GREEN BAY, Wis. (WBAY) - College marks a huge milestone in a child's transition to adulthood. It can be a difficult time for parents who find themselves in an "empty nest."
Prevea Therapist Lisa Schubring says an empty nest can be traumatic for some parents. It can cause depression, loss of identity, and marital problems.
"It's a huge change to go from having a house full of children to all of a sudden no more children in the house," says Schubring.
Parents miss being a part of a child's daily life and all their activities. Empty Nesters find themselves with a lot more free time.
Schubring says it's time to think back to what you did before you had children, and what you enjoyed doing when you had freedom and flexibility.
"And then they get to explore activities, events and resources that do exist in our community and also couples, who are married, partnered. they get to kind of reconnect with each other too, figuring out what do we like to do together and what do we like to do apart.," says Schubring.
"Psychology Today" suggests making a list of your current roles in life. If you're involved in groups, consider expanding your commitment to them.
"So we encourage people to first just take a little bit of time. Recognize that this is a change. It's going to be different. It's going to be hard. Change is hard. That doesn't mean it can't be good. And then they get to figure out what do they want their life to look like," says Schubring.
"Kind of thinking about who was I before I had children. What things did I enjoy before I became a parent and didn't have that freedom and flexibility? Some of those are still things they may enjoy. Some are things they may not and then they get to figure well, what might I like now?"
Focus on helping your child succeed at college. Stay close and make regular visits. Have video chats and text.
Lean on loved ones and close contacts for support.
Take on new challenges at work and home.
Watch Action 2 News This Morning for your guide to Back 2 School. CLICK HERE for more advice on getting ready for the school year.