Pack Up the Kids
Guest Blog written by Alexis Hall
It is not uncommon for families with children to move. Whether it is for economic opportunity or the pull of family, moving with kids is never easy, especially if they are younger. When you’re in the middle of buying a new house and moving your belongings, it can be easy for the children to get lost in the shuffle. However, it is important to cater to their needs and ensure that the move is easy and stress-free for everyone. Here are some things to keep in mind:
Prepare, prepare, prepare
Though kids often have a hard time putting their emotions and thoughts into words, children will generally deal with the move much easier if they are properly prepared. You should let them see the new house before moving day if at all possible. Let them wander around, decide where their furniture and stuff will go, and check out the amenities. Have plenty of conversations about the move and allow your child to ask questions. Children are usually pretty simple. They want to know that all their stuff will come with them and that there will be food available in the new house. As adults, we take this knowledge for granted, but children can become seriously upset if it isn’t explained to them that there will be food in the kitchen or that Mr. Teddy will be moving with the family too. Having these preliminary conversations will help calm some of the child’s more serious fears. It is important to ensure that the conversations are handled correctly, though. According to Psychology Today, keep things short and simple. Too many words can cause a child to tune you out, which won’t help anyone.
Get Them Involved
While it might not make sense for a child to make every housing decision, you should let them be involved with the process as much as possible. Take them to see a couple of houses, especially after you’ve narrowed down your search. Let them not only wander around the house but also take a short sightseeing tour of the neighborhood. It is normal for children to be worried that there won’t be any parks nearby or children for them to play with. Take a quick drive around the neighborhood and point out a couple of locations they might like. While you’re out, you might also want to ensure that the house is in a good part of town. Look for things such as a lot of graffiti, barred windows on businesses, large groups of people loitering, roaming dogs, and litter. Finding the right neighborhood can also help your children make good decisions down the road, such as hanging with the wrong crowd or experimenting with drugs and/or alcohol. According to Homes.com, you should also check the sex offenders registry as well.
Let Them Pack
As we discussed earlier, one of the number one concerns young children usually have when it comes to moving is that their stuff will not come with them. Even if you discuss this problem with them before moving day, young children might still be unable to grasp that everything will be moving with them. The best way to skirt around this possible problem is by allowing them to pack up their things or at least be involved in the process. Teaching them to label each box and allow them to see the box being put on the truck. Explain that the truck is going to your new home and that all the boxes will be on it when it gets there. Visually seeing their stuff head off to their new home will help children feel more confident that everything will get to the right spot.
Moving can be stressful for anybody. And when you’re a small child, it can be even more stressful and confusing, especially if you can’t properly articulate your questions and concerns. By properly preparing your children and using some of the tips we presented here, you will be well on your way to calming your child’s fears and helping them during this transitory time.
AUTHOR BIO -
Alexis Hall is a single mom to three kids. She created SingleParent.info to provide support and advice for the many families out there with only one parent in the household. She works as an in-home health nurse. When she isn’t working or spending time with her kids, she enjoys running and hiking and is currently training for a triathlon.
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