After Having a Baby, Should We Move Close to Our Families? 7+ Eye-opening Tips for Expectant Parents
After planning for giving birth and gathering all the essentials for the big day, first-time expecting moms and dads often think about the answer to the question, “After having a baby, should we move close to our families?”.
There is no definitive answer to this question, and there is not a cookie-cutter solution that will work for every new family. With all our varying values, traditions, and goals in life, it is no wonder this is such a difficult decision for so many of us!
However, to give you some perspective on this matter, we have listed seven tips and added insights that might help you take this next big step in your life. Let us get started!
Evaluate the Practicality of a Move
Of course, one of the first things you must figure out is how feasible it is for you to move closer to your family. While our relationships and connection with our loved ones are essential, we also must remember that at the end of the day, we need to do what is practical and sustain ourselves overall.
Some things you might want to consider:
The Ownership Type of Your Home
Do you own or rent your home? If you are a renter, it will be easier for you to simply up and leave than those who own a house. Not to mention, selling a property takes time and effort (and money!), so you will have to factor that in.
Your Current Career or Source of Income
For stay-at-home parents or those who work remotely, moving might not be important since you can easily take your job with you wherever you go. However, if you must go to an office or place of work physically, relocating might not be as practical since you will need to find a new job in the area.
The Cost of Living in the New Location
Apart from the proximity of your workplace, you will also need to compare the cost of living between your current location and the place you are planning to move into. The closer you are to a city, the more expensive everything gets, so that is something you need to consider before making a final decision.
The Available Medical Facilities in Your Loved Ones’ Area
If you are the mother and you plan to move before or shortly after giving birth, you will need to ensure that the area you are relocating to has medical facilities that can adequately take care of you and your baby. The same goes for young children or elderly family members who might need constant medical attention.
Reflect on Your Current Relationship and Dynamic with Your Family
While families are among, if not the most important people in our lives, not every relationship is perfect. And now that you are about to become a parent, you also must think about how your relationship with your parents and relatives can impact your child’s life.
Are there unresolved issues between you and your family members? Do you have contrasting values that might clash in the future? Are they the type of people you want your kids to be around? These are tough but necessary questions you must ask yourself before deciding whether to move closer to your loved ones.
Nonetheless, grandparents are known to be more patient, loving, and doting, so if you feel like your relationship with them is good, that is a point in favor of relocating!
Determine the Values and Lifestyle You Want for Your Child
Apart from your dynamic and relationship with your family, you should also consider the kind of values and lifestyle you want for your child. For example, some parents may want to pass down their traditions and culture to the next generation, while others might prefer to start fresh and have their kids experience a different type of upbringing.
There is no right or wrong answer here, but it is essential that you and your partner are on the same page before making a massive decision like this.
Consider the Education Options in the New Location
Before you know it, your precious baby will be all grown up and ready for school! If you are planning to move before your child starts kindergarten, then you will need to research the schools in the area and see if they align with your educational values and preferences. The same goes for higher education. If you want your kids to go to college near you, then that is something you need to factor in before deciding to move.
Having to relocate and transfer schools can be tough on kids, so finalize your decision early and do your best to minimize the number of times you have to move around.
Weigh the Pros and Cons of Both Sides
Once you have carefully analyzed the factors listed above, plus all the other details unique to your situation, it is time to sit down with your partner and discuss the pros and cons of each option.
It might be helpful to make a list or use a decision matrix so you can evaluate your options more objectively. This is a huge decision, and you want to be as sure as you can be before making a final choice.
Make the Final Decision as a Team
You and your partner are building a life and a family together, so it is essential that you make all significant decisions together as well. And if there are disagreements, make sure to communicate openly, listen to each other’s points of view, and produce a compromise that you are both happy with.
If You Do Move, Be Smart About It
Suppose you have decided to relocate closer to your family, congratulations! But remember, this is a big step, and you need to be smart about it. So, whether it is in the practical sense of finding an excellent place to live, or in the emotional significance of preparing yourself and your family for the transition, take things slowly and one day at a time.
The Potential Pros of Moving Close to Your Families
Still not sure if moving closer to your family is the right choice for you? Here are some potential benefits that might help sway your decision:
Grandparents Can Help with Childcare
Many parents move closer to their families so their parents or in-laws can help with childcare. This is especially beneficial for working or single parents who might not have as much support.
Moreover, this can be a solution where everyone benefits for both parties because the mom and dad get a little break, and the grandparents also get to bond more with their grandkids! In a survey on the expectations of Americans 65 and above, 25% answered in an open-ended question that time with their grandkids is what they value the most, while 28% responded that spending time with their loved ones in general.
You Can Rely on Your Family for Emotional Support After Having a Baby
No matter how careful and prepared you are, becoming a parent is still a huge adjustment. There will be good days and bad days, highs, and lows. And it is nice to know that you have a support system close by that you can rely on during those tough times.
Your family will also be there to celebrate your joys and successes with you. From your baby’s first steps to their graduation, you will be able to share all of life’s special moments with them.
You Can Set an Example for Your Kids
Because your family is close by, your kids will get to see how important they are to you. They will also get to spend more time with their cousins, aunts, uncles, and grandparents, which can help teach them the value of family.
If you are moving close to your parents, your kids will also see how you interact with them. This can be an excellent opportunity to model healthy family dynamics and teach your kids how to respect their elders.
The Possible Cons of Moving Close to Your Families
All right, those pros are convincing. But it would help if you considered some potential relocating drawbacks to being closer to your families.
Differences in Parenting Styles
This is one of the most common problems that families run into. Even if you have a good relationship with your parents or in-laws, there is a good chance that you do not parent the same way.
For example, you might have different views on screen time, bedtime routines, or food choices. Or your parenting styles are simply different in general. If this is the case, discussing it with your family before moving is essential. This way, you can try to come to a compromise or at least set some boundaries so that everyone is on the same page.
Boundaries Might Be Hard to Set and Keep
It can be tough to set and keep boundaries when your family is close. It is much harder to say “no” to your mom when she is right in front of you.
You might also find it difficult to control your family’s involvement in your day-to-day life. This can be a particular problem if you have parents or in-laws who are overly involved or tend to be helicopter grandparents.
Higher Cost of Living
Even if the cost of living in your family’s area may be manageable, it can still be a financial strain, especially if you will have to drive or commute farther for work. The prices of goods can also be higher if you are moving from a rural area to a more urban one.
Of course, this is not always the case. But again, these are all things you will need to consider before making the final decision.
Things You Can Do After Having a Baby
Whether you have decided to move or stay put, there are things that you can do to make the situation work better for everyone. Here are some of them:
Hire a Nanny or a Family Assistant
If you realize that moving may be too costly and challenging at this time, you can still ease the burden by hiring a nanny or family assistant. The former can help you with anything related to childcare, while the latter can help with some childcare in addition to personal assistant type duties such as household organization and managing a variety of errands and scheduling.
This way, you can still have some assistance even if you are not living close to your family. Make sure that you hire them from a reputable agency and that you are comfortable with them being in your home.
Encourage Your Parents to Attend Grandparent Classes After Having a Baby
If you’ve decided to move close to your family and seek the help of your parents or in-laws with childcare, you can ask them to attend grandparent classes. These are designed to help educate grandparents on how to best support and interact with their grandchildren, especially in their early years.
This can help set the expectations for their involvement in your child’s life and ensure everyone is on the same page. It can also be a great bonding experience for them, plus an opportunity to meet other grandparents in the same boat.
Whichever route you decide to take, it is essential that you communicate openly, first with your partner and then with your family. This decision will affect not just you but also the people closest to you.
Try to be as understanding and respectful of everyone’s feelings and needs as possible. And if any problems come up, do not hesitate to address them head-on. The sooner you do, the easier it will be to find a resolution that works for everyone.
Here is to Having a Healthy and Happy Home with Your New Baby!
You would think that all the struggles and challenges end once you have finally given birth to your beautiful bundle of joy. But for many parents, that is when the real work starts.
Whether you are a first-time parent or not, it is essential always to be prepared for anything. Your child’s health and happiness are your top priority. And this preparation starts with your home.
So, whether you have decided to move closer to your loved ones or stay put, we hope this guide has helped you make the best decision for the home you are about to create!
Please contact Motherhood Center to help you get answers to your questions about After Having a Baby Classes in Houston.
Motherhood Center is the expert in After Having a Baby
3701 W. Alabama Ste 230, Houston, TX 77027 Phone: 713-963-8880
You may also be interested in the following topics related to After Having a Baby