They've Left the Nest: 5 Tips to Help Parents Manage the Separation Anxiety
Congratulations on raising a young adult who is ready to spread their wings and fly. Sending your first child off to college is an exciting and nerve-wracking experience for parents.
You may feel a mix of emotions from proud to sad, from anxious to excited, all at the same time. This is a big change for both you and your young adult.
As you say goodbye and send them off to college, here are some tips to help you manage your anxiety and separation.
Tip #1: Establish open communication
Before your child leaves for college, establish open lines of communication. Discuss what they expect from college and have an open conversation about what you expect from them while they are away. It is important to listen as much as you talk.
Encourage them to call or text regularly and let them know you will do the same. Keep in mind it’s normal for communication to change in frequency or intensity as they adjust to college life.
Tip #2: Practice self-care
You may feel a sense of loss and emptiness after your young adult leaves home. Practice self-care to manage your emotions.
Try to maintain a healthy diet and exercise regularly. Meditation, yoga, or getting outside for a walk can also help.
Remember, your child is not your only source of happiness and fulfillment. Find joy in other areas of your life, whether it’s hobbies, relationships with friends or family or professional pursuits.
Tip #3: Trust in their independence
College is an opportunity for young adults to claim their independence and learn to navigate life on their own. Allow them to make their own decisions (within reason) and learn from their mistakes.
Trust that you have raised them well and equipped them with the life skills they need to make good choices. Remember, you are not losing your child, but gaining a new adult relationship with them.
Tip #4: Keep busy
Distraction can be a powerful tool in coping with separation anxiety. Keep busy with work, hobbies, and spending time with friends and family.
Joining a support group or online community for parents of college students can also provide a sense of belonging and support.
Tip #5: Consider seeing a therapist who specializes in young adult counseling
If you are struggling to manage your emotions, consider seeing a therapist who specializes in young adult counseling. A therapist can help you identify and manage negative thoughts and emotions that may arise as your young adult leaves home. They can also provide tools and resources to help you cope with separation anxiety.
In conclusion, sending your first child off to college is an exciting yet emotional time for parents. By establishing open communication, practicing self-care, trusting in their independence, keeping busy, and considering seeing a teen therapist who specializes in young adult counseling, parents can manage their anxiety and separation from their young adult.
Remember, this is a new chapter in both your lives, and the relationship you have with your young adult will continue to grow and evolve.
Sugar Land Teen & Family Counseling: Specializing in Teen Therapy & Young Adult Counseling in Sugar Land, TX & Houston
You've done a great job raising a healthy, confident young adult. This next chapter in their life is exciting but also can be anxiety provoking.
At Sugar Land Teen & Family Counseling in located in Sugar Land, TX, our therapists have helped others overcome anxiety in their lives. We are conveniently located off of US 90 and Dairy Ashford Road.
Contact Sugar Land Teen & Family Counseling
Talk with one of our caring therapists
Begin the healing process today!
Other Therapy and Counseling Services Offered at Sugar Land Teen & Family Counseling
At Sugar Land Teen & Family Counseling, we provide a variety of therapy approaches that are supported by research and shown to be effective. Some of the teen therapy and young adult counseling we offer are:
Board Certified Neurofeedback Therapy
Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR Therapy)
Group Therapy for Teens
Teen Social Anxiety
Teen Panic Attacks
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)
Couples Therapy & Marriage Counseling
Couples Therapy and Marriage Counseling can be very effective. The secret ingredient to success is each person willing to look at themselves and work to do things differently, together. When a marriage counselor or couples therapist has this to work with, the success rate can be very high.
Sometimes life will throw challenges at us that create situations that put strain on our marriage or relationship. It may be due to:
Choices and actions that have been made by one partner.
Financial downturn in the economy creating financial strain.
Feeling like you're growing apart.
Feeling like you don't have as much in common as you used to.