The aim of our study was to evaluate whether, on the basis of variables related to emotional control, we can anticipate mood change in parents of chronically ill children. Fifty-four parents of children with diagnosed mucopolysaccharidosis participated in the study that was carried out during a rehabilitation programme for children with rare metabolic diseases. To assess emotional control, a Polish adaptation of the Courtauld Emotional Control Scale was used, and mood was measured with the UWIST Mood Adjective Checklist (UMACL). Mood was assessed twice, at an interval of 8 days, on the dimensions of hedonic tone, tense arousal and energetic arousal. The baseline level of each mood dimension accounted for about 30% of the mood variance measured after 8 days. After excluding the part of the mood variance associated with the baseline level, the variables related to emotional control appeared to be significant predictors of the mood assessed 8 days later. For hedonic tone, variables related to emotional control explained 15% of the variance; for tense arousal, it was 14% of the variance; and for energetic arousal, it was 10% of the variance. Depending on the type of emotion and the degree of control, differences in tendencies to respond with a particular mood were observed. Copyright © 2013 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.