Journal of Traumatic Stress Disorders & Treatment ISSN: 2324-8947

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Relations between Tendency to Forgive, PTSD and Well-Being in a Non-Combatant Population during Wartime

Relations between Tendency to Forgive, PTSD and Well-Being in a Non-Combatant Population during Wartime

Objective: The study examined the association between the tendency to forgive (self, others, and situations); each of the DSM 5 clusters of post-traumatic stress symptom levels; and well-being among civilians during wartime.
Method: A sample of 501 Israeli civilians was assessed through web administration in real-time exposure to missile and rocket attacks during the Gaza war in the summer of 2014.
Results: A structural equation model design revealed that the various dimensions of the tendency to forgive were associated differently with the four clusters of traumatic symptoms and wellbeing. Of all the dimensions of tendency to forgive, only forgiving the situations was associated with lower traumatic symptom levels in all four clusters and in higher well-being. Additionally, the tendency to forgive the situation was the only mediating variable between subjective exposure and the four clusters of traumatic symptoms and well-being.
Conclusions: During war the dimensions of tendency to forgive interact differently with traumatic symptoms clusters and wellbeing. Thus, attention should be directed to this diversity, allowing for better understanding and intervention. Theoretical and clinical implications of the findings are discussed.

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