Children's negative emotions and ego-resiliency: Longitudinal relations with social competence

Zoe E. Taylor, Nancy Eisenberg, Sarah K. VanSchyndel, Natalie D. Eggum-Wilkens, Tracy Spinrad

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


We examined the relations of negative emotions in toddlerhood to the development of ego-resiliency and social competence across early childhood. Specifically, we addressed whether fear and anger/frustration in 30-month-old children (N = 213) was associated with the development of ego-resiliency across 4 time points (42 to 84 months), and, in turn, whether ego-resiliency predicted social competence at 84 months. Child anger/frustration negatively predicted the intercept of ego-resiliency at 42 months (controlling for prior ego-resiliency at 18 months) as well as the slope. Fear did not significantly predict either the intercept or slope of ego-resiliency in the structural model, although it was positively correlated with anger/frustration and was negatively related to ego-resiliency in zero-order correlations. The slope of ego-resiliency was positively related to children's social competence at 84 months; however, the intercept of ego-resiliency (set at 42 months) was not a significant predictor of later social competence. Furthermore, the slope of ego-resiliency mediated the relations between anger/frustration and children's later social competence. The results suggest that individual differences in anger/frustration might contribute to the development of ego-resiliency, which, in turn, is associated with children's social competence.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)397-406
Number of pages10
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2014


  • Anger/frustration
  • Ego-resiliency
  • Fear
  • Negative emotionality
  • Social competence

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Psychology


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