Moving can be a happy and joyous time for families that marks the start of a new chapter in their lives. But changing zip codes can also be stressful and overwhelming, especially if it involves moving with kids. Though there may be some upset kids in the beginning, by keeping some simple tips and tactics in mind parents can minimize distress and anxiety to their young ones. Here are some ideas:
Explain the Process:
When something is unknown it is almost always scary for a child. Have honest and open conversations with kids and let them know what to expect every step of the way. Knowing what is to come can calm fears and even generate excitement in kids with the prospect of a new adventure.
Involve Them in the Process:
A great way for kids to not only learn, but find comfort in a new situation, is to be a part of the process. When moving with kids, parents should strive to involve them in all aspects of the move from packing boxes to getting their opinions on the new house. Bringing them into the decision-making process is a great way to encourage them to be a part of the adventure and help them to feel included as well.
Shine the Light on the Positive:
Moving away from familiarity can be stressful for adults and children alike. Take the time to highlight the positive affiliated with the move. Show your children the room that will be theirs soon or the fun-looking park that is nearby. Children take cues from adults when it comes to coping with new life changes. If mom and dad remain upbeat and positive, the kids will as well.
Visit in Advance:
Though this step is not always possible, visiting the new home, community or school in advance can help to calm the fears and apprehensions of all involved when moving with kids. This is also a great way to get them involved in a positive way by asking what they liked best about their new town or what color paint they would like in their room.
Make Things as Homey as Possible:
Becky Mansfield, curator of the website, YourModernFamily.com, has some great advice for moving with kids. “As soon as you get into your new home, even before you really do anything else in the house, set up the kids’ bedroom so they can have a place to stay that contains familiar toys and blankets. Even just a mattress works. Once the kid’s room is set up, parents can then immediately get to work on unpacking the kitchen…the heart of the home. Mansfield also advises sticking to the unpacking and organizing process until it’s done. “Don’t be satisfied with living out of boxes,” she says.”Put everything away and get your décor up and furniture in place. Having order and organization in your new home will do wonders in making the transition smoother.”
Lastly, be Patient:
Change is hard for everyone and parents who are moving with kids can expect bumps in the road. Keep a memory book of your old home for reminiscing on sad days and keep the family united by remaining upbeat and positive about your new home and life.
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