Helping Your Children Move to Their New Home!
If you’re relocating to a new city, you should try to make the transition as smooth as possible for your children. The best thing you can do is to keep them informed. Even if you think they don’t care or won’t fully understand the details, keep them as informed as possible so they feel secure about the situation. Children understand much more than some of us give them credit for. Getting them on-board for the move will help to make the relocation less stressful for the whole family.
The greatest fear preschool children typically have is that they will somehow be left behind. If you need to leave your children for a short time to search for your new home or to orient yourself to the new location, reassure them that you will be back. It may help if you bring them back something from the new location. Consider assigning them a task to complete before you return, such as packing some of their toys in boxes. This will help them feel involved in the move.
Elementary children may fear how the move will disrupt their everyday lives. Take pictures of the new location and of spots that you know they will enjoy, such as parks and pizza parlors. If possible, take them to the new location before the move to let them get a first-hand feel for the place and take the mystery out of it. Nothing is scarier to kids than the unknown.
Teenagers may be worried about fitting in and making new friends at their new school. To help ease their fears, find out as much as you can about the high school they will be attending. Make special note of the local trends, sports teams and school clubs.
Again, if possible, visit the new town before the move and visit the school that each child will attend. Schedule a meeting with the principal and teachers before their first day of school. If you can’t do it before the move, make sure to do it as soon as possible after the move. Once your children start to make new friends, encourage them to bring their new classmates home to visit.
Play tourist in your new location. This is a great way to learn the area and makes the children feel like it is a vacation. It will take time to make new friends so the touring keeps them busy and less likely to dwell on the loss of old friends.
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