Should I ask my child for her opinion?
If you are thinking about moving, you may want to include your child’s opinion. It is wise to think carefully about this possibility before you begin that conversation.
For starters, you need to ask yourself what you will do with your child’s answer. If the child indicates that he or she does not want to move, will the move not go through? What if your child says that she only wants to move under certain conditions, will you comply?
In addition, you can ask yourself if your child can handle this responsibility.
What if your child says she wants to move, and then grandpa and grandma get terribly sad about the planned move? Will your child then feel guilty? What if, after a year, it turns out that the move didn’t turn out as well as expected after all? Will your child feel responsible?
Furthermore, it is good to remember that there are other ways to talk about this topic, without giving your child a heavy responsibility.
You can also discuss the move as a decision you have (almost) made, while listening very carefully to your child’s reaction. If your child shows that he or she is really struggling, you can still revise the plans.
You can also involve your child in the plans by making other decisions together. “Shall we live in the middle of the city, or somewhere outside the city with a big garden?”
You can also discuss with your child what life will be like after the move. You can discuss the advantages and disadvantages of the move. And you can find solutions together for the disadvantages of the move.
The move does not have to be something that happens to your child and over which she has no control. But before you ask your child if she would like to move, be sure to ask yourself what you will say if the answer is “no”.
It goes without saying that it is not good if your child finds out about secret plans to relocate, for example, against the wishes of the other parent. Having to keep a secret like that is considered harmful to a child’s development.
Read more about child relocation