You’re browsing La Jolla townhouse for sale on the Internet, for the 50th time that day. You are scanning through the listings, imagining your family in some of them, your and your kids’ rooms. Then your thoughts stop in their tracks. You haven’t told them yet.

Many parents break out in cold sweat anticipating the protest they’ll get from their kids when mentioning moving away from what’s familiar to them. Understandably enough, kids don’t have a full perspective on the move and may focus only on the negative. However, there are ways to ease kids into the moving process.

Discuss the move & involve them in the process if possible

Conversation is the first step. The key points are: 1) give them as much information about the move as possible, 2) answer their questions truthfully and 3) be open to both negative and positive reactions. After all, they have the right to react as they feel.

The thing is that kids often feel that the move is forced on them. They don’t feel as if they have much say in it, which is true to a larger or lesser extent. To mitigate this sense of being trapped in an inevitable and unwanted change, include the kids in the process whenever possible. If you are looking for a La Jolla townhouse for sale, which we mentioned in the above hypothetical situation, take them with you to the viewings. See how they react in the space. They may surprise you with their insights, or you may feel encouraged by their positive feedback.

It would also be a good idea to explore the prospective neighborhood together. Look for places of interest for the whole family. When we are talking about La Jolla, visiting the beach like Children’s Pool and many others, may make kids excited about all the things that La Jolla has to offer.

Making accommodations for kids according to age

Toddlers and preschoolers may be the easiest to handle during a move, because their grasp of the situation is limited to some aspects. They do, however, need you to be their lead and guide.

·         Explain the move through a story or act it out with some props.

·         If possible, take the kids to see the new home. Bring a few toys and possessions to make the space more familiar.

·         Keep the furniture from the kids’ old room and avoid introducing major changes like potty-training or taking away the pacifier.

·         Arrange the new room similarly to the old.

·         Make arrangements for the move out day, so that the child stays with a babysitter or relative.

School-age kids are both easier and more difficult to deal with when it comes to moving. On the one hand, they have a broader understanding about the move, but they can also put up resistance.

·         Think about the best time to move. Some say it’s during summer, so that the school year is not disrupted, whereas others say mid-year is better. You know your kids best and you can weigh the pros and cons of both in your family’s case.

·         Prepare the documentation the new school will need for the transition.

·         If your kids have after-school activities, like sports or a drama class, try to find them clubs to sign in to.

·         When the school starts, sign up to be a parent volunteer. That way you’ll get to meet other parents and teachers, which will make it easier for your kids to make new connections.

·         Give your kids as much freedom as possible to design their new room as they like.

·         Ask for professional help from counsellors or family therapists if you think that your kid is taking the change too hard.

Teens are a handful on their own, so of course, they are the most difficult to deal with during a major change for the family. Talk to them, even if you fear they’ll ignore you. If they strongly rebel, try to establish which part of the change they have most problem with – is it losing touch with friends, possibly ending their relationship or not being there for an important event. Then try to find a solution for that.  Here are some tips.

·         Point out that change are normal and desirable part of life. This is actually a rehearsal for another, bigger, change down the road, such as college or getting a job.

·         See if it’s possible that your kids get back for important events like proms, homecoming or some sporting events.

·         If it makes sense, could your teen stay with a relative or friend until the school year is over?

·         Apply any of the points for school-age kids as appropriate.

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