Emotional regulation and child rearing at Sri Ram Ashram

By Sienna Trautman and Ruth Arnett

This video discusses emotional regulation and child rearing at Sri Ram Ashram. Our initial purpose was to discover how children at the Ashram are regulated in an environment with a large family. Going into the Ashram, we had an idea that we would be learning about self-regulation. Instead, our observations showed more co-regulation rather than self-regulation among the children.Our working definition of self-regulation is: independently adjusting one’s emotions to function at an optimal level. Our working definition of co-regulation is: Adjusting one’s emotions with assistance from another person. We found after observing a small glimpse of child rearing in India that co-regulation supports their collectivist society and builds strong relationships. The way of being from our observations at the Ashram includes solving problems as a group, being disciplined as a group, along with celebrating as a group.

In regards to the slapping talked about in this video: punitive norms vary throughout cultures, including in India at the Ashram. Corporal punishment is sometimes used, we also would like to address that these children are siblings and fight, laugh and play as if they are siblings as well.