Families most times are faced with moving and changing location either voluntarily or are forced to. Difficult as this can be for parents, the experience can be disruptive for kids, who usually are not part of the decision and will find it difficult to understand. Here are some steps to make the process less difficult for everyone.
Making The Decision To Move
In most cases, kids live a happy life on a particular routine and familiarity. So as you consider a move, it is good to check the benefits of that change to the comfort derived from the established surroundings, school, and social life given to your kids.
The decision to move may be out of your hands as stated earlier, due to some issues, but endeavor to maintain a positive mood during the move even if you are not happy about it. During the process of transition, a parent mood and attitude can greatly affect kids who may be looking up to their parents for reassurance.
Discussing The Move With Kids
No matter what the situation may be, talking to your kids is the most important way to prepare kids to move. As much as possible, give the kids much information early enough. Answer questions completely and truthfully and be observant to both positive and negative reactions. Also, involve the kids in the planning process and the search for new schools. This will make them feel like participants. Provide detailed information about the new home, city, or country.
Moving With Toddlers
Kids under the age of 6 may be easy to move, due to their limited capacity to understand the changes involved. Notwithstanding your guidance is needed. These are a few ways to make the transition easy for young kids:
- Use an interesting story to explain the move and maybe act it out with toys.
- When packing a toddler’s toys, make sure you explain to them that you aren’t getting rid of it.
- It is usually a good idea to use your child’s old furniture in the new home and similarly arrange them as the former home; it provides a sense of comfort.
Moving With School-Age Kids
Kids in elementary school still need consideration and help throughout the process of moving, even if they may be relatively open to a move.
There are two different ideologies about the right time to move. Some experts choose summer as the best time to move because it avoids disrupting the school year. Others say midyear is better, the reason being that the child can meet other kids right away. Also, it is important to gather any information the new school will need to process the transfer, to avoid unnecessary stress.
Moving With Teens
It’s necessary to let teens know that you care and that you respect them. While blanket assurances may sound dismissive, it’s right to suggest that the move can serve as rehearsal for future changes, like college or a new job. However, also be sure to let them know that you hear their concerns.
After Moving Day
After the change, it is also critical to consider getting your kids’ room in order before turning your attention to the rest of the house. Also, try to maintain your routines like time for meals and bedtime to give kids a sense of familiarity.