Parental psychological control and emotion dysregulation among anxious children: A transactional model

Monica M Nanda, University of Rhode Island

Abstract

Existing research and theories have consistently highlighted the role of emotion regulation deficits and parental psychological control in the occurrence of childhood anxiety disorders. The aim of the present study was to continue to examine these relationships using observational methods amongst a clinically anxious sample. Additionally, the present study aimed to identify the direction of effects between parental psychological control and emotion dysregulation by examining whether there is a discernible sequence of parent and child behaviors forming a pattern of interaction between parents and their anxious children. This was completed using microanalytic coding methods to observe parental psychological control and child dysregulated emotion in moment-to-moment interactions between parents and their child. Time-window sequential analyses was used to identify whether parents were more likely to display psychological control in response to child dysregulated affect than at other times and whether children were more likely display dysregulated affect in response to parent psychological control than at other times. In a sample of 123 clinically anxious and 53 non-clinical children, ages 8 to 12 years, results indicated that anxious children were observed to display longer durations of dysregulated affect than non-clinical children, and parents of anxious children were observed to display longer durations of psychological control than parents of non-clinical children. Results from time-window sequential analyses indicated that children were more likely display dysregulated affect in response to parent psychological control than at other times. Anxiety disorder status did not moderate this relationship; however, race was found to moderate the relationship when examining a 4-second time-window. Findings support theories highlighting the role of parental psychological control and emotion dysregulation deficits among children with anxiety disorders and further elucidate the nature of parent-child interactions with respect to parental psychological control and emotion dysregulation. ^

Subject Area

Behavioral psychology|Clinical psychology|Individual & family studies|Cognitive psychology

Recommended Citation

Monica M Nanda, "Parental psychological control and emotion dysregulation among anxious children: A transactional model" (2015). Dissertations and Master's Theses (Campus Access). Paper AAI3712743.
http://digitalcommons.uri.edu/dissertations/AAI3712743

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