Moving Resources for Military Families
Whether you are a member of the military or are part of a military family, it is an honor to be associated with those who serve our country. There are some wonderful things that make being part of a military family great; however, there are some issues, such as moving quite often from place to place, that can make it difficult. Many military families do not stay in one city or state, or even country, for very long periods of time. Often, duty calls and it is time to relocate before the family can even begin to feel settled. Fortunately, there are some ways you can cope with frequent moving as a family that can make the process easier to deal with.
Moving frequently can be difficult, especially for parents of young school-aged children. Kids often crave stability, and changing schools at a young age can be very hard on them. As soon as you know about the next location, have the children look it up and discover exciting facts about your new home. Encourage them to find fun things to do when you move, and always try to stay positive so that they will feel confident about the change. When the big day arrives, be sure you’ve enlisted the help of the military’s programs that are designed to make your move easier. Look for the different benefits your branch provides, and see what they can do to make the transition smooth for everyone involved. Make sure you have everything packed securely, and decide whether to sell existing furniture before you move or pack it and take it with you. Housing is often provided by the military, but if you’d rather rent your own property, be sure to secure it before you head to your new destination.
- Options Available for Military Homeowners
- Moving Tips for the Military Family
- Countdown to Moving Day Checklist
- Talk, Listen, Connect: Tools For Parents
Of course, even when you move, your spouse will most likely end up being deployed somewhere else. Whether it is out to sea, across the ocean in a foreign nation, or even in a different state, deployment is hard on all involved. Try to find out when the exact date of deployment will be and then plan some special time together as a family. Discuss the deployment with your kids well in advance so they understand that Mom or Dad will be gone for a while but it is just temporary. Military deployments can take a toll on spouses, so look for local support groups to join. They offer friendship and understanding during this difficult time and can make your spouse’s absence less taxing. Reassure your kids that they can always write to and even Skype with their parent while they are away so that they will be able to keep in touch when they’re gone.
Helping Children Adjust
Frequent moving is often harder on children. Making new friends is tough, especially at a young age. Look for military families in your new location ahead of time, and plan a meetup so that your kids can make new friends when they arrive. Talk to the school or school district to see what kind of after-school activities they offer and let them know you’re relocating there due to the military. Many schools have special programs for kids who have military parents, and these programs can be encouraging for them to make new friends. Be understanding with your children, and remember that uprooting them can take some time to get used to. Let them know that their parent is serving our country, and tell them things that will make them be proud to be a part of a military family.
Coping with Other Struggles
Of course, moving from place to place is also a struggle financially. As a military spouse, you may be deciding to find a new job while your other half is away. Finding a job will not only help supplement income, but it is also a good way to help pass the time and make new friends. Emotionally, it can be a struggle, since you might feel as if you have no roots or ties to any one place or group of people. Try to stay connected to the friends you’ve made along the way over the different times you’ve moved, and always remember that you are not alone. There are plenty of other military families in the United States going through the same thing you are, so look to each other for strength and support.