How to Survive the Empty Nest at Christmas

Your first Christmas as an empty-nester can be depressing, especially if the children aren't coming home. Instead of dwelling on your loneliness, consider making choices that will help others.

Steps

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    Don't try to guilt-trip your adult children into coming home for Christmas. They'll resent you for it.
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    Volunteer to serve Christmas dinner at a homeless shelter. Don't forget to stay for clean-up afterward.
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    If your workplace is open on Christmas Eve and/or Christmas Day (hospital, convenience store, movie theater), offer to fill in for someone who wants time off to be with their family.
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    Purchase gifts for a family in need. Many charities sponsor such families at Christmas.
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    Do you have friends, neighbors, or co-workers who will also be alone at Christmas? Consider hosting a potluck dinner. Be sure to respect their beliefs; not everyone celebrates the Christian holidays.
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    Contact a nursing home or assisted living facility and ask if you can provide a gift for one or more residents. Many are truly alone in the world, or their families don't visit.

Tips

  • Avoid whatever makes you sad and depressed, such as holiday movies or caroling.
  • You are not a bad person if you get depressed at Christmas.

Article Info

Categories: Family Reunions and Events | Managing Sadness and Nostalgia