Suleman is really mentally ill. I mean, really mentally ill. I have no idea why her 14 children are still living in her house. After reading all about the Suleman kids in a forthcoming New York Times Magazine article, I feel fine saying her fetishistic breeding of children, plus plopping said children in front of video crews, constitutes child abuse. Yep, child abuse.
But she isn’t the only person we should be upset with; so many others are enabling what Octomom is doing with her kids. From the doctors who put the in-vitro eggs into Suleman to the film crew to the people who buy gossip mags about her kids — they are all contributing to this insane fetishism. The poor kids are the ones who’re suffering!
After the jump, 15 things I learned from the Times article on Octomom so you, too, can lose hope for our culture if this is what constitutes “parenting” these days.
- The Times reportedly visited while a film crew from the British division of Eyeworks, a TV company in the Netherlands, was on hand to film “Octomom: Me And My 14 Kids.” Suleman says she hates having TV cameras around. “It’s a Catch-22,” Suleman told the reporter. “I’m damned if I do what I need to do with the media to support my kids, and I’m damned if I don’t. If I don’t, I can’t take care of them…I made these choices out of the midst of being in survivor mode. I think 99 percent of people would have made the same decision.” (No, actually 99 percent of people wouldn’t have gotten impregnated with eight babies after they already had six children and then carried all eight babies to term. But that’s just my opinion.)
- Daysun Perkins, Vice President of Development for the film company making the Octomom documentary, has similarly wackadoo rationalizations for what his film crew is doing in the Suleman home. “When I started to look at the possibilities here, and spent some time with Nadya and the family, it started to feel really … important,” Perkins told the Times. Important for whom?
- Past work by the director filming the Octomom documentary include classics such as “Half-Ton Mum,” “Half-Ton Dad,” and “Half-Ton Son.”
- A member of the film crew told the Times that when the crew first began to come to their house, the kids would stand at the windows and yell “Go away! Go away!” apparently because they thought they were paparazzi. But lately, he proudly told the reporter, the kids don’t say anything about the film crew at all.
- The crew filmed some kind of photo montage of each child on a board that’s slanted at a 70-degree angle, which involved strapping each baby on with a piece of Velcro.
- Octomom says she became impregnated with the octuplets because she had all these leftover embryos which she didn’t want her doctor to throw away. “I just decided to take the chance because I didn’t want to destroy the embryos,” she said. “That was the main focus — not like: ‘Oh, gosh! I really want eight!’ People were thinking, ‘Oh, she wanted so, so many.’ No!”
- The children’s welfare representative from the state of California, who’s supposed to keep the Suleman kids in compliance with child labor laws, thinks everything is A-OK in the house.
- Suleman doesn’t believe her plastic surgery at all resembles Angelina Jolie.
- The film crew members call the loud, snorting way Suleman chuckles her “manic depressive laugh.”
- A lot of the Suleman kids have these New Age-y parenting names, like Makai, Mayliah, Amerah and Calyssa. That’s not child abuse, but it is pretty stupid.
- Four-year-old son Aiden has autism. I’m sure he gets lots of attention for that, considering he has 13 siblings.
- Octomom received $169,000 in disability payments between 2000 and 2008 and has spent a lot of her adult life living with her parents.
- She thinks getting herself a job would be “ludicrous” and “absurd.” What, so she’s just going to exploit her kids for the rest of their lives?
- This quote from Octomom is priceless: “One of the funniest things I’ve ever heard was a Denny’s joke. It said there was a new thing on the menu, that you could get eight eggs, no sausage and the person in the next seat gets to pay the bill. I thought that was absolutely hilarious!” Ha ha.
- Actually, no, this quote from Octomom is priceless: “[The small children are] able to conceptualize that, O.K., we don’t necessarily want this. But it’s controlled.”
Still, I bet Kate Gosselin is kicking herself that she missed this PR opportunity.