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Meaning in life accounts for the association between long-term ostracism and depressive symptoms: The moderating role of self-compassion.

Authors
  • Jiang, Tonglin1
  • Chen, Zhansheng1
  • 1 Department of Psychology, University of Hong Kong , Hong Kong, China. , (China)
Type
Published Article
Journal
The Journal of social psychology
Publication Date
Sep 02, 2020
Volume
160
Issue
5
Pages
535–547
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1080/00224545.2019.1693951
PMID: 31739765
Source
Medline
Keywords
Language
English
License
Unknown

Abstract

According to the temporal need-threat model, ostracism results in three stages of responses. Research on the responses to ostracism has predominantly focused on the first two stages, and the literature needs further empirical evidence on responses to long-term ostracism. We conducted two studies to better understand the association between long-term ostracism and depressive symptoms. Study 1 found a positive association between long-term ostracism and depressive symptoms. More importantly, Study 1 found the threatened sense of meaning in life partially mediates the relationship. Study 2 further found that self-compassion, a positive and healthy trait, weakens the relationship between long-term ostracism and depressive symptoms. More specifically, self-compassion moderates the relationship between the threatened sense of meaning in life and depressive symptoms. Our findings not only further our understanding about the negative consequences of long-term ostracism but also suggest a possible way to mitigate depressive symptoms associated with long-term ostracism.

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