What's happening in the world of mental health?
Have you got an empty nest?
Have you dropped your last child at university?
This time of year can be difficult for parents. How are you feeling? Were there tears as you said goodbye? Have you been upset over the last week? Wandering around like a lost soul?
It can be really difficult for some parents when their last child leaves home - although not a medically recognised condition, empty nest syndrome does exist.
For over 18 years you have been either mum or dad to children who have developed from helpless babies into independent adults. Although you might not feel they have the experience or skills to live alone, and you are going to worry about them, this is their first real step into adulthood, and you have to let them go.
Who are you?
Over time we all lose sight of who we are. From time to time we have to re-evaluate who we are and where we want to go next. This is a great time to do just that.
The Parent Channel has a great YouTube video about this topic. It's important to realise that you aren't the only person feeling like this.
If you are struggling to think of new things to do, this blogger, Jane, has some good ideas. You don't have to go skydiving or abseiling - you can learn new ways to relax. Things you enjoyed before you had children might not float your boat now. On the other hand, you might just release your inner adrenaline junkie.
What about your relationship?
If you have spent over 18 years being mum and dad how do you become just the two of you again? Maybe you have forgotten what you enjoy together. Or you might have grown apart and don't know how to move back to each other.
There is a lot of support and advice available to help you find each other again. It might seem a bit forced at first but some of the exercises can be fun to do. The Gottman Institute have some great information on their website and in their books to help you get back on track again.
Feel proud that you have brought this young adult up to live their life and them going to university proves what a success you are.
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