Every family is unique and has their own dynamics. We will discuss expectations for how to best serve your family.
How do you approach a conversation with your adult children that you want to have with them and they want to have with you?
This class will include presentations, role-modeling effective communication, group discussion, writing prompts, Natalie’s photos for your personal intuition and Q and A.
You will leave with a better understanding of your role in your family, communication strategies, and possibilities for your personal fulfillment.
Before class, make a list of where you walk on eggshells, what communication hasn’t worked and has worked, what leaves you feeling unsettled as a grandparent? You do not have to share this. It is a preparation for the class but not necessary.
Families go through cycles. In the past, they were dependent now they are more self-sufficient.
By Tara Weiss
Jan. 28, 2024 9:00 am ET
After years shepherding children from one minute to the next, moms and dads hire $250-an-hour counselors to help them learn to live on their own
Kenny Hayslett recalled bittersweet feelings when his oldest child left for college. But he didn’t expect the profound sadness when his middle child said goodbye last year.
“They all sting, but this one hurt,” the 56-year-old said.
This bird has flown.
Helicopter parents get accustomed to tracking their children’s every move via smartphone, keeping activities tightly scheduled, scrutinizing homework and grades, exchanging miles of texts. For a certain cohort of hands-on parents, getting their teens into college marks the finish line. Then comes the coup de grâce.
Bye, Mom! Bye, Dad! See you at Thanksgiving!
The kids are fine. It’s parents who need help. The exit of high-school seniors leaves many feeling like “they’re being fired from a job they’ve had for 18 years,” said Jason Ramsden. He has made a name for himself on TikTok as The Empty Nest Coach.
Empty-nest coaching is a growing livelihood—with training certification, support groups and $250-an-hour private-counseling sessions. Demand is driven by parents who feel an emotional and logistical vacuum after years of shepherding children from one moment to the next.
“Even though you know it’s coming to an end, it is such a shock,” said Ramsden, who ushered his last child out the door a little more than two years ago.
TikTok’s algorithm, sensing Hayslett’s pain when his second child left for college last year, served one of Ramsden’s empty-nester videos. Hayslett, of Clearwater, Fla., said he felt like “this dude is talking right to me. I can’t believe this is a thing.” He paid Ramsden $2,000 for weekly videoconferences over about three months before Camden left for college.
Like other things no longer taboo—from getting fired to not wearing pants—empty-nesters want to talk about their struggle.
Ramsden has drawn more than 50,000 subscribers to his TikTok account since becoming a certified coach in 2022. Elsewhere on the internet, the Facebook group Empty Nest Moms has more than 12,000 members seeking guidance and assurance from others in the same emptied boat. The Inspired Empty Nest, an online community started by empty-nester Bobbi Chegwyn, offers to connect local parents seeking to commiserate about the sudden silence at home.
Worried about missing family life, Hayslett switched careers and became a real-estate agent after the birth of his first child so he wouldn’t have to travel for work. Over the years, Hayslett coached flag football, helped with homework and treated each of his three children to one-on-one trips.
Hayslett was a pole vaulter in college and coached his second son, Camden, when the boy took up the sport in 7th grade. In high school, Hayslett volunteered to coach track. With his youngest child, Kate, a high-school senior, now on the launchpad, he plans to circle back to Ramsden.
“I’ll be looking him up again,” said Hayslett, “since we’re going through this again.” He and Kate took many trips to Manhattan, he said, visiting the American Girl store when she was a child and Broadway shows as she got older. Next fall, he and his wife will be true empty-nesters.
Executive and life coaching were popular specialties when Valorie Burton, CEO of the Coaching and Positive Psychology Institute in Atlanta, began in 2002. In past years, she said, coaching services have widened to people going through a divorce or career change. Training can last a weekend or as long as six months, teaching coaches to help clients set goals and carry them out.
Empty-nesters get plenty of unsolicited advice from friends and family: Get a job. Get a hobby. Get a life. Empty-nest coaches say such suggestions aren’t helpful first steps.
“They need to grieve,” said empty-nest coach Natalie Caine. She became a $250-an-hour certified coach in Los Angeles following her own entry into empty-nesthood 15 years ago. “I get asked all the time,” Caine said, “ ‘Do other parents feel like this?’ ”
Parents have always felt wistful when their children went off on their own. But those feelings seem amplified among moms and dads who devoted much of their time to shepherding children through sports, play dates, lessons, tutoring and the college applications.
Christine Oakfield, who has a podcast called Your Empty Nest Coach, said many of her clients have focused on raising their children “to a point where they have no idea who they are. Their whole identity is their kids.”
Camden Hayslett said he wasn’t surprised his father was sad about him leaving for college. The only time he ever saw him cry was when the family said goodbye to his older brother after they dropped him at school. What he didn’t see coming was his dad hiring an empty-nest coach.
Camden thinks it has helped. It doesn’t hurt that he talks with dad every day. “That’s something that makes him feel more in the loop,” he said.
1. Maybe you have an idea you want supported? Get a few friends together and have brunch and conversations with Natalie?
2. Are you struggling with loneliness, unfilled days, and wondering how to have new meaning at this stage of your life.
3. Have you made mistakes with your adult children and wonder “what is my modern role as a grandparent?” It could be empty nest is around the corner or you are sitting in it. Who are you beyond being their parent?
4. What do you want to surface just for you that had to go dormant? Are you sitting with the questions “I want to retire but I don’t want to just run errands. I don’t want to lose community, I want to move, but where and how”?
6. I want an inner world that doesn’t leave when the outer is chaotic. How do I build that inner world for just me as a quiet, wise, safe space?
7. How do I say what I have been holding back to my friends, family members, partner, colleagues? (Honest, respectful communication with each other).
We all have questions, and it is more fun to get support and for sure more hopeful.
HELPERS WHEN NAVIGATING THE UNKNOWN
• Step back from your thoughts and consider a range of new possibilities. “Maybe I don’t have to have it figured out to try something. I can change my mind.”
• Have fun advising yourself sometimes. “Hi Kate, as your best friend, I suggest, since you asked, that you…” Write it and ask it five times. Then read it to yourself out loud.
• The pain will not last forever and for now, for whatever reason, you are feeling pain, grief, limitations. Be gentle with yourself. Stop the pusher and the critic, “I hear you and I’ve got this. Leave.”
• Don’t go it alone on this unexpected or even expected road you are walking.
Happily, I will be living a
Los Angeles and New York.
If you would like
time together in New York or
Los Angeles, email or call me.
I am returning to THE GOLDEN DOOR RESORT & SPA, near San Diego, to teach and work one-on-one with the guests for the week of SEPTEMBER 10.
If I can answer any of your questions about the wellness , friendships, laughter, food, re-charge, and offerings at THE GOLDEN DOOR RESORT, email me.
I will be in conversation with the guests about a life in transition, now what? At any stage of life, we have questions.
Take good care of yourself in these crazy weather days and travel uncertainties.
I look forward to hearing from you and you letting me know what questions you are pondering………Natalie
Natalie Caine M.A.
(818) 621-4116 Los Angeles, CA
Featured on The Today Show, in Time Magazine, USA Today, Huffington Post, Wall Street Journal, New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Washington Post and more…
PALISADIAN-POST, in Pacific Palisades, Ca. March 30, 2023, interviews Natalie Caine, M.A., about her company, Life In Transition.
Palisadian Natalie Caine Offers Support to Groups Experiencing Life Changes
As people across the globe are faced with new life transitions every day, many decide to reach out for guidance and support from those who can provide it.
One individual who provides just that is Palisadian Natalie Caine, who has offered her services to thousands across the country.
Caine told the Palisadian-Post she first realized there was a need for support during her daughter’s high school opening meeting, when the school’s headmaster commented on the fact that the parents sitting there would one day become empty nesters themselves.
“I went home and Googled an empty nest, and there was no support anywhere,” Caine recalled. “So I asked some of the moms … and I facilitated a whole year of conversations and writing prompts about the new role we were going to have as parents, and who we want to be beyond being a parent.”
That following year, Caine was inspired by the new-found community of support she had created and decided to transition from being a speech therapist to holding presentations and workshops, which offered the tools to navigate these changes. She launched “Life In Transition.”
Caine said she helps “people travel their road of change” and provides tools for parents who are becoming empty nesters, career and marriage transitions, and those struggling with the new, modern role of grandparents. She offers presentations to different organizations, conferences, resorts and spas, in addition to online one-on-one sessions.
“The need is global,” Caine explained to the Post. “In the heart of what people are longing to get is support—whether they’re grieving or frightened or just stuck.”
In the 18 years that Caine has been offering her services, there have been people from across the world who have reached out to her—from India, London, Sweden and beyond. She has presented to lawyers, doctors and women’s groups, and written blogs and articles for newspapers, including The Wall Street Journal.
Caine said she currently presents and teaches programs at Omega Institute and The Pump Station & Nurtury in Santa Monica.
“No one wants to go through something alone,” Caine said. “Every single person has said, today and years ago, ‘Oh, my God, I don’t feel so alone. I didn’t know that other people felt this way.’ It’s a bonding of belonging.”
Caine shared she believes that through any transition, community and creativity are vital.
“Even if our world does shut down again,” Caine said, recalling her experience during COVID. “Even though it’s not being able to hold each other’s hand or pass the Kleenex or giggle or dance together, [people] can do it with Zoom. So it is that sense of community that’s just so powerful for compassion and creativity.”
She explained that anything “that gives you a creative moment and [keeps you] curious” with the situation of the transition you’re in is worth doing. Caine recommended doodling, painting, writing, playing a sport, cooking or gardening. These are activities that will inspire looking to the future, according to Caine.
In addition to finding community and creativity, Caine also stressed the importance of maintaining honest and open communication. She explained that being vulnerable—regardless of how challenging it may be—is the foundation to building connections.
“By having these conversations, you create a bonding circle of trust,” Caine said, “and from the foundation of trust, each person is able to be more of who they want to be.”
When faced with difficult conversations, Caine advised to roleplay the conversation beforehand, take a pause when needed and to always “listen more than you talk.”
“At first, it’s all about listening and compassion and simple tools to get through the fear and anxiety or the grieving,” Caine said. “And then it’s the fun of what’s the bigger picture of you having this change in your life: Is it to bring forward a part of you that’s gone dormant for a decade, and now wants to surface? Is it to bring some new vitality and new friendships and trust?”
However, the most important thing to remember, Caine said she believes, is to reach out for support.
“People really do want to help you,” she said. “Have [the] courage to pick up a phone or write an email to someone. You can’t get rid of that inner critic, but quiet it so that you can have more gentleness, for your mind, body and spirit. Be gentle to yourself today, no matter what happens.”
For more information, visit lifeintransition.org.
I am excited about 2023. I plan to continue to be gentle with myself and others.
Communication has been my passion even before I became a Speech Therapist and then re-invented my career, leaving Speech Therapy, to help those who are seeking meaningful lifestyles, more coping skills for the unknown, and healings from the unexpected. You know I have worked with college students, empty nesters, doctors, lawyers, educators, etc., whose lives are in transition and have no idea what’s next for them, due to divorce, illness, burn-out, retirement, feeling unfulfilled. I also have been working with parents and grandparents who want honest, respectful communication with their adult children.
I wanted to let you know during my one-on-one sessions, group work, retreats, speaking presentations, and collaborative panel discussions, I will continue to offer support to people who are longing for change and those who want to learn how to communicate more clearly and respectfully.
Below are suggestions to do and think about at home:
1. Discover your blind spots (like unrealistic expectations) and ask yourself what inner (spiritual practices) and outer resources I need to make the changes I want?
2. Change is both what you want and accepting that you have a part of you that wants nothing to do with the work, feelings, and unknown that change emerges in you. (I love change and have lived a long long list of them both expected and unexpected and I too know the parts of me that don’t want to change. and wobble when I am in the unknown. Vulnerable for sure.)
3. Change asks you to practice new habits, over and over and hold with gentleness that you will be invigorated for the change, as well as collapse around doing the process of change. One day the new practice works and the next it might not. You did not do anything wrong. Oh, how human we all are…
4. I like writing prompts and music as a way to access what I don’t know or feel. For music, I get on my bed with a blanket, pillow and eye mask as I listen. Have paper and pencil to jot down the experience. MUSIC: CHARIOTS OF FIRE (thank you Brugh Joy for that experience with you).
5, Writing prompts: I DON’T REMEMBER… (thank you Cheryl Strayed for that prompt when I was in your workshop, so profound for me). THE CONVERSATION I WANT TO STOP HAVING WITH OTHERS IS… (Thank you, David Whyte, for that writing during the yearlong study I did with you.)
You are welcome to email me, ask a question, share the above that happened for you or any support you need. More information about private sessions, events, etc. are listed on my website link below. We all want a safe place to connect.
Natalie Caine M.A.
Los Angeles, CA
Featured on The Today Show, in Time Magazine, USA Today, Huffington Post, Wall Street Journal, New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Washington Post and more…
I feel the happiness of being together with people who are part of my circle, both family and friends, during this holiday season. I also know I am an over doer… been working on that and must say, just asking myself… do I really need to be doing this right now? has helped me shift.
I noticed over our Thanksgiving gathering, my favorite is the stuffing, that with so many loved ones wanting to connect with each other and have conversations, that my simply being in the room, observing, was fulfilling for me. I chose to be a listener and of course join in or initiate when the room felt open for it. Have you felt like that?
My practice now and for decades is to check in with myself asking, “what am I feeling right now, what am I thinking about, and do I need to be thinking about that, and what do I need in this moment.” That practice helps me remember what matters and what doesn’t. Is there a practice that helps you even if you only do it once in a while?
I imagine during this season that you feel melancholy moments that don’t have a name. You feel tearful. Me too. That is the benefit of love. I would never pass on feeling those moments that are unnamed and so precious. Humbles me. Reminds me I am alive, thank goodness.
Well, here we go. Holiday season and the turn towards a NEW YEAR; dreams, behaviors to practice, and awareness of what needs attention and what needs a wave goodbye.
May you be gentle with yourself. May you adore who you are. May you connect with your inner invisible “partners” all throughout your day and night, thanking them for walking with you. May you be generous with your love.
Thinking of you with appreciation,
Natalie is offering a virtual grand parenting group.
She keeps the group small in order to have Q and A time for everyone. She will be giving suggestions on how to communicate with your adult children, as well as her talking about the role of the modern grandparent.
To join her, email firstname.lastname@example.org. Natalie offers private sessions, speaking engagements, workshops, zoom sessions with families, mentoring, panel discussions, and in person when possible.
Date and Time:
Please have something to take notes.
$40.00, payment by Venmo or personal check
She is looking forward to your participating in this support group. Her hope is you being able to build a meaningful relationship with your adult children and their children/ your grandchildren and you finding meaning at this stage of your life.
Visit her website link below for more information about Natalie and articles.
Natalie is sharing lines to “We Always Have Beauty” and “Inspirations”. She is sharing these now because it is a place to pause during your day and feel something besides the challenges that we all live. It is a new habit to make time for beauty, right out your window.
Holidays are around the corner. I have been hearing from my clients and during presentations, that they already feel hurt that they weren’t invited. Has this happened to you? How do you handle hurt and being left out?
What expectations are realistic and which ones are fantasy? What conversations can you have now on zoom or the phone with family, friends, about what you would like for the holidays, even if you don’t get what you want? In other words, which conversations are worth the risk and which ones aren’t and then you can find another way to feel what you feel, share those feelings with someone, and make a new plan. We don’t all get to live the HALLMARK MOVIE channel, do we? Does anyone live that or is it fun entertainment verses watching violent shows on tv? I do watch the HALLMARK MOVIES.
Email natalie, email@example.com if you would like some suggestions around communication and the holidays.
Take good care, Natalie.
PS. Last week I joined a family on Zoom for a meaningful, discussion about holiday time together and the roles siblings, parents, grandparents, aunts, cousins, friends play at the gathering. We need each other for these honest communications with respect as the foundation and curiosity sitting at the head of the table. If you would like, I would be happy to facilitate on ZOOM this type of conversation. Just email, firstname.lastname@example.org. When you love someone, you just want to be with them.
This is a support group for you. Even good news needs support, don’t you think? So, share good news as well when we gather. You can email me questions before Monday and I will talk about it anonymously on our Zoom. I want each of you to have this safe space for questions, conversations, and suggestions.
The topics are whatever is spinning you that week, that day when we gather. “I want to tell them I feel left out, but how do I talk about it without feeling tiny and without them being defensive. I want to look at options for me at this stage of my life. How do I access my guides?
How do I let go of the resentment I am feeling? How do I decide if I want to be part of that project or pass? How do I have a respectful conversation with my adult kids without them cutting me off in the conversation? How do I get my family to see I have changed, and I am not that little one in the family, that needy one, that controller, especially before the holidays.? What is my role with my kids now? How do I get my husband to participate more in our marriage?
I made a mistake. I can’t let it go. How do you let making mistakes go? I am so bored, but no one knows that. It is too embarrassing. Lonely, yes, I am busy, and still lonely. Those are some of the questions that were submitted and talked about in the last group. email@example.com is my email for questions.
One of my hopes is that you meet someone in this group that you can continue to connect with as we enter holiday season and winter.
RSVP: firstname.lastname@example.org Give your name and email address please.
SPACE IS LIMITED SO PLEASE DON’T WAIT TO RSVP. I want everyone to have time for support.
Payment – Venmo, Square, Check. Sent to Natalie Caine. Address for check is: 4400 W. RIVERSIDE DR. STE 110-1002, Burbank, Ca. 91505.
Invite a friend to join you in this zoom so you can keep the practices and what you discovered during the Zoom gathering moving forward for each other.
Email Natalie with any questions. She is excited to be together.
Take care, Natalie
Holidays are around the corner. What communication with your family members are you wondering how to do better this season? Email me for a list of suggestions email@example.com
Depending on the relationship, all families are unique, maybe schedule a time on the phone with the person before the holidays. “Hey Sis, I keep spinning about a part of me that keeps me from being present when I am with you. Can you help me with this by having a telephone chat before Thanksgiving?”
You will find your words. Just begin to think about how you would like that conversation to go and at the same time, don’t be attached to how it turns out. Love is worth it, isn’t it?
Take care, Natalie
Grandparents, join Natalie in learning the art of communicating with your adult children who are now parents. Your role as the grandparent is to follow their lead. What happens if you really have something to say and fear their reaction? What is worth the risk to communicate even if you don’t get what you want?
Join us as a support and learning on how to continually build an honest, respectful, relationship with your kids and theirs.
I am so excited to invite you to these online times together. We need each other in this role of grandparenting. Your role is not as easy as you thought it would be around communication, being included, honored, and valued for your life experience. Some of you are having easy communication and honoring experiences and want to learn more about your role and this stage of your life.
Visit my website for dates online and to register. Meet other grandparents. Grandparents have asked Natalie how to live this stage of their life that is not only being a grandparent. Join us to have a safe community.
October 18, Zoom, 4:00-5:30 Pacific Time, hosted by Pump Station Santa Monica.
November 2, Zoom, 3:00-5:00 Pacific Time, hosted by Omega Institute.
Natalie was featured on THE TODAY SHOW with AL ROKER recently and was reminded again the feeling of belonging when you are in an inclusive support group.
Email: Natalie@Lifeintransition.org for more information
You want to have a positive impact on others. You do know you have gone as far as you can go in the career you have and you also hear loud and clear, “I don’t like my job.” So now what?
Your life in transition invites you to try an orchestra of ideas, not just the drum or violin.
1. What compliments have you received from others.
2. What character in a movie do you admire? How does that character make you feel?
3. When do you notice you are smiling, in other words, what makes you happy?
4. What invigorates you even when you are not at your best?
5. If someone were to help you and you knew you did not have to take this leap alone, would you?
6. What might you want to begin? You get to change your mind.
I have re-invented myself more than once. Yes, I had no promise it would work out. Yes, I was so uncertain about my new ideas that I was launching. Yes, I have no regrets. For many reasons, just ask me, it was a fulfilling choice to let go and slowly step forward into new parts of myself that were just waiting for me to TAKE A CHANCE. One re-invention was not little steps, it was a flying leap, but I did not know that at the time of my choosing to let go and move forward into new creativity and work.
If I can help you, email, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Take good care,
Empty Nesters, grandparents, those on the edge of retiring, I notice you forget to acknowledge your wisdom. For that matter, all ages forget to say the good in them. We are trained it seems to focus on solving problems. I suggest you make time for the great about you. How have you helped others? Write it and read it out loud to yourself. It is uplifting to be your own cheerleader.
I remember when I couldn’t make a big decision that was sitting on my desk. I walked. I hummed. I wrote. I called a friend. Then I stopped thinking about it. I told myself. I will know when I know. Move into something else right now. I moved into cooking salmon and arugula salad.
Did I get clarity? I did. I reminded myself of the good in me. The ways I have helped my family, friends, colleagues, and strangers. I reminded myself that I COULD CHANGE MY MIND. BEGIN SOMETHING. I also pulled up memories of challenging times for me, like illness, divorce, death of my long-time loving friend to suicide.
How did I live those days and nights? Crying, tucked under covers, eating too much, begging for relief, crying. Yes, I said that twice. Then a shift happened, and I surfaced from the underworld of deep sorrow. That too is part of my wisdom. Letting myself be stuck. Grieving. Begging. Weeping. I took the stuckness along with all the other parts of me. I did not try and get rid of it. That is a wisdom of mine. Let that join my life along with my cheerleader.
So, what is your wisdom? Share it. Email me email@example.com. See what support is offered and hear other’s stories of change. Visit www.lifeintransition.org
Take good care,
Natalie 818 621 4116. Los Angeles.
Natalie Caine, M.A. firstname.lastname@example.org