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Tips for Helping Your Family and Kids Cope with a Move

Mar 26, 2008
If your family never has family meetings, a family meal either at home or in a local restaurant is another good way to break the news. Don't expect everyone to be pleased about the move from Boston to NYC. You will need to provide them with as much information as possible and focus on the benefits and advantages of the move. Tell them if you are moving because of a job promotion or for a new job. Break it to them gently and kindly.

You may be moving to be closer to relatives in NYC and your youngest children will be very pleased if you tell them this is the reason for the move. Older children will want to know more and you should be prepared to tell more. They may want to move however if you explain to them that you are moving to be closer to relatives or to a better job they will most likely understand the reason for the move.

The advantage of moving during school term is that your children will be in school and can make new friends quickly and they may not have as much opportunity to make new friends if you move during the holidays. The other major advantage of moving during the school year is that your children will have a routine established quickly and this has been known to be helpful to children in adapting to a new location.

As the move gets nearer be sure that the entire family is included in progress reports so nobody feels left out. Keep everyone informed on plans and tasks about movers and packers and any activities associated with the move. Keep everybody involved. It is good to allow the children to be involved in some of the decision making. You could consider taking them with you on house hunting trips at your new location if time and finances permit.

Your kids, spouse and teenagers frequently have the most difficult time when moving. They will have made strong friendships and probably spend most of their free time with their friends and will be very hesitant to move away from this sense of security. Teenagers are going through a difficult time anyway with their bodies physically changing and their emotions in constant turmoil. Please be patient with them.

Encourage your teen to get phone numbers and email addresses of friends and be sure to encourage them to keep in contact with their old friends after you move. Keep them involved by assigning some specific duty to them related to the move. It could be to mind the family pet or water the lawn before you leave.

Their focus will be on loss of routine and familiar items rather than on loss of friends. Bring them with you to the new home in advance of actually moving in so they can get used to the new house and allow them to pick out their rooms if possible.

Toys can be used to help with this activity to make it a little clearer to them. Reassure them that they will be moving with you. Little children can be very insecure and this can be seen in times of stress like moving. For young school going children moving can be difficult.

There are two things you can do to help the situation. Check out the new neighborhood for children of their ages. Find out if the school has after-school activities and if there is any orientation available to new students. You can also find out if there is a house of worship in your neighborhood and this is a good place for the entire family to meet like minded people.
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