Tips & Advice For Moving With Children
Most of us understand the typical stresses that come with moving home. From making sure everything is packed in time, to ensuring all the bills are paid. We often forget the different, but no less important stresses moving house imparts on our children. For kids, moving house can be just as intimidating The thought of leaving the safety and familiarity of your home, street, even school. For a child or teenager, feelings of loss and anxiety are not unusual during this time.
With that in mind, the team at ABC Removals and Storage have put together our best advice for preparing children for moving house. Read on to find out more.
Talk To Them Early
When moving with kids, planning ahead is vital to help reduce potential feelings of distress. Talk to your children as early as possible about the move. A caveat to this rule is if the move is not certain, do not provide them with unnecessary worry by telling them too prematurely.
By telling them early, you are giving them time to get used to the idea and develop coping mechanisms to deal with the upheaval. This is especially the case for very young children, who might not fully understand what is happening straight away. Offering plenty of time to process such a big life event is one of the best things you can do for your child during this time.
Be positive. It is understandable that they may be upset at the prospect of moving and of course, it is important to acknowledge and respect these feelings. However, this is your chance to put a positive spin on the news. Moving is scary. But it is also a great adventure. It is an opportunity to discover a new place, make new friends and new memories. Don’t forget to remind your child of these positive things. Point out what is good about the new house, school or neighbourhood. Will they have a bigger garden? Or be closer to a park? While they might not be very enthusiastic at first, offering them this perspective is important in helping them see the move as a good thing, not just the negative stuff. Where they feel loss, show them all that can be gained, too.
Give Them Space & Let Them Share Their Feelings
If this is the first time you have moved house with your kids, you might be feeling a little nervous, feeling the need to over-explain things, pressing them constantly for how they’re feeling. Try to give them space to process the news. Let them know that you respect how they feel and that you are here for them. Make it clear that you want them to share their fears and feelings with you, but of course, don’t force them.
Give children plenty of opportunities to talk to you about how they are feeling. Keep the lines of conversation of open and acknowledge negative feelings. Don’t brush them off. By asking questions they are finding ways to process their thoughts and feelings. So, be ready with answers to their questions.
Visit The New Area
One of the more practical things you can do with your child to help get them ready for a move is to actually take them to visit the new area. Show them the house. Scope out your new neighbourhood. Find some fun places to visit both before and after the move. Getting them used to the new environment early will help them to settle more quickly once they arrive.
Dealing With Changes In Behaviour
It is not uncommon to see a change in a child’s behaviour during this time. While this can be frustrating, further adding to the stress of the move, remember that they may be acting out of their feelings of pain, confusion and fear. Make sure they have space to express their feelings about the move. Listen to them and their concerns. By spending quality time with them, you can provide them with a safe space to explore their feelings, without feeling the need to act out in stress or anger.
You might be tempted to feel guilty during this time. These feelings, however, are unhelpful. It is important not to let them dictate to you. For children, routine is necessary. Changing or relaxing the rules can serve to make them more stressed, as they cannot rely on the familiarity of those established rules and expectations.
If they will be moving to a new school, this will bring its own set of challenges and worries. This article from The Spruce gives parents helpful tips and suggestions on helping your child manage the transfer to a new school after moving.
On the day of the move, it might be best to ask friends or family to look after your children, so that they do not get in the way. Taking them out is a nice distraction from the stresses of the day. Or, if you do decide to have them with you, get them involved. Give them tasks to do like making drinks or ensuring all the toys are packed away.
A great tip is to let them pack a moving day box for themselves. We often suggest preparing a moving day box with all the essentials you might need when you arrive at your new home. Items such as hand towels, chargers, toilet paper, tea bags and the kettle are helpful to have on hand, rather than sorting through all the freshly unloaded boxes. Provide your child with a box to fill with things they think they will need when they arrive at the new house. It doesn’t matter if it’s something useful or not. By giving them a sense of responsibility and something to focus on it can help reduce feelings of powerlessness and anxiety.
When you arrive at the new home and start unpacking, make your child’s room a priority to sort out first. Having their own space will help them settle in, especially if it is full of their familiar bedroom furniture, toys and other belongings. Stick to your regular routines to help give them a sense of security.
If you can, hold off buying new things like beds, sofas and other furniture. Having familiar things from home will help them associate the new place with home more easily.
It Takes Time
Ultimately, give them time to get used to their new surroundings. It won’t happen overnight. But eventually, they will settle into a new rhythm. Be there for them, asking how they are feeling and giving them space to talk if they need to.
Moving house is tough. But it can be a great opportunity to bring your family closer together. You are all starting out on this new adventure. Stick together, listen to one another and by relying on one another, your little unit will grow even stronger.
For more moving advice, contact ABC Removals & Storage on 01494 853112. We are one of the top removal companies in High Wycombe and the surrounding regions. We are approved members of the National Guild of Removers & Storers, making us a moving company you can trust.
Searching for quality removal companies in Maidenhead? Look no further than ABC Removals & Storage. Get in touch to learn more.