Unfortunately for parents planning an out-of-state relocation, stress and moving often go hand in hand, with packing mishaps, last-minute mover cancelations, and financial anxieties lurking around every corner. However, with logistical worries on the brain, people often overlook a significant hidden stressor: telling their children about the big move. Whether you’re putting off a potentially tough conversation or genuinely forgot amongst the madness, the longer you omit the information, the more devastating the news drop will be.
If you’re looking to avoid tantrums and ease your little one’s fears about relocation, read on for six tips for revealing an out-of-state move.
Surviving a move with kids
Besides breaking the news in a delicate fashion, you’ll need to prepare accordingly for your out-of-state move by conjuring up a detailed plan and itinerary filled with to-do lists, packing hacks, budget info, and essential documentation. Additionally, consider hiring the help of reputable movers who can perform the heavy lifting while you wrangle in restless children on moving day.
You can even go one step further by enlisting the help of vehicle shipping services like Guardian Auto Transport. That way, you can take a short low-stress flight to your new home instead of embarking on a cross-country road trip with fussy, impatient kiddos. As a bonus, auto shipping services minimize monopolized PTO days and reduce your risk of dings, dents, or other defects.
Before charging through your cross-country move to-do list and preparing for speed bumps ahead (i.e. moving delays, an insufficient moving essentials box, or mid-trip temper tantrums), you’ll need to navigate the rough terrain of a “we’re moving” conversation.
Not feeling prepared for the rocky roads ahead? Consider the tips below.
Discuss the move early on
The first step to a tantrum-free conversation is discussing the move early on in the process. That way, your little ones will have plenty of time to process, ask questions, and come to terms with the news that they’re leaving their home state. Make sure you include all relevant information and remain open and honest with them throughout the coming months, so they understand the decision is final and feel involved from the get-go.
Allow them to express their feelings
Regardless of how gentle you are when breaking the news to your children, they may have an adverse reaction to leaving the house they’ve grown up in. This kind of information can be shocking and devastating to little ones at first, so make sure you give them time to process and feel their emotions. Listen to and console their concerns while remaining firm that you’ve solidified the decision and will do what you can to ease their discomfort during the move.
Encourage any questions
Once you’ve given them ample time to digest the news, take time to listen to any questions they may have and answer them honestly. While it may seem like you’re protecting them by omitting information, children can better regulate their emotions and come to terms with difficult situations when kept in the loop.
One way to reduce fear and disappointment around an out-of-state move is remaining positive and explaining the advantages of relocating to a new home. While it’s important to stay realistic and steer clear of toxic positivity, listing the benefits of moving and showing them the new, exciting opportunities they’ll have can ease their resistance.
In addition to keeping a positive attitude and outlook during the moving process, express your excitement surrounding your out-of-state relocation and encourage your children to explore the possibilities. Reassure your little ones that their new hometown will be littered with new friends, adventures, and activities ready for the taking. That way, the anticipation and enthusiasm will overtake their resistance and balance out difficult, but valid, emotions.
Disclosing to your children that you’ve decided to relocate out-of-state is no easy task and requires a sensitive touch to bypass tearful, tantrum-filled reactions. While your little ones may still express some discontent at the thought of leaving their home, you can soothe their concerns by telling them early, answering any questions, and remaining positive throughout the process.