Empty Nest Syndrome

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:

  • Depression
  • 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







  1. Mamaintheburbs says:

    Sorry you are feeling this way! I wish I can offer advice or share my experience with you but I’m in a different boat. Your boys love and cherish you so much. And with a new grand baby on the way, your role is changing! I’m so excited for you! Keep writing bc this seems to be a good outlet for you!! And you are good at it! Plus I enjoy reading your posts!

  2. cynthia says:

    Kelly, this has been han interesting time. Yes, I will get better, I just have to stay busy. I am thrilled at being a grandma again!! Writing has always been a good outlet for me, and I am glad you enjoy my posts. Thank you.

  3. redhotwritinghood says:

    I’m sorry you have been feeling depressed and alone. It’s hard when we are so busy in our everyday lives and we have a huge change. I will soon be going through this soon as well, my child is now a senior in high school and I am getting panicked as heck at what I am going to do with out her. I was a single mom for so long and it was always me and her. I am thankfully married now and that will help but I will miss her dearly. The best thing now is to just put all of that wonderful talent of yours into different avenues and you are not alone. There are many of us who love your company and we look forward to spending more time with you and getting to know you more! You are awesome Cynthia!!

  4. cynthia says:

    Thank you so much! I am looking forward to this new phase, albeit reluctantly. I am also looking forward to getting to know new friends like you!

  5. Wendie says:

    Just a few hours ago, I left my youngest child (son) at his college dorm. He is attending a wonderful university, he is only a 40 minute car ride away, his roommate is his best friend and he has received an amazing amount of scholarship money. All good, right? While I knew I would miss him and our daily lives would change, in no way was expecting to cry all the way home. I have two daughters who attended and graduated from the same esteemed institution and I was not nearly as emotional or blue. I have been a mom for 32 years now and my children have been the main focus in my life and I fear this feeling of loss will take some time to get over. I have a beautiful grandson and a new baby grandson due to arrive in October and I am most grateful and I enjoy that part of my life tremendously, but I yearn to have a home filled with at least one child who keeps the house feeling busy and full of life.

  6. cynthia says:

    Wendie, I find myself having to adjust to the quiet too. But, the thought of starting over with a new baby is not something I would enjoy. I am going to embrace this part of my life with new friends, new activities and my wonderful grandchildren! I hope you do too.

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