Is the mom of octuplets a single parent with a single obsession?
The methods used by the woman who gave birth to octuplets are definitely up for debate. According to reports, 33-year-old Nadya Suleman (already a mother of six) underwent controversial fertility treatments, allowing her to give birth to eight -- count 'em, eight -- newborns. Nadya's own mother, Angela Suleman, claims her daughter is "addicted to having children" and has been obsessed with having them since she was a teenager.
Now fertility experts are questioning the mother's choice to get such controversial fertility treatments again and carry a multiple pregnancy like this in the first place, given the fact she already has six children. And some are starting to question Nadya Suleman's mental state.
There is no medical term for a driving need to have many, many children, but Suleman's desire, says Sudeepta Varma, M.D., Clinical Assistant Professor of Psychiatry at the NYU School of Medicine, could fall under the category of an addiction. "Having kids, like having a glass of wine, in and of itself is not a bad thing," explains Dr. Varma. "It's when it's done at the expense of developing other areas of your life or overwhelming your resources that it becomes a possible issue."
"Overwhelming your resources" is an understatement in this case. Suleman is certainly going to have some deep financial trouble on her hands. The mom of fourteen has no partner or job, and her mother recently filed for bankruptcy.
But in the end, cautions Dr. Varma, this decision was hers. "We're not limited to one child in this country," she says. "It's not regulated by law." No one questions Angelina Jolie's desire to have multiple children -- but since she's got a gazillion dollars, nobody judges her for it.
If money was no object, how many kids would you have?