Learning to Live (and Love) in an Empty Nest

As kids leave home, a cottage industry awaits parents looking to reconnect

Illustration by Mark Matcho for TIME

This we know: first comes love, then comes marriage, then comes baby in a baby carriage. But what happens when baby grows up and moves out? The answer, increasingly, is parents cough up cash to attend an empty-nest workshop.

There's a growing cottage industry of experts who contend that sending kids off into the great wide open deserves at least as much attention as preparing to have them in the first place. Community centers and churches around the country are tuning in to the problem and hosting seminars in which parents try to reignite their relationship and figure out how to...