Whether it’s for a new job, to move closer to family, or because you simply want a change of scenery, your family may choose to move out of state. An interstate can be hard on everyone, but especially on kids. It’s important that parents take the time to help their kids understand the new situation and adjust to their new home. Here are a few helpful tips for helping the whole family adjust to life in a new place.
Remember, Kids Take Their Cues from You
We all know that kids, especially young ones, tend to mimic their parents. Show your kids that you’re excited about the move! Often, when kids see their parents excited about things, they get excited as well. If you’re unhappy with the move or stressed out, your kids will be able to sense that something is wrong, and that is the last impression you should give them in their new home. To go along with that, moving is one of the most stressful things in life, so take care of yourself as you adjust to the new house as well. If you begin to feel overly stressed, set aside some time to relax. It’s important to stay positive and upbeat during this transition.
Get Them Involved with the Packing
Packing up your old house is a huge undertaking, so why not get the whole family to help? Have your kids assist you with boxing up their toys, books, and other belongings. As you pack, you can also get them to help sort out donation and trash piles for items they’ve outgrown or no longer use.
Keep in Mind, It’s Their Home Too
Allow your kids to pick out some new decorations for the new house! Let your kids be a part of the process of picking out furniture or other decorations for their room so they feel like they have contributed. This will give them a sense of ownership when it comes to their new home.
Most likely, your kids are dealing with one of the biggest changes of their lives up until that point, so, if you can, stick to the daily schedule you followed in your old home. Try not to make any other drastic changes. Not only will this provide your kids with structure during this hectic time, but it will also assure them that nothing is changing other than the location of their home.
Read, Read, Read
There are so many great resources, not only for parents, but for kids too! Parents.com provides a great list of age specific books for you to read to your children to help them adjust to this big move. For parents, kidshealth.org is also a great resource, with an age specific list of ways for you to help your child transition. It’s important to be able to confidently handle and address any obstacles your children may be facing in their new living situation.
At the end of the day, every child is different. One of your children may be completely okay with the move whereas another kid may have a rougher time. Just be prepared to allocate more attention towards each child as needed. Lastly, let them know that their feelings are valid, and allow them to openly express their feelings as well.