Making the decision to uproot the family for a move is not an easy one to make. Once it’s been determined, there are still a lot of factors to consider when it comes to ensuring its impact isn’t too great. This is particularly true for families with school-aged children who will be leaving behind friends and likely the only home they’ve ever known.
Although moving can be tough on everyone, the emotional effect it typically has on children can be more significant than you might realize. Because of this, parents need to do all they can to prepare their little ones for the big changes moving can bring to their lives. Below, we’ll go over a few helpful pointers on easing the transition when it’s time to relocate your family.
Infographic provided by Move Central, moving services
First and foremost, you need to be communicative with the kids. Whether they’re teenagers or toddlers, conveying what to expect along the way is essential because it provides them an opportunity to mentally prepare. Communicating ought to be done in an age-appropriate manner. This could involve reading books written on the subject or utilizing online resources aimed to make starting the conversation easier. Whichever approach you choose, remember to be patient, encourage questions and share the news sooner rather than later.
You should also be ready to face some big emotions — not just when breaking the news but throughout the entire process. Each child is different and may react with excitement, anger, sadness or any combination of feelings. Depending on age and temperament, children may even have behavioral problems at school or home. The key is to acknowledge their emotions as well as to address any concerns and fears as they are shared. You also need to stay positive as your children are looking to you for guidance during this brand-new experience.
Preparing your family means looking ahead. From taking a private tour of the new school and scouting out interesting community offerings to scheduling the right movers for the job, you need to be carefully considering what’s on the horizon. Speaking of movers, it can really pay to have a team of professional movers at your side — especially if your move is taking you across the state or country. Doing so frees you up to take care of your children’s needs and focus more on staying positive, rather than handling all that back-breaking lifting and hauling.
Another tip parents should definitely consider prior to moving is giving the kids opportunities to get closure. There are plenty of ways to go about it. For instance, you could throw a moving away party and invite their friends. During the event, be sure to take down everyone’s information and give out an email address to help them stay in touch well after the move. Doing so can be very beneficial in maintaining social skills and important relationships down the road.
Bidding farewell could also include dining at a favorite local eatery or stopping by a well-loved park or attraction in the area. Just keep in mind that the goal is to make the hard process of emotionally saying goodbye just a little bit easier. After all, kids often experience a period of grief when moving and said grief may stay with them for a long time. By helping them to get closure, it could work to make the process of settling in less distressing. It may even help get them ready to make friends and happy memories in their new home.
These are just a few pointers to get you started on your upcoming moving adventure. If you would like to learn more about preparing your family for a move, please see the accompanying resource from Move Central for further information.
Author bio: Stan Caramalac is the founder and CEO of Move Central. He started the company because he truly believed that moving could be simple as long as it was done efficiently. He strives to help people make their moves smoother and less stressful. Caramalac and his team proudly serve San Diego, Orange County, Los Angeles and the Bay Area.