The countdown is on! If a recent report is true, I should be feeling fitter, richer and have a better love life in about 16 years when my son leaves for college. Oh goody! In contrast to the loneliness and malaise typically associated with "empty nest syndrome" a UK survey of 2000 parents found that they're happier than ever after their children leave home.
• Parents saved time on "domestic drudgery" with less to clean and cook
• Parents say they have more money in their pockets with reduced food and utility bills [is college cheaper in England???]
• Parents feel 10 years younger with more energy and more time to exercise
• Most parents felt their relationship with their child improved after they moved out
• Parents improved their social lives - on average making three new friends and reconnecting with two old ones.
• Finally, 84% of ENO's ("Empty Nest Opportunists") said they had a better love life.
Instead of having something to look forward to the results of this survey makes me realize now more than ever that as tough as it is to find balance in my life as a parent, I need to try harder not to put my own life on hold in the coming years. Sixteen years is a long time to wait. What about you? Are you happier (or do you anticipate being happier) with an empty nest?
(You can read the press release for this report here.)