HomeBeth Thomas Story: Where is the "Child of Rage" Now?

Beth Thomas Story: Where is the “Child of Rage” Now?

Beth Thomas‘ story gives a ray of hope to professionals who treat struggling children with their old and new therapies. This is one such case that shows how extreme childhood abuse and neglect can lead to a disturbed childhood and even result in a child developing violent thoughts.

The tragic and heart-wrenching story of Beth Thomas was first broadcasted in a documentary titled “Child of Rage” released in the year 1992. After that, Beth Thomas became the talk of the country then.

Thomas discussed with her psychologist in the documentary that she wants to kill her adoptive parents and her brother as well during the nighttime when they are asleep. Beth Thomas was barely six years old when she made these shocking revelations.

All that you need to know about Beth Thomas

The child facing Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD), has tried to kill her brother multiple times by pushing him down the stairs and also hitting his head on a concrete floor.

However, Beth Thomas is now happily married and resides in Flagstaff, Arizona. She has fully recovered from RAD and is now a celebrated nurse and author.

We have covered all that you need to know about Beth Thomas in our article today. Scroll down to continue reading!

Beth Thomas Story in Detail

Speaking about her early life, she was born in 1985 in America. However, her exact birth date is not known.

Beth is a survivor of reactive attachment disorder (RAD). She is presently working as a nurse in Arizona.

Most of the people who lived through the ’80s are aware of her story as it grabbed headlines not only in the US but all across the world when she narrated her ordeal. She was terrorized by her family members.

Sexual Abuse

She was abused by her biological father. At the age of 6, she revealed to her clinical psychologist Dr. Ken Magid that she intended to kill her parents who had adopted her along with her younger brother.

Beth Thomas’s father used to physically, verbally, and sexually abuse her till she was 19 months old. Her toddler life took a 360-degree turn when her mom passed away when she was just one year old. Her father used to sexually abuse her for months.

He did not even bother to take care of her younger brother, Jonathan. He was just one month old when his mother died.

Experienced Nightmares & Disturbed Childhood

These horrifying experiences led to recurring nightmares and her childhood was really disturbed. A man would go walk upstairs to her room and hurt her in the nightmare and he was none other than her father. At such a young age, Thomas used to give a graphical representation of the abuse she underwent.

Child services rescued Thomas from the clutches of her father’s hell when she was just 19 months old. Most of the damage was done when her first adoptive parents came to know about this horror. Her adoptive parents, Tim and Julie Tennent used to lock her inside her room during the night as they were afraid that she might stab them.

Beth tried many times to end Jonathan’s life. Intervention by her mother at the right time has saved his life. Beth was almost about to smash his head repeatedly against a cement floor.

Consultation with Psychologist and Subsequent Treatment

Her parents then consulted a psychologist, Connell Watkins, to admit her and facilitate her recovery. Connell offered to take beth into her home so that she can treat her with intensive behavioral modification therapy. Her parents agreed to this.

Connell started setting extreme constraints on the young kid asking her to seek permission for each and everything. She used to lock her at night. In less than twelve months, she started developing empathy, stopped self-harming, and repented of her treatment of her brother.

Back to Normal Life

The ‘child of rage’ now no longer bears the trauma of her father’s actions and she is fully recovered now. As she grew, RAD diagnosis appeared as though it was never there. She pursued her studies in nursing at the University of Colorado and joined as a nurse at a Flagstaff Medical Center. She also authored a book titled “More Than a Thread of Hope”.

She also won an award by Modern-Day Florence Nightingale Nursing Excellence Awards for her contribution.

Her winning bio on Nurse.com states, “One of Thomas’ most striking attributes as a mentor is her ability to focus on and add to existing strengths. She handles confrontation, correction, and errors in a consistently positive manner, invariably fostering professional growth and learning”.

Thomas has humility and never flaunts the fact that she is an extremely intelligent and gifted clinician. I love being a nurse in the neonatal ICU, and to be rewarded for doing what I love is an absolute honor,” it added.

Personal life

Beth Thomas is leading a normal life with her husband in Flagstaff, Arizona. She married her secretive husband on 18th November 2016.

She is away from the glare of media and not active on social media as well. As such it is tough to know if the couple has any kids in their six years of marriage.

She also takes part in seminars and webinars about reactive attachment disorder with her second adoptive mother, Nancy Thomas. She has also co-authored a few books.

Thomas and her mom Nancy jointly run the “Families By Design” company which helps families deal with children suffering from RAD.

Documentary Movie

Child of Rage movie was based on her life and it is a true story depicting her childhood tragedies. She suffered from severe behavioral problems as she lost her mother when she was an infant and in the process missed the love of her mother.

The American biographical drama television movie featuring Ashley Peldon and Mel Harris was directed by Larry Peerce. The shooting of the film was held in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. The premiere of the film happened in 1992 via CBS.

What are your thoughts on the Beth Thomas story? Feel free to share your thoughts in our comments section below!

Archana Kabra
Archana Kabra
Archana Kabra is a Freelance Writer and has been extensively writing stuff related to Entertainment, Lifestyle, and Technology. She is also an ardent music lover. Twitter handle: @archana153sarda


  1. “Attachment Therapy” (aka Rage Reduction, Holding Therapy, Rebirthing, Compression Therapy, Nancy Thomas parenting) is denounced by the mental health professions as child abuse. There have been many high profile criminal child abuse and death cases linked to this “therapy” and parenting method. This practice has been around since the 1980s, but fewer than 5 survivors, like Beth Thomas, have have endorsed this practice as helpful.

  2. It should also be mentioned that Connell Watkins was convicted of killing an eleven year old girl who was a patient in 2000.


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