Relocating is never a walk in the park. It requires time and a lot of muscle. It becomes even more challenging when you are moving with children. As adults, we often overlook the fact that children are wired differently from us. We find ourselves expecting that they will adjust the same way we do as older people.
In order to minimize your stressors when you relocate, you need to be able to prioritize the needs of your children. In that way, they will won’t give you a hard time while you run about finishing your last minute errands and final check of the house before you leave. Additionally, anticipate potential things that will affect your children and influence the way they behave and respond.
5 Common Challenges
1. Your children get in the way of the process of packing and moving.
When children are not properly briefed about this major family event, they tend to get nervous and uncomfortable. Children who are not yet old enough to understand what is
happening will most likely continue to go about their normal day-to-day routine and consider the family event a new adventure of play.
REMEDY: Let your children in on conversations involving your transition. Orient them as
to what they need to expect and why you need to move. Let them understand that it will
get a bit exhausting for a few days, but that everything will settle down once you have finally arrived.
2. They can get cranky and maladjusted.
When the routine of children and disrupted, they tend to react in a way that will also challenge your patience. You must understand, however, that children simply need to feel secure. If they lose sleep because you are on the road, expect chaos. If you do not eat on time because of the circus, you’re going to be in a lot of trouble.
REMEDY: Choose a time to travel that will not gravely affect their eating and sleeping time. If this cannot be helped, find a way to feed them and make them take naps in between so that they do not end up becoming cranky.
3. They experience separation anxiety.
When children are made to leave their comfort zone, some of them get anxious. They do not know what to expect and will think of the things they are most attached to – their
friends, a place where they like to play, their bedroom, etc.
REMEDY: Give your children enough time to process the transition. Give them a clear picture of what to anticipate such as long drives or riding an airplane. Create a mindset that the travel will be fun and something they can look forward to.
4. Children often resist change.
When they don’t understand what is going on, children will naturally resist the new things that are about to happen to the family. They will be uncooperative and will do everything in their ability to express their frustrations.
REMEDY: Talk to your children constantly and make them an integral part of the decision-making process. Involve them in the planning stage and let them help out during the relocation.
5. They get tired easily.
Small children get tired easily compared to adults most especially if it involves travelling.
REMEDY: Whenever possible, allow your children time to rest – to eat and sleep most especially if you are driving from one state to another.