Moving with Kids: What You Need to Know to Make it a Smooth Transition
Thursday Jan 06th, 2022
Moving is one of the top 10 most stressful events in life for people of any age. This stress can be exponentially worse for children. Research shows that kids, especially those over the age of five, can experience anxiety and problems with social development because of moving and what it means for them.
Unfortunately, you can't put off moving. However, you can help your children in various ways to help them cope with the enormous life change.
Helping with Move Anxiety
Moving is a scary time for children, and because of this, anxiety levels can rise significantly. Children may also experience feelings of anger, frustration, and confusion during a big move. This surge of negative emotions, fear, and anxiety about what comes next can be negated by sharing the news as soon as possible and giving them a proper amount of time to say goodbye to their home and friends.
Packing the Right Way
Packing is an arduous task, even if it is unavoidable. Give yourself enough time to get things packed up ahead of time. During that window, you need to pack the right way. This means including your children in the packing process and allowing them to choose the things they want to box up first and last. Of course, you will need to use your better judgment during this time. However, giving them the option to get involved will help quell their anxieties.
For example, if there are a million toys they never play with, you can have them help pack them away and give them the choice of what belongings they want to pack up last. Objects such as specific toys or their favourite blanket that bring your child comfort will keep their stress levels down.
To help manage anxiety, start with spaces your children barely notice to keep them from seeing their whole life put into boxes all at once.
Preparing for Change
Children are highly resistant to change. After all, change is a difficult thing for people of any age, and when a child is only just developing coping skills, it can be that much harder to deal with. Open the lines of communication with your children early and allow them to air their concerns. By doing so, you can help them feel seen and heard during the process, allowing you to ease their fears.
You will also want to keep your routine as similar as possible during the transition so that the life change does not feel like a whole upheaval of their lives. Preparation for moving also involves giving them time to prepare, so don’t wait until the last minute to let them know that they have to leave their home behind.
Get Them Involved to Encourage Excitement
Parents make the decisions when it comes to moving because they are in charge. However, when you include your children in the decision-making process—such as which room they choose in your new home and how they want it decorated—you give them something to be excited about. If your child is particularly resistant to change, you can include them in decisions about what they want to keep the same in the new home.
Packing up and moving to a new house is difficult, and for children, it can bring on immense stress that they are not equipped to deal with yet. By using the aforementioned tips, you can help your children cope with the changes that a big move brings and maybe even get them excited for a new chapter in their lives.