Brooke Shields Says Sending Daughter to College was 'Worst Thing I've Ever Experienced in My Life'

Brooke Shields helped her daughter Rowan, 18, move into college for her freshman year back in August

Brooke Shields
Brooke Shields and daughter Rowan. Photo: Brooke Shields/Instagram

Brooke Shields is looking back on the bittersweet moment she dropped her daughter off at college.

The Endless Love star, 56, appeared on Wednesday's episode of Live with Kelly and Ryan where she shared what it was like to take her daughter Rowan, 18, to her first year of college at Wake Forest University, calling it the "worst thing I've ever experienced in my life."

Mom of three Kelly Ripa says she's already "empty nesting" and tells Shields that "it gets easier" as time goes on. "By the third one, you barely slow the car down. 'Jump out here at the light!' " she teases.

"You want them to be happy but you really don't want them to be happy," Shields says with a smirk, as Ryan Seacrest adds, "you want them to need to come back," before asking about Shields' "final moments" with Rowan.

"It was the rearview mirror," she says, mimicking her crying as she "saw the university go away."

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"My husband was so funny, he was like, 'Well, we can either fly there or drive.' He said, 'Do you want to cry in a car or do you want to cry in an airplane?' I was like, 'I'm not going to be able to cry with that many people on an airplane,' " she recalls.

Shields, who also shares daughter Grier, 15, with screenwriter husband Chris Henchy, gave fans a glimpse at the college dropoff experience back in August.

"My unique and extraordinary baby girl spreading her wings. I love you so. We are so proud of you," the proud mom wrote on Instagram alongside a carousel of photos and videos from the family's trip to campus.

The post featured some sweet shots of the mother-daughter duo posing in Rowan's new dorm room as well as a video documenting Shields' teary ride home.

"This was the saddest drive away from anywhere I've ever had to make," the Suddenly Susan alum continued. "But my baby is BEGINNING one of the most important adventures of her life to date…NOW!"

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