employed, use any free time to enjoy your new community. Refer to
the Advice for Volunteers website for guidance in selecting a volunteer position and Monster.com for spouse assistance in the Helpful
SUCCESSFULLY RELOCATING YOUR
The majority of relocating families have dependent children. If
you are moving with children, you probably researched schools
before moving; however, personal school visits will transform the
unknown into reality. Visits to new schools to survey the classrooms and meet teachers will go a long way to allay your, and your
children’s worries about the new environment.
Listen carefully to each child’s concerns—every move can bring
new issues to the surface. Encourage your children to maintain
contact with former friends, even while trying to make new friends.
Exchanging photos, having e-mail access and possibly a cell phone
with a camera feature can help bridge the gap between old and new
friends during the early weeks in a new location.
DEALING WITH CHALLENGES
Keep in mind that every stage and every age can bring new challenges. Children who sailed through the last move could be in an
entirely different place emotionally and physically for this move,
so parents cannot assume that a child will ease into the current
move. Routinely share accomplishments and challenges with each
other and talk about ways to overcome difficulties. Children need
to know that even though the parents are responsible for uprooting
them, you both have challenges to face, and you need to work
together as a family to solve them.
The following signs may indicate that children are struggling with the
adjustment: sudden reading difficulties, changes in attention span or
study habits, weight loss or gain, altered enthusiasm or energy levels,
strained relationships with you or their siblings, or disturbed sleep
patterns. Stay closely involved with
your children during the early months
in a new location so you know how
they are feeling, what they are thinking
and who their new friends are.
Consider volunteering or get involved
with the school so that you can see
for yourself how your children are
managing. Both adults and children
need the stability and comfort of
established routines, so keep the same
rules, bedtimes, mealtimes, allowances
and expectations that you had before
moving. Refer to the Tips for Settling
In sidebar for more great info to help
both you and the kids.
• Write down three or four goals to achieve
in your new city.
• Continue all your special family
celebrations and traditions.
• Share some of your family’s special
recipes and cultural aspects with new
acquaintances and neighbors.
• Keep a log of new experiences
• Give everyone in the family
manageable moving chores (taking
care of practical matters will take
the edge off homesickness).
• Join an athletic or special interest group.
• Get involved in community and/or
religious organizations, especially
those that sponsor activities, volunteer
efforts and programs for newcomers.
• Learn about the local government,
issues and politics.
• Most importantly, be patient and take
one day at a time.
American Medical Association www.ama-assn.org
American School Directory www.asd.com
National Association of Child Care Resource www.naccrra.org and Referral Agencies
Elder Care Locator www.eldercare.gov
American Animal Hospital Association www.healthypet.com Hospital Locator
Advice for Volunteers www.serviceleader.org
Parents Without Partners, Inc. www.parentswithoutpartners.org