CIGNA Expat Health Insurance

More About The Right Mindset

Settling In: Adjusting to Expat Life

Moving Abroad: Parenting as an Expat

Parenting as an Expat - Preparing Your Kids for the Big Move

Preparing Your Child for the Big Move

One of the golden rules I use in working with children is "No surprises." Help your children adapt to the idea and realities of life abroad by keeping them in the loop. If you can make your child feel like they are part of the process, they might be able to avoid the sense that the move abroad is something about to happen to them, rather than something they are about to take part in as a member of a family.

As soon as possible, tell them what the schedule is likely to be and help them develop a sense of closure for the life that they are about to leave behind. That means that they should have a chance to say goodbye to friends and family members, visit favorite restaurants, parks or stores, and any other key aspects of their current home. Remember, to a large extent, where we live is woven into our sense of identity, even if we react against it.

If possible, try to show your child how their new life will encompass parts of the existence they will leave in your home country.

Who are your children's heroes? Is there a way to help them see how they are being brave and adventuresome like any one of them? Offer to buy them some books with characters that they relate to that demonstrate the characteristics they'll need to succeed while living overseas.

What are your children's interests? If your children really enjoy athletics, for instance, tell them about how you will take them to see a rugby game in the U.K., a hockey game in Canada or camel racing in the U.A.E., for example.

As a parent, you will need to be creative to make life in another country work for you and your family. Remember that in order to have a different result, you must try something different. Avoid the age old problem of getting into a pattern and then resisting change just because it feels familiar and safe. Talk about this explicity with your spouse and children. Be flexible and develop the ability to make changes as a family as needed.

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Babies on Planes

If you are going to have a baby with you on a long flight, preparation is so important. Anne P. Copeland of The Interchange Institute offers some great tips to help manage the journey in her article 10 Things You'd Be Really Sorry If You Forgot To Put in Your Carry-On Bag. Also it's pretty easy to translate some of these tips into other age groups. Be creative!

ExpertsInMoving.com

Are you tired of calling up random removal companies to quote for your international move? Tired of telling the same story every time? ExpatExchange's new partner, ExpertsInMoving.com, offers you a simple and hassle free solution to plan your move.

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This Issue Written by Joshua Wood

Joshua Wood is one of the owners of ExpatExchange.com. In addition to expatriates and international relocation, he has written about numerous other topics over the last 15 years. He is also a licensed counselor and psychotherapist, and one of his primary areas of interest is the psychological impact of international relocation.

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