How did you handle "empty nest"?

United States
May 3, 2007 10:29am CST
My youngest child graduates from high school next week. She has decided to start college this summer so she will be leaving the first week in June. For the first time in 27 years there will be no children in the house. It is kind of uneasy feeling. How did you handle it or was it not a problem?
1 person likes this
5 responses
• United States
4 May 07
I just wanted to come in here and tell you that I feel for you. I will be in your shoes in the year 2009 and I'm not looking forward to it. I only have one child and my whole life has centered around him and raising him to be a good human being. Everything I do, I do for him. He is my everything and he's also one of my closest friends without crossing the line of parenting. He's such a good person and such a joy to have in my life. I do not know what I will do when he goes away to college. He has big plans for his future and if he has his way, he will be living on campus about 1 1/2 hours west of us. I'm not sure if it will happen right out of high school, he may have to go to the local college for 2 years before transferring which will buy me some time because he said if that happens he will stay living at home to save on expenses but I know the day will come where I will have to let him go and that day will be bittersweet. I'll be so happy that I raised him well enough to spread his wings and succeed but I will miss having him as an active part of my daily life and seeing his sweet face or feeling his warm hugs each day will be so very hard. I will want to allow him his freedom but at the same time, I'll want him to stay close to me as much as he can. It will be hard. My husband can't wait though. He wants to travel and do all kinds of things that we can't really do right now because of expenses and having to stay here for our school to go to school. I don't want to travel without my baby though! I have no advice for you, I just wanted to say that I understand what you are feeling. Somehow I'm sure you will be fine and things will just move into a new type of relationship and a new focus in your life other than her. Good luck to you and congratulations on raising her so well.
1 person likes this
• United States
4 May 07
Thanks so much! I tried to convince her to go to the local jr college but she is ready. She wants to live that next adventure. She is a great kid and will do well. Much better than I would have or will once she leaves. I am sure it will be alright but at this point it doesn't seem like it.
@judyt00 (3504)
• Canada
3 May 07
Look at the good points. No interrupted sleep by someone wanting a ride home at midnight. Not having to get dressed when going from the bedroom to the bathroom when taking a shower. And The Shower. Imagine actually being able to stay in the shower for 20 minutes without running out of hot water or having someone yelling at you to hurry up. And how about having ice cream in the freezer, and juice in the fridge instead of just the empty containers. Your grocery bill will be cut in half because you are only shopping for you and your husband. And you can now take that second honeymoon without dragging the kids with you!
1 person likes this
• United States
3 May 07
Hot shower? Whats that? Thanks for a look at the bright side.
@mrbranan (1012)
• United States
3 May 07
I don't have that problem yet. I don't want to even think about what I am going to do with no children in my house. I still remember how hard it was when the first one started school. I don't want them to leave and so I know it will be hard on me.
1 person likes this
• United States
3 May 07
I also remember the first day of school for her. I not ashamed to admit I cried. Guess I will need a big box of Kleenex.
@bruxedo (773)
• France
3 May 07
It's something that worries me also. I know that I still have some years before it, but I think it will be difficult to deal with it. I think it will always remain a sensation of emptiness even if we agree with them and think that they have to fight for their lives without so much protection.
1 person likes this
• United States
3 May 07
I am practicing keeping my nose out of her decisions unless she ask but it is hard!
• United States
3 May 07
It happened to me years ago and I had to think about how I handled it. Naturally I was a bit lost at first. It was over 20 years ago, but I can remember, back then I found myself really missing her. BUT - it gave me the opportunity to have a room I could make all my own. I still have it. She came home for a while and I had to give up my room to her, but she left again, so I got my room back. Make something positive of the experience PackratsHouse. Don't be sad. She's not gone forever. She'll be back now and again.
• United States
3 May 07
Hadn't thought about an extra room. Have to start thinking what it would be. Thanks