It seems that each year, more of my friends are becoming "Empty Nesters."  Kids are going off to college, or have moved away to start a new job.

While parents are happy to see their kids' spread their wings and fly, it can be a challenging adjustment to make after spending so many years living with them 24/7.  Sudden long-term separation must feel like a loss so feelings of grief and sadness are totally normal, according to mental health experts.

I asked some of my friends what advice they would give to parents whose children have flown the coop.  Here are some of their suggestions:

  • Start doing the things that previously had "someday" status
  • Learn something you've always wanted to learn
  • If you don't have a hobby, find one
  • Volunteer
  • Schedule a celebration for the "launching" of your children
  • Slow down and enjoy the free time you now have
  • Enjoy having your privacy back
  • Find ways to reconnect with your spouse
  • Use technology (Video chats, texting, etc.) to communicate with your kids

What advice would you add to the list?  Please share in the Comments section.