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Keywords:

  • Emotional suppression;
  • Well-being;
  • Immigrants;
  • The Netherlands

We were interested in interethnic differences in emotional suppression. We propose a model in which suppression of specific emotional experiences (suppressive behaviours during interactions with others) mediates the relationship between emotional suppression tendency (intention to suppress emotions) and well-being, operationalised as mood disturbance, life dissatisfaction and depressive and physical symptoms. The sample consisted of 427 majority group members and 344 non-Western and 465 Western immigrants in the Netherlands. Non-Western immigrants scored higher on emotional suppression tendency and lower on well-being than the other groups. We did not find interethnic differences in suppression of specific emotional experiences. The full mediation model was supported in all groups. Interethnic differences in well-being could not be accounted for by differences in emotional suppression.