So we are moving again. It seems like every few years we get the itch to switch things up but this time we are moving to a new town. I worry about how this move will affect my three children who are now twelve years old (twins) and fourteen years old. I guess time will tell. It’s hard for me to know how they will adjust because I never had to go through this as a kid; Both my husband and I grew up in one house. No moving!
My kids will finish the school year off at their current school and then we will make the move. I ask myself: Will they be okay? Will they make new friends? Is this best for them?
I have a plan in place, for both them and me. That’s the way I roll. I want to be prepared to support them and build up their assets through this transition. Maybe they will surprise me. We shall see. Ultimately, I want to be there for them. I try to do this every day but right now I need to put this front and center. Here’s my plan:
Stay mentally strong as a family
- Watch for signs of stress: a headache, sore stomach or changes in behavior.
- Tell them I love them often. It’s stressful to feel alone.
- Keep open communication. If I sense they are stressed – talk to them. Ask them!
- Don’t over-schedule them. It’s important for them to join activities and make friends, however having too much to do can be stressful.
- Recognize we all need a little quiet or down time.
- Make sure family dinner time happens!
- Help support them to get enough sleep. A tired teen can get stressed more easily (just as I can).
Be involved in our new community
- Take a stroll through our new neighborhood or hike a new trail. Spend time together without electronics.
- Spend time outside. Play basketball or road hockey in the driveway and local school yard in hopes to draw other kids outside.
- Introduce ourselves to, and hopefully get to know, our new neighbors.
- Encourage my kids to discover new and fun extra-curricular activities.
- Get involved in their new schools.
Involve kids in decision making
- Talk about why we decided to move.
- Discuss school options. Attend open houses or schedule a tour.
- Create their space. Pick paint colors out together. One of my daughters has shown a lot of interest in decorating. Maybe a career path for her 😉 Who knows!
You might think that I am expecting the worst. I truly am not. I am trying to think of how I would have felt moving when I was a young teen, entering high school. Luckily this is not new to them. Wish us luck on our move!
Have you recently moved with your kids? How did it go? Share with us:
- Leave us a comment below
- Tweet with us @haltonparents
- Follow us on Facebook
- Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
For parenting information or to speak with a public health nurse (every Monday to Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.) simply dial 311 or 905-825-6000.
Tara, thanks for your post. Children will react differently to moves, depending on their temperament and expectations. My five and seven-year-old grandchildren have recently moved across the country with their parents into my home. Talk about change! Both of them have admitted that they miss things about their old house, old neighbourhood, and friends. I tell them it’s OK to miss things and feel sad sometimes. And we are also doing just what you suggest – exploring the nearby parks, visiting the new school, and having family dinner time.
Thanks Janet for sharing! What a big change for everyone! Enjoy those grands! ~Tara RN