Truesee's Daily Wonder

Truesee presents the weird, wild, wacky and world news of the day.

Saturday, January 31, 2009

 

Single Woman, 33, Who Gave Birth To 8 Babies Already Has 6 Children

 By Jessica Garrison, Andrew Blankstein and Jeff Gottlieb
January 30, 2009

The woman who gave birth to octuplets this week already has six young children and never expected that the fertility treatment she received would result in eight more babies, her mother said Thursday.

The woman, who has not been publicly identified, had embryos implanted last year, and "they all happened to take," Angela Suleman said, leading to the eight births Monday. "I looked at those babies. They are so tiny and so beautiful."

She acknowledged that raising 14 children is a daunting prospect.

"It's going to be difficult," Suleman added, noting that her daughter's father is going back to Iraq, where neighbors said he worked as a contractor, to help support the expanded family.

The mother of the octuplets lives on a well-kept cul-de-sac in Whittier, where more than a dozen reporters and camera crews descended Thursday.

Neighbors said she and her six children -- ages 7, 6, 5, 3 and 2-year-old twins -- live there with her mother. Her marital status is unknown. Family members did not answer the door, but when a reporter called the home asking for Suleman, she spoke briefly.

According to her account, when her daughter discovered that she was expecting multiple babies, doctors gave her the option of selectively reducing the number of embryos, but she declined.

"What do you suggest she should have done? She refused to have them killed," Suleman said as the sound of children could be heard in the background. "That is a very painful thing."

The information about the family came amid growing questions about the medical ethics of the case and how the woman came to carry eight babies to term.

Although the successful births at Kaiser Permanente Medical Center in Bellflower have received worldwide attention, they also have prompted disapproval from some medical ethicists and fertility specialists, who argue that high-number multiple births endanger the mother and also frequently lead to long-term health and developmental problems for the children.

Under the guidelines of the American Society for Reproductive Medicine, U.S. doctors normally would not implant more than two embryos at a time in a woman under the age of 35. After that age it is more difficult to become pregnant. The mother of the octuplets is believed to be 33, based on available public records.

The doctors who delivered the babies held a news conference Thursday in which they were peppered with questions about how the hospital handled the woman's pregnancy.

Hospital officials said the woman came to Kaiser already in her 12th week of pregnancy. They did not say where she received the fertility treatment.

Dr. Harold Henry, a member of the delivery team, said doctors counseled her regarding the options and risks -- among them aborting some of the fetuses.

"Our goal is to provide the best possible care, no matter what the situation or circumstances are," Henry said. "What I do is just explain the facts. I always talk about the risks. The mother weighs those options, and she chooses the option based on spiritual or personal makeup."

Henry said the eight children would "require quite a bit of resources. You need many diapers, bottles, car seats, food -- quite a bit."

Doctors, nurses and other medical personnel had planned for the births for months. They were expecting to deliver seven babies but discovered the eighth during delivery. It took only five minutes to deliver all eight by Caesarean section.

The births marked only the second time that octuplets had been successfully delivered in the United States.

At the news conference, Dr. Karen Maples read a statement from the mother in which she thanked the Kaiser staff for its help and support.

"We understand that you are all curious about the arrival of the octuplets, and we appreciate your respect for our family's privacy. Please know in our own time, we will share additional details about this miraculous experience," the statement said.

"The babies continue to grow strong every day and make good progress. My family and I are ecstatic about their arrival. Needless to say, the eighth was a surprise to us all, but a blessing as well."

"We thank all of you for the positive thoughts, prayers and generosity."

Already, Kaiser officials said, the mother is receiving gift baskets, sealed envelopes and flowers.

Times staff writers Esmeralda Bermudez, Janet Lundblad, Sam Quinones, Richard Winton and Alan Zarembo contributed to this report.

 

UPDATE!!!!

Octuplets' Family Filed For Bankruptcy

BELLFLOWER, Calif., Jan. 30, 2009

 

CBS)  CBS News has learned that the family of the octuplets born this week outside Los Angeles filed for bankruptcy and abandoned a home a little over a year-and-a-half ago.

Early Show national correspondent Hattie Kauffman says the mother is in her mid-thirties and lives with her parents.

There's been no mention of the octuplets' father, Kauffman observes.

The grandfather, she adds, is apparently going to head back to his native Iraq to earn money for the growing family. He told CBS News he's a former Iraqi military man.

Kauffman reported Thursday, and the octuplets' maternal grandmother now confirms to the Los Angeles Times, that
the babies' mother already had six young children.

And a family acquaintance had told Kauffman that two of the six other kids are twins, and the six range in age from about two to about seven.

The mother's name is still being kept under wraps.

But her mother, Angela Suleman, also tells the newspaper her daughter conceived the octuplets through a fertility program.

Suleman told the Times her daughter had embryos implanted and, "They all happened to take."

On
The Early Show Friday, the scientific director of an Atlanta-area fertility clinic blasted whichever clinic did the implantations, saying he's "stunned."

Doctors at the hospital where the octuplets were born, Kaiser Permanente Bellflower Medical Center in Bellflower, Calif., some 17 miles southeast of L.A., say the patient came to them already three months pregnant.

Asked at a news conference whether fertility assistance should be provided for a mother who already has multiple children, Dr. Harold Henry, part of the team that delivered the octuplets, said, "Kaiser has no policy on that, adding that doctors counseled the woman on her options.

"The options," said Henry, "were to continue the pregnancy or to selectively abort. The patient chose to continue the pregnancy."

Dr. Karen Maples, who also helped deliver the octuplets, read a statement from the mother saying, "My family and I are ecstatic about all of their arrivals."

The woman and her children live in a neighborhood of small, one-story homes, Kauffman reports, all with two-to-three bedrooms at most. Soon, she pointed out, there will be 14 children and at least three adults living in one of the homes -- until the grandfather heads back to his native Iraq,

Kauffman says unanswered questions include where the woman got the fertility treatments and how they were paid for.

On The Early Show Friday, Michael Tucker, scientific director of
Georgia Reproductive Specialists, says all these developments leave him "stunned. As the story's unfolded and it's gone from the potential use of just fertility drugs, or misuse thereof, to actual, apparently, IVF (in-vitro fertilization) with transfer of embryos, this is just remarkable to me that any practitioner in our field of reproductive medicine would undertake such a practice."

Tucker, who has a doctorate in reproductive physiology, says it's "absolutely" possible the octuplets' mother got pregnant with them by taking fertility drugs on her own without the help of a clinic, "and that seemed the most plausible scenario, simply because the profession, we're policed by the
American Society of Reproductive Medicine, has focused so minutely on the fact that we need to reduce the number of embryos that we transfer. We really are all about seeking the one, the one embryo that's going to make the healthy, single-born baby.

"And this kind of multiple plethora excess of babies is too much of a good thing. And it's rather a slap in the face of the whole profession, simply because it's going in the wrong direction.

"And it's unfortunate, because the media pick up on this and seem to go, I think, Arthur Kaplan from UPenn (University of Pennsylvania) said the media tend to go goo-goo gaga over this and, in fact, it's really a bit of a medical disaster."

"Had she walked into a fertility clinic and said, 'Listen, I've got other children, the oldest seven, the youngest two,' co-anchor Julie Chen asked Tucker, "is there any ethical responsibility on the clinic's part to say, 'I'm not going to treat you,' or, 'You know what? This is not a good idea?" '

"Suffice to say," Tucker responded, "I've been in this business for 25 years now. And it's pretty much standard practice in all clinics to have some form of psychological evaluation of the patient. Also, their sociological circumstances. And I'm stunned, actually, that a clinic would proceed to treat a patient in this circumstance and then even to get to perhaps the transfer of embryos and ponder the transfer in, I believe, the lady's mid-30s, a 35-year-old -- she should be receiving two embryos, maximum, as a transfer into her uterus to have had eight transferred is somewhat -- is extremely irresponsible."


Comments:
You beat me to it, truesee. I just signed on to ask the question "Who the heck would take fertility drugs when she already has twin 2 year olds, a 3, 5, 6 and 7 year old?" I love children and think each baby is a blessing, but who is going to pay for all their care? I read that she had 16 nurses in the hospital. 14 children, single mother... I wanted to start a thread on this yesterday, but I was afraid of the negative reaction. This woman is a walking baby machine, that is, if she can still walk!!
The question has already been answered the tax payers will pick up the tab. It cost $1,000 per baby to be in the nursery and that does not cover the cost of doctors, nurses, pediatricians. and every specialist that you can imagine. I love childred and babies are gifts from the Father however, this is ridiculous to have 14 kids and only 33, single and living with your mom.
In an interview her mom said she was taking care of the previous 6 and told her when she brings the rest home from the hospital she was on her own. Smart mom!!!!!!!

Wonder if the doctor who performed fertility treatments ... put her through psychological testing first.????????
Excuse me for hogging your blog but just found this article. We haven't heard the last of the firestorm she's created.

" Two children should be limit, says green guru

Sarah-Kate Templeton, Health Editor

"COUPLES who have more than two children are being “irresponsible” by creating an unbearable burden on the environment, the government’s green adviser has warned.

Jonathon Porritt, who chairs the government’s Sustainable Development Commission, says curbing population growth through contraception and abortion must be at the heart of policies to fight global warming. He says political leaders and green campaigners should stop dodging the issue of environmental harm caused by an expanding population.

A report by the commission, to be published next month, will say that governments must reduce population growth through better family planning.

“I am unapologetic about asking people to connect up their own responsibility for their total environmental footprint and how they decide to procreate and how many children they think are appropriate,” Porritt said. ..."

http://women.timesonline.co.uk/tol/life_and_style/women/families/article5627634.ece
This girl because I sure can't call her a lady reminds me of one of those teenage girls who are featured on the talk shows. "Mom I'm having a baby and your going to take care of it." It just tares me up of all the people of the world today who are breeding them but can't feed them. Who has all the time in the world to procriate but no time to educate. When I think of Welfare the name it self pretty much sums it up. Nothing is Well and nothing is Fair. Hopefully in this administration they will find a way to reward those who don't take advantage of the system. I can remember as a young girl working 2 and 3 jobs and having to pay in because I had no dependents. Now what kind of message did you think that sent. It is so sad how so many can be so selfish. I know a lady who has 14kids, five sets of twins and I don't think that it will be one scholar in the bunch. They are all angry and just belittle each other all day. Very little structure is in the home most of them stay kicked out of school where is the intervention here.
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