How to Prepare Your Kids for a Move to Another State
Have you decided to pick up your family and move to another state?
You might be prepared for it. But there’s a good chance your kids are going to struggle with the idea of moving across state lines, especially if they’re still on the younger side.
If you want to make sure your move to another state is successful, there are steps you should take to prepare your kids for it. It can reduce the stress your kids might feel and make them more comfortable in your new home right from the start.
Here are some tips to help you move to another state with kids.
Break the News to Your Kids About a Month Before Your Move
The first thing you’re obviously going to need to do is sit down with your kids and let them know that you’re moving.
Don’t do it too soon and give them months and months to agonize over it. At the same time, don’t do it too late and make them feel like they’re being ripped out of your current home without warning.
Try to talk to your kids about a month before your move about how you’re going to be moving to a new state. Tell them which state you’re moving to, why you’re moving, and how you feel it’s going to benefit your family over the long run.
Tell Your Kids About All the Things That Will Stay the Same
One of the reasons kids struggle with the thought of moving is because they assume everything is going to change.
To some degree, things are going to change. But it’s your job as a parent to let your kids know about all the things that are going to remain the same.
Your kids will feel a lot better when you say things like:
- “You are still going to share a room with your big brother in the new house”
- “You are still going to have a big backyard to play in once we get to the new house”
- “You are still going to be able to go to the movies, go out for ice cream, and do everything else that you like to do when we live at the new house”
By taking this approach, you’ll show your kids that not everything is going to change just because you’re moving. This will bring your kids a lot of comfort.
Take Your Kids to Your New House Ahead of Time
Do you want to get your kids excited about your move and build up some anticipation for it?
Take them to the new house shortly after telling them about it. This will allow them to see why you’re so excited to move to another state.
While you’re on the way there, point out some of the cool things that you see along the way. Keep the car ride as positive as possible so that they feel good once you arrive at your new house.
Let them get out and play in the front yard or look over the fence at your new pool. This will show them all the possibilities that await them at the house.
Show Your Kids Some of the Great Things in Your New Neighborhood
In addition to showing your kids your new house, explore your new neighborhood with them, too.
Is there a cool park that you can take your kids to once you move? Go take a look at it!
Is there a school that they’ll attend after you move? Set up a meeting with a teacher there and take a tour of it.
This will, again, build the anticipation up and put a positive spin on your move. Your kids won’t feel so stressed out once they see everything awaiting them at their new house.
Allow Your Kids to Express Their Emotions Regarding Your Move
In the weeks leading up to your move, ask your kids for their thoughts on your new house and your move in general. Sit back and listen to what they have to say and try to pick up on any concerns they might have.
Are they upset about leaving their friends behind? Are they scared about going to a new school? Are they worried that your family dog won’t have enough room to run around?
Kids come up with all kinds of crazy thoughts in their heads. Allow them to get those thoughts out and then talk with them to let them know everything is going to be OK.
Ask Your Kids to Help You Throughout the Packing Process
If you have young kids, they’re probably not going to be able to help out too much when you’re packing for your move.
But that shouldn’t stop you from giving them small tasks around the house. Let them experience what it’s like to make a move to another state.
This will make it feel like you’re all playing a part in your move. They’ll appreciate you including them in the process.
Prepare to Deal With Some Tears When It’s Time to Move
No matter how much time you take to prepare your kids for a move to another state, tears are almost unavoidable. At some point, your kids are going to realize you’re leaving your home and not coming back…and the waterworks are going to start!
Prepare yourself for this to happen so that it doesn’t catch you off guard. And resist the urge to tell your kids to stop crying.
They’ll eventually stop and come to embrace your new home. But by letting them cry, it’ll allow them to process what’s happening and get their emotions out rather than holding them in.
How to Make Your Move to Another State a Complete Success
Making a move to another state is stressful enough without having to worry about your kids’ reactions to it.
Prepare them from the beginning so that they know what’s happening and aren’t too broken up about leaving your old home. The last thing you want to do is wait until you’re leaving to tell them and risk a meltdown.
Read our blog for more tips on making a successful move.