Sometimes children can have a very difficult time with change, and they may hate the idea of moving from the home they know and love. When you have a military PCS (Permanent Change of Station), you have no other choice, though. Even so, children may not understand what goes into placing real estate for sale, so the concept of moving may confuse and even frustrate them. However, it just must be that way sometimes, and the best that you can do is offer your children unconditional love and support as they face these changes they may want to resist. Try these ways to help your children adjust and feel better about the fact that you're placing the family home for sale.
Reassure Your Children About the Things That Will Stay the Same
While it's true that a lot of things about your kids' lives will probably change when you move from one house to another, there are sure to be things that will stay the same. Reassure your children about the things that you know won't change. For example, if you know that you will be able to keep your children in the same home school program they are in, talk about how the school will stay the same. Likewise, reassure your children of other things that will stay the same.
Let Your Children Make Choices About the New Home
One of the big problems that kids may have with a move is that they have no control over it. They may want to stay in the house you own now, but they cannot control the fact that they have to leave it. Help your children regain their sense of control by allowing them a say in some things pertaining to the new home. You may offer to consider their opinion about homes you look at, or let them have complete control over decorating their room in the new home.
Ask Open-Ended Questions to Help a Child Express Their Feelings
Some children will be frustrated about the move, but they may not be able to find the words to say to express their angst. Others may be worried about upsetting you by talking about their negative feelings. Asking open-ended questions can help children consider practical things about the move, get in touch with their feelings, and express them.
- What can be done to help you feel better today?
- What do you think about the new place where you'll be living?
- What do you wish that your family knew about your feelings on the move?
- What are the scariest things about making the move?
- What are some good things about the move?
Finally, keep in mind that children may be perceiving the move in an overly negative way. When you talk about the issues and try these ways to help your children feel better, you can ultimately help them adjust to the changes that come with moving from one home to another.