Google+ Google+ Google+

Relocation Regression

(Yes, I know it doesn’t rhyme.)

As I look around our new house, I only see a few boxes left unpacked.  There are still some bare walls (we need to buy a ladder and hang a large painting on our living room wall, for one) and our dining room is missing furniture (we’re going to get it tomorrow).  But two weeks after our move (more on the actual move coming soon), we are largely settled.  We finally have Internet in our home (thanks to a new cell phone  that doubles as a WiFi HotSpot) and the boys’ playroom is getting a lot of use.

But one thing sticks out to me as a problem.  Maybe not so much a problem, just an issue.  And I’m wondering if you have some advice for me or maybe you want to tell me that your kids did the same thing and it went away.

We’re dealing with a bit of regression from both boys.  For our oldest, Miles, who turned three last month, he is having potty problems.  Namely, he doesn’t make it to the bathroom in time and we end up changing his underwear about a dozen times every evening (for some reason, it isn’t a problem in the mornings).  I will hear or sense his panicked jumping from another room and instruct him to head to the bathroom, but by the time he gets there, he has wet underwear (“I peed in unnies again!”).

I tried making him a chart where he gets bright, colorful stickers with happy faces on the Dry Undies! side and sad, frowny faces drawn on the Wet Undies 🙁 side.  But as it turns out, he likes seeing the frowny faces drawn almost as much as the happy faces.  Chart-making fail on my part.

As for Spencer, he is having some troubles getting back into a good sleep routine after a crazy summer of sleeping in many different bedrooms.  It’s getting better, but the boys aren’t both sleeping in their shared bedroom right now because Spencer is waking at random times during the night and crying.  He goes back to sleep on his own, but because I don’t want to risk waking Miles, he is sleeping in the guest bedroom in the bonus room.  I kinda feel like they’re all over the place right now.

Have your kids gone through a time of adjustment in a new house or new situation?  How did you deal with it?  Did you just wait it out or did you try something to help them adjust?

Even though we’re in this transition time, I have to say that we are in love with this house.  It is absolutely perfect for us and we are so happy here.  The boys have a fantastic playroom, a big bedroom where they will share many happy nights, and I am writing this post from the kitchen bar, where I have a perfect view of the boys in their playroom while I enjoy my morning coffee.  We are beyond blessed and are very thankful for our new home.

If you enjoyed this post, make sure you subscribe to my RSS feed!

Affiliate Offer

About Krista

Krista is a full-time working mom of two boys, currently aged 6 and 7. She lives in Kentucky with her husband, Brandon.


  1. Krista — Regression during ‘big’ life changes is completely normal. I use the term ‘big’ loosely because something that may seem simple to you can often seem HUGE to the smaller people in your house. Regression can be caused by any sort of changes in their routines — starting school, mom got a new job, a baby comes, moving, even a weekend visit to Grandma’s house COULD cause some alterations in their habits. Don’t stress!

    I’m best with potty-training so I’ll address it first. When I have a kid in preschool who has BEEN doing well pottying and suddenly has a setback, I choose to doctor the symptoms and make no further remarks. For example, I have a three-year old (since April) who had done great with the potty for 3-4 months; no accidents, even poooping regularly at school. Suddenly, he’s waking up from his nap everyday wet. He goes before, sometimes more than once, and as soon as his eyes open, we run to the potty– but he’s wet… everyday. At first I tried the reasoning, “wel what happened? why didn’t you get up and go to the potty? why are you wet? Does something hurt?” That led to frustration on his part and a lack of understanding (apparently) on mine.
    Instead, I make a BIG deal out of the successes and ignore the accidents. We go to the potty, change clothes, and sometimes say very little. If he asks for a reward, I would say something like, “Stickers are for pee-pee IN the potty.” And leave it at that. Skip the sad faces. Skip the reasons why he doesn’t get a prize, just plainly (and simply) state what is expected. I don’t say “It’s okay.” (because, while is isn’t tragic, it’s also not okay to pee everywhere..) I stick to the facts: Let’s change your clothes, pee goes in the potty, prizes are for pee in the potty.
    The more you ignore the negative behavior and make a BIGGGG deal out of the positives, the more he’ll work to getting that affirmation through the positive behaviors. 🙂

    I’m less good at the sleeping arrangement thing, lol, so I’ll leave that advice for someone else. 🙂

    SO excited for your new adventure i real estate and I assure you that everyone will get back on track soon! 🙂

    Hugs to you!

  2. Thanks for such a thought out and detailed comment, Monica! Yeah, I realized when I was explaining the chart to him that it wasn’t going to work. I keep forgetting to pick up M & M’s, but those worked SO WELL when he initially learned to use the potty in February.

    I’m not sure why it’s so different in the mornings, but maybe it’s just more hectic in the evenings with dinner and bedtimes and such.

    Thanks again, I’ll let you know how it goes in the next few weeks!

  3. I was worried that jack would have sleeping issues when we moved to our new house, but we did a lot of playing in that room as we were moving in (it was finished when everything else was CHAOS) and I think that playing in there all day made him feel comfortable. He did some waking up at night but that ended up being more about temperature I think. Different house = different air conditioner + ceiling fan….it just took some adjustment. Good news is four weeks later, he is sleeping and napping beautifully again. 🙂

  4. That’s good to hear, Lacy! We also set up the boys’ playroom (and my kitchen) before moving everything else so that it would be ready right away.