How to Help Children Deal with Moving

Family moving house playing with boxes

In today’s fast moving world, families are often forced to relocate from their old family home. They may do so because a family member got promoted and moved to a different office. Or maybe they found a new home with the help of a real estate company like Home Sales San Diego. Moving across town, to a different state or even a different part of the world can be very stressful for families.

Understandably, these sudden changes can be particularly difficult for your children to understand and get used to. According to a study conducted by the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, preschool and primary-grade youngsters find moving particularly difficult.

Children often associate moving with a loss. For them, moving is equally terrifying as their parents getting divorced or their pet passing away. Because children lose their friends they feel like they do not belong in their new environment. It usually takes a while for the kids to adapt to the new environment. And during that time they are bound to go through a lot of anxiety, anger, and sadness.

However, there are several steps you can take in order to make the move easier on your kids. It might not outright save you from desperate cries to go back to your real home, but deep down it will help your kids cope better.

Have a Family Meeting

As soon as you’re certain that you will be moving, organize a family meeting. If you inform your kids right away, you’ll give them more time to prepare and get ready for the moving process. Make sure to explain why moving into your new home is necessary.

For preschoolers and younger children, give them a month to process the information and prepare. A month is just enough time to start dealing with moving, but not too long to be constantly anxious about it.

Make sure to explain that things around their home won’t change and that you’ll take everything with you to your new home.

Reassure Them

The most difficult thing children have to deal with when moving is change. They will have to fit into their new environment while at the same time they have to get over leaving their old school and friends.

Make sure your kids have enough time to say goodbye to their friends. If you are moving locally, reassure them you will visit the old neighborhood once in a while even after you move.

Keep the Kids Involved

One of the things that keep children particularly anxious is leaving them in the dark during the entire process. Have them help out by packing their own stuff. Give them some simple tasks to keep them occupied and keep them from freaking out. Another great way to have your kids involved is letting them choose the decorations or the layout for their new room.

Visit the New Home

Take your kids to your new house before you move, so they can get familiar with their new environment. Have them look around the house and show them where their new room will be. Take them to their new school and visit a few local parks and playgrounds. If you do this a few times before you move, you will give them enough time to adapt and not panic about it.

Have a Party

Have all your kids’ friends and their parents over for a goodbye party. Give them cards with your new address and contact information, so the kids can stay connected. This might seem like an unnecessary task on your already crazy schedule, but your kids and everyone close to them will appreciate it.

Have Their Room Ready

The kids’ room should be your number one priority after you move. As soon as you’ve unpacked, get working on organizing their room first. Children find routine very important, so you should try to make them comfortable early on when you finally move.

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