She speaks out publicly for the first time.
Nadya Suleman, mom of the newborn octuplets, says she was lonely growing up as an only child, and wanted to have a large family because she "longed for certain connections and attachments with another person that [she] really lacked."
In an interview conducted today with NBC's Ann Curry, Suleman says she'd always dreamt of having "a huge family." The unmarried 33-year-old says she tried for seven years to conceive before she sought fertility treatments. "I went through about seven years of trying, through artificial insemination, through medication. And all of which was unsuccessful. And then the first IVF procedure from that facility -- it was successful. And then I just kept going in."
Besides the eight newborns, Suleman has six other children, ages ages 2 to 7 -- one of whom is reportedly autistic. She says all 14 of her children were conceived through in vitro fertilization. It still isn't clear who the octuplets' father is, or who fathered Suleman's other six kids.
Asked what she felt she lacked during her childhood, Suleman says it was a "feeling of self and identity. I didn't feel as though, when I was a child, I had much control of my environment. I felt powerless. And that gave me a sense of predictability. Reflecting back on my childhood, I know it wasn't functional. It was pretty dysfunctional, and whose isn't?"
After her release from the hospital this morning, Suleman went to an "undisclosed location," according to her publicist, so she could avoid the media. Her rep said that she has been deluged with offers, including possible book and TV deals, and might do other interviews later. NBC said tonight they did not pay her for the interview.
The exclusive interview will air on TODAY Monday, Feb. 9, and on Dateline at 10 p.m. on Tuesday, Feb. 10. A first look at the interview will air Friday, Feb. 6, on TODAY.