How to Help your Child Cope with Anxiety when Moving to a New Home?
One can claim with fair certainty that anxiety is a problem familiar to every human being. Most of us get to know the feeling quite early in our lives. While some learn how to cope and handle these difficulties in helping your child cope with anxiety when moving, others are not so fortunate. Certain studies have shown that up to 10 percent of kindergarten-aged children suffer from an anxiety disorder. This rate continues to rise to more than 15 percent of high-school students. Still, these are extremes that should not scare you.
As long as you teach your child from an early age what are the proper ways of handling situations that are out of our hands, you are on the right track. Your upcoming relocation is the perfect occasion where you can do so. It is a stressful event even for adults.
Children tend to take it even more seriously, all depending on their age. Having said that, let’s delve into the adequate approach you ought to take in order to help your child cope with anxiety when moving.
Keep the Goal in Mind
As we are all well aware of the dread that is anxiety, we want to do our best in order to ensure that our child is spared the experience. However, it is of paramount importance that you understand the actual goal. You do not want to get rid of the current anxiety, but rather teach your child how to manage it.
Now, the best way to go about this issue is to aid them with learning how to tolerate their anxiety and function as well as they can, despite the feelings inside them. As time goes and your child starts to adapt, the anxiety will decrease or fall away over time. In order to help your child cope with anxiety when moving, it is crucial that you are calm, available and honest.
Help your child cope with anxiety when moving by encouraging them to ask
Depending on your child’s age, you might have to adjust the manner and tone of your conduct.
Still, it is vital that you listen and understand their worries. You should be cool, calm and collective. You need to set the example with the way you behave, whilst making them feel comfortable about opening up. Inquire about the issues that trouble them by asking uncomplicated questions.
If your child remains silent, try to phrase the questions so that you receive a yes or no answer. Give them enough time to come up with a response.
After your child has opened up a bit, allow them to ask you anything that puzzles them. Try your best to remain positive, but restrain from lying. Losing your child’s trust can cause much more harm than good. If you do not have an answer, explain how that too is okay. As long as you are together, a solution is bound to come up.
Including the Child into the Process
We all share a fear of the unknown. Our offspring is even more wired to tense up in the presence of uncertainty since they are still highly dependant on us, their parents. Consequently, the best approach would be to familiarize them with the upcoming events. For example, if you need to find high-quality packing supplies, let them help. Let them have a say it this massive change that is affecting you all. We all crave for control over our lives, and children do not differ. By presenting them with choices, you will see your child slowly but surely lighting up. In time, you can even turn this whole relocation process into an adventure.
Still, for the time being, help your child cope with anxiety when moving by focusing their attention on the positive aspects of this change. Explain how they will be able to decorate their new room. They can choose what to eat on the day of the move, as well as the combination that they are to wear.
Coping with the Goodbyes
No matter the beauty of the picture that you paint regarding your new life, your child will still have to deal with the goodbyes. This tends to be the hardest part of every move, no matter the age. Nonetheless, there are still steps that can be taken in order to soften the blow. If you are a proud parent of a toddler, ensure them that all of their toys, blankets, and bottles are coming with you.
They will still be able to enjoy all that they have, and nothing will change regarding such matters. If planning on relocating to Wellington all the way from Charlotte whilst your kid is attending school, your conversations will be a bit more complicated. You ought to highlight all the positive aspects of this move since they will be well aware of all the negative ones.
Try to portray the relocation as a step towards a greater good.
Yes, you will all be leaving your friends behind, but should also rejoice about all the new potential acquaintances, adventures and opportunities.
Accepting the New Home
Encourage your child to be open as much as you can, but try not to rush their adjustment. In order to help your child cope with anxiety when moving, it is of utmost importance that you provide them with enough time. This goes for both the pre and the post moving period. A lot of your words, however wise and sound, simply need some time to sink in. It is, after all, a big change.
Be open to exploring the new surroundings together, whilst being ready to give them space, if they so desire.
Do not fall into despair if it takes more time than you might have expected. Stay optimistic, have faith in your child and set a good example. With time, you will all be happy about the positive impact this relocation has had on your lives.