#JustAThought … When They Leave The Nest

Many of you have already experienced it when a child moves out. I also experienced it six years ago for the first time. Now the next move-out is coming up these days. I think I can speak for most of you when I say that we are proud when our children take on the challenge and responsibility for their own lives and take the step into their own independent future.

I definitely feel no resistance in this process. I am a mother who supports her children in believing in themselves and in their choices. I want them to explore life and themselves in their lives. I also try to convey that even if they stumble and fall, it is a part of their personal development and not a failure. They should never be afraid to try something new and thus stretch their lives and abilities as far as they can. But still, it’s bittersweet. Memories come flooding back. The happy ones and the ones that still haunt you when you know, in hindsight, you could have done so much better. Did I enjoy and appreciate my time with them enough? Did I do enough with and for them? Why couldn’t I be more patient? Did my behavior leave something incriminating? Questions and mixed emotions play tag.

What I have learned over the last 25 years with my children is that it is only to a limited extent the parents who teach their children “life”. It is more of an interplay, as both grow and learn from each other. I believe my children have taught me more about life than I could have ever taught them. They have shown me who I am. They have mirrored my actions, habits, and behaviors to me. Because of me trying to protect them and at the same time preparing them for standing on their own feet, they made me see life in new ways.

Most of all, It was my middle one, who is now moving out, who provided me with the pivotal moments to change my behavior. He was able to do this because he naturally refused to be bent. He has always had his own priorities, so he couldn’t understand why certain things were so important to me. This confused and unsettled him a lot. Although I had noticed it before, I pushed it aside. I remember one incident when this 7-year-old boy told me this in childlike honesty and also desperation. That was the moment I woke up, eventually. The love for my child broke the wall of my acquired behavior. I saw that I was hurting him in the same way that I was becoming. I didn’t want him to have to struggle with the same demons to break out of his own maze as I had to. This boy played a very important role in my personal breakthrough process.


I think even the best parents question themselves. Nevertheless, we are all human beings – work in progress. We are here to learn, and we learn from each other. We do our best to do what we think is best in the current moment. In hindsight, we always know better. When it comes to our children, we will do many things poorly and many things very well. Both are just subjective judgments. After all, what you think you did wrong may be the most important thing they grow from and what keeps them from greater harm. In the end, all we can do is our best and hope it was good enough.

Thank you for letting me share my thoughts. I would love to know what you were thinking and feeling when your children moved out.

In Love and Light

About the Author

Posted by

The purpose of my blog is to inspire and shine a light on the beauty and power of the wonderful being inside your body. You came into this world to share what only you can give. Remember who you really are, conquer the world the way you always wanted to, and become the blessing to us all that you were meant to be.


To tell from what I read on your blog, you are living that Dalai Lama quote, Gary. We continue to learn through our children with every stage in their lives. Thank you, Gary 💖

Liked by 1 person

It’s hard for sure. When my oldest daughter left for college, it changed the dynamics of the household, but when the youngest one went, it really affected my husband. It spent a lot of time outdoors and worried so much about her. But we adjusted and really enjoyed that time together, just the two of us. Best wishes!

Liked by 2 people

It is a transformation process for eveyone. If one moves out, the others needs to adjust and it results in a new formation of living together. As it actually already does when the kids are growing up. It is a constant readjustment. He is not living too far away and I know, he will be fine. And if he needs support, he knows he gets it anyway. Thank you very much for sharing, Jan!

Liked by 1 person

this is so spot on, and I’ve gone through this 3 times, and more, when one moved to australia, and I always believed it was up to them to discover their destiny, all the while missing them, but hopeful for their experiences

Liked by 2 people

I think I was around 19 or 20 when I started living on my own. My mom supported me and although children grow up and leave the nest, the parental thread is never cut. I’m happy you have such a relationship with your kids that you learn from and develop through one another. When you can give them wings to fly and not tie their wings down, then you know you are giving them that freedom to learn from their mistakes and successes. Thank you for sharing your thoughts and I wish your son great experiences in his new chapter.

Liked by 3 people

Yes, you are right. Giving them their freedom to be allowed to make their own hard experiences is imporant and a sign that you believe in them. But at the same time, it is the hardest thing to do, to only observe it. A lesson for both parties… again! Thank you very much for sharing your thoughts and for your wishes, Sylvester!


I know it must be hard, the memories of them as little children, growing up and now seeing them living independently. Them knowing you believe and are confident in them will make a huge difference. You’re very welcome always!

Liked by 1 person

It is actually touchingly wonderful rather than hard. It is a blessing to see how they developed and that I was allowed to accompany them throught all of those years. Thank you!


Beautiful and timeless thoughts Erika. When each of my two children embarked on their individual paths I felt I had two new paths sprouting in my heart. They provide me new adventures, adding to my already full life, and I am grateful to watch, explore, and sometimes dip into their journeys. My heart grows with each step they take.

Liked by 3 people

That’s such a great input. Yes, indeed, it is like both lives are only expanding which has been expanding your life. That’s an awesome thought. Thank you for sharing!

Liked by 1 person

Both my children moved out under undesirable circumstances. My son had got into a serious drug addiction situation and his behaviour dictated he either accept help to address it, or he leave. He chose to leave. My daughter, the younger of the two, always looked up to her brother but did not understand why he had to leave. She decided to also leave. He did eventually return and accepted our offer to get him into a rehab program. She spent some time living precariously until she decided that life “on the street” was not all she thought it would be!

Upon reflection, were there things that we, as parents, could have done differently? Of course there were. As I have repeatedly told them both (and said on various Blogs), “I will expect perfection as soon as I can set the example. You are quite safe for the immediate future!” I now look at them and admire the journey that they have both made over the past 50 years.

Having them leave home was simply a new direction that they each took as they continued on their life journey. The trauma of their teens simply prepared them for the future, and gave each of them so much experience to draw from in later years. While I struggled for many years reflecting on their teen years and wondered if we could have achieved a different direction for both of them, mu ultimate answer was a clear yes. However, we did the best we could with what we knew … and I would suggest that any parent reading this would be nodding their heads and thinking “Yes …. I did the best I could with what I knew at that time.”

Postscript: Both my two are living productive lives, and I am very proud of both of them.

Liked by 1 person

When I read about the journey your kids went on when they moved out, it all makes so much sense. It had to be as it was that they found their way eventually. It must have been very difficult and heartbreaking when you are in the midst of it all, worrying about them. But in the end, only that made them the steadfast people they are today. It must be so encouraging for others reading this, who are in a similar situation as you were at that time. Although it is not up to me to judge anything, it feels so true that you did the best thing you could that supported their unique development. And as I said at the end of my post, even when we thought we could have done better, it might have been the only right thing to do to keep them on the path they are supposed to take. However, we often talked about it, which way ever we choose, it may lead you to the place you are supposed to arrive.
Thank you so much for sharing this with us. As I said, It may be very encouraging for readers in similar circumstances.

Liked by 1 person

Perfect words Erika, you have done what your heart spoke, nothing could be better. There is one thing though, for us when the last one left there was this sudden silence in our lives. Took a bit to get used to but we shouldn’t have worried, he came back to live another two times…and as we had become used to the silence his noise was now actually, strangely an oddity. It’s amazing what we get used to 😀 ❤️ 🙏🏽 🦋 😂 🤣

Liked by 2 people

LOL! I know what you mean 😂 actually it is kind of the second time that he moves out since he went to university for three years but still, his main location was with us. So, this time it is serious. And that’s totally ok. I was about the same age when I moved out (a few months younger), and it was clear to me that I would never move back in with my parents… haha.

Liked by 1 person

1 2

Add a Response

Leave a Reply to Erika Cancel reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: