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A real-time investigation of the effectiveness of adolescent girls’ interpersonal emotion regulation with parents and peers

Do, Quyen Bao Phung (2024) A real-time investigation of the effectiveness of adolescent girls’ interpersonal emotion regulation with parents and peers. Master's Thesis, University of Pittsburgh. (Unpublished)

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Adolescence is a developmental period distinguished by heightened emotion and social sensitivity that warrant the use of emotion regulation strategies. It is believed that parents and peers play key socializing roles in adolescents’ emotion regulation development. Yet, little is known about how parents and peers directly co-regulate with teens in daily life, including their effectiveness in down regulating negative affect and links to longer term adjustment. This study examined adolescent girls’ use of interpersonal emotion regulation strategies with parents and peers in response to negative social interactions. We also tested differential associations between rates of parental and peer co-regulation and concurrent as well as future depressive symptoms. One-hundred and twelve adolescent girls (Mage=12.39, ages 11-13; 68.8% White, 18.8% Black, 9.8% Biracial, 8.9% Hispanic/Latino) at temperamental risk for anxiety and depression completed a 16-day ecological momentary assessment protocol measuring daily negative reactivity to negative social interactions, interpersonal emotion regulation strategies used with parents and peers, and momentary negative affect. Participants reported depressive symptoms at baseline and at the one-year follow-up assessment. Results indicated that adolescents used generally adaptive strategies (acceptance, problem solving, cognitive reappraisal, support seeking) with peers (Mdn=.76) more frequently than parents (Mdn=.69), and generally maladaptive strategies (rumination, cognitive and behavioral avoidance) with parents (Mdn=.31) more frequently than peers (Mdn=.24), in daily life—although this was a small effect (r=.09). Multilevel models showed that both parental and peer co-regulation effectively down regulated negative affect, as indicated by adolescents’ decreased likelihood of experiencing continued negative affect. Longitudinal analyses indicated that higher proportions of parental involvement in adaptive strategy use in daily life were linked to reduced depressive symptoms one year later. Findings suggest key potential for leveraging adolescents girls’ natural tendency to engage in adaptive co-regulation with peers. Findings also show that both parents and peers are effective at helping teens down regulate everyday negative emotions—even when teens tend to engage in more maladaptive strategies with parents. However, findings suggest that parents offer more enduring benefits for adolescent girls’ long-term adjustment by engaging in everyday adaptive co-regulation.


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Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Do, Quyen Bao Phungqbd1@pitt.eduqbd10000-0002-5074-9867
ETD Committee:
TitleMemberEmail AddressPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairSilk, Jennifer
Committee MemberHallion, Lauren
Committee MemberWoody, Mary
Date: 14 February 2024
Date Type: Publication
Defense Date: 20 September 2021
Approval Date: 14 February 2024
Submission Date: 9 December 2021
Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
Number of Pages: 68
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences > Psychology
Degree: MS - Master of Science
Thesis Type: Master's Thesis
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: ecological momentary assessment, interpersonal emotion regulation, emotion socialization, adolescence, depression
Date Deposited: 14 Feb 2024 18:47
Last Modified: 14 Feb 2024 18:47


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