Abstract

Although the ability to forgive offending peers may be crucial for maintaining long-term friendships in childhood, little is actually known about forgiveness among peers in childhood. In the present research, we examined whether forgiveness among children is related to enhanced psychological well-being. Importantly, we hypothesized that this association should be most pronounced when friendship is strong rather than weak. In a sample of 275 nine- to 13-year-olds who completed self-reported and behavioral measures of forgiveness and various indicators of psychological well-being, the present study revealed that forgiveness among peers was indeed associated with enhanced psychological well-being. In line with predictions, the association with psychological well-being was stronger when it concerned forgiveness toward friends rather than forgiveness toward nonfriends. Implications for the extant literature on forgiveness among children, and interpersonal relationships more broadly, are discussed.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1535-0266
Print ISSN
0272-930X
Pages
pp. 1-21
Launched on MUSE
2015-12-30
Open Access
No
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