Empty nest syndrome strikes early: Mothers suffer back-to-school blues as 84 per cent are struck by sadness and loss
84% of UK mums struck by September sadness
Over half of family pets miss the children too
23:11 GMT, 3 September 2012
Uniforms are ironed, lunchboxes are prepared and bags are packed; it can mean only one thing – the first day of term.
But it’s not the children dreading the return to the classroom.
A new survey revealed that a staggering 84 per cent of mums will be struck by the back-to-school blues this week.
A survey reveals that 84 per cent of mothers will be struck by back to school blues this week
According to a nationwide study by Butlins the start of September will see 43 per cent feeling sad and lonely, 22 per cent sensing anxiety and one in five (20 per cent) feeling fed up and miserable.
With just 12 per cent feeling some sense of relief when the children return to school.
While a summer of fun family fixtures has impacted on the number of glum mothers across the UK, a quarter will also be fretting about their children making new friends and enjoying life back in class.
And although three quarters of children will expect to feel some level of short-lived anxiety in returning to the school gate, nearly one in five mothers expect to take much longer to get over the start of term.
The start of September will see 43 per cent of mothers feeling sad and lonely
And it’s not just mums feeling the strain of September according to the research; the back-to-school transition is also hard on family pets, with more than 51per cent of owners reporting a change in behaviour of their dogs and cats who have had playful company for six weeks.
Butlins Director of Happiness, Mark Hunter, said: 'While many reports suggest that parents will be glad to see the back of six-weeks of laying on entertainment, our research shows that the summer of 2012 has brought families even closer together, and coming to the end of it is leaving mums feeling really down.
'People can often feel a bit blue after good times, and it’s only when term time resumes that many parents come to the stark realisation that quality family time is really precious.
'Now is the time to look ahead and plan things together that they love doing – whether that’s a weekend trip to the park or a break away.'
In a bid to cure the back-to-school blues, almost half of mums are already researching and booking a half term break to rekindle those special summer moments.
Almost one in six will hit the shops for a spot of retail therapy, while a quarter will throw themselves into work to take their mind off things.
TOP FACTORS CONTRIBUTING TO BACK TO SCHOOL BLUES
A return to the term time regime
– uniforms, PE kits, homework squabbles, after-school activity dash and
bedtime tantrums (54%)
Missing quality time spent with the whole family together (48%)
The end of a summer of day trips (39%)
The end to a summer spell of spending mealtimes together (17%)
Not having a good excuse to get out of work early (10%)