Back in the ‘70s, both psychologists and the media popularized the term “empty-nest-syndrome”—a myth that parents, especially mothers, feel a sense of depression and loss of purpose when their children leave home. But researchers are now debunking this myth and suggesting that this period in a parents’ life can be one of increased opportunity, heightened excitement and renewed relationships. They are proving parents are excited over a wealth of opportunity they hadn’t seen since prior to having children.
Now this isn’t to say the empty nest’s impact on parents isn’t one of transition, because it will take some time getting used to a new life without kids living under the roof, but the idea that parents are doing worse when their kids are gone is being proved wrong.
The Next Chapter
Parenting is a considerable part of our identity. After all, we never stop being parents, even after our children grow up. But parents aren’t showing the typical telltale signs of empty nest syndrome: they are not depressed or suffering unrelenting sadness, they do not cry uncontrollably, nor do they suffer from a lack of enthusiasm or little energy. Instead, they’re becoming active, joining groups, reestablishing lost relationships and exploring new interests.
Once the children bid adieu, parents feel the freedom to pursue their own goals and embrace the world outside the home. Whether it’s to explore with a weekend escape or a month-long adventure, to reconnect with work or to dive back into the workplace, parents are starting to live their next chapter—and with renewed focus.
The Surprise of Letting Go
When kids leave home, the community of parents that shared your interests is lost, too. For this reason, some empty nesters are turning to blogs and online social groups for camaraderie as well as advice. They’re turning to social media to find that new community that can help fill the hours once devoted to their children. Building new friends, new hobbies and exploring new hobbies is surprisingly comfortable during life after the college drop off, especially with platforms like GetAssist.
GetAssist makes meeting people in your community, bouncing between chats and conversations, asking questions, discovering new passions and joining private and closed groups a supreme outlet to network. And GetAssist is not just for communal joiners. It’s a great way to keep that connection with your children…digitally.