Why Moving Can Be Traumatic: An Expert's Perspective

Moving can be a stressful and traumatic experience, no matter how often or rarely you do it. It's an intensely emotional experience, full of symbolism, hope, disappointment, anxiety and fear. The underlying psychological issues involved in real estate decisions are of great interest to therapists and psychologists. One of the main reasons why moving is so difficult is because of all the major changes that are happening in your life.

It can be especially hard if you're jumping into the unknown. To make things easier, it's important to do your research before you move. Find out what your new location looks like, the best roads to travel on, where the nearest grocery stores and restaurants are, and other things about your home. With this knowledge, you can start to feel more comfortable with your new home.

In addition, it will be easier for you to focus on positive things. Moving to an unfamiliar area can make you feel anxious and unsafe. You may also feel that you are not in control of your life and that everything is happening too quickly. You may find it hard to relax, feel overwhelmed easily, and get angry quickly.

You may even feel sorry when leaving your old house or apartment, especially if you have lived in your house for a long time or if you leave a childhood home full of memories. And all these feelings are amplified if you stay away from your friends and family. As Graham points out to us, moving is one of life's great pains. The truth is that, especially for older adults, pain is more than just a euphemism for an annoying and exhausting event.

It's a reality. Called transitional trauma or relocation stress syndrome (RSS), it is characterized by symptoms such as anxiety, confusion and hopelessness. In addition, emotions involved in movement can trigger a physical reaction, especially in older adults. Combining the physical and emotional toll, the effects can take months to recover. My mother has arthritis and now she is still limping even though the move is over. When we think of trauma that leads to depression, we think of situations such as car accidents, witnessing violence or being abused.

Many people are surprised to learn that transitional trauma is a very real experience and that there are actually some syndromes associated with it - such as relocation depression. Relocation depression is just as the name implies: feeling an overwhelming and persistent feeling of sadness that can develop into depression that lasts months or years due to moving - whether it's locally or long-distance - when you're far from where you call home. When you move, a chapter in your life is coming to an end - whether you want to admit it or not. Every relationship you build, every milestone you've joined - they all can feel like they're turning into memories that quickly fade into the wind. For most people, painful goodbyes are an inescapable element of this life - which could be one reason why relocation can affect us so deeply. Fortunately, there are several things you can do to turn such a stressful experience into a positive one. Whether you're a student flying from the nest for the first time, a professional diving into a new profession or place, or part of a family embarking on their next big adventure together - keep reading to learn more about why relocation may cause depression and what you can do about it. Many of the symptoms of relocation depression are caused by an underlying fear of the unknown and the loss of the familiar. No matter where you call home, you have developed a familiarity with it that is unique in that place - you know how to move around; you've mapped out your friends (and maybe your “enemies” as well); you've got your favorite places; and you've most likely found places of refuge for when you're feeling depressed. When you leave this place for a new one, you may have to start from scratch - which can be absolutely scary and isolating.

You may also experience weight loss, sleep changes or eating disorders; in some cases people may resort to alcohol or drugs to cope with moving to a new location. People who have experienced depression from relocation have described this moment as a loss of control; the end of an era; or even a loss of confidence. Older people are particularly susceptible as they have often spent much of their lives in one place and are more likely to have to move not out of choice but out of necessity. As you prepare for these fledgling changes, imagine who you've always wanted to be. When you were little did you want to be an actor, writer or artist; doctor or Olympic weightlifter? Or maybe he wanted to be more adventurous; have meaningful interactions with strangers; or get land and adopt some pets?It's important to remember that moving doesn't have to be traumatic - there are ways to make it easier on yourself and turn it into a positive experience!.

Mandy Harland
Mandy Harland

Freelance coffee ninja. Extreme introvert. Passionate food trailblazer. Communicator. Subtly charming bacon fanatic. Friendly bacon nerd.

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