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Title:Mothers' personal distress and child dysregulation: joint contributions to change in maternal support in an emotionally challenging situation
Author(s):Ravindran, Niyantri
Advisor(s):Kramer, Laurie; McElwain, Nancy
Department / Program:Human Development and Family Studies
Discipline:Human Development and Family Studies
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):personal distress
maternal support
child dysregulation
time-series analyses
Abstract:In this study, I examined the contributions of mothers' self-reported personal distress to two types of change in maternal support during a challenging snack-delay task: (a) within-mother change in support "in the moment" (i.e., in intervals immediately following instances of within-child increase in dysregulation); and (b) rate of change in maternal support over the course of the snack-delay task. I also examined whether associations between mothers' personal distress and change in maternal support would be more pronounced when children displayed high overall levels of dysregulation during the task. Participants were 128 mothers and their 32-month-old children (66 girls). Mothers completed questionnaires assessing personal distress, and maternal support and child dysregulation were coded in 15-second intervals from digital recordings of the snack delay. Tests of multilevel models revealed that mothers' personal distress was unrelated to maternal support "in the moment" (i.e., in intervals immediately following instances of within-child increase in dysregulation). However, mothers who reported higher levels of personal distress showed a greater rate of decline in support over the course of the snack delay, but only when overall levels of child dysregulation were high. Taken together, the results indicate that although trait-level personal distress may not predict mothers' immediate responses to child dysregulation, it may have cascading or cumulative effects over time during an emotionally challenging situation. Findings also highlight the importance of investigating real-time variations in parenting behavior.
Issue Date:2016-04-08
Rights Information:copyright 2016 Niyantri Ravindran
Date Available in IDEALS:2016-07-07
Date Deposited:2016-05

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