Not for nothing did HealthStatus list moving home as the third most stressful event in life after bereavement and divorce. Moving home can be incredibly traumatic, even if you are moving up to a larger, nicer home. Of course, the majority of the stress involving in moving home is borne by adults, not kids. However, parents can become so wrapped up in their own emotions that they fail to see the impact that moving has on their kids. Here are five tips for helping your kids cope with the stress of moving home.
#1. Involve Your Kids In The Planning Process
Young kids often feel as though the world revolves around them even though it is likely their parents who organize the physical packing. One way you can prepare your kids for the move is to involve them in the planning. This can help them feel more settled about the moving itself. By registering free on Floorplanner, you can create an interactive floor plan of your new home. The website has a library of images to choose from including furniture, drapery and other possessions you likely own. Your kids will love being included in the process of planning the layout of your new home.
#2. Give Your Kids A Personal Packing Case
While the bulk of your child’s possessions will be transported in conventional cardboard packing boxes, you should always give them a symbolic personal packing case they can take with them. For young kids, this could be a ride-on suitcase such as a Trunki whereas older kids will prefer a backpack. Teach your kids the importance of keeping a few essentials on hand to help them adjust when they first arrive at their new home.
#3. Keep Your Routines In Place
As you know, kids thrive on routine. One of the best ways of helping your kids through the upheaval of moving home is to try and keep as many routines in place as possible. If you always walk the dogs at 6pm, try to maintain this when you move. If you eat meals at certain times, try to continue this habit. By maintaining as many of your normal routines as possible, kid will adjust to their new surroundings quicker.
#4. Give Your Kids Ownership Of The Move
If your kids are old enough to have a tablet or smartphone, you can let them complete certain chores and tasks related to the move and record them via a moving app. For older kids, these could be real tasks such as labeling boxes. Moving apps provide you with a checklist that can help you organize a move. These apps are saved in the cloud and can be shared with all members of your family. For younger kids, you could use a free app such as the Sesame Street-inspired The Big Moving Adventure. This app lets young kids create their own muppet friend and help him or her through the moving process such as packing, saying goodbye, expressing feelings, traveling, exploring the new home, and making new friends.
#5. Encourage Questions
The best way of helping your kids through the process of moving is to encourage them to ask as many questions as possible. Depending on their ages, your kids may have a number of fears or concerns about life in your new home. Honesty is the best policy so always work through issues together and let your kids ask as many questions as they need.
Whether you are doing the grunt work yourself or paying a removal firm to handle your residential move, these five tips should help your kids cope with the stress of moving. If you have recently moved home, how did you help your kids? Let us know and leave us a comment below!