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Guilt in bereavement: a review and conceptual framework.

Authors
  • Li, Jie
  • Stroebe, Margaret
  • Chan, Cecilia L W
  • Chow, Amy Y M
Type
Published Article
Journal
Death studies
Publication Date
Jan 01, 2014
Volume
38
Issue
1-5
Pages
165–171
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1080/07481187.2012.738770
PMID: 24524544
Source
Medline
License
Unknown

Abstract

Thirty-four quantitative and 9 qualitative studies are reviewed to indicate current understanding of the nature and impact of guilt in bereavement. This overview suggests that guilt is especially prevalent among some vulnerable subgroups, and it is associated with maladaptive health outcomes. Being male, longer bereavement time, and good end-of life experience seem to be associated with less guilt feelings. However, definition ambiguity, measurement difficulties, and cultural insensitivity are evident in studies. Therefore, a multidimensional conceptualization of guilt and a structural model to guide future investigation of this phenomenon in the bereavement context is proposed.

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