When you break the news to your teenager that your family is moving out of state, don't be surprised if he isn't happy about relocating. It's often hard for teenagers to deal with drastic life changes. After all, to him, making a long-distance move means leaving all of his friends behind, his school, and his extended family behind to live in a place that's completely new and different. However, just because your teen doesn't like the idea of an out-of-state move, it doesn't mean you have to drag him with you kicking and screaming. There are several things that you can do to help make the transition easier for him.

Consider His Schedule When Planning Your Move

If possible, plan your move so that it doesn't disrupt your teen's life too much. Moving in the middle of the school year is more difficult on teens than moving during the summer for several reasons:

  • Delaying your move until the end of his current school year gives him extra time to spend with his friends before you move.
  • There's a better chance that he won't be the only new kid at his new school if he transfers at the start of the school year. He might be more comfortable at his new school if he doesn't feel like he's the only outsider.
  • It's often easier for teens to make new friends at the beginning of the school year because the other kids haven't settled into their new routine yet. Remember, teenagers tend to do things such as walking to class and eating lunch in groups. It's often harder for new kids to join a group of teens who are settled into their daily routines already.
  • If you move during the summer, your teen has time to get involved in extracurricular activities before school starts. This way, he already knows people before starting classes at his new school.

Keep Him Involved During the Move

The less your teenager knows about your long-distance move, the more anxious he'll be about moving. From the time you tell him that you're moving up until the time the long-distance movers arrive at your doorstep, you need to encourage positive activities that make him feel involved in the moving process.

  • Let your teen help you look for your new home. Also, while you're looking for a place to live, keep his preferences in mind so that he feels like his opinion truly matters.
  • Spend time with your teen researching the area that you're moving too. He'll feel more comfortable with the move if he knows what to expect, and you'll probably find some fun activities to enjoy once you arrive.
  • Plan your first trip back home before you move. This way, your long-distance move doesn't feel as permanent to your teen.

It probably seems like it's easier to find a new house, organize and pack all of your belongings, and find good long-distance moving services than it is to tell your teenager that you're making an out-of-state move. However, you shouldn't worry too much about his immediate reaction. As long as you keep him involved in your plans and adjust your move so that's it's easier for him, you'll find that making a long-distance move with a teen isn't as difficult as you might think.