Emotion regulation as a mediator of associations between mother-child attachment and peer relationships in middle childhood.J Fam Psychol. 2000 Mar; 14(1):111-24.JF
Although a link between attachment and peer relationships has been established, the mechanisms that account for this link have not been identified. The 1st goal of this study was to test emotion regulation as a mediator of this link in middle childhood. The 2nd goal was to examine how different aspects of emotion regulation relate to peer competence. Fifth graders completed self-report and semiprojective measures to index mother-child attachment, mothers reported on children's emotionality and coping strategies, and teachers reported on children's peer competence. Constructive coping was related to both attachment and peer competence, and mediated the association between attachment and peer competence, suggesting that emotion regulation is one of the mechanisms accounting for attachment-peer links. Constructive coping was more strongly associated with peer competence for children high on negative emotionality than for children low on negative emotionality.