Moving might be good news for the older adults in the family, but for the children and younger ones, it’s usually much tougher for them.
They don’t understand the rationale behind it and probably won’t.
Whether it’s the movement from one neighbourhood to another, moving a few streets ahead or moving to the other side of the world, it’s a major decision.
You’re basically breaking a whole routine that has been in place for a number of years. But moving can be so much easier for the kids with crucial points to keep in mind in every phase they’ll be going through.
Parents, Adjust Yourself First
Some parents expect to be supported by their kids the most in the whole moving process. Thinking that they’re doing most of the work (obviously), so they must feel some sort of appreciation.
Unfortunately, that’s the worst way you can deal with moving as a parent. It’s important to understand that the younger ones also go through a bunch of emotions and effort to accept this, especially if they don’t find support from the family. They go through a hectic experience that affects them mentally rather than the parent’s experience, which is more physically exhausting.
Make sure you create an easy-going experience for yourself and for your family in the moving process thru Removalists Perth as a smooth-sailing move is what you’ll need to have time to cope with the kids better.
From packaging to moving boxes to the actual move itself, being there for your kids the whole process will help them adjust to the situation better.
Helping out Your Kids Before Moving
Explain Why This is Happening
The first step to a better movement process is being slightly honest with your child to why you’re moving. Some information will probably better off unsaid, but try your best to provide as much simple information as you can behind why you’re moving in the first place.
Include them in the discussions and if possible, in choosing a few things too!
This way, you let the child feel much safer and comfortable towards the idea of moving. And it won’t be much of a sudden change for them, but more of a gradual change to them.
A Pre-Road Trip!
Let the kids see the new place before the actual moving. Show them around the neighbourhood and take them to fun places to visit. It’s important for them to know that the new place probably isn’t so different to the old one, it might be even better! In this period, know that it’s okay to ignore some rules. Stop at the ice cream truck and let them play in the playground for a while, make them feel special in some way. If you’re moving to a bigger or better place than what you used to have, use this as a way to get them excited. Talk about letting them have their own room or a trampoline in the garden for instance!
Give Them More To Control
Let them choose the colour to paint their room in, or their own bed! This gives them more excitement to work on their own little project room that they’ll live in for a while.
Sometimes it depends on the age, if they’re a little older, give them some money to decorate their own room on their own. If you want to encourage decluttering, let them do it in their own way. Give them two boxes, one of the things they want to keep and one of the things they don’t want anymore or want to donate to those who’ll need them.
Helping out Your Kids Whilst Moving
A Moving Book
Encourage an initiative like a moving book, extremely interactive, a great teamwork between the family members, a good way to keep the old memories and its fun! Take out some old photos, the kids write their own captions or print out ready made captions and start glueing. Include positive captions regarding the move as well! So for instance if you moved for another job or promotion, caption it with something similar to “daddy got his dream job in X and we’re going on a journey to live there!’ encourage the end of the book to be things that the family is looking forward to, it would be great if you continued adding pictures in the moving book after you’ve settled in as well!
Let Them Grieve
It’s important to let your kids be able to grief without them worrying about getting shouted at.
Let them know that it’s okay for them to express whatever they’re feeling. Let them take their time adjusting to the whole process because it certainly isn’t easy for them.
Take them to their favourite spots in their old neighbourhood as a way of goodbye. Encourage them to write goodbye and thank you letters to those they love. Once the whole house is empty, take a journey around the whole house and say goodbye to every room. It might create sad moments and memories but it’ll let them grief better during the movement phase.
Helping out your Kids After Moving
Help Them Maintain Contact
The issue with the phase after moving is that kids might feel a sudden sadness and pain at times where they remember old memories or activities in the neighbourhood. As adults, it’s definitely hard to keep staying in touch after moving. But it makes transitioning much easier if their old neighbourhood or friends are still included in some way, at least at the time of transitioning.
When the kids start adjusting, they’ll feel more comfortable in their new neighbourhood and friends. So when attention shifts from those in the old neighbourhood later on, it becomes much easier for them. Don’t let them feel uncomfortable for constantly talking about their old friends, let them take it out whenever they feel like it but with a certain limit if you feel like it’s necessary.
Remember to keep the parents’ contact information so they’re able to call or write to their friends once they move. If you’ll be able to control the hassle, turn your house into a quick weekend camp for your kids’ old friends.
Become Involved in The Community Yourself
When you meet new people through different ways in the community, you open the doors for your children to know people as well. Whether it’s through organisations, groups or local school; you can reach out to parents that have children the same age as your child.
If you want to go the extra mile, invite some parents over with their kids and make it regular meetup! Look over the community of sports activities or summer camps, a child usually feels more belonging to the neighbourhood they’re in when they represent a team or feel a sense of belonging in camps.
Back To the Familiar Routine
You want to encourage them to feel more secure and comfortable in their new home. The best way to that is getting back to their usual routine with minor changes if possible. Don’t let there be so many boxes left unpacked, especially in their room. Make them feel like their home is settled and ready for a new experience and journey. Keep the mealtimes, bedtimes and play times the exact same way and times they were before moving. It might be a hassle during the new school adjustments but slowly you’ll be able to add changes and new adjustments to the routine at hand.
How To Handle Kids Depending on Their Age Group
Preschoolers, toddlers or babies probably won’t understand the actual process of moving.
However, you still need to provide support and guidance. If they’re young children and have some understanding of what’s happening, encourage reading books and stories to show them what moving will be like and how it will be a fun experience for them.
Let the explanations regarding the movement decision very simple and positive. In this age group, you want to stay consistent in a few things, their room furniture, toys, home scent and room colour.
If you can’t handle a baby during the process, try to get a familiar family member or friend to help you out to take care of the baby whilst you handle the rest.
However, you don’t want to send them to their grandparents all the time, it’s good to let them around you most of the time, so they don’t feel weird when they don’t find you as often and then suddenly move to a whole other house.
School Age Children
Surprisingly, those open to moving are kids in elementary or middle school. The level of excitement they’ll be in are much higher than other age groups. So they’ll be easier to handle, involve and deal with.
Try enhancing that trait by giving them moving responsibilities like packing some stuff and making them feel like they’re needed in the process of moving.
Their biggest concern will probably be the school they’ll be exchanged to.
Unfortunately, this age is where kids start to try fitting in with the popular group and become up to current trends. Help them transition smoothly by collecting as much information as you can on the school. Become involved as much as possible without showing much to the child.
The age group that’ll probably protest at the movement decision. Or basically protest on any decision not taken by them, to be completely honest.
They might be in a relationship too, so this might cause a much bigger issue in the process. Especially if there is a special event coming up like a prom, an anniversary or a birthday, they wouldn’t want to miss on that.
With teens, you want to move in a suitable time, even if it means they must stay in town with a reliable family member or neighbour until the timing is right. If it’s possible to postpone the moving until it’s the right time (usually after an educational year ending) then try to do that.
At this stage, try to become a friend to your child rather than a parent. Encourage contact in the beginning and let your child invite their old friends over in the beginning period of adjustment. Let them take this change as an opportunity of exploration and experience.
Remember, It Will Pass No Matter What
As a parent you need to know that whatever happens, happens, whether you’re going through a bad moving experience or a tougher attitude from the kids, it will still pass.
You just need to remember to get through it with minor tips like the ones stated above. Remember that it always goes back to the age group your kids belong in, and their personality also affects the process too. Remind them that it’s a collective phase that is both hard and changeable for all and that they need to be collaborating with all family members.
Give Them Enough Time To Adjust
Everyone will adjust in their own way. Some will take longer than the other but it will happen.
The good thing is to constantly remember as well as remind the rest that moving is an adventure in its own way, it gives every family member an experience of its own and a different community to explore.
As a parent, you shouldn’t take it personally if your children began to point fingers at you for this change. You need to learn how to take whatever will be said in their times of grief and respond as their friend not as a strict parent. They’ll slowly but surely, grow their love for their new house and room, maybe more than the old one too.
Keep the above tips in mind during the whole process and try to add the detailed initiatives of each phase, before, during and after the move. Most of all, enjoy the memories you’re creating for your little ones!