Bethany Hamilton’s Son Found Out About Her Shark Attack Through His Cousins: ‘Kids Will Be Kids’


Bethany Hamilton With Sons
Bethany Hamilton with her sons, Tobias and Wesley. Courtesy Bethany Hamilton/Instagram

Word travels fast! Bethany Hamilton didn’t want to tell her 4-year-old son, Tobias, the details of her shark attack, but he found out anyway.

“I actually never really explained it to him,” the professional surfer, 29, told Us Weekly exclusively on Wednesday, October 16, while promoting her Bethany Hamilton: Unstoppable documentary. “I think his cousins told him. Kids will be kids. Word gets out.”

While the little one has seen her new film, Hamilton hasn’t shown him Soul Surfer, the 2011 movie based on her memoir in which the Hawaii native is played by AnnaSophia Robb.

“Maybe when he’s older if it naturally happens, but I wouldn’t go out of my way to show it to him just because I want him to be a bit older,” she explained. “The shark attack scene is a bit gory and kind of crazy and hectic. I don’t want him to have fears, even though he knows what happened.”

Hamilton, who also shares 16-month-old son, Wesley, with her husband, Adam Dirks, is teaching both of her kids to follow in her footsteps. “My 4-year-old surfs,” she told Us. “He started catching his own waves and he loves the ocean, so it’s fun. [Wesley] usually screams the whole way, but then he’s stoked to be in the water. … I just make him go on a wave when we’re out with big brother. I’m like, ‘We gotta go with him!’”

That being said, the Soul Surfer author isn’t “pushing” for her sons to be professional surfers. “I just hope they love the ocean,” she explained. “I just want them to find their own little passions and then if it happens to be surfing, I’ll be there cheering them on!”

The Amazing Race alum hopes that her documentary motivates viewers to push through their hardships. “My life has emulated a lot of kind of unstoppable tones and I hope that people will be inspired in their own journey to live unstoppable and overcome things and find passions and keep stoking on them,” Hamilton told Us.

Bethany Hamilton: Unstoppable was released on home entertainment on Tuesday, October 15.

With reporting by Carly Sloane

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