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College Student Drinkers Have Higher Self-Compassion Scores than Nondrinkers




Forgiveness, particularly forgiveness of oneself, has been associated with lower alcohol use in several samples. We aimed to confirm this finding in college students and expand it by exploring the relationship of self-compassion to alcohol use. Surprisingly, we found that students who drank (n = 54) scored higher than nondrinkers (n = 30) on the self-kindness and mindfulness aspects of the Self-Compassion Scale, as well as the self-forgiveness aspect of the Heartland Forgiveness Scale. There was no statistical difference between social drinkers and binge drinkers. The relationships of self-compassion and forgiveness to alcohol use and abuse should be further investigated to clarify conflicting results, and a longitudinal cohort study could be particularly useful in elucidating whether self-compassion and forgiveness are related to one’s decision to drink alcohol at all.

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International Journal of Mental Health and Addiction

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