How to help children adjust to relocating?


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Moving tends to be a very stressful experience for the whole family. You have to pack up your home, work, and take care of your little ones, all while organizing the details of the move. Family relationships tend to suffer a bit in these times, especially with young children. They simply don’t know why everything is happening! It’s so important that you find patience for your little ones in this time. Children struggle with change much more than adults. And, a good idea would be to truly take your time and explain everything to your kids. Today, at A2B Moving and Storage we’d like to share some tips on how you can help children adjust to relocating.

A mom playing with her children

Keep your children in the loop from day one

As soon as you make plans with your movers Virginia, you should announce the move to your children. But, be prepared for various reactions! Every child is different so we can’t predict how yours will react, but there tend to be some patterns. A good way to go about delivering the news is to make it sound exciting. Because it is! Tell your children that there’s an exciting change on the way. Usually, kids react either by getting angry or sad. This is completely normal, and remember to never punish your little ones for expressing their emotions.

On the contrary, popular psychology suggests that the best way to build self-trust and self-esteem in children is by acknowledging and accepting their emotions. Something as simple as “I know how hard a big change can be” will make your little ones feel validated. You can even share some personal stories of when you’ve struggled with change. Relate to their story, validate their feelings, and comfort them! 

Take care of yourself

In the midst of all of the chaos of moving, people tend to start ignoring their needs. If you want to set up a good example for your children, you mustn’t allow yourself to get lost in the chaos. Take some time off. Remember to eat well, sleep well, and play well! Taking care of your needs will just make it easier to empathize with your children and show more patience. A cranky parent is the last thing a stressed-out child needs.

A woman relaxing
Give yourself the spa experience so that you can give your children a calm, collected parent who meets all their needs.

Talk about the move often

One of the things that our experience has shown us works is talking about the impending change to help children adjust to relocating. Tell your children about their future home. Explain how for example, the house will be bigger than your current. Or there are more parks to pet dogs in! Talk about the best movers Alexandria VA who will help you carry all of your items to your new home. Just try to keep them engaged, interested, and excited if possible. Also, be prepared for some tough questions. For small children, change can truly seem like the end of the world. All they know is their home, their school, and their friends. Encourage your children. They need to know that they can handle this change. You are always there to support them, but they are strong enough to handle it.

Additionally, we’d urge you to allow your children space and time to vent. They’re angry, they’re sad! Let them express their feelings and process them. Otherwise, they’d just be burying them inside and there will come a time when everything explodes.

 Honor your children’s wishes to say goodbye

It’s very healthy for children to express their grief over everything they will no longer have. And of course, they’d enjoy saying goodbye to everything they’ve known for their entire lives. Saying goodbye doesn’t mean forever, but it gives some much-needed closure to your little ones.

  • Visit friends and family – If your child would enjoy visiting all of their friends and saying goodbye, make some time for it. Explain that you can’t spend too much time at every location, and go to each person’s home for half an hour to an hour. Let your kids say their goodbyes, exchange numbers, addresses, whatever they wish!
  • Visit your children’s favorite spots – Kids connect with everything around them. Go to their favorite playground, fast food restaurant, or park. You can commemorate these moments by taking photos!
  • Play games – For example, you can play a game where each person names something they’ll miss about their current home, and one thing they’re looking forward to in their new home. You could start by saying how you’ll miss your morning coffee from the nearby cafe, but you’re so excited to find even better coffee! Always try to set a good example and your kids will follow you.
  • After your local movers Northern VA empty out your home, take one last tour around it – Go into each room and say goodbye! Try to acknowledge all the lovely memories made in all of these rooms and how your whole family will cherish them forever.
A girl and her grandma waving to the ocean
Saying goodbye is a healthy coping mechanism that allows your children to accept change easier.

Include your children in the moving process

If your children are old enough to make good decisions, allow them to make some. Maybe they’d love their rooms painted in certain colors when they move. Not only will your children feel in control of their lives, but they will have something to look forward to! You can even give them some money they will use for decorating their new rooms.

Another amazing way to engage your children is to let them decide which items they want to keep, and which they want to give away. Create boxes for keep, give away, throw away, and whatever category you need in your home. This way your little ones can make grown-up decisions and feel in control.

We hope our tips on how to help children adjust to relocating will prove to be useful for you and your family! Good luck and remember, be patient with your children.

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