Almost Empty Nest? Tips to Cope
With the summer on the wane, you may be getting ready to send your last or only off to college. If so, you may also be dreading the infamous "Empty Nest Syndrome." However, plenty of Boomer parents will tell you that after an initial adjustment period, being "child free" isn't so bad after all. The University of Indiana, in a recent press release, offers tips from clinical psychologist Kelly Miller on how to cope:
1. Prepare yourself
Miller suggests getting "reacquainted with your partner" by scheduling more of those all-important date nights or signing up for a class together to learn a new skill or hobby.
2. Adapt to your changing role
Her second tip is to realize that your parenting role is not by any means ending. It's simply shifting to a new phase.
3. Maintain stability
Miller also stresses not making huge changes right away such as turning your teen's bedroom in to a sewing room or downsizing by selling the family home. "Keep your most meaningful traditions and rituals intact," she says, "but remain open to developing new ones as the family transitions to new adult relationships."
4. Seek support and information
Her fourth suggestion is talk with others in your situation. She also recommends reading “Letting Go: A Parents’ Guide to Understanding the College Years,” and “Chicken Soup for the Soul: Empty Nesters.”