Moving is stressful for everyone, but for children, it can be a particularly difficult period. For young children, there is the stress of change and leaving their home. For older children, there are worries about leaving their friends and adjusting to a new school. As a parent, you can help ease the anxiety of a move by following a few simple tips.
1. Get to Know Your New Home
One of the biggest reasons kids worry about a move is the fear of the unknown. If possible, visit your new home and town so that your kids know what to expect. Try to find some fun places that your kids can look forward to visiting. If you can’t visit, do internet research to look at pictures of your new home and some cool activities offered in your new town.
2. Let Kids Help Pack
Younger children may be fearful that they will never see their toys again. Get them involved in the packing to help them understand what is happening. Also let your children keep out a few of their favorite toys for the plane trip or car ride. These toys can be a source of comfort for them.
3. Unpack Your Kids’ Things First
You can ease a lot of your children’s stress by getting their rooms set up first. Although the new house will be unfamiliar, having all their things out in a normal spot will reassure them that this will be their new home.
4. Try to Stick to Your Routines
Children of all ages thrive on routines, and moving is a huge disruption to that. It may be difficult to stick to a routine while you’re in the middle of the move, but try to work in familiar things here and there to keep your kids grounded. For example, if you read a story every night before bed, take time to do that. Familiar routines will let your children know that while some things are changing, some things will stay the same.
5. Help Your Children Make Friends
The sooner your children make friends, the sooner they will fee comfortable and happy in their new home and school. While you can’t force kids to be friends with your children, you can help. Get involved at your kids new school and with after school activities. The more involved you and your kids are, the more opportunities they will have to make friends.
By helping your children to keep a positive attitude about moving while still acknowledging their feelings of sadness, you can help make the adjustment period easier on your entire family. Encourage your kids to make the best of the situation and see it as an adventure.