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George Stephanopoulous and Ali Wentworth face 'brutal' change as daughter leaves home – see emotional photo

The GMA and ABC News anchor and the Go Ask Ali podcast host are now the proud parents of two college students


Ali Wentworth, Harper Andrea Stephanopoulos, Elliott Anastasia Stephanopoulos and George Stephanopoulos at the New York premiere of "Pretty Baby: Brooke Shields" held at Alice Tully Hall on March 29, 2023 in New York City© Getty Images
Ahad Sanwari
Ahad Sanwari - New York
Senior WriterNew York
August 21, 2023
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It's a bittersweet day in the Stephanopoulos household as the youngest in the family, 18-year-old Harper, has left the nest for college.

George Stephanopoulos and Ali Wentworth's second daughter is following in the footsteps of her older sister, Elliott, who will be starting her junior year at Brown University.

Harper, meanwhile, will be starting at Vanderbilt University, and Ali, 58, shared a photo of herself and George walking away after dropping her off, hand in hand.

WATCH: George Stephanopoulos' wife makes surprise parenting confession live on GMA

Ali penned alongside the snap: "We dropped our baby off at college. Everyone is saying 'she's ready to launch'! But… I don't think I'm ready! 

"I don't want to stop making pasta with vodka sauce, picking up wet towels, cuddling up to her familiar scent. As Joni Mitchell once wrote – 'the bed's too big, the frying pan too wide'." 

MORE: George Stephanopoulos and wife Ali Wentworth's joint on-air appearance has fans saying the same thing

She continued: "I know our daughter will thrive. But man, it's brutal on the parents. If you feel inclined – please send me baked goods. I'll be under my covers."

George Stephanopoulos and Ali Wentworth captured in a tender moment after dropping daughter Harper off at college© Instagram
George and Ali captured in a tender moment after dropping Harper off at college

One of the first to comment was George's Good Morning America colleague Lara Spencer, who is dropping her own daughter, Katharine, off at Vanderbilt as well, and could easily relate to their new status as empty nesters.

MORE: Ali Wentworth poses in low-cut wetsuit in head-turning new photo from vacation home

She commented: "I hear you sister. I am at the airport with a giant lump in my throat. I don't want to leave. It's going to feel too real. The house will be too quiet. The music won't be blaring. Her room will be neat. My clothes will not be missing. I don't like it one bit."

George's wife Ali Wentworth and their daughters getting ready © Instagram
Harper is following in her big sister Elliott's footsteps

Their ABC colleague Deborah Roberts, who dropped off her son Nick at university last year with husband Al Roker, also responded with: "Awww. I know that feeling. Heart aches a bit. Takes time to adjust."

MORE: George Stephanopoulos and Ali Wentworth melt hearts with beachside photo

Several other fans responded with their own words of encouragement, with one adding: "We raise them to be strong independent women with big wings ready to fly. It is incredibly hard on us when they fly!"

George Stephanopoulos and Ali Wentworth help their daughter Harper with her move to college© Instagram
Ali captured the mania of prepping Harper's new dorm room

Another wrote: "You have a nice support human," and a third added: "You've done good mama. Watch your baby fly, that hurt will turn into smiles of joy as she shows you just how much she's learned. Sit back and revel in all that she will accomplish."

MORE: George Stephanopoulos' BTS video at work reveals the dynamics between the co-stars off-air

Ever the comedian, though, Ali kept the mood on her Instagram light in the build up to her daughter's departure, taking to her Instagram Stories with a running gag chronicling their move to Vanderbilt in Nashville, Tennessee.

George Stephanopoulos and Ali Wentworth help their daughter Harper with her move to college© Instagram
The actress and comedienne threw shade at her husband for spending most of his day checking emails

With photos inside Harper's new dorm room, Ali highlighted herself putting together furniture while George was on his phone. "I assemble complicated furniture…he checks emails!" she wrote.

More snaps she posted captured the GMA anchor in various different scenarios still on his phone, while Ali wrote she gathered "important college supplies" and then the trash. She ended on a high, writing: "And done…oh you know what he's doing!"

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