Octuplets' Mom and the Public: Where's the Love?


An Associated Press story indicates that Nadya Suleman, the Whittier mother of octuplets, shouldn't hold her breath waiting for the kindness of strangers. While parents of multiple-birth babies are usually showered with gifts from an adoring public, it seems that the nature of these particular births, and speculation about the still-hospitalized Suleman's mental state, have led talk-show hosts and bloggers to cold-shoulder or even denounce her.

A perfect storm of controversy has exploded over the births, which occurred at a Kaiser Permanente

hospital in Bellflower last week. Suleman, who has variously been

described as a 33-year-old divorcee or an unwed mother obsessed with

children, had her frozen embryos from previous pregnancies implanted in

her to give birth -- even though she already has six young children. This kind of atmosphere is not conducive, the AP story noted, to winning commercial sponsors.


"Gerber spokesman David Mortazavi," reported AP, "said that if the baby-food maker was

planning to do something for the family, it probably would have done it

already, and that the octuplets' birth was not on Gerber's radar. He

would not elaborate."

Suleman

had, perhaps overplayed her hand when it was announced yesterday that

she would be entertaining offers from the news and entertainment media

for pay-for-play interviews and product endorsements. (She is repped by

veteran L.A. flacks Joann Killeen and Mike Furtney.)  If anything,

Suleman has become a public pinata pounded on newspaper letter pages, blog

posts and AM radio. The AP feature noted that fright-wing KFI commentator Bill Handel

chivalrously labeled Suleman's birth's "freakish" and

suggested an economic boycott of companies doing business with the

mother.


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