Military.com

6 Tips for Moving on Base With Kids

(Photo: U.S. Air Force.)
(Photo: U.S. Air Force.)

Whether you’re relocating across the country or just from your local civilian community into on-base housing, any military move can be tough on children.

But there are some easy ways that you can help your child acclimate to his or her new home – and embrace the changes.

6 Tips for Moving on Base With Kids

1. Address the loss of friends or family. Get the past over with first and don’t be afraid to address the issue that is most likely making this move hard. Children become comfortable quickly in environments that nourish their happiness.  However, this is a great opportunity to introduce to them a valuable lesson -- sometimes change is good.  Your child will quickly become immersed in a brand new world, preparing them for the new worlds they’ll continue to encounter as they grow older

2.  Attend on base community events. Your child will learn to love her new home faster if you jump right in to community events. Many military bases have a lot to choose from, so don’t be afraid to get out of the house.

3. Get your children involved in a sport or activity. A quick way to perk your child up a bit is introduce them to the slew of sports and activities offered for children on the base.  In these programs your child will be able to meet friends as well as fellow kids who have similar experiences.

4. Go off base. Just because you live on a military base doesn't mean you have to always stay on it. Explore your community and visit surrounding parks or cities. It will be a breath of fresh air.

5. Start casually. The tightknit community of a military base can be a blessing – and a curse. Don’t dive in too early to things like gossip with your new neighbors. You don’t want to brush anyone the wrong way from the get-go.

6. Show your child extra love. Show your child as much love as you can, and then some.  This will most likely be one of their first big transitions of lifestyles, so they will be extra vulnerable -- be aware.