The focus of this paper will be on the transition to empty nest for the marital couple and leaving the home for the emerging adults. This paper explores family life cycles, provides an overview of Adler’s view of marriage, and discusses the roles family members hold and the impact on family life cycle transitions. This paper also examines the combined stress of approaching mid-life while also experiencing the empty nest. The view of the child emerging from childhood to adulthood is examined and the potential impact of parenting style on the preparedness of the emerging adult. The impact of the return of adult children on the marriage is analyzed and the paper provides information on research about this important family life cycle as well as assessments and treatment techniques for therapists who work with clients struggling with this life stage transition. The focus of this paper is on families who follow a traditional path where they grow up, marry or partner, have children and approach the end of life.
Transitions: The Family Life Cycle and the Empty Nest
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