Can you share some practical ways to reduce the trauma of moving for all children?
Nothing is more frightening than the unknown, particularly for a child about to be moved miles away from friends, loved ones and a favorite playground. Here are some proven tips:
Explain The ABCs Of Moving.
Years of experience have shown one of the best ways to overcome childrens moving fears is open communication from start to finish. Young children, especially, have no concept of what it means to move. They may conjure up images of their favorite possessions being left behind or their entire house physically moving.
- Calm The Jitters Before The Move.
- Carefully explain why you are moving and when.
- Listen to all fears and answer questions honestly.
- Bring children along on the house-hunting trip if possible.
- Take pictures of the new home, neighborhood, school and playground to show your kids what to expect.
- Look for age-appropriate books on moving, in the library or bookstore, to share with the children.
- Let Everyone Help.
- Let children help with organizing and packing for the move, especially their "stuff."
- Give them special boxes to pack favorite things in.
- Explain that when you arrive at the new home, all the things in the boxes will go right into their new rooms.
- Allow children to help plan the drive, if feasible.
- Incorporate the children whenever you can with decision making. Get their input on colors of paint, flowers to plant and location of furniture.
- Settle In Together After The Move.
- Let the kids help arrange furniture in their new bedrooms.
- Be prepared for nighttime fears when settling in a new home.
- Invite new friends and neighbors to visit.
- Encourage children to write or call old friends.
- Plan some family time. Explore the new area together, including points of special interest to the kids.
- Accompany the children to school until they feel at home there.
- Be patient moving jitters can often cause behavior changes.
- Dont hesitate to get professional help if you feel its needed to help children adjust.