Children, when overcome by emotions, opt to remain silent or throw tantrums. For youngsters and teenagers, they rebel and sink into their world of thoughts. This scenario can re-enact itself after we successfully move out to a city and take on new job appointments. It is not unusual to find your children’s bedroom looking untidy with clothes strewn all over and beds unmade. You recall that back in your previous home; they were all neat in everything they did.
In your view, you have achieved a significant career milestone, but for the children, it is a setback which if not checked early can lead to depression. Can you avoid the above situation? Do children play a part in relocation decisions? The affirmative is true for both questions. Being the caring parent that you have been, you must prepare your kids for an upcoming move to a new city and home.
The following tips can be constructive:
Get your kids ready
The way you handle the period before the relocation influences the way your children settle down. An ideal starting point is to tell them about a month before. That way, you give them time to let the information sink into their young minds. Help them understand the transition they are about to undergo. Go to the internet and show them pictures of the city. Also assure them that despite the move, they will still retain their old stuff.
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Questions – answer them truthfully
Owing to their inquisitive nature, your kids will raise all manner of issues. Be truthful with your answers and describe everything in a way that they can understand. Allow them to express their dissatisfaction and negativity. If a child says they do not like the town you are moving to, ask why before proceeding to assure them that it shall be well.
Discuss the plan
During your conversations with the children, share with them what you have planned before, during and after the moving out day. Tell them how you shall put their belongings in boxes together with everything else. As you pack, you could allow them to put a mark on the carton box containing items from their bedroom. They can write their name, draw a picture or scribble a sentence or two. That way, you make them feel that they are part of the moving process.
Young kids – preschoolers and toddlers
Children below six years are easy to handle. Explain all the activities directly. You could package the entire relocation process in a story. As you narrate it, use toys to represent the moving company’s trucks. Let their furniture be the last thing you pack lest they think you want to throw it away.
Every child responds to a family move in their own way. Prepare them ahead of time by breaking the news. Answer their questions directly and honestly. Explain to them everything that will happen from packing to unpacking. Simulate a relocation scene using the child’s toys and household furniture. Let them mark boxes where you will put their possessions.