Hostname: page-component-5db6c4db9b-qvlvc Total loading time: 0 Render date: 2023-03-27T02:06:06.200Z Has data issue: true Feature Flags: { "useRatesEcommerce": false } hasContentIssue true

Caregiver–adolescent co-reminiscing and adolescents’ individual recollections of a devastating tornado: Associations with enduring posttraumatic stress symptoms

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  01 February 2019

Michelle L. Hendrickson*
Jackson Behavioral Health Hospital, Miami, FL, USA
Madelaine R. Abel
University of Kansas, Clinical Child Psychology Program, Lawrence, KS, USA
Eric M. Vernberg
University of Kansas, Clinical Child Psychology Program, Lawrence, KS, USA
Kristina L. McDonald
University of Alabama, Department of Psychology, Tuscaloosa, AL, USA
John E. Lochman
University of Alabama, Department of Psychology, Tuscaloosa, AL, USA
Author for correspondence: Michelle L. Hendrickson, Jackson Behavioral Health Hospital, 1695 NW 9th Ave., Room 2516K, Miami, FL33136; E-mail:


Although disaster-related posttraumatic stress symptoms (PTSS) typically decrease in intensity over time, some youth continue to report elevated levels of PTSS many years after the disaster. The current study examines two processes that may help to explain the link between disaster exposure and enduring PTSS: caregiver emotion socialization and youth recollection qualities. One hundred and twenty-two youth (ages 12 to 17) and their female caregivers who experienced an EF-4 tornado co-reminisced about the event, and adolescents provided independent recollections between 3 and 4 years after the tornado. Adolescent individual transcripts were coded for coherence and negative personal impact, qualities that have been found to contribute to meaning making. Parent–adolescent conversations were coded for caregiver egocentrism, a construct derived from the emotion socialization literature to reflect the extent to which the caregiver centered the conversation on her own emotions and experiences. Egocentrism predicted higher youth PTSS, and this association was mediated by the coherence of adolescents’ narratives. The association between coherence and PTSS was stronger for youth who focused more on the negative personal impacts of the tornado event during their recollections. Results suggest that enduring tornado-related PTSS may be influenced in part by the interplay of caregiver emotion socialization practices and youth recollection qualities.

Regular Articles
Copyright © Cambridge University Press 2019

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below. (Log in options will check for institutional or personal access. Content may require purchase if you do not have access.)


Anthony, J. L., Lonigan, C. J., Vernberg, E. M., Silverman, W. K., La Greca, A. M., & Prinstein, M. J. (2005). Multisample cross-validation of a model of childhood posttraumatic stress disorder symptomatology. Journal of Traumatic Stress, 18, 667676.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Alexander, K. W., Goodman, G. S., Schaaf, J. M., Edelstein, R. S., Quas, J. A., & Shaver, P. R. (2002). The role of attachment and cognitive inhibition in children's memory and suggestibility for a stressful event. Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, 83, 262290. doi:10.1016/S0022-0965(02)00149-2CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Baerger, D. R., & McAdams, D. P. (1999). Life story coherence and its relation to psychological well-being. Narrative Inquiry, 9, 6996. doi:10.1075/ni.9.1.05baeCrossRefGoogle Scholar
Bauer, P. J., Burch, M. M., Van Abbema, D. L., & Ackil, J. K. (2007). Talking about twisters: Relations between mothers' and children's contributions to conversations about a devastating tornado. Journal of Cognition and Development, 8, 371399. doi:10.1080/15248370701612936CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Bauer, P. J., Stark, E. N., Lukowski, A. F., Rademacher, J., Van Abbema, D. L., & Ackil, J. K. (2005). Working together to make sense of the past: Mothers' and children's use of internal states language in conversations about traumatic and nontraumatic events. Journal of Cognition and Development, 6, 463488. doi:10.1207/s15327647jcd0604-2CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Bögels, S. M., & Brechman-Toussaint, M. L. (2006). Family issues in child anxiety: Attachment, family functioning, caregiver rearing and beliefs. Clinical Psychology Review, 26, 834856. doi:10.1016/j/cpr.2005.08.001CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Bowie, B. H., Carrère, S., Cooke, C., Valdivia, G., McAllister, B., & Doohan, E. (2013). The role of culture in caregivers’ socialization of children's emotional development. Western Journal of Nursing Research, 35, 514533. doi:10.1177/0193945911411494CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Brand, A. E., & Klimes-Dougan, B. (2010). Emotion socialization in adolescence: The roles of mothers and fathers. New Directions for Child and Adolescent Development, 128, 85100. doi:10.1002/cd.270CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Campos, J. J., Frankel, C. B., & Camras, L. (2004). On the nature of emotion regulation. Child Development, 75, 377394. doi:10.1111/j.1467-8624.2004.00681.xCrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Cary, C. E., & McMillen, J. C. (2012). The data behind the dissemination: A systematic review of trauma-focused cognitive behavioral therapy for use with children and youth. Child and Youth Services Review, 34, 748757. doi:10.1016/j.childyouth.2012.01.003CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Cole, P. M., & Tan, P. Z. (2007). Emotion socialization from a cultural perspective. In Grusec, J. E. & Hastings, P. H. (Eds.), Handbook of socialization: Theory and research (pp. 516542). New York: Guilford Press.Google Scholar
Cunningham, J. N., Kliewer, W., & Garner, P. W. (2009). Emotion socialization, child emotion understanding and regulation, and adjustment in urban African American families: Differential associations across child gender. Development and Psychopathology, 21, 261283. doi:10.1017/S0954579409000157CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Dodge, K. A., & Coie, J. D. (1987). Social-information processing factors in reactive and proactive aggression in children's peer groups. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 53, 11461158. doi:10.1037/0022-3514.53.6.1146CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Dunsmore, J. C., Booker, J. A., & Ollendick, T. H. (2013). Caregiver emotion coaching and child emotion regulation as protective factors for children with oppositional defiant disorder. Social Development, 22, 444466. doi:10.1111/j.1467-9507.2011.00652.xCrossRefGoogle Scholar
Dunsmore, J. C., Booker, J. A., Ollendick, T. H., & Greene, R. W. (2016). Emotion socialization in the context of risk and psychopathology: Maternal emotion coaching predicts better treatment outcomes for emotionally labile children with oppositional defiant disorder. Social Development, 25, 826. doi:10.1111/sode.12109CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Eisenberg, N., Losoya, S., Fabes, R. A., Guthrie, I. K., Reiser, M., Murphy, B., … Padgett, S. J. (2001). Caregiver socialization of children's dysregulated expression of emotion and externalizing problems. Journal of Family Psychology, 15, 183205. doi:10.1037/0893-3200.15.2.183CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Fivush, R. (2009). Co-constructing memories and meaning over time. In Quas, J. & Fivush, R. (Eds.), Emotion and memory in development (pp. 343354). New York: Oxford University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Fivush, R., Haden, C. A., & Reese, E. (2006). Elaborating on elaborations: The role of maternal reminiscing style in cognitive and socioemotional development. Child Development, 77, 15681588. doi:10.1111/j.1467-8624.2006.00960.xCrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Fivush, R., Hazzard, A., McDermott Sales, J., Sarfati, D., & Brown, T. (2003). Creating coherence out of chaos? Children's narratives of emotionally positive and negative events. Applied Cognitive Psychology, 17, 119. doi:10.1002/acp.854CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Fivush, R., & Sales, J. M. (2006). Coping, attachment, and mother-child narratives of stressful events. Merrill-Palmer Quarterly, 52, 125150. doi:10.1353/mpq.2006.003CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Fivush, R., Sales, J. M., & Bohanek, J. G. (2008). Meaning making in mothers' and children's narratives of emotional events. Memory, 16, 579594. doi:10.1080/09658210802150681CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Frederick, C. J. (1985). Selected foci in the spectrum of posttraumatic stress disorders. In Laube, J. & Murphy, S. A. (Eds.), Perspectives on disaster recovery (pp. 110131). Norwalk, CT: Appleton-Century-Croft.Google Scholar
Frederick, C. J., Pynoos, R. S., & Nader, K. (1992). Reaction Index to Psychic Trauma Form C (Child). Unpublished manuscript, University of California, Los Angeles.Google Scholar
Garside, R. B., & Klimes-Dougan, B. (2002). Socialization of discrete negative emotions: Gender differences and links with psychological distress. Sex Roles, 47, 115128. doi:10.1023/A:1021090904785CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Greenhoot, A. F., Sun, S., Bunnell, S. L., & Lindboe, K. (2013). Making sense of traumatic memories: Memory qualities and psychological symptoms in emerging adults with and without abuse histories. Memory, 21, 125142. doi:10.1080/09658211.2012.712975CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Hambrick, E. P. (2014). Recalling a devastating tornado: Child and mother-child recollections, meaning making, and child traumatic stress (Unpublished doctoral dissertation, University of Kansas, Lawrence).Google Scholar
Hambrick, E. P., Vernberg, E. M., Greenhoot, A. F., & Hendrickson, M. L. (2018). Recalling a devastating tornado: Qualities of child recollections and associations with mental health symptoms. Journal of Child & Adolescent Trauma, 11, 227239. doi:10.1007/s40653-017-0199-zCrossRefGoogle Scholar
Hastings, P. D., Klimes-Dougan, B., Kendziora, K. T., Brand, A., & Zahn-Waxler, C. (2014). Regulating sadness and fear from outside and within: Mothers' emotion socialization and adolescents' parasympathetic regulation predict the development of internalizing difficulties. Development and Psychopathology, 26, 13691384. doi:10.1017/S0954579414001084CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Hayes, A. F. (2017). Introduction to medication, moderation, and conditional process analysis: A regression-based approach (2nd ed.). New York: Guildford Press.Google Scholar
Hendrickson, M. (2016). Caregiver emotion socialization and adolescent meaning making about a devastating tornado (Unpublished doctoral dissertation, University of Kansas, Lawrence).Google Scholar
Izard, C. E. (1991). The psychology of emotions. New York: Plenum Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Izard, C. E., & Ackerman, B. P. (2000). Motivational, organizational, and regulatory functions of discrete emotions. In Lewis, M. & Haviland, J. M. (Eds.), Handbook of emotions (2nd ed., pp. 253264). New York: Guilford Press.Google Scholar
Katz, L. F., & Hunter, E. C. (2007). Maternal meta-emotion philosophy and adolescent depressive symptomatology. Social Development, 16, 343360. doi:10.111/j.1467-9507.2007.00388.xCrossRefGoogle Scholar
Katz, L. F., Maliken, A. C., & Stettler, N. M. (2012). Parent meta-emotion philosophy: A review of research and theoretical framework. Child Development Perspectives, 6, 417422. doi:10.1111/j.1750-8606.2012.00244.xGoogle Scholar
Katz, L. F., Stettler, N., & Gurtovenko, K. (2016). Traumatic stress symptoms in children exposed to intimate partner violence. Social Development, 25, 4765. doi:10.1111/sode.12151CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Katz, L. F., Wilson, B., & Gottman, J. M. (1999). Meta-emotion philosophy and family adjustment: Making an emotional connection. In Cox, M. J & Brooks-Gunn, J. (Eds.), Conflict and cohesion in families: Causes and consequences (pp. 131165). New York: Psychology Press.Google Scholar
Katz, L. F., & Windecker-Nelson, B. (2006). Domestic violence, emotion coaching, and child adjustment. Journal of Family Psychology, 20, 5667. doi:10.1037/0893-3200.20.1.56CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Klimes-Dougan, B., Brand, A. E., Zahn-Waxler, C., Usher, B., Hastings, P. D., Kendziora, K., & Garside, R. B. (2007). Caregivers emotion socialization in adolescence: Differences in sex, age, and problem status. Social Development, 16, 326342. doi:10.1111/j.1467-9507.2007.00387.xCrossRefGoogle Scholar
La Greca, A. M., Lai, B. S., Llabre, M. M., Silverman, W. K., Vernberg, E. M., & Prinstein, M. J. (2013). Children's postdisaster trajectories of PTS symptoms: Predicting chronic distress. Child & Youth Care Forum, 42, 351369. doi:10.1007/s10566-013-9206-1CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
La Greca, A. M., Silverman, W. K., Vernberg, E. M., & Prinstein, M. J. (1996). Symptoms of posttraumatic stress in children after Hurricane Andrew: A prospective study. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 64, 712723. doi:10.1037/0022-006X.64.4.712CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Lai, B. S., Lewis, R., Livings, M. S., La Greca, A. M., & Esnard, A. M. (2017). Posttraumatic stress symptom trajectories among children after natural disaster exposure: A review. Journal of Traumatic Stress, 30, 571582. doi:10.1002/jts.22242CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Laible, D. (2004). Mother-child discourse in two contexts: Links with child temperament, attachment security, and socioemotional competence. Developmental Psychology, 40, 979992. doi:10.1037/0012-1649.40.6.979CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Lambert, J. E., Holzer, J., & Hasbun, A. (2014). Association between parents’ PTSD severity and children's psychological distress: A meta-analysis. Journal of Traumatic Stress, 27, 917. doi:10.1002/jts.21891CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Larson, R. W., Richards, M. H., Moneta, G., Holmbeck, G., & Duckett, E. (1996). Changes in adolescents' daily interactions with their families from ages 10 to 18: Disengagement and transformation. Developmental Psychology, 32, 744754. doi:10.1037/0012-1649.32.4.744CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Lindsey, E. W., Colwell, M. J., Frabutt, J. M., Chambers, J. C., & MacKinnon-Lewis, C. (2008). Mother-child dyadic synchrony in European American and African American families during early adolescence: Relations with self-esteem and prosocial behavior. Merrill-Palmer Quarterly, 54, 289315. doi:10.1353/mpq.0.0003CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Lochman, J. E., Dishion, T. J., Powell, N. P., Boxmeyer, C. L., Qu, L., & Sallee, M. (2015). Evidence-based preventive intervention for preadolescent aggressive children: One-year outcomes following randomization to group versus individual delivery. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 83, 728735. doi:10.1037/ccp0000030CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Lochman, J. E., Vernberg, E., Powell, N. P., Boxmeyer, C. L., Jarrett, M., McDonald, K., … & Kassing, F. (2017). Pre -post tornado effects on aggressive children's psychological and behavioral adjustment through one-year postdisaster. Journal of Clinical Child & Adolescent Psychology, 46, 136149. doi:10.1080/15374416.2016.1228460CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Lunkenheimer, E. S., Shields, A. M., & Cortina, K. S. (2007). Parental emotion coaching and dismissing in family interaction. Social Development, 16, 232248. doi:10.1111/j.1467-9507.2007.00382.xCrossRefGoogle Scholar
Masten, A. S., & Osofsky, J. D. (2010). Disasters and their impact on child development: Introduction to the special section. Child Development, 81, 10291039. doi:10.1111/j.1467-8624.2010.01452.xCrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
McLean, K. C., & Mansfield, C. D. (2011). To reason or not to reason: Is autobiographical reasoning always beneficial? In Habermas, T. (Ed.), The development of autobiographical reasoning in adolescence and beyond (pp. 8597). San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.Google Scholar
McLean, K. C., & Mansfield, C. D. (2012). The co-construction of adolescent narrative identity: Narrative processing as a function of adolescent age, gender, and maternal scaffolding. Developmental Psychology, 48, 436447. doi:10.1037/a0025563CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Miller-Slough, R. L., & Dunsmore, J. C. (2016). Parent and friend emotion socialization in adolescence: Associations with psychological adjustment. Adolescent Research Review, 1, 287305. doi:10.1007/s40894-016-0026-zCrossRefGoogle Scholar
Mossige, S., Jensen, T. K., Gulbrandsen, W., Reichelt, S., & Tjersland, O. A. (2005). Children's narratives of sexual abuse: What characterizes them and how do they contribute to meaning-making? Narrative Inquiry, 15, 377404. doi:10.1075/ni.15.2.09mosCrossRefGoogle Scholar
National Centers for Environmental Information. (2017). On This Day: 2011 Tornado Super Outbreak. Retrieved from Scholar
Nelson, J. A., Leerkes, E. M., O'Brien, M., Calkins, S. D., & Marcovitch, S. (2012). African American and European American mothers’ beliefs about negative emotions and emotion socialization practices. Parenting, 12, 2241. doi:10.1080/15295192.2012.638871CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Norris, F. H., Friedman, M. J., Watson, P. J., Byrne, C. M., Diaz, E., & Kaniasty, K. (2002). 60,000 disaster victims speak: Part I. An empirical review of the empirical literature, 1981–2001. Psychiatry, 65, 207239. doi:10.1521/psyc. ScholarPubMed
Park, C. L. (2010). Making sense of the meaning literature: An integrative review of meaning making and its effects on adjustment to stressful life events. Psychological Bulletin, 136, 257301. doi:10.1037/a0018301CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Park, C. L., & Blumberg, C. J. (2002). Disclosing trauma through writing: Testing the meaning-making hypothesis. Cognitive Therapy and Research, 26, 597616. doi:10.1023/A:1020353109229CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Peterson, C., Sales, J. M., Rees, M., & Fivush, R. (2007). Caregiver-child talk and children's memory for stressful events. Applied Cognitive Psychology, 21, 10571075. doi:10.1002/acp.1314CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Phares, V. (1992). Where's poppa? The relative lack of attention to the role of fathers in child and adolescent psychopathology. American Psychologist, 47, 656. doi:10.1037/0003-066X.47.5.656CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Phares, V., Lopez, E., Fields, S., Kamboukos, D., & Duhig, A. M. (2005). Are fathers involved in pediatric psychology research and treatment? Journal of Pediatric Psychology, 30, 631643. doi:10.1093/jpepsy/jsi050CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Preacher, K. J., & Hayes, A. F. (2008). Asymptotic and resampling strategies for assessing and comparing indirect effects in multiple mediator models. Behavioral Research Methods, 40, 879891. doi:10.3758.BRM.40.3.879CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Preacher, K. J., Rucker, D. D., & Hayes, A. F. (2007). Addressing moderated mediation hypotheses: Theory, methods, and prescriptions. Multivariate Behavior Research, 42, 185227. doi:10.1080/00273170701341316CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Reese, E., Haden, C. A., Baker-Ward, L., Bauer, P., Fivush, R., & Ornstein, P. A. (2011). Coherence of personal narratives across the lifespan: A multidimensional model and coding method. Journal of Cognition and Development, 12, 424462. doi:10.1080/15248372.2011.587854CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Sales, J. M., & Fivush, R. (2005). Social and emotional functions of mother-child reminiscing about stressful events. Social Cognition, 23, 7090. doi:10.1521/soco. Scholar
Sheeringa, M. S., & Zeanah, C. H. (2008). Reconsideration of harm's way: Onsets and comorbidity patterns of disorders in preschool children and their caregivers following Hurricane Katrina. Journal of Clinical Child & Adolescent Psychology, 37, 508518. doi:10.1080/15374410802148178CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Shortt, J. W., Stoolmiller, M., Smith-Shine, J. N., Mark Eddy, J., & Sheeber, L. (2010). Maternal emotion coaching, adolescent anger regulation, and siblings’ externalizing symptoms. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 51, 799808. doi:10.111/j.1469-7610.2009.02207.xCrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Stocker, C. M., Richmond, M. K., Rhoades, G. K., & Kiang, L. (2007). Family emotional processes and adolescents' adjustment. Social Development, 16, 310325. doi:10.111/j.1467-9507.2007.00386.xCrossRefGoogle Scholar
Vernberg, E. M., & Jacobs, A. K. (2005). Tornado Related Traumatic Exposure Scale. Unpublished Manuscript, University of Kansas, Lawrence.Google Scholar
Vernberg, E. M., La Greca, A. M., Silverman, W. K., & Prinstein, M. J. (1996). Prediction of posttraumatic stress symptoms in children after Hurricane Andrew. Journal of Abnormal Psychology, 105, 237248. doi:10.1037/0021-843X.105.2.237CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Waters, T. E., & Fivush, R. (2015). Relations between narrative coherence, identity, and psychological well-being in emerging adulthood. Journal of Personality, 83, 441451. doi:10.1111/jopy.12120CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Waters, T. E., Shallcross, J. F., & Fivush, R. (2013). The many facets of meaning making: Comparing multiple measures of meaning making and their relations to psychological distress. Memory, 21, 111124. doi:10.1080/09658211.2012.705300CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed