ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Immigrating With Young Children

Updated on January 23, 2016

Terrified is an Understatement

Imagine being torn away from everything and everyone that is familiar to you. Torn from your family, your friends and your home. What would you do? How would you feel? Picture for a moment, being surrounded by people and feeling the loneliest you have ever felt in your entire life. You are unable to tell anyone around how you feel, what you need and you’re helpless to change the situation. Parents, have you ever lost sight of your child in a crowded store for just a moment? Do you remember that feeling in the pit of your stomach that doesn’t go away until you lay eyes on them again? Suppose you had to endure that feeling for hours per day, every day for months at a time.

Everything that I described is the life of a newly immigrated child’s school experience. I know all of this because I lived it. Almost as horrible as leaving my family was having to sit a room full of strangers whose language I didn’t speak for hours and days and weeks. All I could think about was how much I missed my grandparents, my cousins, my home and my dog. I cried every day, which gave the other kids another reason to avoid me. My poor dad had to come pick me up early at school each and every day because I was inconsolable. “I WANT TO GO HOME PLEASE!”. I remember the hopelessness in my dad’s face. Like he just wanted to make everything better and he just couldn’t despite his many efforts.

I share all of this for two reasons. The first is to try to help any parent that is in this situation understand what their child is feeling. In spite of the fact that children are resilient and adapt quicker to new situations, they still need time. Patience is something you must have when dealing with a child experiencing this level of fear. Secondly, to educate parents who have children that may have immigrant children in their school. Teach your children tolerance, encourage them to be kind to others, teach them that it is ok to be different and embrace the opportunity to learn about someone form another culture. Most days all I needed was a friendly smile to show me that there could be some light at the end of the tunnel, but there was none in sight until my dad came to get me.


How Can You Help Your Child Adjust?

As parents we struggle with how to raise them "correctly". As toddlers we teach them please and thank you, not to chew with their mouth open, when to use the potty and how to share. As they get older the struggles get more complex as we combat peer pressure and all of the behaviors that come along with peer pressure. As parents of immigrant children we deal with all of these and more. In addition to the "normal" challenges that we tackle immigrating parents must attend to the emotional and psychological troubles that their children face. Many children become withdrawn and depressed in the face of such changes. In many cases they don’t know how to express their feelings and in others they don’t want to disappoint or upset their parents so they suffer in silence.

PARENTS, do not ignore the silence and sadness. It is difficult to address and you may think it will just go away but it doesn’t. These children need to express themselves and allow their emotions to be heard. Here are some tips on how to get your child talking:

  1. Have 1 day per week designated for an outing. (The movies, park etc)

  2. Have conversation about something great that happened during your work day.

  3. Ask questions about their day. (What is your teacher’s name?, Did you learn anything new?)

  4. When your child is expressing anger or sadness about the situation do not try to convince them that he/she is wrong. These are their emotions not yours.

  5. HAVE PATIENCE. Don’t get angry if your child is getting frustrated.

The key is to get your child talking about it. Put yourself in their shoes. Do you need to vent when you have had a rough day? Yes? Well, your children do too.

Immigration Poll

How do you feel about immigrants?

See results

© 2014 Celia Ribeiro


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)