We all know that transitioning to life after having kids can take a toll on your romantic relationship, but dealing with an empty nest can be equally stressful as you rediscover your role as lovers. If you encounter a few bumps along the road back to romance, know that you are not alone and take comfort in the fact that happiness levels have the capacity to soar once the kids move out.
Expert Advice from Dr. Jess, Astroglide's Resident Sexologist
Here are a few tips for empty nesters looking to rekindle the flame:
With a newly emptied nest, it’s easy to fall into the habit of doing everything together from grocery shopping to cleaning the house. However, performing mundane tasks as a team only serves to replace your roles as co-parents as opposed to encouraging romantic reconnection. Spending time apart is just as important as enjoying your time together, so sign up for a class or join separate clubs so that you have lots to talk about when you are together.
Take a trip down memory lane. Whether you visit the site of your first date or replay music from your wedding, recalling the happiest and most romantic moments offers a reminder of why you fell in love in the first place.
Over the years, you likely transformed you home into a kid and teen-friendly haven and now it’s time for a design with adults in mind. Convert the kids’ rooms into entertainment areas, hobby rooms or a home gym as a reminder that you’re starting a fresh chapter as a couple.
Sometimes props are all the encouragement you need to remind yourselves that you’re sexual beings. Keep Astroglide’s Warming Liquid on hand for afternoon sessions (there’s nothing to stop you now!) or buy a few extra pillows for the bed to be used as inspiration for new positions.
You may feel uncomfortable at first, but short monthly check-ins may be just what you need to heighten intimacy and rekindle the flame. Start by answering three simple questions over brunch:
Happiness is contagious (and so is divorce), so surround yourself with happy friends and feed off of their energy.
Being alone as a couple may feel like a foreign concept, but you’ll have to get used to it sooner rather than later. If possible, book a short getaway on your way home from dropping the kid(s) off at college. Some successful empty nest celebrations might include a wine tour, a spa getaway or even a night at a nice hotel.
You likely put your lives and careers on hold temporarily while the kids were still growing, but now it’s time to refocus your energy on yourselves. Sit down and make a list of dreams you’d like to live out. From scuba diving and salsa dancing to taking a pilgrimage or visiting your parents’ home country, anything goes! Post the list on your fridge and cross off the items one at a time.
Images are for illustrative purposes only.