The relation of maternal behavior and attachment security to toddler’s emotions and emotion regulation

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Susan D. Calkins, Professor (Creator)
Susan P. Keane, Professor (Contributor)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
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Abstract: In this study, we examined characteristics of the mother–child context that may support young children’s emotion expressions and emotion regulation. We observed children (N= 154) in four emotion-eliciting episodes to measure their emotion expressions and mother-focused regulation strategies. Mothers reported on the toddlers’ attachment security. Lower levels of maternal controlling behaviors and higher levels of attachment security were associated with more adaptive emotion expressions by toddlers, and more maternal positive behavior was associated with more mother-focused regulation. Toddlers’ use of mother-focused regulation was also associated with decreased levels of negative affect in positive and fear emotion- eliciting tasks but not in frustration tasks. The associations differed for boys and girls and differed depending on the context of the specific emotion elicited.

Additional Information

Research in Human Development 3(1):21-31
Language: English
Date: 2006
Mother–child context, Emotion expressions, Emotion regulation, Toddler

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