Latina mothers' emotion socialization and their
children's emotion knowledge
Alyssa I. Pintar Breen
Catherine S. Tamis‐LeMonda
Department of Applied Psychology,
New York University, New York, NY, USA
NYU Center for Research on Culture,
Development, and Education, New York, US
Alyssa I. Pintar Breen, Department of Applied
Psychology, New York University, 246 Greene
Street, 8th Floor, New York, NY 10003, USA.
National Science Foundation, Division of
Behavioral and Cognitive Sciences, Grant/
Award Number: #021859; National Science
Foundation, Integrative Research Activities for
Developmental Science, Grant/Award Num-
We investigated whether “supportive” and “nonsupportive” dimen-
sions of emotion socialization, commonly identified in studies of
European American mothers, were applicable to a low‐income
sample of Mexican and Dominican immigrant mothers (N = 112) in
the United States, and if so, whether these dimensions related to
child emotion knowledge. Exploratory factor analysis was applied
to an adapted version of a widely used questionnaire of maternal
responses to children's negative emotions (The Coping with
Children's Negative Emotions Questionnaire, CCNES; Fabes,
Eisenberg, & Bernzweig, 1990). Children's (mean age = 5.08 years,
SD = .11) emotion knowledge was assessed through play‐based
vignettes and a task in which children labelled the emotions on pic-
tures of faces. A two‐factor solution on the CCNES aligned with the
“supportive” and “nonsupportive” dimensions of prior studies.
Mothers' supportive responses related to greater child expressive
emotion knowledge. Nonsupportive responses did not relate to
child expressive emotion knowledge. The benefits of supportive
emotion socialization seen in European American families generalize
to Latina American immigrant mothers, but the negative effects of
what is considered to be “nonsupportive” in European American
mothers might not apply.
• Do the terms “supportive” and “nonsupportive” emotion socializa-
tion represent Latina immigrant mothers, and do these dimen-
sions of parenting relate to their children's emotion language?
• Mothers reported on their emotion socialization practices while
children's emotion language was assessed with a play‐based task.
We found that mothers' responses represented “supportive” and
“nonsupportive” dimensions and that only supportive responses,
not nonsupportive, predicted better emotion language among
Received: 1 August 2016 Revised: 4 November 2017 Accepted: 7 November 2017
Inf Child Dev. 2018;27:e2077.
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