There has only been one reported case of this in the US prior to Suleman’s and both were not natural pregnancies but rather, IVF pregnancies. Suleman had six embryos implanted in her that ended up producing eight children as two of those embryos split into two sets of twins. While she didn’t think in her wildest dreams that all six would take and then produce two more, she did want to have two more children.
Her doctor at the time implanted all six, against regulations (he was later expelled from the medical board and is no longer allowed to practice medicine). The more surprising issue here that Nadya already had six children at home waiting for her – why would she do this to herself? Alas, Nadya stated in interviews that she gets her life’s satisfaction from children rather than relationships and loves her children more than anything else. Sadly, in another interview, she was quoted as saying that she regrets being a mother in the first place. We aren’t sure what to believe but chose to buy into her love of her children since we want to give her the benefit of the doubt.
Nadya has endured a lot since having her children, which had catapulted her and the brood to stardom due to the media spotlight that was put on them throughout her pregnancy and birth. Suleman was on welfare when she was pregnant with the children and had to do a lot of shady things as they were growing up to make sure that they had a roof over their heads. We took a look into her life.
She has 14 children
There was so much press about Nadya’s eight babies that people forgot that she had six additional children at home. Suleman has 10 sons and four daughters total. The problem with Nadya in this case was the fact that she was an unemployed woman living on food stamps and could barely provide for her six children before she even delivered the eight babies.
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All of her children are the result of IVF
Nadya started her IVF journey when she was just 21 years old in 1997. Her initial phsician was Dr. Michael Kamrava, the same doctor who in October of 2009 was expelled from the American Society for Reproductive Medicine. Nadya’s first child was born in 2001, her second in 2002 and tow more pregnancies thereafter, one pregnancy with a set of twins. It was in 2008 that she asked Dr. Kamrava to put all of her remaining embryos in her last treatment.
Who is Nadya Suleman?
Let’s go back to a time when Nadya Suleman was a childless woman. Without her crew of 14 children, she was just a California woman who was actually on a bright path in life. Suleman has a bachelor’s degree in child and adolescent development from California State university. She was in her graduate program when she conceived the octuplets.
Why so many children?
On why she had so many children, Nadya said, “Looking back, I’ve always coveted that connection, that attachment to another being. And the connection felt safer with children than with a significant other, more predictable,” said Suleman. “The security — I was hungering for the security.” There are those out there, probably most, who would say that having so many children is downright irresponsible on her behalf.
Who is the father?
This is the million dollar question. Nadya’s mother says that the father of all 14 children is one donor named David Solomon. The children have that last name as well. Suleman herself said that she dated Solomon but decided he wasn’t for her. She did, however, ask him for his specimen so that she could produce his children. Nadya’s father has stated that the whole David Solomon story is a lie and that the father is unknown.
How does she support them financially?
Nadya doesn’t use food stamps anymore, instead using the money she makes from television appearances about her and her children. “We’re surviving,” she stated. “We’re so busy going, going, going, moving, moving, moving, trying to keep up that you don’t have time to think, to reflect, to feel anything. And it is a choice. I own all of the responsibility for my poor choices in the past.”
There are many people out there, including us, who happen to think that Nadya Suleman looks a whole lot like Angelina Jolie. Nadya has clearly had some plastic surgery done to her face (and perhaps her body). She has had her nose done, her lips injected and her cheeks implanted. Nadya denies looking like Angelina but the similarities speak for themselves.
She picked Biblical names for her octuplets
Nadya named her last eight children, the octuplets, with names from the Bible. The order of the names are: Noah, Jonah, Jeremiah, Josiah, Isaiah, Makai, Nariyah, and Maliyah. There are two girls and six boys in this batch of babies. The names of her other children are Amerah, Calyssa, Elijah, Joshua, Aidan, and Caleb. That is one seriously large brood!
Does she regret her children?
“You can’t regret children. But the choices were childish. They were immature. They were selfish. Are we defined by our choices? Our behavior? Our actions? No. I don’t believe that defines our worth. I feel as though I wasn’t thinking at that time,” she went on. “If I could go back, would I make different choices? Maybe. At this point, I know and I need to teach my children that we need to learn, we need to grow, we need to keep on growing and transcending, and we need to make the best possible choices. And when we make poor choices, all you can do is really, really learn from that and grow from that. Try not to repeat it.”
Her net worth
There was a time when Nadya Suleman was worth $1 million. She was worth that much thanks to the media coverage over her pregnancy and the much more extensive coverage after she gave birth to the octuplets. Today, Nadya is worth close to nothing. If anything, Nadya has filed for bankruptcy. Her La Habra home has been foreclosed on. Her parent’s home has also been auctioned off as a result of significant debt as a result of helping their daughter.
Will she have MORE children?
“At this point in my life, that is the furthest thing that I would ever even imagine,” she said. “I cannot grow additional eyes or hands. I’m not an octopus. I can barely give them — nobody could, not two people, not four people even could give them — all the emotional, psychological and physical needs. You can’t possibly.” Well, at least that part is right.
In an effort to support her lifestyle and children, Nadya decided it would be a good idea to enter into the world of adult entertainment. In 2012, Nadya was in the adult film Octomom Home Alone. Suleman has also danced at adult clubs. Her film actually won an AVN Award in 2013 for Best Celebrity Adult Tape. We wouldn’t go as far as saying that but that was nice of them.
Trouble with the law
Nadya has been accused of welfare fraud back in 2014. It was said that Suleman failed to report much of her earnings that year and that it was not the first time. This was well after her home had been foreclosed upon and her adult entertainment career had saved her from homelessness. Nadya plead no contest to the accusations and was sentenced to 200 hours of community service.
A mother’s determination
“I will do anything in my power to secure what I need to, on my own, without exploiting my children, to secure revenue so I can provide that,” she said. “I know that sounds selfish, but I breathe for my children. I wake up for my children. I will do anything to secure the revenue on my own to provide for these kids.”
“I fully exploited and dehumanized myself with the [adult video] and the stripping. I was so desperate we were on the verge of homelessness, so rather than put my kids in front of the camera I decided to put myself out there. The consequences of exploiting myself was deep toxic shame and self-disgust. To continue, I had to numb — and that’s when I started with the prescription [medication].”
A stint in boxing
One of the many things that Suleman tried to do to make money for herself and her family was a short stint in the boxing ring. In 2011, she and other D-list celebrities stepped into the ring to try and make some money for themselves while embarrassing themselves more than anything else. The boxing career wasn’t for her, but it will always be able to be found on YouTube.
Her eldest child
Amerah is Nadya’s eldest. On her birthday this year, she posted this photo and captioned it: “Dear Amerah, One of the most important lessons I try to teach you all is that every person that crosses your path is fighting a battle you know nothing about. Be kind, compassionate, and patient with people always; and aware that sometimes the brighter the smile the deeper the suffering. By looking at your beautiful smile no one could imagine the struggle you face, that we all face, daily…”
Many public figures had a lot to say about Octomom. Gloria Allred, the famed women’s rights attorney wasn’t even on her side as she criticized her as a mother and as a person. Dr. Phil McGraw thought she was a selfish woman for bringing new lives into a life that was already unstable, and Oprah Winfrey had her on her show twice, both of which painted Nadya in the dimmest of lights.
There was a time that Nadya was married. From 1996 to 2008, Nadya was married to Marcos Gutierrez, but the two separated back in 2000. None of the children belong to Marcos, who ironically enough divorced Nadya due to the fact that she couldn’t have children without IVF, something he found repulsive. Looking back now, her ex-husband wishes her nothing but the very best.
See this photo of Nadya? She posted this one to Instagram with the caption: “Calyssa found this pic today and asked if she was in my belly with Caleb here. I was only three WEEKS (nearly one month) pregnant with the little 8! I started showing by 3 days.” Can you imagine how hard it must have been to carry all eight of those children, the weight alone must have had her sitting all the time.
How does she stay so thin?
Anyone who has seen Nadya knows that she is a thin woman. She wasn’t always thin, as when she was younger she had more meat on her bones, but since she was introduced to the public her figure has been small. How does she do it? She goes to the gym obsessively and there are those who say that her substance abuse was one of the causes for her thin frame.
Two of her children have disabilities
Two of Nadya’s 14 children have disabilities. Little Aiden and Calyssa, who are two of the older six children and not one of the octuplets, have been diagnosed with disabilities. She discusses this lightly when she said, “Every day I wake up around 5 and get the kids ready for school,” she says. “I work with Aidan, who’s 11 and is disabled, to get him ready, and one of my twins [Calyssa, 9] is autistic so I give her extra nurturing and attention. Then are four school drop-offs!”
While she doesn’t press veganism on her children, Nadya herself is a devout vegan (which is how she has her awesome figure as well). She posted this photo to her Instagram page and captioned it: “What raw, ethical vegan becomes stuck in a state of cognitive dissonance in the In and Out drive thru, ordering decayed carcass for their teen? While drinking a healthy turmeric raw shake.” Funny, Nadya, really funny.
She has been quoted saying she regrets her children
Sometime between when she had the babies and today, there was a time that Nadya regretted her children. She was quoted as saying, “If I knew then what I know now they wouldn’t be here. What was I thinking? I’m not a maternal person. It’s hard for me to be attached to anyone which is why I’ve been celibate for 13 years. I’m asexual and have no desires at all. So all that energy goes on the kids.”
In that same interview, Suleman goes on to talk about wanting just one more child and not another eight! “I wanted one more baby after the six. I thought “I’m on a roll, what’s one more?” she said. “I refused selective reduction before they were born but I didn’t choose to have all these.” Whether we believe her or not, we hope the children don’t ever read this interview.
Nadya entered a rehabilitation center for anxiety, stress, and exhaustion back in October of 2012. It was from that time that she was given Xanax for her stress and anxiety. It was after this that it was said that Nadya became addicted to the prescription medication and had to be entirely taken off of it. With everything that is going on in her life, we have to admit it would cause us anxiety and exhaustion as well.
The way she used to look
Before babies, before plastic surgery and before a life in front of the media spotlight, Nadya Suleman was a daddy’s girl. She posted this photo with her father and another family member from when she was just a teenage girl herself. She captioned the photos: “The unconditional love I have for my children began with learning how much I was loved by my family..”
There have been accusations by those who have been in her home as to the state of the home as well as the children. A hair dresser who came to Suleman’s home said that the children and home were filthy and that they were not being cared for properly. “The kids are in desperate need of help, and I tried to help and she’s not open to anyone helping her.” After that statement came out, Child services arrived at her home, but not before a cleaning crew had arrived.
The octuplets today
The octuplets are now 8 years old and are looking like normal children. They are all in the same school and are thriving children. The home life must be hectic, what with 14 children running around. Child services has been around the children since they were young so as to make sure that the living situation was suitable for them.
Nadya Suleman today
First of all, she now goes by Natalie, her birth name. The world didn’t know that Nadya was actually born Natalie until a few months ago. Her most recent interview was with In Touch Weekly where she said, “I admit that I made many mistakes in my life and that I’m imperfect. I make mistakes constantly,” she explains. “But my children were not a mistake — they were meant to be here.”
What put her life back on track
There was a time there that Nadya was digging a very deep whole for herself financially. In order to make the money she needed to get her children fed and a roof over their heads, she went to the lowest of the low – stripping and adult entertainment (like we mentioned earlier). What made her stop more than anything was her daughter playing with her stripper clothing. “She put on these heels and she was strutting around in them and that was it.”
Her eldest daughter’s words
Amerah, Nadya’s eldest child, recalled the way life was after the birth of the octuplets: “In the beginning, it was very difficult,” she said. “I had so many people asking questions and I was like, ‘She’s my mom. She’s no different than anyone else.’” There was noise in the house on a constant basis and she needed to grow up fast in order to help her mother.
Nadya went on to say that she realized what she was doing was rubbing off on her children. “After I had observed my daughter beginning to emulate me, I saw her going down that same potentially destructive path, and I realized at that moment I’d rather be homeless in my van with all 14 kids than continuing down this path. It was not what I wanted for my children.”
Going by the name Natalie these days, she is working hard to stay on the right path, the path away from stripping and selling herself for money. “When I woke up and I went back to my roots, my helping profession, and my kids, we were struggling financially but it didn’t matter. I never felt so free and so happy in my life.”
Addiction to Xanax
“I’m 100 percent natural and vegan so to go on any medication is against my beliefs but I was taking Xanax every day. I couldn’t do an interview or go on camera without taking it. I never took more than was prescribed so I wasn’t abusing it but for me I’m not accustomed to taking anything and I wasn’t able to exploit myself and do what I was doing without it, which became a problem – it wasn’t healthy.”
What critics have to say
“Some critics argue that Suleman has failed to fully consider her family from day one. The mother chose to have another IVF even after she had already given birth to six children, which she was already unable to support, and who had special needs from birth. The octuplets were also born premature, putting them at an increased risk for autism and a handful of birth defects.”
What psychologists think
“According to the popular Dr. Phil McGraw, Suleman suffers from “Pollyanna Disconnect,” a mental state where an individual displays an inordinate amount of naivete when dealing with reality, rushing wholeheartedly and optimistically into situations without due consideration.” Nadya herself was on the Dr. Phil show and so what he had to say came from his own time with her.
NYT on the fame monster
“Two weeks after delivering her eight babies, Suleman appeared with Ann Curry for an interview broadcast by NBC, followed by another with Dr. Phil. She soon cut a deal with RadarOnline (owned in part by American Media, which also publishes National Enquirer and Star magazine) to allow a film crew into her house to generate material for its Web site, which published explosive stories daily. Suleman’s mother gave an interview to Us Weekly, and her father appeared on Oprah, sparking family squabbles that in turn became fodder for new tabloid stories.”
The kids hate the paparazzi
Since they were infants they knew that photographers were always going to be there. The director of the documentary about Nadya and her children said, “When we first came here,” McLeod marveled, “the kids hated us. They were shouting out the window: ‘Go away! Go away!’ They had already learned to hate the paparazzi. And we were the paparazzi. Now that we’ve been here a while longer, they like us.”
Baby addiction is actually a thing, apparently. “There’s not always a simple reason why people create uncommonly large families. Some parents cite religious or cultural reasons for having many children. Some say they just love kids and feel they can provide a big family with a stable, loving home. Some want to help a child in need so they add to their biological families through adoption. But sometimes the desire to keep having children can be rooted in complex psychological issues dating as far back as one’s childhood. In certain cases, experts say, it can become a compulsion, an obsession or even a “baby addiction.”