Anxiety Community
I miss my adult children
About This Community:

A community of people with Anxiety offering support through your health journey. Ask a question, join a conversation, share experiences: sleeping, mood swings, panic attacks, and disorders.

Font Size:
A
A
A
Background:
Blank
Blank
Blank
Blank Blank

I miss my adult children

What would be considered a healthly amount of interaction per week with my adult children?  I seem to be doing most of the contacting...but don't want to interfere with their busy schedules so I call them approximately once every two to three weeks.  I am so lonely for them though...and wonder if I am just going through mid life crisis.  One of them is 32 and has been out of the house since he was 19, is married and has two children and the other is 26 and has been on her own for 4 yrs.  You'd think I'd be over the emptly nest syndrome by now.  

As I observe those around me - it seems their adult children contact them alot.  I guess I have been using my observations as to what is a healthy relationship with adult children. I find myself comparing my situation to theirs and feel that I am coming up short. Perhaps it is because their kids are local and live closer and both of mine live out of state. With all the technology, it is pretty easy to communicate regularly though.  I would like to believe they are just busy, healthy, happy, & productive and that we did our job well and they don't "need" us. But I want them to "want us".  I figure there must be something I can do to attract them.  A little voice in the back of my head says "they don't enjoy being with me" and I want them to.  Any suggestions?
Related Discussions
12 Comments Post a Comment
Blank
1394098 tn?1385963734
I totally understand how you feel.  I miss my kids so much.  My oldest has been out of the house for 5 years and the youngest has been gone for 2 years.  I dont talk to them that much either.  I dont want to bother them because I know that they are busy.  I call my mom once a week.  I dont talk to my kids that often.  Its a weird situation that parents are put into.  We teach our kids to be out on their own while at the same time wishing they would never leave us.  But we know that they have to leave to have full healthy lives. When I do forget to call my mom, its usually because Im really busy or Im really tired. I try to believe that my kids dont contact me for the same reasons.  Recently, I talked to my oldest daughter about this and was just honest that I was happy that they were doing so well but I just get sad because I miss them so much.  She is a very compassionate person and was so sweet about it.  I dont know if it will make her call me more but at least she understands.  And she must have told her sister because I got a hand written letter from my youngest telling me that she loved me and that I was still important to her.  I could hardly read it because of my tears.  I dont know how receptive your kids would be to telling them, but I feel a lot better.  Im still very lonely for them.  Im not sure that empty nest ever goes away for some of us.  Sometimes I text them to see if they are busy before I call them.  I think they appreciate that.  In answer to your question,  I think that its not unreasonable to talk to them once a week or so.  Just dont keep them on the phone too long and keep your conversations as upbeat as possible.  Do you have a Facebook acct?  I look at their walls periodically and make a comment here and there.  As long as I dont embarrass them, they seem to be fine with talking to me that way too. But dont feel alone.  There are a lot of us out here that miss our kids like you do.  I do a lot of praying and I have a kitty that keeps me company. I find that it helps to stay busy.  But I still have times that I cry because I miss them so much.  I hope you feel better soon.  
Blank
370181 tn?1428180348
Epic tomes have been written on the empty nest syndrome. It's very real and it's very, very painful and sad. But it's a part of the life cycle, which doesn't make it any easier, we just have no choice..........except how we choose to deal with it.
There is no "right" or "wrong" amount of time that we should or shouldn't interact with our grown children. And I think to put expectations on THEM because of OUR needs is unfair. My boys are both in their twenties, one is 25, the other, 28. Our oldest son, who is unmarried and just recently returned to finish his college degree, has taken to stopping by a little more often than he use to. Our youngest only manages to make it home for  various holidays and even though I've asked him a million times to just drop an email every once in awhile to let us know he's still alive, well, that falls on deaf ears for the most part.
I spent vast amounts of time just standing in their bedrooms, sobbing with what amounted to grief. I think now I was grieving for the end of a chapter of our life as a family. We would be close, always, but we would now be forever changed. The patterns of our lives as a family and as individuals inside that family, had to rearrange themselves, had to morph into what we would become next. We are still in that process and I think we will be for quite some time. But it's OK. The boys know where their roots are and they are flying very well.
Accepting this massive change in our lives is also a process and if you don't want to get bogged down in the past, become depressed and needy, giving up on life and making yourself a drag to be around, then you need to put on your big girl panties and get a life of your own. Travel with your husband or girlfriends, get a job, volunteer, find a hobby, take some classes, start a book club...........do something you've always wanted to do, something you promised yourself you'd do once the kids were "grown and gone." Well, they're gone! DO IT!
I agree with the above poster that talking to your kids, telling them how you're feeling, what you're going through, would be a great way to begin dealing with your pain. They probably have no idea how much you're hurting.
As a last resort, there is always therapy if you just can't get on with your life. I doubt it will come to that, but it's out there if you need it.
I wish you Godspeed as you travel this path. It's well worn and well marked.
Post to us anytime you need to talk. We''re always here, OK?
Be strong
Peace
Greenlydia  



ting home in a house that is now too big and too silent, full of the echoes of something we can't help but feel we've lost...........this is an incredibly difficult transition period for everyone. I am reminded of something written on an old fridge magnet that someone gave me when our first son was born. It said "There are only two lasting gifts we can give our children. One is roots. The other is wings."
Blank
370181 tn?1428180348

Epic tomes have been written on the empty nest syndrome. It's very real and it's very, very painful and sad. But it's a part of the life cycle, which doesn't make it any easier, we just have no choice..........except how we choose to deal with it.
There is no "right" or "wrong" amount of time that we should or shouldn't interact with our grown children. And I think to put expectations on THEM because of OUR needs is unfair. My boys are both in their twenties, one is 25, the other, 28. Our oldest son, who is unmarried and just recently returned to finish his college degree, has taken to stopping by a little more often than he use to. Our youngest only manages to make it home for  various holidays and even though I've asked him a million times to just drop an email every once in awhile to let us know he's still alive, well, that falls on deaf ears for the most part.
I spent vast amounts of time just standing in their bedrooms, sobbing with what amounted to grief. I think now I was grieving for the end of a chapter of our life as a family. We would be close, always, but we would now be forever changed. The patterns of our lives as a family and as individuals inside that family, had to rearrange themselves, had to morph into what we would become next. We are still in that process and I think we will be for quite some time. But it's OK. The boys know where their roots are and they are flying very well.
Accepting this massive change in our lives is also a process and if you don't want to get bogged down in the past, become depressed and needy, giving up on life and making yourself a drag to be around, then you need to put on your big girl panties and get a life of your own. Travel with your husband or girlfriends, get a job, volunteer, find a hobby, take some classes, start a book club...........do something you've always wanted to do, something you promised yourself you'd do once the kids were "grown and gone." Well, they're gone! DO IT!
I agree with the above poster that talking to your kids, telling them how you're feeling, what you're going through, would be a great way to begin dealing with your pain. They probably have no idea how much you're hurting.
As a last resort, there is always therapy if you just can't get on with your life. I doubt it will come to that, but it's out there if you need it.
I wish you Godspeed as you travel this path. It's well worn and well marked.
Post to us anytime you need to talk. We''re always here, OK?
Be strong
Peace
Greenlydia  


Blank
Avatar f tn
Thank you both for your input.  It is comforting to have a network of those who understand the emotional changes that happen with the transition and to see it through others eyes helps with new perspective.  I have always worked full time, am a licensed minister, real estate investor and run a small non proft that serves the poor in my community. I never really had the mindset or a plan to be able to do something after my kids moved out.  I've done it while they were living with me too.  Fortunately, I have lots of activities that I love to do that keep me busy and lots of venues for social interaction. But first and foremost - I love being with my kids.  "Quality time" is my love language.  In most cases I am completely transparent and an open book.  I have taught classes on conflict resolution, etc, etc....but have held back from talking with my kids because I didn't want them to feel obligated, and/or have another pressure in their lives which would appear as an "expectation".  I don't want them to pursue me out of obligation, but out of desire.  I think I just need to stop defaulting to the thought that their being too busy for mom and dad right now is because they don't want to be with us.  I could never tell them I have felt that way because I don't want to lay a guilt trip on them.  Perhaps it is what it is...they are both healthy, happy, active adults that are trying to balance their lives like everyone else.  I have a mother that lives locally too.  She is 80yrs old. Now that I have come to this season in my life, I have wondered if she and my father felt the same way when I was in my 20's & 30's. It is just too bad we learn some of these lessons so much later in life.  I have a scheduled coffee time at her  house once a week before work now to stay connected.  My father passed away 2 yrs ago so she is living alone now.  Still at 80, she does yoga once a week and maintains her own home.  I am doing most of the pursuing on both ends...with my mom and with my kids :0).  Perhaps I'll just keep doing that until there is a season in their lives when they start coming around more often.  Thanks again.
Blank
Avatar f tn
The empty nest syndrome is part of the American culture - it is NOT a part of the life cycle but speaks more about the devaluing of older women in this country.  I think it is very sad that so many mothers (and fathers) are cast off and discarded when a child no longer needs them to do things for him or her.  Empty nest speaks more to the selfishness of young adults and a culture that encourages that selfishness by calling it normal or desirable.  A lack of respect and love is not normal for an individual who is an adult.  Americans need to look at the rest of the world to see where older women have important respected roles in families and in society throughout their lives. All those women who feel sad - lonely and discarded after children leave home need to work together to change this country so this cycle of cruelty ends.
Blank
Avatar n tn
I would gladly be apart of a Mom Team that helps to reshape the culture so that there is no need for feeling abandoned by our children. We have Mom prayer times for Women that are new Mom's and children starting school why not have a adult child prayer so they understand our desires and needs. Prayer is needed and I have not done that. My Son is 34 today and I lost my daughter at 25 6 years ago. I can hardly breathe it is so hard not to hear from my son. I love him and his family but they are really busy and focused on his football career. They are having fun and at my home its just not as much fun as out with their friends. We try to take Christmas vacations away from the house but if its not planned carefully we end up not doing anything fun. I am in on this heartbreaking time and I need support. I am a very busy career Mom but my quiet time hurts. I will put them first if they would let me know when we could have some quality time.
Blank
Avatar f tn
My son was so incredibly loving as a little boy and even into his early teens. He is 17 now and acts like I am the enemy much of the time. I am a christian who believes in living according to God's rules and my son has turned his back on most of that. I miss him so terribly and am so grieved by his life choices. I feel like I will never be happy again. I want him to be little again so bad. Back then I felt like a wonderful mom. I read to him and played him with him so much. Now he is gone so very much of the time. I can't seem to find much of anything I enjoy doing. I know I need to get a life and hobbies, but I am so depressed so much of the time that I can't seem to find the motivation.
Blank
Avatar f tn
I am so sorry,I too can definitely relate,your story is so like mine.I just retired at 52 and moved clear across country to be w family.What a shock to find my children were not really available.We moved to the boonies on top of it and there is nothing for 30 miles and not extras to run in and out of town.I feel very isolated.Trying to make the best of it. lin
Blank
Avatar m tn
I am with you.  My son is 19 and moved out three months ago.  He has become very disrespectful, almost mean.  He doesn't want to come around because he says we aren't nice to his girlfriend.  She's an only child and very possessive.  It hurts me badly because he's always been closest to me.  He was always loving, caring, and his mom was special.  Now I don't hear from him at all.  I am lost.
Blank
Avatar f tn
Im new to this community, and am so grateful to have found it.................Im going thru the same thing with my sons. Well at least my 20 year old talks to me ,but his brother who is 25 doesnt and hasnt.  Its very anguishing.
Blank
Avatar m tn
We raised 5 kids.

My 21 year old daughter is home from ISU for spring break and she called to let me know that the house that we lived in from the time she was born until 3rd grade was for sale/open house and she was going to go through it and have a look.

She also pointed me toward Zillow where I saw the home listing with pictures.

I have to admit I didn't think it would affect me until I saw those darn pictures of the inside of the house.

4 out of 5 came right from the hospital to that home, took their 1st steps there, posed for Christmas card pictures, learned to ride bikes, birthday parties,swimming parties, broken arms falling off the swing set.

Then I thought about how hard my wife worked to make it a home,

and how hard I worked to make sure that roof was always over their heads.

That is what I miss! The grind.

Oh sure, they are still around but we hardly see them. For the most part they dont want anything to do with us. I get it, I am glad they are turning out to be good adults with their own lives, but there are things I miss very badly.

I miss them relying on us, coming to us with their problems, fighting, snuggling on the couch watching TV. Bright eyes at Christmas. Sad times losing pets and friends moving. What can I say Im selfish. I miss it all.

I knew I would. I have several friends who tell me Im crazy and they are very glad that portion of their life is over. I knew even then I would miss it nad tried very hard to pause to remember even back then.

Anyway, The point in all of this is, your not alone. I will never feel as fulfilled in life as I did for those 20 years. BTW: I also miss being in my 30's I dont think I could do it now that I am in my 50's. Try to remember you did the best job you could. If you didnt, they would still be there mooching off you and you would have a whole new set of problems. I guarantee you would not be missing them too much then.
Blank
Post a Comment
To
Recent Activity
406584 tn?1399591666
Blank
10356 commented on READY
22 mins ago
Avatar f tn
Blank
tabbyann111 added the Anxiety/Panic Tracker
2 hrs ago
Avatar f tn
Blank
tabbyann111 is ...worried Comment
2 hrs ago
Blank
Anxiety Tracker
Track Anxiety Symptoms
Start Tracking Now
Top Anxiety Answerers
Avatar m tn
Blank
anxiety860
Avatar m tn
Blank
Paxiled
Arlington, VA
358304 tn?1409713092
Blank
cnote
na, MO
675718 tn?1449992146
Blank
drifter0213
El Paso, TX
Avatar f tn
Blank
Gemfly
Avatar m tn
Blank
michigan07
Anxiety Community Resources
RSS Expert Activity
233488 tn?1310696703
Blank
Marathon Running Done Over Many Yea...
May 21 by John C Hagan III, MD, FACS, FAAOBlank
233488 tn?1310696703
Blank
New Article on Multifocal IOL vs &q...
May 21 by John C Hagan III, MD, FACS, FAAOBlank
748543 tn?1443740527
Blank
TMJ/TMJ The Connection Between Teet...
01/15 by Hamidreza Nassery , DMD, FICOI, FAGD, FICCMOBlank
Top Anxiety Answerers
Avatar m tn
Blank
anxiety860
Avatar m tn
Blank
Paxiled
Arlington, VA
358304 tn?1409713092
Blank
cnote
na, MO
675718 tn?1449992146
Blank
drifter0213
El Paso, TX
Avatar f tn
Blank
Gemfly
Avatar m tn
Blank
michigan07