empty nest

a household in which one or more parents live after the children have left home: Our only child just moved into her first apartment, so we have an empty nest.
a stage in a parent’s life after the children have left home.
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American Heritage
Cultural Dictionary

empty nest definition

The stage in a family's cycle when the children have grown up and left home to begin their own adult lives.

Note: For parents, the empty nest sometimes results in midlife anxiety.
The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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