How Do Children Adapt to Change?

I ask this question because I am so anti-change, it's ridiculous.  And this is one trait I hope Cooper and Cole do not pick up from me.  So, I am not a big fan of change...nobody is right?  Wrong!  There are many people I know who like change, embrace it and see it as a good thing.   And most of these people are very successful in their lives, both professionally and personally.   When I ask my 'pro-change' friends why they are so easy with it, the answer is pretty much the same..."Most things can be reversed, if needed.  And if not, deal with it and make the best of it."  Simple right...so what's my problem?

 

I bring up this topic because we are getting ready to put our house up for sale and I am freaking out.  The main reason we are doing this is for the boys.  We want better schools for them, to have kids in the neighborhood that are their age and to give them more space both inside and outside of the house.  OK, maybe that last one is for Ken and me so that we are not tripping over toys everywhere we go.

 

Moving has been the 'hot topic' in our household for about two years. However, whenever Ken brings it up, I either change the subject or I leave the room...seriously.  But now the time has come for me to make a decision...I can't avoid it or Ken anymore.  Moving now is ideal for many reasons...lower home prices and interest rates are big reasons.  Another is that the boys are still young enough that they will not be too affected by the change...I hope.  Plus, Cooper will start Kindergarten (ugh) in a year and we want the boys to start in a school system that they will stay in through high school. 

 

When I talk to people about our rush to move since obviously I fear moving, some people agree with our thought process and others tell me to wait and move later when I am more comfortable with it.  When I bring up my concerns about the boys and adapting to the changes when they are older, they tell me 'don't worry...they will adapt'.  Will they?

 

I think about my childhood and although it was not perfect, I dealt with very little change.  Is that why I am so anti-change?  And if so, should I be introducing more change to them so they are better prepared to adapt than I am? 

 

Think about celebrity parents such as Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt who are travel with their children constantly.  Some people may criticize their lifestyle as their children are travelling constantly with no semblance of a 'traditional home life'.  However, aside from the money, will these kids be better prepared for life due to all of the changes they experienced growing up?  Some may say yes.

 

There probably is no right or wrong answer here; it's all just a matter of opinion.  I have done research on this topic and in the end, everyone says the same thing...it is different for every child. 

 

So what do you think?  Any advice out there from the Ay Mama! readers on how to help my children adapt to change.  There is little hope for me right now J but maybe I can work to ensure that Cooper and Cole can adapt to many 'curve balls' life throws at them better that their mom does.

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  • My dear friend, embrace change :-) When I was little girl, my Mother moved to Spain with us and for four years we lived in Seville. At age 13 I went back to Puerto Rico and both my sister and I adapted very quickly. It will be fine, I promise :-) (Take it from a nomad at heart!)

  • Believe it or not I went to therapy to adapt to change. As you can see, it helped a lot. I have the life I really wanted but I've had to adapt to constant changes. That doesn't mean I don't fear change any more than you do, but most of the time change is what gets us where we want in life.

  • Nina -- Thank you for your words of encouragement. I have been meaning to call you for a pep talk!

  • Ana -- Thank you for sharing that. I know life keeps going so I better get on board or I will some great opportunities.

  • I'm just like you, Lisa. We have been tripping over toys and talking about moving for years. However, we live on a lake and now that the girls are old enough to enjoy it, it would be a shame to leave. However...is it really that I don't want to leave the lake for the girls' sake, or is it mine? When I really think it through, it is more the latter.

    Would I enjoy a bigger house? Yes. And a better school district? Yes. So, since Lilija is going into 2nd grade next year, we have decided to make the change sooner than later. When put into perspective, we share a summer cottage on a lake with my sister and her family, so do we really need to live on a lake daily? No. And that is what I had to put into perspective. I didn't want to make the change. I think when you weigh your options and your fears, you'll come up with your answer, as I did.

    I think kids adapt well. Some children may balk at change at first, but they always do just fine a little ways down the road. Your boys are still so young. They will be just fine. :)

  • Anita -- Thank you for sharing your similar thoughts. After reading these posts, it's good to know I am not the only one out there who drags her feet on things.

  • No, you are never alone! :)

  • I hated change, too. The turning point with me came when I had kids and realized how fast things they changed physically, mentally, emotionally. I quickly accepted that life evolves every day. I calmed down greatly once I began to expect constant change. I now try to teach my kids that change always happens. When some things change it can be like an exciting adventure. Other changes can make you sad. But change is a natural, unavoidable part of life.

  • In reply to jenmcautry:

    Jen -- Thank you! Appreciate the advice. You are so right that change is part of life. What you are teaching your kids is exactly what I want to do. Thank you again!

  • In reply to jenmcautry:

    When I was young, I prided myself in adapting and accepting change more than my immediate family. Then, I moved 800+ miles from a southern state to a northern state, and ReAlLy learned how open I am to change.

    As an adult, change is inevitable. For a long time, I tried to manifest into reality the person I imagined being when I was a kid, and I've had mixed success. The trick is to "have the serenity to accept what I cannot change, the courage to change what I can, and the wisdom to know the difference". (I love that prayer, by the way.)

    As far as kids are concerened, they adapt MUCH more quickly to change than most adults. Good luck!

  • In reply to jenmcautry:

    Thank you for your kindness and your words of wisdom!

  • In reply to jenmcautry:

    I agree with everyone's comments. So true!

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