In many ways and in lots of situations, kids are far more resilient and adaptable than adults are – except when it comes to moving. It may be exciting for you, but probably not so much for your kids. They will be leaving a familiar school environment, their friends, the familiar places where they hang out, and, many times, the only home they’ve ever known. That’s why it’s so important to know how to help your kids adjust to a move in Los Angeles.
What you do with and how you handle the period leading up to move will hugely impact how quickly and how well your kids adjust. Take the time to thoroughly prepare them long before moving day arrives.
For younger kids like toddlers and preschoolers, you need to calmly and gradually give them the news at least a month in advance. That way, they’ll have time to think about and process the information and fully grasp the implications. It’s also a good idea to reassure them that the important things won’t change, that you’ll just be living in a different house.
Older kids should be forewarned as well. But make sure you give them the opportunity to express their opinions about the move and let them know that you genuinely are taking their concerns into consideration. It won’t change the fact of the move, but it will let your pre-teens and teens know that they do have a say and that you actually listened.
Emphasize the Excitement
A very important element of how to help your kids adjust to a move in Los Angeles, especially for younger kids, is emphasizing the excitement. You could, for example, cast the move in terms of an adventure, explaining to them that they’ll be just like explorers or pioneers setting out to uncharted lands for the thrill of discovery. Also, try encouraging your kids to make their own plans for the move, listing what new things they’ll attempt on arrival at their new home.
Keep Established Routines
Another thing you can do to make it easier for your kids is simply to stick to the old, familiar, established routines. If your family customarily gathers around the dining-room table for the evening meal, keep doing it. Or if you usually have a family game night, keep those up. But it doesn’t really have to be something that big. It could be just sticking to normal bedtimes or standard curfews. Basically, you want to bring a sense of consistency and normalcy to the new home so that your kids accept it as home.
Another important part of how to help your kids adjust to a move in Los Angeles involves the fact that some sporadic regression is inevitable. Although the adjustment may have seemed smooth and completed, it’s usually not a clear linear progression. Kids must be allowed to adjust at their own pace, and that usually involves some occasional backsliding.
For example, with younger kids, things may appear to be going swimmingly because Johnny hasn’t wet the bed for three weeks. But then he starts back up. It happens, and you need to be ready for. Or if you have teenagers, they may revert to those intolerable attitudes that teenagers are known for. Child experts maintain that these temporary regressions are actually just inarticulate ways of dealing with a stressful situation.
Moving can be a pretty traumatic and anxiety-inducing experience for kids, but you can ease the transition if you know how to help your kids adjust to a move in Los Angeles. Still, it can be an ongoing process extended over several months, so you’ll need some persistence.