Yes, everybody says that relocation is always stressful for understandable reasons. When you are an adult, you somehow accept the fact that changing your home location is inevitable. Unfortunately, when you are a child, the situation is much more difficult. Everything that makes you leave your comfort zone, leave the ordinary you are used to, is seen as a serious threat. Hence, as a parent, you have a responsibility to do your best to prepare your kids for a big move well and make the whole process the least stressful given the circumstances.
I have a few simple but useful tips to help you cope with what you have to take on in the easiest way. Children indeed have their own radars and can detect the lack of confidence, the stress, or the fear you might be feeling. Remeber that relocation has many perks, so be optimistic and keep a positive spirit. By following these pieces of advice, you will prepare your kids for a big move easily.
Know What To Expect
Firstly, you need to know what kind of problems to expect to be able to face the challenge better. Although each child is unique and has a specific strategy to deal with problems, dealing with moving-related problems is pretty similar for everybody. Here is what most commonly causes problems for children when they need to move:
- Leaving their home – Home is where children feel safe and thus they get emotionally attached to it. Leaving this familiar surrounding is actually perceived as setting off to the unknown and into uncertainty. Teenagers, in particular, have difficulties accepting this. Hence, your support will be vital for your kids to overcome the negative feelings they connect with relocation.
- Leaving their friends, relatives, neighbors, teachers. – Even adults find this difficult to bear, let alone kids. Encourage your kids to stay in contact with their friends and also help them to make some new friends once the move is over. This aspect of the relocation will require a lot of patience, so prepare well.
- Starting a new school – Adapting to the new school, teachers, and classmates is a considerable stress causer. The older your kids are, the harder it is for them to go through this change. Do not expect too much of them. This adaptation will take time and I mean a lot of it. Show an understanding of their feelings and offer support and encouragement. This is something your kids will have to deal with mostly on their own.
Professional Movers Are The Helping Hand You Need
To be able to focus on the best ways to prepare your kids for a big move, you need genuine professionals to plan, organize, and conduct your relocation. Opting for a DIY move will be a completely unreasonable decision. Every relocation is very time-consuming and requires the utmost commitment. Understandably, if you want to take care of your kids’ well-being during the process, completing all the relocation-related tasks successfully on your own will be impossible.
Hence, start planning your move well before the moving day. Search the internet, ask for recommendations, read reviews to find the movers you can unreservedly trust with your relocation. Unsurprisingly, this will take much less of your time than to orchestrate and conduct the whole move on your own.
The Moving Day Is Approaching Fast – What Now?
As you might assume, the preparation for every move starts well in advance, ideally, on the same day your decision to move is made final. That is also the day when you need to have an honest conversation with your kids. They will certainly have a reaction to the news, so expect everything, from initial enthusiasm to resistance, sadness, and crying. However difficult it might seem to introduce your kids to the inevitable change in their lives, it is the best practice and by all means a winning strategy. With your creative ideas, optimism, and support, your kids will get used to the idea of relocation and will soon start making plans with you.
When the initial shock wears off, you might decide to visit the new home location together. Take your kids to see their new home, take a walk around the new neighborhood, make some plans about what you will do once the relocation is over. This might have a positive effect on their emotions and they might start feeling a bit excited about what is ahead. Also, this will help them gain a sense of control over what is happening in their lives.
Get Your Kids Involved
Your kids will love to be involved in the process of relocation. Here are a few hints on how to achieve this:
- Let them pack – Before the relocation, you will definitely need to declutter your kids’ bedrooms. Let your kids help you by deciding which of their current belongings they need and want in their new rooms. By working on this task, you will get a chance to spend some quality time together. Furthermore, this is a perfect opportunity for your kids to open up to you if they have some fears or uncertainties regarding the upcoming relocation.
- Let your kids make some decisions about the new home – Of course, this should include making some simple choices. For example, let them choose their room in the new home. Also, you can let them choose the color of the walls or maybe chose a furniture item they need or want in their new home. This will make them feel important and they will not feel neglected during this period in their lives.
- Organize a goodbye party if your kids want it. – And if they are not too young, of course. Some kids find organizing a party like this very stressful and sad, while others look forward to it. You will know best whether this is a good idea for your kids. You can also suggest organizing a party for the old friends once you settle in and adapt to your new home or maybe set a date for a visit to your old town once you leave. Be creative, use your imagination and you will make the right choice.
Having A Babysitter On Moving Day Is A Good Idea When Your Kids Are Small
Even if you prepare your kids for a big move well enough, you will certainly want them to be taken care of on moving day. Although hiring a babysitter can be a real nuisance in an already turbulent period in your life, it is worth every effort if there is no friend, relative, or neighbor who can take care of your children. While it is true that professional movers will do all the work, you still need to monitor what they are doing and that requires your undivided attention.
On the other hand, your kids will be calmer and less stressed out if they spend time on some more enjoyable activities than watching movers loading their stuff onto a moving truck and marching around the house.
A Few Final Words
No matter how difficult a period you are going through in your life, the needs of your kids should never be neglected. It is the only way to keep your whole family both happy and healthy. Relocating your home will affect all of you, but you will have a significantly larger share of stress than your kids. Communication is very important throughout the whole process, as well as being positive and enthusiastic about this huge change. Always bear in mind that your kids can sense when something is wrong and when you are unsettled. Turning a relocation into an adventure and a genuine breeze is possible only if you prepare your kids for a big move well enough and provide them with support throughout the process.
Linda Miller has been working in the moving industry for 6 years now. In her free time, she loves writing articles on how to overcome various difficulties during the relocation process. Linda is also an adventurer who likes traveling. She enjoys spending time with her family and friends who inspire her.