Dear “And You Will Haveunity Kids”:
We will be moving soon because of my husband’s job change. We’ve never moved out of state before and I’m unsure of how to help the kids handle this. Any suggestions?
Dear “Moving Mom”:
A move can be hard on children. At the same time, children are quite resilient and should be able to adapt very well to their new community with a little support and encouragement from their parents.
It’s important to still keep in touch with friends and family even after you’ve moved to a new community, although it takes time and effort to make this happen. My children still keep in touch with many of their old friends even though we moved out of that community 4 years ago. This has really given them a sense of stability during the move and our transition to a new community.
It’s important to find ways to continue to participate in activities that are important to your family even after you move. When we lived in Pennsylvania, I started a homeschool travel club. My children loved meeting new people and going new places! When we left, all of the children in the group were sad because they felt that the field trip group would end. Instead, one of the other mother’s agreed to take over the group in Pennsylvania. After we got settled in Virginia, I began another homeschool field trip group in our new community. The kids were thrilled, and I think it was a good lesson for them to learn: you don’t have to give up what you enjoy just because life changes.
It is important to be honest with your children and explain to them that it will take some time to adjust to the new community and to make new friends. I remember that my youngest child was discouraged because she hadn’t found a best friend a month after we’d moved. I explained to her that her expectations weren’t very realistic.
I found that we were able to join several groups online before our move and “meet” people virtually. Once we had moved, we were able to meet them in person. Of course, you need to be careful and cautious when doing this, but it worked out very well. For example, I joined several local homeschooling groups before our move and participated in the discussions. That way, I “knew” people before we’d moved. This really helped my kids to adapt to the community.
Moving with children is definitely an adventure! Hopefully, some of these tips will be useful to you and help make this transition as painless as possible. I wish you the best!