If you have children and have ever experienced an eerily silence in your home when your kids are away for a short period of time that turned into feelings of sadness for you, because they’re away from you, you have experienced a snippet of what may come when your kids grow up and venture off on their own. Empty nest syndrome is a term that describes the feelings parents or guardians experience when their children move out of the home.
Not every parent or guardian will experience empty nest syndrome but for those that do, symptoms may include a sense of loss, anxiety and/or worry over your child’s well-being, depression, and/or stress. While mothers—due to their natural nurturing abilities—may experience stronger emotions associated with empty nest syndrome, fathers may have a difficult time dealing with their child’s absence because they are unprepared for the unexpected empty nest syndrome effects.
If you are a parent or guardian experiencing empty nest syndrome, you may be struggling with the symptoms. In time you will feel better, but in the meantime, consider these ideas to help you cope:
- Do you love animals? Consider adopting a new pet. A kitten, puppy, or bird may be just the companion you need to bring forth smiles and fun.
- Exercising is a great way to relief stress and fight depression, and the benefits of exercise are priceless.
- Is there a hobby you’ve been curious about? There’s no better time than now to turn empty rooms into hobby rooms.
- Call your child, grab your calendars, and plan your next visit to see each other. Just because your child is gone, doesn’t mean you’ll never see each other again. Be joyful for each other, and encourage each other to find personal happiness.
Empty nest syndrome can be a difficult time of transition but does not last forever.