This week has been a very tough week for me. I guess you could say I have been feeling ungrateful, depressed, or left out, this is unusual for me.
I am always grateful for the many blessings I have in my life, and I thank God every day for my health, my family, my education, my home, etc..
But, this week I began to feel like my children no longer needed me as a parent.
According to Wikipedia, “Empty nest syndrome is a general feeling of grief and loneliness, parents or guardians may feel when their children leave home to live on their own for the first time. For parents, this can result in depression, as well as a loss of purpose.”
The symptoms of empty nest syndrome, according to Wikipedia, are, but not included to:
- Loss of purpose
- Worry, stress, or anxiety over the welfare of the child
- Feelings of rejection
You see, I did not suffer the empty nest syndrome most parents exhibit when their children leave home. I knew as a parent that my children were meant to leave home and I was ready for them to do so.
I have three grown sons. My oldest joined the Marines right out of high school. My middle child did not leave home until he was 24, and my youngest until 22. So, I guess I was blessed they hung around that long.
Now, they are all healthy, happy, independent, young men, with busy lives. I don’t hear from them often, as they work long hours, and have children. One lives out of state.
However, at the time they left home I was busy with my graduate studies pursuing my Master’s degree in Criminal Justice, and I had my hands full studying, and writing my thesis. However, The last 3 years, have been different. I have been unemployed twice, and not much else as far as school, or hobby to keep me busy.
I guess I am just now going through the empty nest syndrome I suppose. I don’t feel needed on a daily basis, I don’t see my sons as often as I would like, and I don’t speak to them on a daily basis.
My youngest son says that, “If they were girls that would be different, I would hear from them more often.” Moms with girls is that so? I have three boys…………
As a parent I was very involved in my kids lives, PTO, team mom, wife to head coach for baseball, carpool, I never missed a game etc…
So, now to have so little contact with them on a daily basis, I guess I don’t feel needed. I must add that I am very proud of all three of my sons. I am proud of what they have accomplished, and who they have become. I know that should bring me some comfort, and happiness.
Parents that have grown children, did you go through this? I would love your input.
I guess like every other parent I will adjust to my new role as a parent. I guess it will just take time.
If you have experienced the “empty nest” syndrome and care to share your story please let me know. I would like to know I am not alone, of course I know I am not, but it would help.
The definitions enclosed are excerpts from www.wikipedia.org