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Percentage of U.S. Adults Suffering from Religious Trauma: A Sociological Study

Darren M. Slade; Adrianna Smell; Elizabeth Wilson; Rebekah Drumsta

Vol. 5, No. 1

Summer 2023

Pages: 1‒28

DOI: 10.33929/sherm.2023.vol5.no1.01


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Religious Trauma

Religious Trauma, Spiritual Abuse, Sociology of Religion, Adverse Religious Experiences, Religious Trauma Syndrome, Religious Abuse

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Rational Faith.png

This sociological study aimed to ascertain the percentage of adults living in the United States who have experienced religious trauma (RT) and what percentage presently suffer from RT symptoms now. After compiling data from 1,581 adults living in the United States, this study concludes it is likely that around one-third (27‒33%) of U.S. adults (conservatively) have experienced religious trauma at some point in their life. That number increases to 37% if those suffering from any three of the six major RT symptoms are included. It is also likely that around 10‒15% of U.S. adults currently suffer from religious trauma if only the most conservative numbers are highlighted. Nonetheless, since 37% of the respondents personally know people who potentially suffer from RT, and 90% of those respondents know between one and ten people who likely suffer from RT, then it could be argued that as many as one-in-five (20%) U.S. adults presently suffer from major religious trauma symptoms.


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