Moving to New Zealand with children
Moving to New Zealand with children can be an extremely daunting experience. Not just because it’s extra little lives to co-ordinate while moving continents, but also because children don’t necessarily understand what’s happening. As parent you’ll know what this could mean – frustrated, angry, sad or scared children.
It doesn’t have to be this way though. You can pack up and move your life to New Zealand without disrupting your children too much. All you’ll need is an action plan – and we’re here to share tried-and-tested ideas with you.
Make your children part of the decision-making process
You know, and we know, that the parents will make all the important decisions. But you can let your children help with some of the decision making and make a big deal of their input. In this way, your children will feel included and considered. Start with their room – decide together what can stay and what should go.
Answer all the questions
Children are not afraid to ask questions! This is the one time though that no questions should be off limits. Getting answers to their questions will quell any fears or concerns your children might have. Also don’t wait for them to approach you. If you see your child is quieter than usual or is acting out more than is normal, ask them if anything about the move is bothering them.
Tell them it’s a new adventure
Let’s face it – while immigrating is indeed stressful, it’s also a big adventure. Get your children to buy into this! Here’s one idea – watch videos of New Zealand together and then place stickers on all the sights you want to visit once you’ve arrived.
Help your children say goodbye
Don’t forget that goodbyes are hard on your children too! We might not always realise it, but children also have the ability to form strong bonds, even at a young age. A great idea is to host a leaving party at school or at home, while also organizing one-on-one goodbyes with close friends.
Remind your children all along that new friends are waiting on the other side.
Stick to your schedule
Moving to New Zealand with children is going to be so much easier if you stick to your normal schedule. For instance, continue eating dinner at the same time. Keep bed time the same too! This not only makes the children feel safe and secure, it also makes things easier on yourself. Less chaos equals happy parents.
Don’t forget to care for your relationship with your partner too. It’s all too easy to focus only on the children or the parts of the your visa application. Yes, immigrating is not easy, especially when it’s as a family, but remember – as you’ll tell your children – a new adventure awaits!