The annual Permanent Change of Station (PCS) season is fast upon us. As adults, we know the many affects it can have on our mental, physical, and emotional health. Have we ever stopped to think about the effects it may have on our children?
As a military family, we move — and we move often.
I forget how my children are being affected by the move; I know I am guilty of this, as I’m sure many of us are too. Sure, we have job changes, career changes, life, friends, home, pets, you name it. But where do our children come in?
As PCS season is drawing near and yet another move looms over, I sit here thinking of how my children are feeling about this move and what I can do to help them.
- On average, military-connected students will attend between six to nine schools between kindergarten and their senior year of high school, according to the National Military Family Association.
- Military children move three times more often than their civilian peers
- Military families move an average of every two to three years, meaning approximately 500,000 military children change schools every year
Now that we have our bases covered, let’s look at the effects PCS’ng can have on children:
- Children who make a geographical move are at a higher increase of developing mental health problems when compared to those children that did not move.
- Attention deficit, conduct disorders, self-injury, and suicidal behaviors are also a higher risk for children who frequently move.
- As much as we do not like to think about it, substance abuse can also be a side effect.
- Younger children may have persistent nightmares.
PCSing is not new to any of us, and it is something that we cannot avoid.
But we can do our best to prepare ourselves and our children. Check out these previous articles from our team that provide tips on PCSing with children:
I know that as we get closer, I will be paying extra attention to the needs of my children during these months. But mama, give yourself grace over all, you are superwoman!