Ingersoll-Dayton, Berit, and Neal Krause. 2005. "Self-forgiveness: A component of mental health in later life." Research on Aging, 27(3), 267-289.
For older people, self-forgiveness may play an important role in diminishing guilt and enhancing self-acceptance. In particular, self-forgiveness can result in a more congruent view of the self. This study explored the components of self-forgiveness in a sample of 129 White and African American individuals aged 65 and older to whom religion was at least somewhat important. Qualitative methods were used to identify the reactions of older adults after committing transgressions. Analyses of the participants' responses illuminate cognitive, behavioral, and emotional reactions integral to self-forgiveness. The findings also provide insights into the types of older people who may find self-forgiveness most problematic.
Country of focus: United States.