How emotions are regulated is significant to an individual's functioning. It is known that there is an association between individuals’ emotion regulation and how and to what extent their caregivers regulate their own emotions. However, research on how young adults describe emotion regulation strategies of themselves and their caregivers and how they reflect on the contributing factors to their emotion regulation processes is scarce. Therefore, in this study, it was aimed to examine the ideas of young adults on their emotion regulation, on their caregivers' use of regulation strategies, and on the factors that affect their emotion regulation. Accordingly, information about emotion regulation processes of 14 participants was gathered through semi-structured in-depth interviews and online diaries applied every other day for two weeks after the interviews. Data were analyzed using thematic analysis. It is comprehended that emotion regulation strategies of young adults and their caregivers show similarities. The strategies are grouped into three main themes which are strategies based on mental processes, interaction, and exposure. According to the diaries, strategies based on exposure are used most frequently in daily life, which was followed by strategies based on interaction and based on mental processes. As a result of the analysis, it was also observed that the participants defined complicated emotion regulation processes and they thought that their emotion regulation was influenced by many factors. Some strategies (e.g., suppression) differed from the definitions in the literature, and it was understood that factors such as being functional or non-functional and relational consequences of the method could play a role in the emotion regulation process, in addition to caregivers.
Emotion, emotion regulation strategies, early adulthood, caregivers, thematic analysis