Tips for Helping Your Children Adjust to Life Abroad
How many of you love to travel? Traveling opens our eyes to unique cultures and experiences around the globe and has become a favorite pastime of many. Sometimes when we get away for a little while, we start to wonder what life would be like if we really did live abroad. For some of you, this dream may soon become a reality.
Maybe you’re relocating to another country for work or to be closer to family or for financial security. Whatever the reason, if you’re planning a move abroad, you probably have a lot on your mind. Add kids to the picture, and there is even more to consider. Children are incredibly adaptable creatures so a move abroad can seem exciting, but it also might be daunting when their entire world is about to change.
What will happen to their friends? What if they don’t understand the language? Will their stuffed teddy bear be okay on the nine-hour flight? It’s no surprise that they may have some questions and concerns. Follow these tips to help your child adjust to life abroad to make this transition as seamless as possible.
Research Your New Home
Moving abroad requires a ton of research—for yourself and for your kids. Go in prepared. Of course, there are the basics of researching travel documents and visas, finding a place to live, and setting yourself up with a local doctor. You’ll also want to research the best spaces for your kids. Know the schools, research the safe areas of town, and maybe find a nice playground or a fun after-school activity your kids can get involved in, especially as they settle in.
Research is more than just people and places. You’ll want to familiarize yourself with the cultural differences in a new country. You’d be amazed by the little things that vary around the world. For example, what electrical outlets are used? How should you navigate public transportation? The more you can prepare for these little (but impactful) differences, the more comfortable you’ll start to feel in your new home.
Find Your New Routine
A new place is already going to come with an avalanche of changes, but you can try to maintain a sense of normalcy with your daily routine. Children thrive off of routine, so the quicker you can set into a daily schedule, the better. Try to keep up with past traditions and activities. For example, if Tuesday nights were the days you went to music class at the local YMCA, maybe find a comparable activity in your new location.
Getting kids involved will help them make new friends and realize that their new home isn’t a scary, uncertain place. You can take old traditions like music class or create new traditions like a Sunday afternoon ice cream date. As long as your kids see their old life hasn’t completely gone away, they’ll embrace their new routine and new environment.
Acknowledge Their Feelings
Most of the time, kids just want to feel seen and understood. For this reason, you need to maintain open and honest communication with them. A big transition may come with big feelings for the whole family. So be real with your child. It’s OK to admit that this is a transition for you as well and that there will be easy days and some hard days.
It may even be useful to speak to a mental health professional about the transition. Whether the move is a traumatic experience or a tricky transition, having your child speak with a professional could be beneficial. The skilled child therapists in NYC may ease kids’ minds and help them find happiness and opportunity in their new situation. With their specialty in helping young people, they’ll know the right tools to help your child thrive in their new surroundings.
Take Care of Yourself, Too
While you’re working to guarantee your family’s happiness during this transition, it’s okay to admit you need to be taken care of, too. Maybe it‘s with your own mental health or with the organizational points of a huge move. You want a guarantee that everything will be taken care of with your new job and your new home. Make sure you‘re working with people and organizations you can trust.
When searching “mortgage broker Vancouver,” you want to find someone who will help you get set with a home equity loan to purchase a new home in Canada. Sometimes these private equity lenders are most flexible with new members of the community. Consolidating debt and having financial security in your new home will give you peace of mind. Feeling secure not only benefits you, but it guarantees a safe, happy home for your whole family.