When you’re parenting children through the school years, your life revolves around their schedule. Because of this, many couples find it hard to make time for each other. So when the children leave for college, you find yourself living with a stranger, and subsequently, you feel your marriage falling apart and the word divorce has been brought up a time or two. Welcome to the empty nest syndrome.
But, it doesn’t have to be this way. There are ways for you to protect your marriage so that when your children leave, you can remain connected. They key is to understand why marriages fall apart after the children leave.
The cultural expectations of marriage have shifted in the past few decades. People live longer, subsequently giving you more time with your spouse. So, when people get caught up in their mid-life crisis, they struggle to identify not only with themselves but with their spouses as well. Try to find a common interest with your spouse while the kids are still at home, develop that interest, and plan for the future.
Another reason people find it difficult to maintain a common ground is the biological factor. As your body ages, your hormone levels change which can shift how you feel and relate to others. Women feel less desire to nest and more desire to reconnect with friends and their community.
When these factors combine, it forces empty nesters to take a look at their priorities and to reimagine their roles as they relate to one another and the world around them.
If you feel there’s no hope in your marriage, consider hiring a therapist in hopes that you can salvage the love you once had. If you’ve exhausted all possibilities, and just can’t seem to find a way to connect, contact us.