Title page for ETD etd-08032008-220804

Type of Document Dissertation
Author Her, Pa
URN etd-08032008-220804
Title Parental Emotion Socialization of Seventh and Eighth Graders: Gender Differences in Independent and Interdependent Self-Construals
Degree PhD
Department Psychology
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Dunsmore, Julie C. Committee Chair
Bell, Martha Ann Committee Member
Cooper, Robin K. Panneton Committee Member
Kim, Kee Jeong Committee Member
  • discourse
  • gender differences
  • emotion socialization
  • self-construal
Date of Defense 2008-07-22
Availability unrestricted
The primary goal of the present study was to assess linkages between parents’ beliefs about children’s emotions, parent-child discourse, and children’s independent and interdependent self-construals with sixty 7th and 8th grade children. Children were interviewed with the Self-Guide Questionnaire (Higgins, Klein, & Strauman, 1985) and completed an independent and interdependent reaction time measure (Watson & Quatman, 2005). Children’s self-guide responses were coded for independent and interdependent traits and behaviors. Parents completed the Parents’ Beliefs about Children’s Emotions Questionnaire (Halberstadt et al., 2008) to assess their beliefs about the danger of emotions and parents’ and children’s roles in emotion socialization. Parents’ elaborative reminiscing style and both parent and child emotion labeling were measured through a cooperative game designed to elicit emotion-related discourse. Results showed that girls responded faster to interdependent traits and included more interdependent and connected self attributes than did boys, whereas boys included more independent and unique self attributes than did girls. Parents who believe children can guide their own emotion socialization elaborated less about their children’s independent and interdependent memories. Their children who responded more slowly to both independent and interdependent traits, with a stronger effect for independent compared with interdependent traits. The interaction between parents’ beliefs about the danger of emotions and about their guidance of their child’s emotions was related to girls’, but not boys’, balance of independent and interdependent traits in their self-construal. Results have implications for identifying beneficial developmental trajectories of positive adjustment and mental health.
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