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Emotion regulation and subjective well-being among parents of children with behavioral and emotional problems – the role of self-compassion


Parents of children with emotional and behavioral problems often experience emotional regulation difficulties and decreased well-being. The study examined two models (mediating and moderating) explaining associations between difficulties in emotion regulation, self-compassion, and subjective well-being among parents of children with emotional and behavioral problems. The sample comprised 662 parents of children attending the child and adolescent psychiatric center of a public hospital. Measurements included: Personal Wellbeing Index, Difficulties in Emotion Regulation Scale, and Self-Compassion Scale. A regression-based path analysis directly tested the proposed moderation model using model 1 in PROCESS. Path analysis using AMOS examined the mediation model. Results supported the moderation model wherein self-compassion moderated the association between difficulties in emotion regulation and well-being. The interaction between difficulties in emotion regulation and self-compassion was significant in predicting subjective well-being. Increased difficulties in emotion regulation were associated with decreased subjective well-being, and increased self-compassion was associated with increased subjective well-being. Parents with high difficulties in emotion regulation and low self-compassion had the worst subjective well-being. The mediation model, wherein difficulties in emotion regulation mediated the association between self-compassion and subjective well-being. was not supported. The results support the subjective well-being homeostasis theory, suggesting self-compassion is a protective factor. Cultivating self-compassion may foster parents’ ability to respond to emotional distress and improve well-being.

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Data Availability Statement

The data that support the findings of this study are available from the corresponding author upon reasonable request.




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Correspondence to Vered Shenaar-Golan.

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Ethical Approval

This research was approved by the Ethics Committee of XXX Center in XXX. Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study. The procedures used in this study adhere to the tenets of the Declaration of Helsinki.

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The authors declare that they have no conflicts of interest or financial disclosures related to this work.

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Shenaar-Golan, V., Gur, A. & Yatzkar, U. Emotion regulation and subjective well-being among parents of children with behavioral and emotional problems – the role of self-compassion. Curr Psychol (2022).

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  • Behavioral and emotional problems
  • Difficulties in emotion regulation
  • Self-compassion
  • Subjective well-being