Parental emotional management benefits family relationships: A randomized controlled trial in Hong Kong, China

Cecilia S. Fabrizio, Tai Hing Lam, Malia R. Hirschmann, Irene Pang, Nancy Xiaonan Yu, Xin Wang, Sunita M. Stewart

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

9 Scopus citations

Abstract

There is a shortage of culturally appropriate, brief, preventive interventions designed to be sustainable and acceptable for community participants in nonwestern cultures. Parents' ability to regulate their emotions is an important factor for psychological well-being of the family. In Chinese societies, emotional regulation may be more important in light of the cultural desirability of maintaining harmonious family relationships. The objectives of our randomized controlled trial were to test the effectiveness of our Effective Parenting Programme (EPP) to increase the use of emotional management strategies (primary outcome) and enhance the parent-child relationship (secondary outcome). We utilized design characteristics that promoted recruitment, retention, and intervention sustainability. We randomized a community sample of 412 Hong Kong middle- and low-income mothers of children aged 6-8 years to the EPP or attention control group. At 3, 6 and 12- month follow up, the Effective Parent Program group reported greater increases in the use of emotion management strategies during parent-child interactions, with small to medium effect size, and lower negative affect and greater positive affect, subjective happiness, satisfaction with the parent-child relationship, and family harmony, compared to the control group, with small to medium effect size. Our results provided evidence of effectiveness for a sustainable, preventive, culturally appropriate, cognitive behaviorally-based emotion management program, in a non-clinical setting for Chinese mothers. Trial registration: HKCTR-1190.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)115-124
Number of pages10
JournalBehaviour Research and Therapy
Volume71
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 1 2015

Keywords

  • Chinese cultural groups
  • Cognitive behavioral therapy
  • Emotional regulation
  • Parent training
  • Prevention

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology

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