Child of Rage: Abused children that abuse others


FOTCM Member
Very powerful video about a little girl named Beth who, at first, appears to be totally psychopathic. But, when you learn her background, you begin to understand why. Actual therapy interviews and interviews with her parents.


Jedi Master
FOTCM Member
It's so simple

The Golden Rule, usually quoted as, "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you," in its King James bible locution, is not primarily a statement of altruistic loving benevolence towards other people.

It is, instead, a fundamentally practical statement of enlightened self-interest, proceeding from a simple understanding that "what goes around, comes around", or to put it another way, people give what they receive. Only stupid people consistently fail to understand this universal truth about human interaction.


Jedi Master
Hi, I found the video subtitled in Spanish. Here it is.


Jedi Master
FOTCM Member
Very powerful indeed. It's nice to see that she came a long way from wanting to inflict pain on everyone. It reminded me of what Tim McGregor was saying on the SOTT show not long ago, how empathy can be demonstrated and spread to others.


FOTCM Member
Disturbing and sad as it was to watch, I am glad that her parents were caring and understanding to recognize the problem and do something about it so early. It might be long, but she has a chance to live a normal life and connect with people. How many children like her go untreated, end up in juvenile homes and later in prisons or mental institutions? What good is that to anyone? Especially when there are ways to approach it? It makes me so mad! :mad:


Dagobah Resident
I found this article meanwhile I was browsing around this topic:

Martin H. Teicher is an associate professor of psychiatry at Harvard
Medical School, director of the Developmental Biopsychiatry Research Program
at McLean Hospital in Belmont, Mass., and chief of the Developmental Psychopharmacology Laboratory
at the Mailman Research Center at McLean.


Maltreatment at an early age can have enduring negative effects on a
child's brain development and function.

In 1994 Boston Police were shocked to discover a malnourished four-year-old locked away in a filthy Roxbury apartment, where he lived in dreadfully squalid conditions.
Worse, the boy's tiny hands were found to have been horrendously burned.
It emerged that his drug-abusing mother had held the child's hands under a steaming hot faucet to punish him for eating her boyfriend'd food, despite her instructions not to do so.
The ailing youngster had been given no medical care at all. The disturbing story made national headlines. Later placed in foster care, the boy received skin grafts to help his scarred hands to regain function. But even though the victim's physical wounds were treated, recent research finding s indicate that any injuries inflicted to his developing mind may never truly heal.

Though an extreme example, the notorious case is unfortunately not all that uncommon. Every year child welfare agencies in the US receive more then three million allegations of childhood abuse and neglect and collect sufficient evidence to substantiate more than a million instances.

It is hardly surprising to us that research reveals a strong link between physical, sexual and emotional mistreatment of children and the development of psychiatric problems. But in the early 1990s mental health professionals believed that emotional and social difficulties occurred mainly through psychological means. Childhood maltreatment was understood either to foster the development of intrapsychic defense mechanisms that proved to be self-defeating in adulthood or to arrest psychosocial development, leaving a "wounded child" within. Researchers thought of the damage as basically a software problem amenable to reprogramming via therapy or simply erasable through the exhortation "Get over it".

New investigations into the consequences opt early maltreatment, including work my colleagues and I have done at McLean Hospital in Belmont, Mass., and at Harvard Medical School, appear to tell a different story.. Because childhood abuse occurs during the critical formative time when the brain is being physically sculpted by experience, the impact of severe stress can leave an indelible imprint on its structure and function. Such and abuse, it seems, induces a cascade of molecular neurobiological effects that irreversibly alter neural development.

Extreme Personalities

The aftermath of childhood abuse can manifest itself at any age in a variety of ways. Internally it can appear as depression, anxiety, suicidal thoughts or post traumatic stress; it can also be expressed outward as aggression, impulsiveness, delinquency, hyperactivity or substance abuse. One of the more perplexing psychiatric conditions that is strongly associated with ill-treatment is borderline personality disorder. Someone with this disfunction characteristically sees others in black and white terms, often first putting a person on a pedestal, then vilifying the same person after some perceived slight or betrayal. Those afflicted are also prone to volcanic outbursts of anger and transient episodes of paranoia or psychosis. They typically have a history of intense, unstable relationships, feel empty or unsure of their identity, commonly try to escape through substance abuse, and experience self-destructive or suicidal impulses.

While treating three patines with borderline personality disorder 1984, begin to suspect that their early exposure to various forms of maltreatment had altered the development of their limbic systems. The limbic system is a collection of interconnected brain nuclei(neural centers) that play a pivotal role in the regulation of emotion and memory. Two critically important limbic regions are the hippocampus and the amygdala, which lie below the cortex in the temporal lobe. The hippocampus is thought to be important in the formation and retrieval of both verbal and emotional memories, whereas the amygdala is concerned with creating the emotional content of memory- for example, feelings relating to fear conditioning and aggressive responses.

My McLean colleagues Yutaka Ito and Carol A. Glod and I Wondered whether childhood abuse might disrupt the healthy maturation of the brain regions. Could early maltreatment stimulate the amygdala into a state of heightened electrical irritability or damage the developing hippocampus through excessive exposure to stress hormones? We reasoned further that hippocampal harm or amygdaloid over excitation could produce symptoms similar to those experienced by patients with temporal lobe epilepsy (TLE), which sporadically disrupts the function of these brain nuclei. During TLE seizures, patines remain conscious while experiencing a range of psychomotor symptoms brought on by electrical storms within these regions. Associated effects include the abrupt onset of tingling, numbness or vertigo; motor-related manifestations such as uncontrollable staring or twitching; and automatic symptoms such as flushing, nausea or the "pit in your stomach" feeling one gets in a fast-rising elevator. TLE can also cause hallucinations or illusions in any of the five senses. It is not unusual, for instance, for one afflicted with this condition to experience Alice-in-Wonderland -like distortions of the sizes or shapes of objects.

Original article:


The Living Force
FOTCM Member
That was difficult to watch. But gave hope in that she seemed to recover herself and heal. Thanks for sharing this, lots to think about.

Approaching Infinity

FOTCM Member
SeekinTruth said:
That was difficult to watch. But gave hope in that she seemed to recover herself and heal. Thanks for sharing this, lots to think about.

Looks like she's a nurse now. Here's a link to a short piece on an award she won: _


The Living Force
Very disturbing and painful to watch and listen to. The description of the abuse (both that she received and inflicted) was nauseating...

Because of her lack of emotions at the beginning of her treatment, she seems so mature for a 6 year-old!
Then, at the end, two years later (if I'm not mistaken), she recounts the event, she breaks down (so heartbreaking, that part!) and it's like her emotions make her a child again.

We could not help but search a bit about her (as I see Approaching Infinity did as well! :) ) and indeed she is a nurse now, has won an award, etc. We needed to check she was still doing OK, I guess. It seemed so impossible to really help that child who had become a monster, basically, because of bad treatment. I would have like to know how little Jonathan was faring as well.

An extremely interesting documentary indeed... Thanks, Laura!


The Living Force
I don't know what to think of this :
Beth Thomas grew into a mentally healthy woman. She obtained a degree in nursing and has authored a book entitled “More Than a Thread of Hope.” She and her adoptive mother Nancy Thomas established a clinic for children with severe behaviour disturbances.

Nancy Thomas wrote a book entitled Dandelion on my Pillow, Butcher Knife Beneath (Coping with Personal Problems). Nancy and Beth Thomas’ website is Since the original posting of this blog, the author has uncovered disturbing information about Nancy Thomas and her child therapy practices. To read a blog and watch a video about Thomas’s therapy strategies click here. **warning – video has disturbing content**

In an ironic endnote, Beth’s therapist, Connell Watkins performed a fatal attachment therapy session known as a “rebirth“ on a 10-year girl named Candace Newmaker and in doing so, asphyxiated the child. Watkins served seven years of a sixteen year prison sentence and was forbidden from working with children upon her release in 2008. Walker served 7 years of her 16 year sentence.

Candace’s death became the motivation for “Candace’s Law” against attachment therapy in several states. For detailed information about Candace Newmaker’s death and Walker and Ponder’s criminal convictions click here. Although Nancy Thomas was not involved in Newmaker’s death she continues to be associated with the clinic that has been held responsible. To read a blog criticizing Nancy Thomas’s AT parenting with children click here.


And another explanation here :

Two Attachment Therapists in Colorado were found guilty by a jury of reckless child-abuse resulting in the death of 10-year-old adoptee Candace Newmaker during a “rebirthing” session. Both are appealing their convictions, but have begun serving historic 16-year sentences in Colorado state prison.

Connell Watkins, a pioneer in the treatment of “Attachment disorder” in children, and her associate, Julie Ponder, a marriage and family therapist from California, were convicted after a grueling three-week trial.

Two assisting “therapy parents,” Brita St Clair and Jack McDaniel, originally faced identical charges, but in a plea bargain made after the others’ convictions, pled guilty to lesser felonies for negligent child-abuse and received 10 years’ probation and a thousand hours of community service.

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