When Mother’s Day rolls around, it can conjure up bittersweet emotions for mothers whose children have grown up and left home. Commonly known as empty nest syndrome, the feelings of emptiness become especially pronounced around holidays and special occasions. First, it’s important to know that you’re not alone in feeling sad as an empty nester. Second, there are healthy ways to cope with empty nest feelings. By acknowledging your emotions and finding a path forward, you can live your best life as you watch your children build theirs.
A Vast Array of Emotions
Even though there’s no clinical diagnosis for empty nest syndrome, it can stir serious emotions in mothers and fathers. Not everyone who has empty nest syndrome experiences the same emotions. For many mothers, sadness is the dominant emotion. They may grieve the loss of daily interaction with their child. Some parents experience a strong bittersweet feeling because they’re happy that their child has achieved independence, but they find it’s painful to let go of their parenting role.
Empty Nest Syndrome and Identity
One of the primary reasons people experience the strong emotions associated with empty nest syndrome is because so much of their identity is connected to being a parent. After all, they’ve invested countless hours in their children’s lives. Therefore, when their primary parenting duties are finished, they may experience an identity crisis. Some people become consumed with worry over what they’ll do with their lives now that their children don’t live at home.
One of the worst things you can do is isolate yourself. Instead of trying to push through your feelings, talk to a therapist, trusted friend, or online psychic. Describe how you’re feeling, the stress you have about your future, and the steps you can take to build a healthy life for yourself as an empty nester. As you discuss your situation, you’re sure to find that others have walked this path before you and have advice on how to cope.
Learn Your New Role
One of the challenges you face is your shifting role in your children’s lives. One of the best strategies is to follow your adult child’s lead on how much to communicate. Some young adults want some distance while others crave a daily or weekly phone call or visit. Let your son or daughter set the frequency of communication.
Find or Rediscover Your Passions
Most parents pour their love into their children during their childhood and adolescence. But when the children move away to school or to find a job, parents have to consciously redirect their passion and energies. Think about the things you enjoyed doing before you had children and revisit some of those activities. If you have trouble thinking of things to do, a live psychic reading is a fun way to see what adventures lay ahead.
When you find new outlets for your creativity, you’ll discover an exciting new world while still being a part of your grown children’s lives.