Moving interstate is a fantastic opportunity for any family, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t a few challenges to overcome. Perhaps the biggest problem is making sure your kids are as happy and excited about the move as you are.
Young children can feel a little intimidated by the move because it means:
- Leaving behind their old friends
- Trying to fit into a new social circle
- Finding new leisure activities
- Figuring out which parts of their new town they can enjoy
When it comes to moving interstate, it’s natural to focus on the move as well as the whole process of selling your home and moving into a new one. But, it’s essential that you put just as much time into helping your kids to assimilate into their new home. You can play a big part in making them feel more comfortable, and they’ll also pick up a whole range of skills that will help them to cope with the other challenges that life has in store.
The best thing you can do is listen. Ask your kids how they’re feeling, and make an effort to understand their concerns. If the whole family is working together, the move will be a lot easier.
So, here’s how you can help your kids to cope better with moving interstate.
Make Sure You Know The Area
If you know the area, your kids will feel a lot more confident in the move. Once you have done your own research, why not take them along for a tour of their new area? By pointing out all the new possibilities that the move brings, like new sports, schools and leisure activities, you give them something to get excited about, while also helping them to understand the purpose of the move.
When researching the move, you need to go beyond just enquiring about the local schools. You need to understand the culture of the area and gain a general understanding of the types of activities that are popular with local children. For example, if you’re moving from Victoria to Queensland, your children may have to transition from Auskick to rugby league. Or, soccer may be a more popular sport in the area you’re moving to. If you understand this before you move, at least you can prepare your kids for the change.
Most importantly, the entire family needs to understand where to find essential goods and services. If you know where supermarkets, doctors, dentists and even public transport routes are located before you move, you’ll make the busy post-move period a lot easier.
Remember That Kids Love Routine
Routine is absolutely essential to young children. They love doing the same thing every day, and any change from this routine can be incredibly unsettling.
To help lessen the change, you can recreate their old routine as much as possible. That means cooking the same meals, making sure they have access to the same TV shows and even getting them involved in their favourite hobbies as soon as possible. If their routine stays the same, it will be far easier for your children to cope with all the other change they’re going through.
Get Them To Help Out With The Move
A great way to get your kids excited about the move is to give them some ownership over the process. Kids love responsibility, so ask them to:
- Design the decorations for their room
- Research their new area and find some hobbies
- Create a list of the benefits of the move, and how it will affect the whole family
- Take them to their new home, so they’ve at least seen it before moving day
By giving them responsibility and involving them in the move, they will have a much better understanding of why the move is taking place. With this understanding, they will arrive with a more positive mindset and tackle their new life with enthusiasm.
By giving them a sense of agency over the process, they will also have some control over what is happening. The worst thing you can do as a parent is to just take over the whole process. You need to work together, and part of that is ensuring that the wants and fears of your children are validated and understood.
Remember, your kids can be the perfect helpers when planning your move. Their labour is free, and they have energy to burn! So, enlist their help wherever you can. Just make sure all their favourite toys and possessions are among the last things packed.
You Are Their Greatest Resource
Probably the hardest thing about moving interstate for kids is making new friends. Social media has been pilloried of late, but it is a fantastic tool for looking up the school and parent groups that can help you in introducing your kids to their new peers. Use these forums to set up playdates or get them involved in school holiday activities that allow them to meet their classmates before they’ve even started school.
If they already have friends, it will make that dreaded first day of school so much easier. It also gets them back into their old routines and favourite activities as soon as possible, and that will make life at home a lot more comfortable for everyone.
Get the Best Help Possible
No matter how well your kids adjust to the move, picking up your family is an enormous undertaking. It’s never going to be easy, which is why you need professional help. By getting a quality and affordable interstate removals service onside, you can focus on your family and their needs, and rest easy in knowing that your valuables are in the best possible hands.
If you have a reliable removals company and a quality real estate agency working for you at both ends of the move, a lot of the stress is taken out of your hands
Source: Sally Wood, Your Pack Removals