Marital Offense –Specific Forgiveness Scale

Author of Tool: 

Paleari, F. G, Regalia, C., & Fincham, F.D.

Key references: 

Paleari, F. G, Regalia, C., & Fincham, F.D. (2009). Measuring offence-specific forgiveness in marriage: The Marital Offence-specific Forgiveness Scale (MOFS). Psychological assessment, 21, 194-209.

Primary use / Purpose: 

A measure assessing offence-specific forgiveness for marital transgressions

Background: 

The exponential growth of research on forgiveness reflects, in part, its presumed beneficial effects on relationship well-being, an idea reinforced by the fact that spouses themselves rate the seeking and granting of forgiveness as important for marital longevity and marital satisfaction (Fenell, 1993). Available research is consistent with this view in that forgiving the spouse enhances relationship intimacy and commitment, promotes effective conflict resolution,and has a positive influence on marital quality over time (Fincham& Beach, 2007; Fincham, Beach, & Davila, 2007; Paleari, Regalia,& Fincham, 2005; Tsang, McCullough, & Fincham, 2006). In viewof these beneficial effects, considerable effort has been devoted to of these beneficial effects, considerable effort has been devoted toidentifying factors that may facilitate forgiveness in couple relationships. he Marital Forgiveness Scale is a nine-item measure focusingon the incident when the respondent felt most wronged or hurt bythe partner. It yields three distinct but correlated subscales, of which two (Avoidance and Retaliation) reflect the negative dimen-sion of forgiveness and one (Benevolence) reflects the positivedimension. Thus it is assumed that even though a spouse has notcompletely overcome his or her avoidant and/or revengeful inten-tions, he or she may at the same time be inclined to more benevolent ones. 

Psychometrics: 

Convergent validity of the new scale was indicated by significant relationships between its underlying dimensions and a host of predicted sociocognitive, relationship, trait, and well-being correlates of forgiveness. Providing evidence for predictive validity, forgiveness dimensions accounted for variability in relationship variables over a 6-month period. 

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