Moving can be challenging for anyone, but even more so for autistic children. However, they're many steps you can take to help them prepare for the move and have a successful transition to their new home.
Bring them House Hunting
Since many autistic children struggle with changes in their environment and routine, getting them involved in the house-hunting process early will help them understand that a change is coming. Talk to them often about the move and make sure they're prepared for any accompanying major changes it will bring, such as switching schools. As you tour potential homes, help them envision what life will look like and reassure them their comfort and needs will continue to be prioritized. For example, if they're accustomed to sitting in a certain chair to eat meals, let them know that they will still be able to sit in that chair when they eat meals in the new house.
Prepare for Moving Day
You'll want to have a plan for when the big day arrives. Don't pack away any items that may be important to your child's daily routine and comfort, such as their favorite blanket or set of headphones.
Another idea is to have a dedicated, familiar caretaker tend to your child on moving day. This ensures they have the one-on-one attention they need and will feel as safe and comfortable as possible during the transition. This trusted adult can also help your child start setting up their room while you take care of other things.
Contributions to this blog are made by Celebrate the Children's highly talented, interdisciplinary team and wonderful families.