our child has left home, what should I do with his …

“I was sad to see my daughter throw everything away without mercy,” Irène, 68

“Recently I had to sell my house to live in a smaller apartment. It had to be emptied and I found all my daughter’s belongings, now 35 years old. I had kept his room intact and kept everything since kindergarten! Her drawings, her Mother’s Day gifts, her toys, her high school and preparation classes … I asked her to come and find out what she would keep and take with her. I was very sad to see her relentlessly throw away all those little treasures I had amassed. ” Irene, 68 years

What our experts say:

We may be inclined to turn the space of the children who have gone into a real mausoleumas if to maintain their presence with us, for a little longer … ”You must be able to tell yourself that they only pass through the parental home. Their calling is to leave it to build their own nest! Therefore, it does not really go in the direction of life to keep their room and everything that belongs to them intact “, notes Patrick Avrane, psychoanalyst and author of” Houses. When the unconscious lives in places ”, (ed. Puf).

Nothing therefore prevents us from investing their old room as our own place with a new decoration. – a 30-year-old does not particularly appreciate finding the unchanged decor from his 15 years! – even if it means storing a few trinkets and pictures that belonged to him. And when the children themselves embark on a drastic sorting of their belongings, it is a pretty good sign. “They do not deny the past in any way, but they simply feel able to take on their adult lives without the need to cling. for “stuffed animals.” Their parents can be happy, they have raised their offspring well! ” smiles Martine Teillac, psychologist and author of “I Say Stop to Those Who Destroy My Life!” (ed. Leduc).

Also read: The empty nest syndrome, how to overcome it

“I took a box directly to my son”, Éliane, 67

“Since my son still had not come to pick up his belongings five years after leaving the house forever, I set about arranging things on my own. I put aside a few memories that made sense: certain drawings, his high school transcripts, class pictures. I packed everything else in boxes and took it straight home to him. He had no choice but to take care of it. ” Eliane, 67 years

What our experts say:

If some parents do not feel safe at the thought of threatening to wipe the blackboard clean, they may opt for a softer approach.. “Instead of waiting for the flood, this mother was right in taking the bull by the horns! With great tact she came to her son’s house to say to him symbolically: you now have your own place to live, I therefore give you back what belongs to you and the freedom to do with it what you want ”, decrypts Martine Teillac.

Was it wise to pick up a few souvenirs that she was paying particular attention to? “Why not, provided she informs her son and asks him if he sees any nuisances. Through class pictures, for example, this mother may have wanted to keep the pictures of his boy’s development. But perhaps he is also attached to these clichés? If this is the case, then his wish must be respected because it is his story, “warns Patrick Avrane.

Also read: Help, I’m Becoming a Mother – in – law!

“My kids came to sort their things together,” Murielle, 63

“A few months ago, I invited my three kids to a sorting day at home. I had each prepared their boxes filled with things left at home. They unpacked everything in the living room and sorted it together. They recalled lots of childhood memories, swapped items and laughed a lot. It was truly a wonderful moment, full of emotion and rediscovered complicity. “Murielle, 63 years old

What our experts say:

What a great initiative, probably the most satisfying of all to solve this problem! Everyone enjoys. The parents because they finally find space and no longer feel overwhelmed. The brothers and sisters because they want to have offered themselves a little regressive and exciting journey in childhood.

“For these young adults, it is an excellent opportunity to revisit their recent past to choose the important objects. which characterized them and which they would like to take home to continue writing their story. Everyone will go enriched and stronger from there, “explains Martine Teillac.” Having done this sorting mission together will necessarily unite siblings. They will remember this happy day for a long time. And when, years later, they have to empty their parents’ house, this time definitively after their death, this serene memory will carry them and soothe them in a painful moment.“, Performs Patrick Avrane.

Also read: 7 tips for a successful garage sale

“If they do not decide, then I throw everything away!”, Henri, 71 years.

“We are more than tired of being overrun with our children’s belongings! Despite our repeated requests that they come and pick them up, they are not moving … Yet they now live in comfortable apartments. We have the impression that that they take our house for a warehouse and that at least they do not have much to do with what they left with us. If they do not decide, then I throw it all away! “, Henri, 71 years, it is not a little directly on the part of these young people to ignore their parents’ repeated requests? “Yes, it even borders on selfishness because their house is not a furniture store! Henri, 71 years old

What our experts say:

Parents have the right to strive for more space for themselves and for their personal activities in their own home. These children who leave their footprints everywhere – a bit like an animal marking its territory! – would they have a hard time accepting that their father and mother have a life outside of them after their departure? We can ask ourselves … “, points out Martine Teillac.

If the threat from this father to throw everything away may seem quite radical at first glance, it will at least have the benefit of acting as an electroshock.. “She will put the children in charge of their responsibilities and come to remind them that from now on they have grown up and must act as such. Even if they do not really want to go back to their childhood to fix their childhood. Things, this task is their responsibility and they can not escape from it forever, “insists Patrick Avrane.

Also read: Should we as pensioners keep our payslips?

“I do not want to impose on my children what I have been through,” Elisabeth, 72

“I’m lucky to have a big house that allows me to keep everything the kids left behind when they left. I have no intentions of getting rid of it. Above all, I do not want to impose on them what I myself experienced: almost a year after my departure, my mother had done a ‘great cleaning’. In particular, she had sold all my vinyl records to a recycling dealer and I still have not recovered!“Elisabeth, 72 years old

What our experts say:

Hurrying to evacuate children’s belongings, even when they are not yet properly clarified in life, is really very violent. “It may be an unconscious revenge, no doubt dictated by the suffering of having seen one of his family go when the parent was not ready for it. You would go away, pity you, I throw away what you cared about. mostly!” analyzes Martine Teillac.

So let’s give our kids a break before we demand that they leave the premises.. And if we have space and their objects do not interfere with our living space, let’s try to understand why they want us to keep this box of cartoons or this little electric train at home. “Perhaps they have the idea of ​​transferring these items to their own unborn children, and they consider their parents as the official guardians of this family transfer,” she continues. A role we can not refuse them to play!

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