Forgiveness education in fibromyalgia: A qualitative inquiry


The purpose of this qualitative study was to assess perspectives on the acceptability and the potential applicability of a forgiveness education in patients with fibromyalgia. The concept and tools of forgiveness were presented to thirteen women (age: 40 - 54 years) with a previous diagnosis of fibromyalgia. Subjects participated in 1 of 2 focus groups following a 90-minute education session in which forgiveness was presented as an emotion-focused coping strategy to deal with interpersonal stressors. Qualitative assessment of focus group discussions reveals 3 themes: 1) forgiveness is healthy and reduces pain, 2) forgiveness is within a patient’s personal control, and 3) forgiveness education is similar to other types of patient education and is well received. Our results suggest that forgiveness education is acceptable and feasible in patients with fibromyalgia. This justifies further exploration of forgiveness as an emotion-focused self- management strategy to decrease psychological distress.

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L. Toussaint, L. , Vincent, A. , O. Whipple, M. , J. McAllister, S. , M. Finnie, D. , C. Hathaway, J. , H. Oh, T. , C. Fleming, K. and Vickers Douglas, K. (2014) Forgiveness education in fibromyalgia: A qualitative inquiry. Pain Studies and Treatment, 2, 11-16. doi: 10.4236/pst.2014.21003.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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