For some children the prospect of a new school, new friends or even a new bedroom, can be daunting. Talk to your children about the move and get them used to the idea well in advance. They may be feeling pensive about leaving behind friends and favourite places, which is understandable. It is important for them to let you know how they are feeling.
Leaving behind the comfort and security of a home can be upsetting, no matter how old you are. If you have moved before then this move may bring back unpleasant memories. Children who are anxious about moving may show signs of depression, withdrawn behaviour or tantrums as the day of the move approaches. Understand and accept how they are feeling.
On moving day babies and young children should be kept well away from the action. Besides the risk of injury, they might not receive the same level of attention from you, and that removal van on a busy road is going to be fascinating! If possible arrange to have a babysitter for the day and keep their favourite books or toys close by.
Hints and tips
- Include the children when making plans for the move
- Help them learn about the new suburb or city where they will be living
- Allow kids to have some input about how their rooms are to be arranged and decorated
- Make time to have a last visit to special places
- Encourage young people to exchange mail, email or phone numbers with their friends. Speaking with a familiar voice on the phone may assist with post move stress
- Take some time out with the family once the move is completed
- Perhaps a special friend can come and stay for a few days
- The first few weeks at a new school might prove difficult for your child. Being there for them and keeping in close contact with their new teacher will ensure that you pick up on, and hopefully resolve any distress sooner rather than later
If your move involves a big change to your children’s lifestyle or environment, make sure you educate them beforehand on the new situations they are likely to encounter