Nadya Suleman, a.k.a. OctomomUnless you've been living under a rock or on another planet, you know who Nadya Suleman is (or at least you know her as "Octomom"). For those of you who have taken up residence under said rock, I'll give you a brief overview. Suleman earned notoriety in 2009 when she gave birth to octuplets, only the second set of eight babies to be delivered alive in the U.S. That alone caused quite a stir, but then it was revealed that she already had six children at home, all of which were conceived through IVF.
As you can imagine, a single mother with 14 children will face quite a financial strain. In the early days of the octuplets' life, Suleman took advantage of the interest and signed on to do several TV specials, and even had a reality show set to air in England chronicling her daily life. As more details emerged about her life and what many people dubbed "selfish behavior," the offers quickly dried up and the money stopped rolling in.Read More: 7 Things Not To Say To A Mom Of Twins
In 2010, her home in La Habra, Calif., was facing foreclosure, and Suleman was unemployed. Due to the generosity of others and with the help of her lawyer, she managed to save her home -- for the time being. But she still needed cash. So, last month, after saying she never would, Suleman posed topless for an overseas magazine, raking in about $10,000 for the spread.
Still, it wasn't enough. Now, after again saying she never would, Suleman has applied for and received government assistance, according to TMZ.com. She gets $2,000 per month, and that money can only be used for food. But the residents of California are far from happy about it. Since going public with the news, she has received hate mail, angry phone calls, and death threats. One resident even acted out physically. TMZ also reported that sometime during the early morning hours Saturday, someone busted out the window of the family car and left a handwritten note with a simple but ominous message: "Leave California or You Will Die."
I certainly understand the anger behind the firestorm. Why should the residents of California have to pay for the mistakes of one woman? I would be angry, too. But there's a bigger picture that we need to keep sight of. There are 14 children that need help, and it's not their fault, either. They didn't ask to be brought into this world, and they're going to have a horribly tough time navigating through their lives.
Three of her children were born with disabilities. None of her children will likely ever know who their father is. They will have to read and come to terms with interviews in which their own mother says she hates children, and it was a mistake to have them. They will read the articles where total strangers discuss how horrible their mother is and that her children never should have been born. And now, they will have to contend with the fact people want to see their mother dead.
That's more than any child should have to contend with, but unfortunately, 14 children will have to go through it. Children and Family Services has been monitoring the situation since before the birth of the octuplets, and they remain involved. We can only hope that Suleman is doing what she can to help her children and that they survive all the hardships that are on their way to them. We shouldn't be adding to it.
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