying symptoms

  • You think your useful life is over. 
  • You are constantly crying.
  • You feel so sad that you refuse to go to work or hang out with your friends.

It looks like your "chick's" departure "provoked depressive reactions that need to be worked out by all means. Discuss your concerns with a – Most likely, a few sessions of cognitive behavioral therapy will help you get rid of overwhelming emotions and gain a sense of perspective. 

During this period you need the support of your family and friends – especially if they have experienced "empty nest syndrome" at some point in their lives.

Stay always in touch with your children

It's easier than ever to keep in touch with children who have left home. Mobile communication, Skype, WhatsApp, Viber, e-mail – You have a huge number of opportunities to stay in touch! Some families use social networking sites such as Facebook, VKontakte. However, according to statistics, more than 70% of young people aged 18 to 25 have consciously chosen not to be "friends"; with parents on social networks.  And who can blame them? You are not a friend, you are a – parent. 

Most kids prefer to communicate via text messages (SMS and instant messaging) because it's fast, convenient, and keeps parents from getting hung up.

Remember, it's hard not only for you!

Children are also not easy – they also feel homesick and miss you, and they also have to adapt to a new team and new conditions – they have a lot to do! Is it fair to load them with your mental state as well? It is the responsibility of parents to prepare children for independent living and facilitate separation, not the other way around. Therefore, the phrase "I miss you" is enough.

Take your grief out on a partner, friend, or therapist, not on your child. Help him cope with the situation and enjoy new friends, interesting activities and first achievements.

You have entered a new stage in your life

You must have a huge mental list of things you've wanted to do for a long time but haven't had the time to do yet. Now is the time to pamper yourself! Bring out your "wishlist" – and go! You may want to sing in a choir or learn Italian, go to a friend's country house for a month, or register on a dating site and meet an interesting man – now you can afford it. Actually, like the daily pleasures – such as prolonged lying in a fragrant bubble bath. You still have half of your life ahead of you – frankly, not the worst! If you are single, this might be a good time to expand your social circle. 

But if you're in a long-term relationship, empty nest syndrome can provoke negative thoughts about the state of your romance and even feelings of despair. What happens if you find that without the constant presence of children, your relationship – superfluous and meaningless? After my youngest son entered the university, my friends – married couple – decided to arrange a "celebration of life".

My default image

They went on a trip to exotic places in Asia and found that they had completely different opinions on how to spend their time. She wanted to visit ancient Ankhgor, but he preferred to read while sipping gin on a sun lounger by the pool. The evenings were no better. They sat across from each other at an elegant candlelit table, unable to think of anything to discuss. By the end of the "celebration of life" the couple decided to divorce.

Unfortunately, the departure of children from their home often exposes shortcomings in your relationship. Can you save them? Only if you both have the sanity and the desire to continue being together. 

Nothing will ever be the same.

Don't make hasty decisions. Realize that you are in a state of crisis, which you need to get out of together.

Remember what bound you years ago.

Think about how much you mean to each other as individuals, two separate people, despite how many years of parenting you have been. It is amazing when, having passed the difficult stage of "letting go" children, the couple rediscover each other and begin a happier, more friendly and sexual phase.

New work

This period can also be a time of fresh beginnings in terms of activities. This is – time for a fresh start: if you have previously chosen low-paying part-time jobs while devoting yourself to children, you may want to consider further education or vocational retraining. Or you can satisfy unspent ambitions and start your own business. 

New call

This is a difficult time for you. Nothing will ever be the same. But just because it's different doesn't mean it's worse. Many parents use the second half of their lives extremely productively and end up doing things they never would have dared to dream of while their children were home. 

In 2010, British sociologists conducted a survey of 2,000 parents whose children had recently left home. Researchers found that most moms and dads: felt ten years younger  earned an average of £600 more; per month, increased the number of their friends and time spent with them, had new hobbies, believed that their personal relationships have improved. 

So, even if you feel rather sad reading this article, take inspiration from the fact that in the near future you will almost certainly feel happier than ever before.  


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