What happens when your children grow up?

If the largest part of your adult life has been invested in your children, it can be hard to cope with the silence and emptiness when they’ve all left home

By Dr Miriam Stoppard

A great part of yourself seems to have vanished into thin air. Particularly vulnerable are women who have defined their role in life in terms of child-raising and motherhood. For such women, the empty nest can take away part of their identity and, in some cases, leave them feeling purposeless with a real sense of loss.

When their children leave home, some women may undergo an emotional and intellectual trauma, similar to bereavement.

Having four sons I was OK until my youngest left home, then I became a real mess, wandering around, looking for signs of him. After holidays, I’d leave my sons’ gear lying about as though they were still living in the house.

We have to find a new focus in our lives and the empty nest can spur major reassessment. Being aware of this eventuality means a woman can prepare, maybe by starting new activities or making a career move.

Source: Daily Mirror

Picture credit: Imae source/India Picture

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