Tag: Transition

Surviving the Empty Nest Syndrome

The day has finally come when your child has moved out of the house.  There were probably points along the way when you never thought you’d make it here.  But you have.  Whether off to college, starting a family of their own, enlisting for service, or just ready to explore the world and all it has to offer – your child has now spread his wings and taken flight.  Walking through the house you are suddenly aware how quiet it is.  Perhaps a little too quiet. If you are experiencing feelings of depression, rejection, worry and anxiety for your children, and a loss of purpose you, like many, may be experiencing the Empty Nest Syndrome.
When a child leaves home for the first time it can often be a difficult time of transition for the parents.  This may be particularly true for full-time parents, those whose identity was based around being a parent,  individuals who find change to be stressful or are already undergoing other significant changes (retirement, menopause, etc.)  Parents who worked outside the home may begin questioning whether they invested enough time in their children.  Try to remember these feelings are normal and this is a time of transition.  You may be faced with trying to reconnect with your spouse since raising children is no longer your primary focus.  Additionally, you will have to establish a new kind of relationship with the child.  Communication may primarily take place electronically now which is a big shift from daily face to face interaction.  Perhaps you  also have an abundance of free time that you don’t know how to occupy.
The good news is this time of transition (and the feelings that go with it) doesn’t have to last forever.  There are a number of things you can do to help.  Find a hobby or an interest you enjoy that will occupy your time and help you to feel good about yourself.  Consider volunteering in your community.  Also, take advantage of the newly acquired time to reconnect with your partner.  Spontaneity may have been difficult with children in the house, so take the opportunity to go on dates or focus on intimacy.  If your relationship was strained before the kids left, use the time you now have to work on the relationship.  And of course, maintaining communication with your child (in whatever form circumstances will allow) can help reduce the Empty Nest feelings. If you feel you are stuck in this stage be sure to reach out to family and friends for support.
It’s also important to note that not all parents will go through this stage.  Don’t feel guilty if you find yourself in a happy place after your children leave the house.  Take pride in the job you’ve done raising your child and live confidently knowing you help gave them the wings to fly!

Photo Credit: http://www.freedigitalphotos.net/images/view_photog.php?photogid=2703

Life In A Military Family

Life-In-A-Military-FamilyBeing a member of a military family comes with a unique sense of honor and pride.  Unfortunately, it also comes with a great deal of stress.  There are a number of reasons it can be a challenging, but two in particular often weigh heavy on the hearts of military families.
1.  Deployment – Fear of deployment may be a constant for some military members, their spouses, and children.  Not knowing when, if, or for how long can be stressful.  Though you may have signed up for this by joining the military or marrying a member of the military the reality of it may be harder than you imagined.  Once deployment orders have been given couples may experience tension in the relationship due to anxiety about what’s to come.  Children may begin acting out for the same reason.  Once the family member is deployed spouses may have difficulty adjusting to new duties around the home and may feel overwhelmed by handling the homefront alone.  Many find it helpful to include the deployed spouse in parenting decision making whenever possible.  The separation can also make it difficult to maintain a level of intimacy both partners desire.  Additionally, families may experience financial strains during deployment.  This may come in part as a result of having to work out new child care arrangements.  Spouses and children alike may fear heavily for the safety of their loved one.  Limiting exposure to constant news sources may be helpful.  Unfortunately, the challenges may not end with the deployment. The returning soldier may have difficulty adjusting to the changes that have taken place in the family while gone.  It may take some time getting used to the new independence his or her spouse has acquired while they were gone.  Of course if the soldier returns wounded, physically or emotionally, it may also be a challenging time of transition.
2.  Frequently Relocating – This can also place tremendous stress on military families.  Spouses and children may feel their lives are constantly being interrupted.  Having to change jobs, neighborhoods, and schools means having to make new friends.  This can be tough for everyone involved.  Also, because the military issues the orders it may feel like a loss of control of your own life.  It’s important for family members to discuss their feelings with one another which can ultimately help make the transition smoother.
The good news is there are a number of great resources available to help military families handle the unique stress they experience.  Support groups are available online and throughout communities all over the country.  Also, many find it helpful to quickly connect with other military families in their neighborhood, schools, and churches as soon as they move so that they have people around them who understand their experiences.  If a support system of family and friends is not enough, professional help is always available.

hope & restorationWhen the dark clouds of life roll in and settle over you, it’s important to have someone who can help you tap into your inner strength so that you can survive the storm.  At The Empowerment Group, that’s exactly what we do. We welcome you to explore the possibilities that are available to you. Restore a sense of balance and direction to your life. Whether through therapy, through Family Mediation, or through relationship counseling, we can help you find a path toward resolution and relief. Empowering your life! The Empowerment Group wants to help you bring balance, peace and happiness to your life even when the storms roll in and you feel all hope is gone. We can help:
  • Mediation
  • Therapy
  • Relationships
  • Pre-Marital Counseling



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