The Macksey Journal


Religious Trauma Syndrome (RTS) was a term coined by Marlene Winell in 2011. Winell is a popular educator and writer who has done psychological research on human development, and decided to research religious trauma after her own expereiences. She became a licensed psychologist and began to explore the changes that adolescents go through as they age. Most of her work revolves around personal growth and healing, as she teaches about “thriving and not surviving.” In this paper, I will focus on the negative effects that religion can have on different individuals and the ways in which these individuals must use alternative coping mechanisms for their trauma. Then, I will move into the way that music is one alternative coping mechanism because of its cathartic value for individuals who cannot turn to religion for relief. Finally, I will draw a parallel between the two in order to show that there is a way that certain musicians are using their music and their lyrics in order to work through religious trauma from their past by presenting a case study of Brendon Urie.