Forgiveness and Suicidal Behavior in Primary Care: Mediating Role of Future Orientation

Document Type


Publication Date



Forgiveness, a cognitive-emotional and behavioral reduction of negative responses to offenses, is directly related to less suicide risk, but may be indirectly related via its relation with future orientation, the ability to envision a positive future. In 100 rural primary care patients, we examined the association between self-forgiveness, other-forgiveness, and forgiveness by God and suicidal behavior, with future orientation as a mediator. Forgiveness was related to greater future orientation and, in turn, to, less suicidal behavior. Addressing the past may promote adaptive views of the future and reduce suicide risk, results suggesting potential temporal and forgiveness-based points for suicide prevention.