More Than Half of Americans Say They've Been Visited by a Dead Relative

Amanda Casanova | ChristianHeadlines.com Contributor | Updated: Aug 30, 2023
More Than Half of Americans Say They've Been Visited by a Dead Relative

More Than Half of Americans Say They've Been Visited by a Dead Relative

A recent Pew Research Study found that more than half of Americans believe they’ve been visited in some way by a dead relative.

About 53 percent say they believe they’ve been visited by a dead family member in a dream or some other way.

The survey included Americans of all religious backgrounds, including Jews, Muslims, Buddhists and Hindus.

Respondents also said in the past year: 

  • 34 percent have “felt the presence” of a dead relative
  • 28 percent have told a dead relative about their life
  • 15 percent have had a dead family member communicate with them

In total, 44 percent said they have had at least one of the above experiences in the past 12 months.

While 34 percent said they “felt the presence” of a dead relative, 28 percent say they have told dead family members about events in their lives.

Just 15 percent say a deceased family member has communicated with them in the past year.

The survey did not ask respondents to give explanations for their experiences.

About two-thirds of Catholics (66 percent) and members of the historically Black Protestant tradition (67 percent) say they have experienced a visit from a deceased family member in some form. Just 42 percent of Evangelical Protestants said the same.

About half (48 percent) of Americans who are religiously unaffiliated say they have been visited by a dead relative in a dream or other form.

According to the survey, “people who are moderately religious seem to be more likely than other Americans to have these experiences.

“This is partly because some of the most traditionally religious groups – such as evangelical Protestants – as well as some of the least religious parts of the population – such as atheists and agnostics – are less likely to report having interactions with deceased family members.”

Finally, among men and women, women were more likely than men to say they had felt the presence of a dead family member or had talked to a dead family member.

For the full report from the Pew Research Center, visit here.

Photo courtesy: ©Getty Images/ajkkafe


Amanda Casanova is a writer living in Dallas, Texas. She has covered news for ChristianHeadlines.com since 2014. She has also contributed to The Houston Chronicle, U.S. News and World Report and IBelieve.com. She blogs at The Migraine Runner.



More Than Half of Americans Say They've Been Visited by a Dead Relative