Emotional Life of the Family: Parental Meta-Emotions, Children's Temperament and Internalising and Externalising Problems

Andreja Brajša-Žganec


The aim of this study was to investigate some assumptionsrelated to Gottman's model of parental meta-emotions on asample of preschool children's parents. The study included 506parents. The questionnaires about parental meta-emotions, dimensions of temperament and children's internalising and externalising problems were completed by mothers and fathers separately. Mothers' and fathers' awareness of their own and of theirchildren's emotions and coaching child emotions were indirectlyrelated to child externalising and internalising problems throughchild negative affectivity and effortful control, and awareness wasalso directly related to the child's externalising and internalisingproblems. The results of the models showed that mothers' andfathers' awareness and coaching were positively related toeffortful control and negatively related to negative affectivity,whereas only mothers' and fathers' awareness were negativelyrelated to externalising and internalising problems. Simultaneously,negative affectivity was positively related to the child's externalisingand internalising problems and effortful control was negativelyrelated to the child's externalising and internalising problems.With this study, we have confirmed part of the investigatedassumptions from Gottman's model that relate to the influence ofparental meta-emotion on child outcomes.


parental meta-emotion; negative affectivity; effortful control; child externalising and internalising problems

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Print ISSN 1330-0288 | Online ISSN 1848-6096