Trauma Exposure in Relation to the Content of Mother-Child Emotional Conversations and Quality of Interaction

Mathilde M. Overbeek, Nina Koren-Karie, Adi Erez Ben-Haim, J. Clasien de Schipper, Patricia D. Dreier Gligoor, Carlo Schuengel

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

Parent-child conversations contribute to understanding and regulating children's emotions. Similarities and differences in discussed topics, quality of interaction and coherence/elaboration in mother-child conversations about emotional experiences of the child were studied in dyads who had been exposed to interpersonal trauma (N = 213) and non-trauma-exposed dyads (N = 86). Results showed that in conversations about negative emotions, trauma-exposed children more often discussed trauma topics and focused less on relationship topics than non-trauma-exposed children. Trauma-exposed dyads found it more difficult to come up with a story. The most common topics chosen by dyads to discuss for each emotion were mostly similar between trauma-exposed dyads and non-trauma-exposed dyads. Dyads exposed to interpersonal traumatic events showed lower quality of interaction and less coherence/elaboration than dyads who had not experienced traumatic events. Discussion of traumatic topics was associated with lower quality of mother-child interaction and less coherent dialogues. In conclusion, the effect of the trauma is seen at several levels in mother-child interaction: topics, behavior and coherence. A focus on support in developing a secure relationship after trauma may be important for intervention.

Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Volume16
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 5 Mar 2019

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Mothers
Wounds and Injuries
Mother-Child Relations
Emotions

Keywords

  • emotion conversation
  • emotion dialogue
  • marital violence
  • mother-child interaction
  • parent-child communication
  • sexual abuse
  • trauma exposure

Cite this

@article{0986f1928c254017ad828bb30c666b4f,
title = "Trauma Exposure in Relation to the Content of Mother-Child Emotional Conversations and Quality of Interaction",
abstract = "Parent-child conversations contribute to understanding and regulating children's emotions. Similarities and differences in discussed topics, quality of interaction and coherence/elaboration in mother-child conversations about emotional experiences of the child were studied in dyads who had been exposed to interpersonal trauma (N = 213) and non-trauma-exposed dyads (N = 86). Results showed that in conversations about negative emotions, trauma-exposed children more often discussed trauma topics and focused less on relationship topics than non-trauma-exposed children. Trauma-exposed dyads found it more difficult to come up with a story. The most common topics chosen by dyads to discuss for each emotion were mostly similar between trauma-exposed dyads and non-trauma-exposed dyads. Dyads exposed to interpersonal traumatic events showed lower quality of interaction and less coherence/elaboration than dyads who had not experienced traumatic events. Discussion of traumatic topics was associated with lower quality of mother-child interaction and less coherent dialogues. In conclusion, the effect of the trauma is seen at several levels in mother-child interaction: topics, behavior and coherence. A focus on support in developing a secure relationship after trauma may be important for intervention.",
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author = "Overbeek, {Mathilde M.} and Nina Koren-Karie and Ben-Haim, {Adi Erez} and {de Schipper}, {J. Clasien} and {Dreier Gligoor}, {Patricia D.} and Carlo Schuengel",
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Trauma Exposure in Relation to the Content of Mother-Child Emotional Conversations and Quality of Interaction. / Overbeek, Mathilde M.; Koren-Karie, Nina; Ben-Haim, Adi Erez; de Schipper, J. Clasien; Dreier Gligoor, Patricia D.; Schuengel, Carlo.

In: International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, Vol. 16, No. 5, 05.03.2019.

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review

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T1 - Trauma Exposure in Relation to the Content of Mother-Child Emotional Conversations and Quality of Interaction

AU - Overbeek, Mathilde M.

AU - Koren-Karie, Nina

AU - Ben-Haim, Adi Erez

AU - de Schipper, J. Clasien

AU - Dreier Gligoor, Patricia D.

AU - Schuengel, Carlo

PY - 2019/3/5

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N2 - Parent-child conversations contribute to understanding and regulating children's emotions. Similarities and differences in discussed topics, quality of interaction and coherence/elaboration in mother-child conversations about emotional experiences of the child were studied in dyads who had been exposed to interpersonal trauma (N = 213) and non-trauma-exposed dyads (N = 86). Results showed that in conversations about negative emotions, trauma-exposed children more often discussed trauma topics and focused less on relationship topics than non-trauma-exposed children. Trauma-exposed dyads found it more difficult to come up with a story. The most common topics chosen by dyads to discuss for each emotion were mostly similar between trauma-exposed dyads and non-trauma-exposed dyads. Dyads exposed to interpersonal traumatic events showed lower quality of interaction and less coherence/elaboration than dyads who had not experienced traumatic events. Discussion of traumatic topics was associated with lower quality of mother-child interaction and less coherent dialogues. In conclusion, the effect of the trauma is seen at several levels in mother-child interaction: topics, behavior and coherence. A focus on support in developing a secure relationship after trauma may be important for intervention.

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