Dear Janice,

My two eldest children left home a few years ago and now my youngest is due to go to university in another city next term.

I am so proud of their hard work and achievements, but selfishly I am lost without them.

I’ve been single most of their lives which never concerned me as I’ve always been at my happiest when my life centred around my family.

But now the reality of being lonely for the rest of my life has just hit home, and I find myself crying a lot and feeling sorry for myself.

I dread a future without my children and have no idea how to pick up on my life now that they no longer need me.

Where do I start, and will things get better?



Dear Jane,

You’re their mum and they will always need you, but now for totally different reasons.

You should be incredibly proud that they are educated, and confident individuals who have spread their wings and left the comfort of a nurturing home to take on the challenges of the outside world.

Empty nest syndrome is very real and you’re right, you have ‘lost’ your children, but in time you will gain three (hopefully) qualified, independent, and happy adults, who in turn may produce offspring of their own. (Granny Jane)!

In the meantime, send them little gifts, call regularly, visit them, and welcome them home with their uni friends for a catch-up.

Your children will find their way in life, but they will do so more easily if they have peace of mind that their mum is tip-top, so the focus is on you now.

It’s a big step, but just like your children, you need to discover what the world has to offer.

Nowadays, the list of singles clubs is endless, so join a few and meet like-minded people, or why not sign up to learn a new skill yourself?

Jane, it’s your time to shine, so lead by example and let your kids see the happy, fun, clever side of their mum who is embracing life too.


Dear Janice,

I suspect my best friend fancies my wife. 

He hangs on her every word and compliments her constantly, even when she looks like she’s just rolled out of bed.

She, of course, laps up the attention.

I made a joke about him sniffing after my wife and they both laughed it off, but I still think there could be something going on, but how can I be sure?



Dear Jason,

Let’s start with you and your wife.

Do you compliment her often, take her out on date night, buy her small gifts, or thank her for being a wonderful wife?

If not, perhaps this is what you should be focused on instead of accusing your friend of doing some of the things you ought to be doing. 

Up your game and watch your wife’s response.