Helping Kids Cope with a Move

Helping Kids Cope with a Move


According to the U.S. Census Bureau, about 12% of the U.S. population moves every year—a number that has remained consistent since around 2008. That means that about 1 in 9 people will change residences over the next 12 months. And couples with young children are the most likely to move a long distance, says David Bancroft Arrick, of MelissaData, which handles address changes for movers.

If you have children and are planning to move soon, consider that moving can be one of the most stressful events that a family can face—especially for your little ones.  But you can help make it less stressful, with a few simple actions.

To help children cope with your upcoming move, try these suggestions—from the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry (AACAP):

  • Explain why the move is important.
  • Play up the benefits of the new location (amusement parks, playgrounds, restaurants).
  • Get them familiar with the new area—by pre-visit, if possible (or by Internet, if not). Show them the new neighborhood, landscape, new schools.
  • Ask children to help design their new room.
  • Help them keep in touch with old friends—through Facetime, Skype, Snapchat, Facebook, email, phone, text, and visits (if possible).
  • Help them make new friends quickly—by getting them involved in sports, scouts, music, church, or school activities.
  • Look for warning signs of depression (social withdrawal, changes in appetite, irritability, drop in grades). If you see them, ask for a referral to a good adolescent psychiatrist or counselor.

A move can be a great growth opportunity for kids and their families—and a chance to try out new things.  Pay attention to distress signals from your children, and respond appropriately.  Help make this move as comfortable as possible for them.

We can help make your move as smooth as possible. Contact a ReeceNichols agent today.