Are you considering moving to a new place after divorce?
For many of us, moving will also follow a divorce or separation; yet another major change that can impact our stress levels and mental health. Whether you are moving into a new place through necessity or because you’d like to start fresh, uprooting your life can be challenging, even if you’re not moving far. Here are some tips to help you feel more at home in your new home as soon as possible.
Tips for Moving into a New Place After Divorce
1. It’s OK to Feel Overwhelmed
Moving into a new place after divorce is a big change, and it’s normal to feel overwhelmed. Take some time to consider your options. Explore new neighborhoods, homes, or apartments. Moving is a great opportunity to discover new décor, new communities, and even new cities if it’s practical. But if you need someone to help you narrow down the possibilities, consult a trusted friend or family member.
If you have older children, ask them about their preferences and get them involved in finding a new home or new city. Having a shared family goal and making choices together can help all of you feel more grounded.
2. Purge the Past
It can be difficult to be surrounded by memories when you’re starting out on your own again. The objects we own can remind us of people and events from better times or not-so-great times. So, don’t be afraid to purge the past if it helps. Sell that painting you got on your honeymoon, or give away that easy chair from the den.
If you’re downsizing, this is a good chance to keep only those things you want and need. But it’s also an opportunity to repurpose things that remind you of your former spouse. If you can’t get rid of that kitchen table, give it a coat of new paint, and make it look new. If purging or repurposing works for you, give yourself permission to do it instead of holding on to the past.
3. Unpack and Settle In
When you move into a new place after divorce, even if it’s temporary, you’ll feel more at home if you unpack the boxes, put your clothes in the closets, and settle in as quickly as possible. Living surrounded by boxes can keep you feeling unsettled, as if your new life is temporary. You may have a more optimistic attitude about your new home and your new life with your familiar and loved things around you.
4. Connect with Your New Community
Look outside your new home to build your new life as well. Explore local restaurants and shops. Get to know your neighbors. Join a local fitness group. If you have kids in new schools, get involved and get to know their classmates’ parents. Help your kids find new activities or new places to do old activities they love. Getting to know your new community and its people will help all of you feel more at home.
5. Let Your Kids Help Make a Home
If you have kids, let them help you make a new home. If they’re old enough, let them look at apartments or houses with you, pick out paint for their new bedrooms, select that new couch, or plant some flowers for the front porch or balcony.
Let them help you unpack and decide where their favorite books go on the shelf, or help you decide the best placement for their favorite chairs. Getting your kids invested in the process of moving into a new place and building a new home can help all of you feel more comfortable.
Divorce doesn’t have to be a hostile process with a decision handed down by a judge. There is a better way. At the Miller Law Group, we offer you alternatives to an adversarial process through mediation and collaboration, and we put the needs of children first. If you’re on the cusp of divorce or separation, or if you’re just beginning the divorce process, our team can help. Contact us to discuss your options. Even if you ultimately decide not to divorce, knowing your alternatives can help you make wise choices.