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Maternal Mindfulness and School-Age Children’s Emotion Regulation: Mediation by Positive Parenting Practices and Moderation by Maternal Perceived Life Stress

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Abstract

Objectives

Maternal disposition and behaviors are critical to children’s emotional adjustment, and exploring the differential effects of supportive and unsupportive maternal factors on children’s emotion regulation and the underlying mechanisms can provide us with a better understanding of mother-child interactions. This study examined the mediating role of maternal positive parenting practices on the link between maternal mindfulness and children’s emotion regulation and whether maternal perceived life stress moderated the proposed links in a sample of Chinese families with school-aged children.

Methods

In all, 1723 biological mothers aged between 26 and 63 years (Mage = 37.96) completed questionnaires assessing maternal mindfulness disposition, perceived life stress, positive parenting practices, and their children’s emotion regulation. A moderated mediation analysis was used to delineate the relationships among the study variables.

Results

The results showed that a higher level of maternal perceived life stress weakened the positive links between maternal mindfulness and positive parenting practices and between maternal mindfulness and school-aged children’s emotion regulation.

Conclusions

These findings help us better understand the associations between the comparatively understudied maternal supportive/unsupportive factors and school-aged children’s emotion regulation in Chinese families.

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Author information

RY designed the study, analyzed the data, and wrote the paper. HZR designed and executed the study, and wrote the paper. AN wrote and edited the paper. ZG wrote and edited the paper.

Correspondence to Zhuo Rachel Han.

Ethics declarations

1. All materials and procedures in the present study were approved by the Institutional Review Board of the Beijing Normal University.

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

Conflict of Interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Data Availability Statement

The data that support the findings of this study are available from the corresponding author upon reasonable request. The contact information of the corresponding author is Zhuo Rachel Han, Ph.D., rachhan@bnu.edu.cn.

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Ren, Y., Han, Z.R., Ahemaitijiang, N. et al. Maternal Mindfulness and School-Age Children’s Emotion Regulation: Mediation by Positive Parenting Practices and Moderation by Maternal Perceived Life Stress. Mindfulness (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s12671-019-01300-w

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Keywords

  • School-age children
  • Emotion regulation
  • Maternal mindfulness
  • Perceived life stress
  • Parenting practices