People Share Their Biggest Moving Oppositions

moving oppositions

Moving can be one of the most disruptive things to a person’s life. Uprooting your home, packing your things, and relocating to a new place can be an adventure unparalleled by most other occurrences. Especially if it is a long distance move. So we reached out to people all over the country and found out if they had ever encountered strong opposition on their move, either from family or friends, and how they have handled it. The answers are thought provoking to say the least.

(Read: Finding a New Place to Call Home)

Derek from Des Moines, Iowa

“Yes. In some cases, it’s worth it to take a few minutes to find out why they are negative about the move. If the feedback is from a wise person who is well-traveled, then the plans might be worth re-evaluating. For example, an older relative who has a successful career suggests that her 19 year old nephew acquire a trade or a CDL before moving across the country. That is good advice in today’s economy. On the other hand, if it’s from co-workers or relatives who are stuck where they are in life through questionable choices or who clearly have their own agendas (i.e. who is going to babysit my kids if you move? Who is going to drive me to the doctor?) then I would just ignore their words.

In short, consider the source and act accordingly.”

It can be hard to move away from family and friends but sometimes you just have to do what is best for you. There are several ways to keep in touch these days. The world has become a smaller place with the internet, comprehensive cell phone plans, and cheap plane tickets.

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Claire from San Antonio, Texas

“My parents are not happy with my decision to move because I do not already have a job lined up. So, I totally get why they are worried (to be fair, I am worried myself). I have to remind myself, though, that I’m going to be 30 so no one can really stop me from going. I have money saved, and my boyfriend and I have everything planned out well (minus the job part). My parents would also love to build a house for me and my brother in the backyard and keep us there forever if they could, so, clearly they have some issues lol.”

For some parents it is really hard to see their children grow up, spread their wings, and fly away. Take it as a compliment. If your parents thought badly about you they might be more excited to see you leave so you must be doing something right!

(Read: The 5 Best Places in the World to Move to)

Jamison from Chicago, Illinois

“For the move that I am planning now (Chicago to Alaska) I got a lot of negativity from former co-workers, but all my friends and family who know me have been supportive. Most of the negativity I’ve gotten has been from people who have lived their entire lives in Chicago and can’t imagine moving anywhere, let alone somewhere as far and desolate as Alaska. But I grew up in a military family so I’m really used to moving.

I pretty much handle it by just explaining that the move is well thought out and we made the decision consciously. If I still meet resistance I explain some of the new things I am looking forward to and if I still get resistance after that I just brush them off. It’s my life. My decision. Not yours.”

Long distance moves can be some of the most difficult for people. But they can also be the most inspiring. People tend to thrive under adverse situations where you get outside of your comfort zone. So plan ahead as well as you can and accomplish everything that you set out to do!

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Sharon from Seattle, Washington

“I encountered some resistance from family. Everyone reacts differently when you announce unexpectedly that you will be moving away. Some people won’t be able to comprehend your choice as they may be happy where they are, or they’re not sure whether to congratulate you or sympathize. Some people might try to talk you out of it, but they will appreciate being given advance notice and plenty of time to adjust to the idea. They may even become excited for you and try to help you out.

Here is a range of reactions I have encountered and how I best dealt with them:

The Skeptic – “I will believe it when I see it.”

What to do – Reiterating your plans, ignoring that person, or a quiet “I told you so” later might make you feel better but your actions can end up doing all the talking for you.

The Unable-to-Understand – “I don’t understand why you want to do this.”

What to do – Sincere explanations, analogies, and examples of other people that have done this may help, but as you go through life there will be many people who don’t understand some of the things you do and that’s okay.

The Wise Elder – “You silly children thinking that moving will solve all your problems.”

What to do – Recognize that moving isn’t going to solve everything in your life, but explain the reasons why you are doing it, express that you will miss what you’re leaving behind, and try to share some enjoyable experiences before you leave.

The Demeaning One – “You idiot. Why would you do this?”

What to do – Stay confident in yourself and explain your actions. If you don’t like how that person makes you feel or don’t want a debate, walk away. Give that person some time to accept your decision.

The Guilter – “Well good for you. I guess I will have to deal without you.”

What to do – Acknowledge their feelings and tell them you’ll miss them too. Find ways to lighten the mood and fun things to do together before you leave.

The Victim – “I can’t believe that you are doing this to me!”

What to do – This person may perhaps need a few days, or longer, to get used to the idea. Explain your reasons for moving and find a time when you can spend some quality time together before you leave.

The Quiet One – “Hmm..” (thinks quietly: I am conflicted about this and won’t say much.)

What to do – It might take some time for this person to sort through their emotions. Explain your decision and reach out to them again after allowing them some time to think.

The Envious – “I wish I could do it.”

What to do – Invite them to participate in the process by sharing what your thinking and planning and get their input and help.

The Vicarious – “I so wish I were going. You have to move to Omaha. It’s great there.”

What to do – Acknowledge any suggestions, whether welcomed or not, and try to find something in common, or ask why they suggest that if you are interested, or just to let them express themselves.

The Interested One – “Tell me about it. Why are you moving?”

What to do – Share your story. This could be a chance to share your excitement with someone.

The Supporter – “That’s awesome. Tell me what I can do to help.”

What to do – Involve this person as much as you’d like. Maybe they know someone in your new area, or have been there on vacation and can advise you on things to do or places to eat. Maybe they will help you pack or take care of your pet during your move.”

Very thorough! Someone is a psych major or has moved quite a few times. This pretty much sums up the gamut of people you may encounter during your transition.

(Read: Long Distance Moving Services)

Jamie from Memphis, Tennessee

“Not opposition as such, but I did get “No! You can’t go!” from both family and friends. Within six months after I moved, my sister moved 3 hours away, my parents moved to another state, one good friend moved to Michigan to start medical school, and another good friend got married and moved to Germany.

Live your life. Just because people say “Don’t go!” doesn’t mean that they will stay.”

And I think that is a good place to end it. No matter what people say, although it is good to listen and consider their words, you have to do what is right for you.


Communication is key to a successful situation. From moving away to work related projects and everything in between it is going to benefit you to have an understanding with the people around you. Be sure to listen, understand what the other person is saying, and honestly consider their position before responding. Then you should be able to handle even the biggest oppositions to your next move!

(Read: The Ultimate Pre-Move Checklist)

Has anyone ever tried to stand in your way when you wanted to move? Tell us about it in the comments section below!

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