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Empty nest sydrome for the DW

Discussion in 'Random Ramblings' started by nmantime, Aug 21, 2007.

  1. nmantime

    nmantime Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 12, 2007
    S.F. Bay Area
    Looking for a little advice from you guys... The DW and I are now at the empty nest time in our lives... Our dd left for college early as part of an engineering prep course (Stanford University.... I am also experincing empty pockets syndrome) DS is in last year at San Francisco Art Academy.... We are 43 and 46(me). I must be honest and tell you all, i'm loving this so far... DW is not adjusting well... I think it's cause she has no hobbies or outside interest. I have my girls (16 of them), dogs, parakeets and gardening, fishing (BASS Fishing that is) good friends(some shared) and family close by, etc... DW does not really participate in hobby type of activity's except shopping and she did that with the kids... when they were not out with me, and her work with various church ministries. Now to be honest we both enjoy traveling. But that is not an everyday type of activity... She wanted me to go shopping with her the other day and I ask her why... Why would I want to do something that I have for 26+ years told her give me a case of the hives... I'll give you all the money you want just don't expect me to go... I even offered to treat her and one of her friends to a weekend of that all spa stuff just don't ask me to go shopping at the mall... [​IMG] Now my situation is what am i going to do, we talk about this and I feel she needs to find something that interest her, but i can't be a fill in for the kids for her... I suggested we take a extra trip each month to sight see or Vegas or something but she still needed to find that daily fill-in activity... I'm losing hair over this... just did not see this coming. i mean come on the dw is only 43... a lot of life left in her. How else can i help her... And don't you'all tell me to go shopping with her. I did that in 96' for her birthday and i was in the hospital the next day with an anxitey attack. I can't handle malls or endless drolling about in stores for no reason (but when we are on the go i can do the little antique and boutique stores)... Now me and the dw get along fine most of the time but this is adding stress. she just seems to mope ans sigh and talk about how she does not have anything to do. I found her crying one day and after awhile we were talking and she said I don't include her in my life, after taking a deep breath i tried to express myself and say I don't include you in my hobbies because you tell me they are not interesting to you. I also try and make sure i do things that we both enjoy. If i gave up my hobbies i'd end up like her, now wouldn't that be a sight. Now i'm thinking we should be having a good ole time... dinners out for 2 or with friends, wine tasting in Sonoma and Napa... touring along the coast heading up to our favorite B&B near Ferndale, CA or Brookings Oregon... Heck we could be checking out land to either buy or build our retirement home. Or is this just one of the wait it out deals and maintain a supportive and cheerful spirit until she comes around.
    Come on now someone else out there has gone through this and got or have some good advice I can take under consideration

    Norm in N.CA [​IMG]
     
  2. Poison Ivy

    Poison Ivy Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 2, 2007
    Naples, Florida
    I think I need you to talk to my hubby! I wish he would do all that for me! I just think she needs time to adjust to it all. My mom likes to do geneology research she got into that a few years ago. Just keep doing what your doing she'll come around soon.
     
    Last edited: Aug 21, 2007
  3. tiffanyh

    tiffanyh Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 8, 2007
    Connecticut
    My advice, as a women, even if you THINK she wouldnt like your hobbies---INVITE HER! It will mean a lot to her. Even if she says no EVERY SINGLE TIME--still INVITE HER. You could even go as far as try to spark an interest for her in your hobbies. Let her pick out 2 chicks and mother them, buy her a pink fishing pole, start a garden with her, get her her own parakeet. Even if all of those "goods" you purchase sit in the garage (well not the birds) but it will count to her. Once she gets out and starts doing things with YOU, it will spark her curiousity and confidence and she may start venturing out on her own and building her own hobbies.

    I think the biggest things is to include her. She will feel loved and supported.

    Good luck either way with everything.
     
    Last edited: Aug 21, 2007
  4. equine chick

    equine chick Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 9, 2007
    pennsylvania
    You wife has spent a good part of her life raising her babies and she feels lost. She feels like her job is done and does not know how to fill her days. I've been through this, i worked but really did not have any hobbies except for occasionally riding at the local stable. I know you say your hobbies don't interest her, invite her anyways. Who knows maybe she might like fishing! If not, There has got to be something for her to be interested in, the something that makes her tick if you know what i mean. You need to really support her now and perhaps spend some quality time with her so she can find what will give her joy. This won't go away overnight, so give her time.
     
    Last edited: Aug 21, 2007
  5. buckbeak

    buckbeak Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 27, 2007
    Morgantown, PA
    Take a class together- some continuing education community college thing. They are usually short term & not too expensive. Pick something that neither of you know much about & wouldn't have imagined trying. Figure it is short term, so if you don't like it, it will soon be over. But if you do like it, you could take more classes like it. Or you could just keep taking different classes each term- like short term adventures.
    Or she could take some classes on her own.
    How about getting a job, or another job? Even if you don't need the money...
    Or you could do some volunteer work together?
     
  6. Southern28Chick

    Southern28Chick Flew The Coop

    Apr 16, 2007
    I don't know what to tell ya, I hate shopping and I'm a woman. Ask her to do something you like to do. Like fishing or whatever. I bet she'll like it. Y'all need to do something together that you both like. I'm sure that'll beat the empty nest blues. But what do I know, I'm 24 with no kids and I've only been married 3 years. [​IMG]
     
  7. jessied1227

    jessied1227 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 31, 2007
    East Brady, PA
    I was thinking along the same lines as Buckbeak. Even if you don't need the cash (although you did mention empty pocket syndrome, lol) maybe she could get a part-time job to get her out of the house a few days a week.

    I left the work force when my son was born, and I can tell you, I *so* miss the friendships and social times I had at my job.

    Maybe she could get a little boutique job or something.

    Hope things get better for you. My kids are 4 and 16 months. I'm a LOONNNNG way from an empty nest.

    Jess
     
  8. MandyH

    MandyH You'll shoot your eye out!

    sometimes 3 feels like 30.......
     
  9. cheeptrick

    cheeptrick Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 1, 2007
    New Hampshire
    Try this...
    www.letterboxing.org
    Both of you will enjoy this...you both need to find something you both LIKE to do...something NEW!
    You are together while doing letterboxing, you are going somewhere, and you are 'looking' for something which mimics shopping...only you are NOT spending $$! We place boxes too and have many in special places that are special to us.
    Take a class together?
    Research Geneology or go thru all your family photos and upload them to Shutterfly and have a photobook made and tell her to put them in her purse and everytime she misses the children to pull out that book and then PUT it away after she gets a good dose of happiness!
    Good luck...and most of all tell her how much MORE you love her now than ever!
     
  10. BirdBrain

    BirdBrain Prefers Frozen Tail Feathers

    May 7, 2007
    Alaska
    Is there any chance that you can get her interested in chickens or ducks or some type of geese?---something that is just her own? Does she garden? Even if you don't think she would be interested in chickens, buy a special bunch just for her.

    Tell her how much it would mean to her if she would show an interest in what you are interested in. Tell her that even if she really doesn't have a passion for what you like, you have a passion for her and want her presence if nothing else. My DH just likes me to be near him in the evenings when we are doing stuff around the place even if we are not talking much. I have NO interest whatsoever in guns, but my DH loves them. He has bought the oldest son (now 10) an air rifle and decided he would get a nice one for himself just for plinking. So, he thought it would also be nice if I would get one, so, MANY dollars later, I have a very nice air rifle. I must admit that while I had no interest in shooting an air rifle, it is a bit fun and I enjoy being with my DH and he likes to be out there with me.

    Hauling her here and there won't change the fact that it is just the 2 of you now. It will just make you busier. If you can get her interested in the girls (or girls of her own--possibly with their own special coop) they can be a source of comfort and enjoyment even when you are elsewhere.

    I hope things get better. With the kids gone, a major source of "sense of accomplishment and significance" is gone. She really needs your love and support, even if it does not include the mall.
     

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