The experience of loneliness: The role of fears of compassion and social safeness
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AbstractThere are multiple factors associated with an increasing rate of loneliness. One common thread may be social disconnection and a reduced ability to feel safe in social settings for fear of giving to and receiving help from others. This study used an online survey to explore loneliness and its relationship with related psychological constructs of social connectedness, social safeness, subjective happiness, and fears of compassion in 177 adults (Female = 126), aged 18–70 years. The results showed that those with high loneliness reported significantly higher fears of expressing compassion for others and self, and receiving compassion from others, as well as lower reported social safeness, subjective happiness and social connection compared to those with reported low loneliness. Those with moderate levels of loneliness were not significantly different from the high loneliness group on fears of compassion towards others or measures of positive affect. The findings show that social safeness, and fears of receiving compassion from others or self are highly related to those with high levels of loneliness.
CitationBest, T., Herring, L., Clarke, C., Kirby, J., & Gilbert, P. (2021). 'The experience of loneliness: The role of fears of compassion and social safeness'. Personality and Individual Differences, 183, pp. 1-6.
JournalPersonality and Individual Differences
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