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Telling Loved Ones You're Moving with the Military
One of the hardest parts of a military move is telling your loved ones that you will be moving away. Thankfully, there are some steps you can take to soften the blow your moving news may have, whether you're being deployed, or you or your partner are being transferred to a different base.
Decide who to tell
Before you start telling everyone your moving plans, you have to decide who to tell and when to tell them -- a good rule of thumb is the sooner the better. Be sure to inform:
- Immediate family members
- Close friends in the area
- Nearby family members
- Respected neighbours
Break the news
Every friend and family member is different, so treat each situation uniquely. When telling loved ones about your upcoming move, definitely do it in person or over the phone. News of your military move should not be done through text message, email, or as a social media status -- that's just disrespectful.
When breaking the news, we recommend sticking to the following guidelines:
- Prepare yourself for how this person will react using everything you already know about them (will they cry, get angry?)
- Consider if you should tell this person one-on-one or in a group
- Imagine how the scenario will play out in your head and practise handling problems beforehand
- Choose where to tell this person (for example, a crier may do better in a more private location)
- Ease into the news in a way this person will respond to best (slowly, succinctly, etc.)
TIP: The easiest way to tell everyone about relocating with the military may be to do it all at once at a large get-together or a family function.
Promise to keep in touch
A great way to lessen the blow of your news is to remind loved ones that you plan to keep in touch and visit them when you are able to, such as when you're on leave.
- Exchange email and physical addresses as well as cell numbers if you do not already have this information
- Check that you are friends on various social media accounts
- Set up a schedule for getting in touch (via phone, email, Skype or Google hangout)
- Make sure the other person knows there will be no hard feelings if things don't remain as they once were
Throw a goodbye party
A goodbye party is the perfect way to say farewell to the friends, family members and neighbours you will be leaving behind when you move. Not only is it a good moment to tell loved ones how much you will miss them, it's also a perfect time to say goodbye to your old house.
Give out your new address
After or before you have moved (or even during your goodbye party) hand out or mail your new address to friends and family members so they can locate you in the future.
- Give out cards with your new contact information while telling loved ones you're moving
- Mail out postcards before or after your military move with your updated information
- Send out a mass email to all pertinent people in your address book
- Ensure that this contact information also includes your new landline if you have one