The sound of little feet running through the house, in time, turns into phones ringing and loud music playing. This is something that parents just get used to – sounds of their children growing up and experiencing life. Something that many parents cannot get used to is the sound of silence. This is often an unwelcome change called “the empty nest” – when children have moved out of the house for college or work and just the parents remain. As a parent, the focus has been providing a loving, nurturing environment for their children, for many years. As they establish their independence and leave the home, it can bring on a sense of loss and negative feelings that persist and lead to depression.
As a parent and especially as a mother, your children need you to survive and thrive on many levels – physically but also emotionally. When it can seem that you are no longer “needed”, this can lead to loneliness and a lack of purpose, especially for parents whose lives revolved entirely around their children. This loneliness can fester and consume your everyday. In some cases, parents who begin to feel this loneliness and boredom fill that void with substances or alcohol.
It has been shown that people who are depressed are more likely to develop a dependence on alcohol. According to WebMD, nearly one-third of people with major depression also have an alcohol problem. Changes such as the child leaving home can also take a large toll on one’s marriage. In some circumstances, once the children are gone many couples find they have nothing left in common. This can also cause issues with drinking.
In addition, with other changes that occur around the same time in a lifecycle – such as aging or ill parents, huge changes in the amount of time spent with one’s spouse, retirement, hormonal changes like menopause, women are faced with unique challenges during the empty nest years and this can ultimately cause them to isolate. Read more about the unique challenges the mature population face which can lead to addiction..
If you or a loved one is suffering from substance use due to empty nest syndrome, New Directions for Women is here to offer a complimentary and confidential consultation to aid you in your journey toward wellness and recovery. We can help you determine if your situation warrants professional help, act as a supportive and loving voice to guide you through the process and help you learn more about treatment options and our services.
New Directions for Women is committed to providing exceptional treatment services that meet physical, emotional, and spiritual needs of each woman and her family that are suffering from the disease of addiction. Therefore, we tailor each treatment plan to the individual woman and her family being treated, and emphasize responsible recovery for long-term sobriety. By addressing the holistic needs of every aspect of our patients’ lives, including, spiritual, emotional, physical, social and intellectual, we facilitate their journey in recovery, encouraging them to rejoin their communities as healthy, whole women and families.. To learn more about our services, visit Our Treatment page.
New Directions for Women has been serving women, children and their families for four decades. Call to help yourself or a loved one at 1-800-93-WOMEN or visit us at: https://www.newdirectionsforwomen.org/