There will always be a time when families have to deal with big changes. It may be difficult for children to deal with change, especially when it can affect their sense of security. When families decide to move elsewhere, children may go through a lot of stress. Your child may already have close friends, or he may already be doing well in school. Since a move can bring about a lot of uncertainty, a child may feel threatened that he will lose his sense of belonging.
The transition can be difficult and parents need to take steps, so that children can effectively cope in the new environment. Long before you plan to move, talk openly to your child regarding the impending change. Try to give your child a good overview, on how life will be after the move. Always be truthful in answering questions, so that a child will not have any unrealistic expectations.
Focus on the positive aspect of the move, and how it can benefit everybody. If you are moving to a bigger house, perhaps your child may be excited in getting his own room. You may also point out new activities, which your child may like to do in the new place. For younger children, it may help if you can provide age-appropriate books, which can illustrate the process of a move. Encourage your kids to voice out their concerns, so that you can properly address any unnecessary fears.
Children may also get a sense of control if you include them in the planning. If you are still house hunting, involve him in the process. Give your child some autonomy by allowing him to choose his preferred wallpaper color, or if he decides to keep his bedroom furniture. When children are included in the planning, they may feel that the move is not being enforced on them.
If you can take your kids to the new place, it can better prepare them for the move. Drive them by the new community, or their new school. If this is not possible, be totally supportive. The transition is usually hardest two weeks before, and two weeks after the move. During this crucial time, parents should take measures so that kids will have a smoother transition. Make plans to have breaks by visiting new museums or parks, so that children will have some time to play and relax.
It will definitely take some time before you can put all your stuff in order. Before you attend to other things, fix your child’s room first. Try to keep the usual routine for meals, bedtime, and other activities. This will give your child a sense of familiarity amidst all the changes.
A child may also be stressed with the idea of going to a new school. Try to take your child to his new school before it starts. This is essential because it can give your child an idea of his new environment. Once school starts, you may even accompany your child to his school, so that you can meet his teachers.
You may also open doors so that your child can make new friends. Reach out to people in your area, who have children with the same age as your kids. You may also invite some families over for dinner. This will provide your kids an opportunity to make new friends. Check out activities in your community that your family can join. This will also be a good way in getting to know more people in the community.
A move can be difficult for everyone, but it can also bring about positive changes in the family. With all the uncertainties involved, it helps that the change can bring families closer together.