Learning To Live As An Empty Nester

empty nester

Disclaimer: Elise Ho, aka “Dr. Ho” is a Holistic Health & Life Coach. Dr. Ho is NOT a medical doctor, licensed therapist, lawyer, or a bevy of other things. Products or services that Dr. Ho believes in are the only ones that she recommends. Dr. Ho may receive compensation, product, or an affiliate commission on anything you see on this site. This is a personal Website solely reflecting Dr. Ho’s personal opinions. Statements on this site do not represent the views or policies of any organization with which I may be affiliated.

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A new empty nester has complicated feelings.

They are happy for their children but sad for themselves.

It is more important than ever to do things that nourish you.


A New Routine


One of the biggest challenges you’ll face is adjusting to life without your kids. This includes trying to get back to a normal routine, filling in the blanks in your life, and exploring new opportunities. After living a whole life where your kids are the center of your world, it’s natural to feel overwhelmed and like you don’t know what to do. But don’t let that worry you. You can find ways to fill in the gaps in your life through activities like online dating and chat line trials, learning about new cultures, and taking on new responsibilities.


Build yourself a new routine where you are the new center of your universe. Take time to figure out what you like to do. And what you want your new life to look like. Of course, spending time on yourself doesn’t mean you don’t still have time for your kids. But it’ll allow you to live your life to the fullest as well as support theirs. 


Coping With The Loss


Managing feelings of loss and separation that comes with being an empty nester will be hard. When I became an empty nester I walked the halls of my house crying.

Seek out support from other family members and friends. Remember that your parents went through the same thing with you way back when. So lean on their knowledge for expert advice navigating these difficult times. 

And try not to bear down on your children with the weight of your expectations. Because what you think will likely happen in the coming months is very different to what they expect. Open conversations about this will help bridge the gap. But more importantly, let them make their own mistakes. It’s the best way to learn, and they won’t resent you for not letting them live their life the way they want.


Stay Connected


The most important thing you can do is stay connected with your kids. This means sending them periodic updates, keeping in touch through social media, and sharing any special moments together. It also means being there for them when they need you. It’s natural to feel lonely when your kids are gone for long periods. But by staying connected, you can help make the transition easier for both of you.


Create goals and positive ways to stay in touch with your children once they’ve left. Keeping in touch will help you navigate feelings of loneliness and continue to play an essential role in their lives. 


Make Space For Your Hobbies In The Home


Another important thing you can do to make the transition easier for both you and your kids is to make space for your hobbies in the home. Hobbies are a great way to keep your mind active and help you relax.

 As your children leave the nest, you may have more space in your home than ever. This newfound space can be an excellent opportunity to indulge in your hobbies again! However, if you’re like most people, you may not have much storage space for your new supplies and equipment. That’s where a storage unit can come in handy. And, if you choose a storage unit close to your home, it can be easy to access whenever you want to work on your hobbies.

As an empty nester, you have come upon a time in which you will have more time to explore your own hobbies. It is time to explore the things that you love. And rediscover yourself. Nothing is more empowering than making time for yourself and doing activities that you love and bring joy. 


For More Parenting Tips
Buying a Car for Your Child
Buying a Car for Your Child
Keeping Your Family Healthy
Keeping Your Family Healthy

Please use the comment section below to share your tips, questions, and/or thoughts about this post.

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Naturally Yours,
Elise Ho
Ph.D., D.N. Psych.
Behavioral & Mental Health Specialist

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30 thoughts on “Learning To Live As An Empty Nester”

  1. I’m so happy I came across this blog and I’ll be sure to share it with women’s group. Not many Mother’s speak on the transition of empty nesting, stepping out of a routine you’ve done practically every day for 18 + years isn’t easy. Just remember to take it one step at a time.

  2. Jennifer Prince

    Yessssss!! My youngest just went off to college, so my husband and I are experiencing this. I appreciate the sage advice and insight!

  3. This is such a good read. Perfect for those who are dealing with separation anxiety and for those who will endure the same in the coming months. This is indeed the things to consider to be able to positively live our life in case our children has their own already.

  4. Ah yyyeeeaaahhhh…I remember studying about this part of time in many peoples’ lives and it left wondering how it felt “getting freerer” like before kids came into the picture of your life.

  5. Your post is so emotional. Though my child is very small now. But she was leaving with me 24×7 from last 2years and she will go for her physical school. And I was thinking how lonely I will feel during her absence. Hope you got some new and exciting to things in your life.

  6. I have a 16 year old and though I was getting close to being an empty nester… but we had a surprise pregnancy and just started again. Definitely didn’t expect to be starting over but excited all the same.

  7. This has to be one of the hardest transitions in life. Really appreciate your honesty here…I know one day this will be me and it gives a tug on my heart even to think about it.

  8. I used to think that I’ll be ready to let my kids go at 18 years. But now that my eldest is almost 17, I’m having mixed emotions, just like you. We’ve been talking about him registering for a university abroad and much as I would love him to get on with his life in the future, I’m also sad knowing he’s going to start living a life apart from us.

  9. Thank you so much for sharing your own empty nester experience. I have a friend who recently had her children leave the nest, and it’s been so hard for her. It’s also opened my eyes to the fact that I’ll be dealing with the same thing soon.

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About The Author

Dr. Elise Ho

Dr. Elise Ho

Dr. Elise Ho is a Holistic Health & Life Coach with a special interest in emotional health, life alignment, and energy flow.

Elise will partner with you to align your mindset, your energy, your home and your career so that you can live your life's desire with freedom and love.

Elise offers 30 years of experience and multiple certifications and degrees including a Ph.D. in Natural Health and a doctoral degree in Naturopathic Psychology.