Life Advice



Ask Amy: Empty-nester wants to clear out the nest

Amy Dickinson, Tribune Content Agency on

– Not so Empty Nest Mom

Dear Not so Empty Nest: Definitely lay out your expectations and a roadmap for mini-steps and dates for when tasks will be completed.

And then watch as all of your beautifully laid and expressed expectations fall by the wayside. Why? Because this is a priority only for you.

Your husband isn’t bothered by your garage doubling as a storage unit and your adult children have a responsible curator for their possessions – many of which they probably don’t even know about or care about.

Many people your daughters’ age have embraced minimalism. They might completely understand your desire, but would benefit from a nudge.

Put the word out now that you’re getting antsy to deal with these things. Ask both women to come home for a few days this summer. Dive in, start sorting, and plan a yard, eBay or Etsy sale. Anything that doesn’t get sold will get donated to your local Goodwill. I predict that you will be able to reduce these possessions by at least half.


In my opinion, you should offer to hold onto treasures: report cards, prom corsages, yearbooks, and heirloom items – until your daughters are settled. But store their low-rise jeans from 10 th grade? No.

Dear Amy: I’m a widow in my 60s. A couple of years ago I reconnected with a former boyfriend from my teen years. Even though he's separated from his wife he is still married and not planning on divorcing her.

We went on vacation trips three times, along with my brother and sister-in-law, who are also friends with him.

Six months ago, he sent me a text saying that he was flying to visit me for the weekend. I told him I had other plans and that I wasn’t available, and he went silent, stopped texting or calling, and didn’t answer my – or even my brother’s – calls.


swipe to next page




Pardon My Planet Diamond Lil Garfield Humor Me (Leave Caption In Comments) Jeff Danziger Jack Ohman