6 Nov

Fall: A Season of Change and Transitioning

Staff therapist Emma Steiner, MSW, LCSW, MFT  specializes 

Fall is here.

Although television commercials have been announcing the return of Fall since mid-summer, it is finally undeniable that the season is changing. This change can mean a lot of different things for different people. For those who love the summer it may be sad to think of it coming to an end, while for those who hate the heat the change may be a welcomed respite. The falling temperature and shorter days really can lead to emotional changes for some, as in the case of Seasonal Affective Disorder, or SAD, but there are many other changes in addition to the weather that happen at this time of year.

Back to school and what that means for all ages.

The start of the school year means a return to, if not the first venture in to, the structure and focus of the classroom. School can bring to light the challenges that some children face academically, behaviorally or socially. It can also be an entrée into an environment where some children thrive. The fall may mean leaving home for the first time, and for parents the first absence of children in eighteen or more years.

For both parties in this case the change is fraught with all kinds of emotions: fear, sadness, excitement, joy, frustration, and loneliness, to name a few. College is a time when young adults can really struggle, as it is the first time in their lives that they are mostly self-directed. Parents may struggle with stepping back and giving the reigns to their children, or with the fact that they are suddenly alone together in a relationship that they may have neglected while focusing on parenthood.

The season of change and transitioning.

Change and transitions, big and small, are hard for everyone, and some of us may be even more sensitive to them than others. It’s important to cut yourself some slack, and be kind to yourself as you readjust to new things. Try to take some time to check-in with yourself and see how you are doing. Allow for the space to feel the whole gamut of emotions because, as I said before, change is often a mixed bag.

There is always good and bad in every change just as there are both positive feelings and difficult ones. It may be helpful to reach out to friends who are in the same life stage, as you will undoubtedly learn that you are not alone in your struggle. And, of course, if you feel that you are not adjusting well, or are feeling significant and ongoing distress, reach out to a therapist who can help you work through it.


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