Tips: Moving with Children

Posted on: January 15, 2014

Moving with kids can be quite an ordeal. Children often thrive on familiarity and routine, and uprooting their lives can leave them reeling. There are some steps to help lessen the blow and even excite them about their new situation. Remember that as much stress as moving can be for everyone, it is a chance at a new beginning. If you stress the positives and downplay the negatives, you can help their chances of adapting to the change.

1) Maintain Positive Attitudes: If you are stressing about the move, don’t let the kids know. Start talking about moving day way in advance and illustrate the positives. Talk about the better things the new house or neighborhood  has to offer.

2) Make It An Adventure: Research the new neighborhood. For distant moves, the new city or state.  Find kid-friendly activities to get them excited. Be tourists in your new neighborhood. Make a family wish list for the new home– let them plan their new bedrooms and play spaces. These tips should keep the kids excited and stop them from thinking too much about what they are leaving behind.

3) Take It Easy:  Start house hunting right away and include the kids in some of the decisionsSpread the move out over a couple of days, even if you could get it done in one. Get family members to help, as familiar faces will make things smoother and extra hands are always useful. Give the kids simple jobs to keep them engaged.

4) Smooth Transitions: When packing, you may naturally want to throw things away. Before you do, talk to the kids, they might have a strong connection to some of the items. Ask them if they’d like to keep their old bedroom furniture, the familiarity might make the transition smoother.

5) Build New Connections: Get right to work toward building a new life in your new home. If your child obsesses over the old house or neighborhood, talk through it with them. Let them keep in touch with old friends, encourage phone calls and letters. Let them know they don’t need to break the ties between them just because they’ve moved away, but gently encourage new friendships.