10 things you’ll know if your parents are empty nesters

If your parents are empty nesters, you’ll be able to really empathise with the following list. If they aren’t, I hope that you feel for us.

  1. They’ll cry as they help you unpack and do unnecessary but sweet things like make your bed and put loo roll on the side.
  2. It’s impossible to feel homesick. You receive up to ten texts from your mum in under an hour asking if you’re alright, if you’re having a good day, eating well enough etc etc. Mum, I’ve got the same seminars and lecturers I had this time last week and my love life hasn’t changed since the last time you asked last night.
  3. You’ll constantly have missed calls and have embarrassing moments when your phone starts buzzing in the middle of an awkward seminar or a silent library. Not now, please!
  4. You’ll receive daily messages asking when you’re returning to said nest – “Will it be soon?” “Don’t forget you’ll have to come back for your cousin’s niece’s sister’s birthday!”
  5. When you do finally go home, they’ll probably be waiting inside the station for you or they’ll come and pick you up themselves, even if it’s three-hour drive.
  6. They constantly try to feed you – they’ll say you’re looking too thin or like you haven’t been eating enough when in actuality you’ve just been living off of pasta, takeaways and caffeine for a month. 
  7. Turns out, they’ve bought a dog while you’ve been away. The house was too quiet without you in it, they say. Depending on the number of siblings you have, especially if you’re the youngest and the last to leave the nest, there could be even more than one new family member.
  8. When you do manage to leave the clutches of parents, you’ve got heavier bags than what you came with because your mum’s packed them full of food, leftovers and anything else you can imagine.
  9. They cry again as you leave the house or drop you off at the train station.
  10. You won’t even have sat down on the train before you get a text saying that they miss you. And it starts all over again until the pain of the empty nesters subsides and they actually realise that they quite enjoy not seeing you that often, and would much rather have a dog.

Stephanie Bennett

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