We took our eldest son to University on Saturday and my wife has literally fallen to pieces since.  We have two younger sons as well but 'empty nest syndrome' has kicked in properly.  She is often in tears and is inconsolable.
There are other things happening too - her elderly parents, one with a form of dementia, have moved nearer to us which is both good and challenging, and today she has returned to work (to a job she hates) after taking the summer off.
If she leaves her job she is worried about being alone at home and although she loves her parents, she does not want to become the default full-time carer.
Platitudes such as "it'll be alright", "he'll be fine", "you'll be fine" are just not cutting it right now and I am really worried about her. If anyone has been through the same thing or has any suggestions or advice, I would be only too glad to hear it!
Hi, I understand that this is a difficult and upsetting situation. It sounds like she's having a really hard time at the moment. Perhaps counselling could help if she's struggling and finds that things are too much. She can speak to her GP and get a referral or refer herself through the NHS website. Instead of saying things like 'it'll be alright' simply ask her how she's doing and what you can do to help her feel better in that moment. Things like 'it'll be alright' can feel empty and presumptuous when you're having a hard time. Does she have other people, friends or family, that she can talk to or spend time with to take her mind off of how she's feeling? If you feel like you need further support please e-mail us at or call us on our freephone helpline on 0808 800 2222.