So what do you do with an empty-nest?

D lived with us for three months between undergrad and grad school, and she had to be my therapist the whole time. (Going through a lot with elderly father and sister.) I do not think she will be offering free therapy sessions any time soon. So you never know who is being helped by whom.

Shaw, if u r in SE FL, let me know. I’d love to meet you and the miss.

Why moan over empty nest, consider it another chance to start over. If not must not deal with this transition then just enroll kids into community or commuter college and keep them home.

With affection, I’d just like to say–let people feel what they’re feeling. It’s the easiest thing in the world to say–that’s dumb, get over it. But it’s human to feel loss and need time to live with it and move on and thrive.

My experience tells me that sometimes people need time, not cavalier dismissal. Both of mine took a while to find their wings, and I struggled with their struggles. They’re both happily in their own lives now, and it’s all good. But I do not find I need to question the process as others go through it.

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My oldest has hand internships and then a job on the West Coast since he was a college junior. The youngest graduated in 2014 and lived in our attic for two years. He had an unpaid internship, then a very low paying internship and then a decent paying job where he’d had the internship but by then he’d decided he was finishing up the project and then moving on. He spent quite a while studying for the Officer Candidate Exam and then waiting for a spot to open up, but eventually his Navy Career finally got going properly and he’s off on his own. We never regretted having him rent free. He helped around the house, did a big back yard project that involved moving a lot of rocks and provided a lot of really interesting conversation thanks to his internships. Thankfully his girlfriend is getting her PhD at Columbia so there’s often been a reason for him to come and visit. (Though right now she’s overseas doing research.)

I have good friends though whose kid seems really stuck. He never finished his senior thesis from Princeton, has never paid rent, has had odd jobs always provided by the parents. He’s drinking too much, smoking too much weed. The absolute last kid you would have expected to fall apart. He’s had all kinds of therapy, but so far without any positive results.

As I mentioned earlier, we have failed miserably in downsizing and bought a house that had one large master bedroom and four smaller bedrooms (which post architect will be three smaller bedrooms) and a huge in-law suite with a big MBR, a huge living room, a small kitchen and small bedroom. We have decided to live in the original house and put my office in the in-law suite living room (and keep our ability to have a house with a ground floor MBR as these are highly sought after according to RE agents).

ShawD visited us last week in FL and mentioned that when she had kids, she and her BF would move back from California and live with us in our new house. ShawWife asked, “In the in-law suite”)? She said, “No. You guys will live in the in-law suite and we will live in the main house.” So, someday our empty nest may not be empty.

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Empty Nesters, how are you dealing with sudden reoccupation of your nests? How are ones surviving who downsized or repurposed children’s rooms?

I’m glad we didn’t repurpose the rooms much as they have now been here since Feb and S is busy deep cleaning everything! I’m proud of him for tackling what we have put off for way too long.

We are all getting along even better than expected. The kids are pretty cheerful and helpful. Im glad they have each other—think it helps abs they’ve always been close. S has been doing a bit of kayaking in his one man folding kayak. We have also been rowing in the rowing machine next to my computer and walking a bit in the neighborhood. The kids have been doing our shopping and most of our errands, even cooking many dinners!

We do get some takeouts to mix things up and help local companies.

That is awesome.

I sold my house 7 years ago and currently live in what was a one bedroom, furnished, with a tiny “breakfast room.” One of my kids squeezed her mattress in there by moving the table into the closet! She wasn’t going to stay long but COVID has prolonged her stay. I wish I had a house or apartment with two bathrooms so she could stay when she goes back to work and friends, but we both have concerns about my health so she will have to move.

In this case it’s not that my nest is empty of full- it’s too small!

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We would be delighted to have one or both kids here but are even more delighted that they are happily ensconced in a very nice condo with several roommates and are both busy plying their trades.

They are also adamant that the last thing we need is them, especially ShawD who is working as a nurse practitioner doing primary care. She is mostly doing telemedicine but does see some patients in person. At some point, she will do a rotation in a clinic that is focused on patients with COVID sympoms.

@shawbridge thank your daughter for her brave (now and anticipated) work!

We are doing ok. Have to say that I’m happy we didn’t downsize to the condo I wanted because it would have been impossible for all of us to work from home.

Well our empty nest of 3 years is coming to an extreme halt due to the current situation. My son who’s internship was canceled is coming home next week as I make my way over to get him. Then my daughter virtually graduates from college and comes home later May. We have had both of them in the same house in very limited fashion since both had study abroad, internships etc over the last 3 years. We actually liked our “Empty” Nest!! ?.

They last time they were both here together was over their winter break and they went right back up to school to their apartments instead of staying home during the Covaid 19 virus. Don’t get me wrong we love to have them home but they are so used to doing things their own way and I don’t blame them. But I am not running around the house cleaning up after them or cleaning their piles of stuff they just leave… It’s not college anymore… They don’t like us telling them anything… Imagine that ?

Just remember as disrupting as it is to you to have your empty nest refilled, it can also be a very defeating time for kids to have to revert back home. Doesn’t mean they don’t like or enjoy you but it’s probably not their ideal circumstance either.

Good idea to sit down and have everyone air out concerns and make a plan for living together while still living life apart (and taking care of the home).

Yep ^^^ we joke about this with them. We honestly all get it. They expected to come back home for a bit and figure out next steps especially during this time. 2 of us are easy and well…two of us can be more of a challenge after a week or two together.

It will be fine and just having a bit of fun here. It will be nice to have them back. Still possible that one won’t be here all summer. Everything is a moving target at this point. Honestly thrilled to have one done with college at this point. One more to go…

My late 20’s kid (youngest) is leaving my apartment in a couple of weeks, after 4 months here. With COVID, her leaving means she will probably go out more and potentially be more exposed so the virus gives a new twist to the nest emptying again. I will be alone again, as I have for several years now, and am going to find out what that is like with sheltering in place. Thank heavens for Zoom and Netflix, though I am trying to focus more on off-screen activities too.

My kids are 30/32. They are both sheltering in our home and state. It’s the longest we’ve all been together since S started college in 2006. They’ve been here since February and neither have indicated then they plan to return to their respective rentals in LA and Arlington VA.

Our state has the lowest infection rate of the 3 venues and we are all doing well together. I am cherishing our time together. It will be lonelier when they leave but I’m grateful H and I have one another plus my large extended family is all on our island as well.

I had been minimizing my exposure to crowds for some time before COVID 19 and will continue to do so.

We have a full house. I think the 20yo is going to cancel her lease and commute to college next year since all extracurriculars are cancelled, her on-campus job is gone and all classes will be available remotely. We aren’t sure if the 18yo will be going to his (far-away) campus or not.
I am generally enjoying this extra time together!

Well, this is the first time (other than vacations) that the house is full with both kids home since 2006, when S left for college. It’s a bit bumpy adjusting to the refilled (temp) nest, but we are all cherishing the time.

No clear idea when the kids will head to their respective rentals (which have much higher Covid-19 infection rates than Honolulu).

Amazon has been getting lots of orders from us and benefitted financially from our wanting to minimize trips outside the home.