Moving is hard on anyone, but often times the kids get really stressed out about it and the parents are just too busy to realize it especially if you are relocating out of your current area. What can you do to reduce their anxiety?
Some of the biggest stressers for the kids are moving to a whole new city and/or school where they have to make all new friends or moving because of a family event such as a financial hardship or divorce. If you notice your child acting different, acting out and behaving in ways that are negative that he had not done before these may be signs that the moving stress is too much.
What can you do to help your child cope with your upcoming move?
- Don’t keep it a secret – tell them that you are going to be moving and why, always talk about it in a positive manner even if you aren’t happy about it, they don’t need to know that
- Be honest – let them know that it will be a new place with a new school and it might be hard to make friends at first but you have to do the same and make it sound like an exciting adventure rather than a really rough project. Let the child know that you will always be there if they need help with any issues.
- Keep an open dialog – have discussions about the move often and leave time for any questions that may come up. Your child probably has a million questions and the more you can answer the better he will feel.
- Spend time together – you will be busy getting everything in order for the move but make sure that you leave plenty of time to spend with your child. Go to a favorite restaurant or play area, visit places your child loves to go to before you leave. Take pictures and create an album of memories.
- When you start packing have the child help out. Don’t just decide what goes and what stays, let your child help in that decision when it comes to his things.
- How about a going away party? Have your child invite all his friends over for a nice going away party, maybe set up something to get exchange addresses so all the friends can remain together as pen pals. Nothing is more exciting than getting a letter from a friend when you are feeling lonely in your new home.
- Once you get to your new home, let your child get their room set up as they like it right away, take them to their new school to become familiar with it before the first day, find some fun activities to participate in in the new area, you may be busy but always make time for your child.