Psychological well-being of adolescents : maternal rearing behaviors, basic personality traits and emotion regulation processes

Sarıtaş, Dilek
Parents remain to be effective in adolescents’ emotional development. However, emotion socialization research is fundamentally based on studies conducted in infancy through middle childhood, but late childhood and adolescence have been largely ignored. Therefore, the current study aimed to make contribution to the current literature investigating factors associated with adolescents’ emotion regulation difficulties. As the first part of the study psychometric properties of the Difficulties in Emotion Regulation Scale (DERS) were examined among Turkish adolescent sample. A total of 312 high school students (161 females and 141 males) whose ages ranged between 14 and 17 years participated in the study and findings indicated strong evidence for the utility of the DERS as a measure of emotion regulation difficulties in adolescents. The main study consists of three different purposes. First, discrepancies between mothers’ and adolescents’ reports on adolescents’ emotion regulation difficulties were examined. Second, factors associated with adolescents’ emotion regulation difficulties such as mothers’ emotion regulation, psychopathology, and personality traits, maternal rearing behaviors, and adolescents’ personality traits were explored. Lastly, mediating roles of emotion regulation difficulties on the relationship between adolescents’ perception of their mothers’ maternal rearing behaviors and their psychological problems were examined. Participants of this research were 595 first-grade high school students aged between 14 and 16 years, and 365 mothers from eight different high schools in Ankara. Data was collected from both adolescents and their mothers through questionnaire packets. Adolescents’ questionnaire set consisted of scales measuring emotion regulation difficulties (DERS), positive and negative affect scale (PANAS), maternal rearing behaviors (EMBU), basic personality traits (Big Five), and adolescents’ externalizing (SDQ) and internalizing symptoms (CDI). Similarly, mothers’ questionnaire set consisted of scales measuring emotion regulation difficulties (DERS), children’s emotion regulation (DERS), Brief Symptom Inventory (BSI), maternal rearing behaviors (EMBU), and basic personality traits (Big-Five). The results indicated that adolescents, both boys and girls, reported higher levels of difficulties in emotion regulation for themselves as compared to reports of mothers for their children. As expected, adolescents’ basic personality traits were significantly associated with their emotion regulation difficulties even after controlling the effects of socio-demographic variables, mothers’ emotion regulation, psychological symptoms and their maternal rearing behaviors. Finally, mediation analyses indicated that the link between perceived maternal rearing behaviors and adolescents’ psychological problems occurs through emotion regulation difficulties of adolescents. Findings were discussed within the relevant literature.


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Citation Formats
D. Sarıtaş, “Psychological well-being of adolescents : maternal rearing behaviors, basic personality traits and emotion regulation processes,” Ph.D. - Doctoral Program, Middle East Technical University, 2012.