University of Lisbon, Portugal
Parental regulation and child’s adjustment

Ana Isabel Pereira received her PhD in Clinical Psychology from The University of Coimbra, Portugal. She is currently Auxiliary Professor at the Faculty of Psychology of the University of Lisbon. She teaches and researches in the area of Clinical and Health Psychology, Developmental Psychology and Family Psychology. She participated in several research projects and supervised master and PhD students.  Her research work has tackled a broad range of questions related to parenting, anxiety disorders in youth and evidence-based psychological interventions with children and parents.  She has published several scholarly articles and chapters and is the author or co-author of four books. She supervises the team of clinical psychologists of the Paediatric Clinical Consultation of the Community Service of the Faculty of Psychology.

This symposium is dedicated to the theme of parental regulation. The literature of parenting has focused mostly on global parental variables (e.g. parental psychopathology) and behavior (parenting styles, parenting practices). Parental cognitions and emotions have been the focus of less attention. How parents manage to regulate their children’s behavior and emotions depends on the parents’ capacity to regulate their own behavior and emotions. The capacity for a parent to self-regulate is proposed to be a fundamental process for positive parenting and to raise competent and healthy children. These processes relative to parent’s self-regulation (i.e. the flexible regulation of cognition, behavior and emotion; Bandura, 1991) have been less studied, although the promotion of parental regulation is an important therapeutic objective in most of the current parental interventions (Sanders, & Mazzucchelli, 2013). In this symposium we will present studies dedicated to the theme of parental regulation. The studies presented in this symposium will focus different facets of parental regulation and will examine parental regulation in different contexts, including community and clinical samples (children with both internalizing and externalizing disorders). Some central questions will be addressed: the assessment of parental regulation (development of a scale to assess parental experiential avoidance and emotion regulation, validation of the Portuguese version of the “Me as a Parent” scale), the relation between different facets of parental regulation (e.g. parental experiential avoidance and parent’s strategies to manage children’s negative emotions), the relation between parental regulation and parenting practices and the relation between parental regulation and children’s adjustment.