While moving is exciting, it can also be stressful. Stress can be unusually high for kids who are leaving their home and friends behind. Here are some ways you can help your kids adjust to their new home.
Talk with your kids before you prepare to move. Explain why you are moving. Assure your child that although many aspects of their lives will change, your love for them will remain the same. Welcome their questions, and be as open with them as possible.
Assign your child chores related to the move. Give them some responsibility. Also, encourage your child to pack their own belongings. This way they feel more comfortable that their things will be waiting for them at the new house. Let your child pack a box of their favorite items to carry in the car so that they can unpack as soon as you arrive.
Make Their Room Familiar
Children feel more comfortable when surrounded by familiar things. Set up their room as soon as possible and try to keep the same rugs, spreads, and other objects as in your previous house. If you feel you must change some item of decor, let the child help choose the new items.
Expect Regressive Behavior
Stressful situations can cause children to regress, especially with potty-training, baby talk, and separation anxiety. Stay calm if your child does regress. Allow them to adjust at their own pace. If regression continues for more than a few months, contact a doctor.
Allow Grief and Anxiety
Most kids require at least six months to become acclimated to their new surroundings. Even if your child is excited about the move, accept that they may have moments when they cry for old friends or seem cranky or out of sorts. These teary times and tantrums are normal.
If you have a positive attitude about the move, chances are your child will too. Likewise, any negativity will also spread to your child. Letting your child see you experience sadness is okay; it provides the child an opportunity to learn how to manage emotions constructively.
Children find security in schedules and rituals. Maintain similar mealtimes and family times as at your old home. Do the same bedtime rituals in the same order for toddlers. Consider putting baby to bed in the old crib or on old crib sheets.
Show Them How to Make Friends
Practice opening lines with kids, such as “Hi, my name is Joan. I moved here because my mom just got a new job.” Remind them how easily they made friends at the old house and encourage them to easily make friends at their new home.
Explore the New Community
Take your child on a fun tour around the new neighborhood and surrounding community. Discover new places of interest for the whole family like exciting parks, playgrounds, and historical spots. Find fun places like a donut shop or ice cream shop where you can begin to create new family memories.
If you are making plans for your move, we can help. Contact us for a free quote.