Journal of Child and Family Studies

, Volume 27, Issue 6, pp 1774–1785 | Cite as

The Emotion Regulation Strategies of Adolescents and their Parents: An Experience Sampling Study

  • Eliana Silva
  • Teresa FreireEmail author
  • Susana Faria
Original Paper


Parents are the main socialization agents in the development of emotion regulation (ER). In this study, we evaluated adolescents’ and their respective parents’ perspectives about their use of two ER strategies (cognitive reappraisal and expressive suppression) in daily life. In addition, we evaluated the within-family associations between adolescents’ and their parents’ use of strategies. We controlled for adolescents’ gender and age and the perceived quality of their relationships with their parents (mothers and fathers). The sample consisted of 33 12- to 18-year-old adolescent–father–mother triads, totaling 99 participants. Parents and adolescents reported their use of ER strategies in response to eight random prompts throughout the day, by means of the experience sampling method for 1 week. Participants provided 4082 reports on their momentary experiences. The data were analyzed using multilevel modeling to account for the hierarchical structure of the repeated daily assessments. The significant association between parents’ and adolescents’ use of ER strategies was specific to mother–adolescent dyads. The significant association between adolescents’ and their mothers’ ER strategies varied as a function of the adolescents’ age and the quality of their relationship with their mothers according to adolescents’ reports, but not as a function of adolescent gender. These findings suggest that mothers have a role in their adolescents’ emotion regulation in a developmental period characterized by autonomy from parental guidance.


Emotion regulation strategies Adolescents Parents Experience sampling method Multilevel modeling 


Author Contributions

E.S.: performed the data collection, design the study, participated in the data analysis, in the interpretation of the results, and wrote the manuscript. T.F.: was responsible for the design and coordination of the study; supervised the research process and critically reviewed all the manuscript. S.F.: participated in the data analysis, in the interpretation of results and critically revised the statistical procedures and results of the study.


This research was funded by the Portuguese Foundation for Science and Technology through a Doctoral grant (SFRH/BD/90581/2012) to Eliana Silva, supported by national funds of the Ministry of Education and Science and the European Social Fund through the Human Capital Operational Program. This study was conducted at Psychology Research Centre (UID/PSI/01662/2013), University of Minho, and supported by the Portuguese Foundation for Science and Technology and the Portuguese Ministry of Science, Technology and Higher Education through national funds and co-financed by FEDER through COMPETE2020 under the PT2020 Partnership Agreement (POCI-01-0145-FEDER-007653).

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Ethical Approval

All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.

Informed Consent

Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Applied Psychology, School of PsychologyUniversity of MinhoBragaPortugal
  2. 2.Department of Mathematics and Applications, School of SciencesUniversity of MinhoBragaPortugal

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