Toddlers and moving - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 5 Old 03-02-2011, 01:27 PM - Thread Starter
 
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DD is 32 months. We have been living with my parents since my separation when she was 15 months. I don't think she remembers living with her donordad at all.

 

My parents and I are currently looking at buying a duplex together, since we all agree that DD will be better off having her extended family nearby. She is used to having 3 adults around and I don't feel it would be fair to her to yank her away from that. In our search for new digs, we've had to drive around neighborhoods and sometimes go visit some duplexes on week-ends.

 

DD has not reacted well. It got so bad that I ended up staying in the car with her while my folks went to visit, and then we switched, so I got to see the place too.

 

After listening to DD talk the other day, I discovered that she thinks that *I* will be moving out and leaving her behind. I've tried to explain that when we move, it'll be as a family, nana, papi, mommy and DD together. I'm not sure I got through to her. I'm starting to think I shouldn't have told her anything about moving because in her mind, moving = abandonment.

 

Anyone have suggestions to help her adapt? This move won't be happening until next summer or potentially the following summer, so by then, she'll almost be 4. I would just like to help ease her fears...She doesn't do well at all with change.

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#2 of 5 Old 03-02-2011, 04:23 PM
 
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If she's that hung up by the thought of moving, I'd guess she did have some sense of loss and abandonment when you and your ex split. Has your ex had any contact with her at all since then?

 

I haven't been in your situation, but perhaps getting her involved in the moving process as it manifests on her level would help reduce the fear? It's a fear of the unknown, so help her take the guesswork out of it. Would she be moving to her own bedroom? Getting new bedroom furniture, that sort of thing? Does she have any friends who recently moved house? See if you can get her excited about one part of the moving process and go from there.

 

Edit: If bedtime stories are a part of the night routine, I'd see about finding a book or two about moving, too.


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#3 of 5 Old 03-02-2011, 07:39 PM
 
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Also, when you visit new houses talk to her about the activities she'll do with you there. "Ooo, this house has a porch swing, we could sit her and drink lemonade." "If we buy this house, this will be our bedroom and we'll read stories in here" "you and grandma could plant flowers in this part of the yard".

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#4 of 5 Old 03-02-2011, 09:38 PM
 
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DS (just 3 at the time) was incredibly anxious about moving as well. We really conveyed how much fun we were going to have at the neighborhood park, and how we could play in the front yard. Totally sold him on the place before we moved. We wanted him to see himself in the place - so he knew he was coming with us. DP made a special calendar with hand drawings for each day and we marked off the days until the move. We also helped him to pack his own box of special things so that he knew that his toys were coming along with us. It went pretty well. He was a little apprehensive as he watched the movers put our boxes on the truck, and even more when he came into the house after lunch and everything was gone. But once we were in the new place and started unpacking his special box, he was fine.

 

I hope the move goes well for you and your family. I love the idea of your buying a duplex with your parents in order to keep her with her extended family.


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#5 of 5 Old 03-03-2011, 09:11 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sapphire_chan View Post

Also, when you visit new houses talk to her about the activities she'll do with you there. "Ooo, this house has a porch swing, we could sit her and drink lemonade." "If we buy this house, this will be our bedroom and we'll read stories in here" "you and grandma could plant flowers in this part of the yard".



 Oh, very good suggestions. I'll make sure I "sell" the place to her.



Quote:
Originally Posted by tiddle View Post

Has your ex had any contact with her at all since then?

 

(snip). Would she be moving to her own bedroom? Getting new bedroom furniture, that sort of thing? Does she have any friends who recently moved house? See if you can get her excited about one part of the moving process and go from there.

 

Edit: If bedtime stories are a part of the night routine, I'd see about finding a book or two about moving, too.


No, her donordad hasn't seen her for 10 months now, and I don't forsee he will again. She is his 4th child and I assume he's got a 5th one on the way right now.

 

And yes, DD will be moving into her own room and she'll be getting all new furniture. But she doesn't want any of that...she currently sleeps in the same room as I do, but in her own big girl bed, and every night she travels over to my bed to cuddle. I guess right now separation anxiety is very strong.

 

I'll look for some books on moving...
 

 Quote:

Originally Posted by h4ppyphant0m View Post

 I love the idea of your buying a duplex with your parents in order to keep her with her extended family.

Oh me too! when I moved in, I thought it would only be temporary, but DD really got used to my parents being present in her life, and now they're part of the family unit. When I think about it today, I realize that we help each other out a great deal, financially and logistically, and DD benefits a great deal from that arrangement.

 

 

 

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