Friday, 30 May 2014

Five signs your children are better expats than you

Your kids may have been your biggest concern in moving abroad, but many expat parents soon find that children take to the family’s new life much quicker than the adults! See below to find out if your child is a better expat than you are and find out what top tips you can learn from them. 

They aren’t too shy to speak the language: Children aren’t as worried about making mistakes and this can mean they really throw themselves in to language learning. Last year’s Expat Explorer survey even found that children were best at picking up languages often perceived as harder such as Thai and Chinese. While children may have some natural advantages in picking up new tongues more quickly, their can do attitude and lack of self-consciousness should definitely be replicated.

Creative Commons / Coelacan

They’ve made new friends by joining new activities: Whether it’s ballet on Thursdays or softball on Saturdays, children often attend a host of fun activities, where, naturally, they meet lots of friends. No doubt you’ve enrolled your children in multiple clubs to help them settle in, but what about you? Take up a hobby or join a class and you’ll soon feel at home with your new friends, whether they are other expats or locals.

They already refer to your new house as ‘home’: If ‘home’ for you means only your birth country while the kids are chattering happily about returning home from the shops, it may be that you’re struggling to let go. Take a look at our top tips for dealing with homesickness and make sure you’re focused on the here and now.

Creative Commons / Takeaway

They’re no longer fussy eaters: The move abroad may have sparked a sudden interest in culinary oddities among your kids (especially if it gives them bragging rights when talking to friends who they’ve left behind). If you’re avoiding local grub, maybe reassess your position – you may find a new love for it! 

They see expat life as one big adventure: Moving can be as fun for children as it is stressful for parents, but see if you can imbibe some of their excitement and you might find things get a lot more fun!

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