Planning for a major long distance move can produce fear and anxiety for teens as they face social insecurities, process intense emotions, and make their way through an overwhelming adjustment period while getting settled into a new neighborhood and home. But these issues don't have to ruin the overall moving experience, which is sure to be just as exciting as it is scary. In addition to hiring professional movers to take some weight off the shoulders of your entire family, you can lessen the stress on your teen during and after your big move:
Involve Some Friends
To help ensure that your teen stays in a positive frame of mind during and after your long distance move, consider involving a few of their closest friends in the overall process. This will help to minimize the social loss your teen feels during the weeks leading up to the move and should invoke a strong support system they can count on as they adapt to their new home and life. There are a number of ways to encourage the involvement of your teen's friends including:
The whole ideas is to make sure that your teen's social structure remains familiar throughout the move so they don't feel alone and can easily gain access to extra support when it's needed.
Focus on Communication
To minimize the chance of your teen withdrawing from the family dynamic during the move due to concerns, insecurities, or even anger about the situation, it's important to focus on keeping communication lines open at all times. Taking the time to ask your teen about their feelings and how they're mentally preparing for the move will give you an opportunity to answer their questions and work through frustrations without having to walk on egg shells.
If it becomes apparent that your teen isn't interested in sharing their personal feelings about the move with you, schedule a visit or two with a therapist who will be able to provide unbiased advice, encouragement, and support. An experienced therapist should also be able to provide your teen with some new tools to use when communicating with you at home.
Visit the New Neighborhood Beforehand
If you can manage it, you may find that it's worthwhile to visit your new neighborhood before actually moving there. This will allow your teen to check out their new school and meet other students before beginning their first official day. It will also give the whole family a chance to get acquainted with the new stores, community clubs, local parks, and neighborhood attractions they'll be interacting with after the move.
If you can't make a trip to your new neighborhood before your official move there, spend some time online with your teen and take some virtual tours of facilities, attractions, and points of interest in the area that your teen can expect to become part of their life.
With the help of these techniques and a little patience, you should find that your teen is their happy and healthy self again within just a few weeks of your official move.
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