When it comes to major life events, moving is among the most stressful. But did you know that changing where you live can be just as traumatic and worrying for children as it is for adults?
If you’re a parent, it’s wise to consider the impact a move will have on your youngsters well in advance of moving day. Try to minimize any negative effects by talking through the realities of the changes your child is likely to experience.
Even very young children can become fearful or insecure if they see familiar pictures disappearing from walls and rooms filling with boxes as cherished items are packed in preparation for the move.
Older ones can become withdrawn as they ponder the unknown with questions like “Will I make friends?” and “Will I like my new school?”
So while moving can be hectic, it’s important to make time to listen to your children’s concerns, to be sensitive to any changes in their behavior and to provide plenty of reassurance. Let them know that while there may be challenges ahead, you’ll be there to support them. If you need help, any bookstore has many excellent children’s books that are appropriate for a range of ages and help explain the moving experience.
Once in your new home, set up the kids’ rooms first. Quickly explore your new neighborhood with your children to help familiarize them with their surroundings.
You never know – you all might meet a few new friends along the way.