Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Psychology (PsyD)



First Advisor

Sara Haden

Committee Chair and Members

Sara Haden, Chair

Kevin Meehan

Nicholas Papouchis


Effortful control, Emotion coaching, Emotion regulation, Emotion socialization, Parenting, Self-regulation


Research and theory have indicated the importance of parental emotion socialization behaviors on children’s developing emotional competence. Less attention has been given to factors that influence parent emotion socialization behaviors. The current study sought to build upon emerging research on the impact of parents’ self-regulatory capacities on their emotion socializing behaviors, in particular their responses to child negative emotionality. It explored the relationships between emotion regulation, effortful control, and responses to child negative affect in a sample of parents of 3- to 8-year-old children (N = 528). As expected, parent emotion dysregulation was significantly negatively related to parent effortful control. In separate multivariate regression models for supportive and nonsupportive responses to child distress, effortful control mediated the relations between emotion dysregulation and emotion socialization. In bivariate analyses, higher levels of parent emotion dysregulation predicted nonsupportive reactions to child negative affect. Contrary to predictions, parent emotional flooding did not significantly moderate the relationship between emotion dysregulation and responses to child distress. Exploratory analyses revealed significant positive correlations between emotion coaching and emotion dismissing beliefs and parent emotion socializing behaviors. Overall, the present study adds to the extant literature supporting the role of effortful control in facilitating emotion regulation and suggests that it may be crucial in supporting emotion socialization. The findings have important treatment implications, particularly for the leading edge of child interventions that designate parent emotion regulation as a primary target.