The Octomom, Nadya (now Natalie) Suleman has started a new chapter in her life.
The mother of fourteen first made headlines after giving birth to octuplets as a result of in vitro fertilization, and now she is hoping to shed the “vile” Octomom persona and move on with her life.
Suleman opened up to DailyMail.com about how ashamed she is over her “dehumanizing and exploitative” work she did as a stripper and celebrity porn star following the birth of her children. She also admitted to developing an addiction to Xanax as a way to “numb” the pain.
Today, Suleman said that she believes she would have died of an overdose had she not left her Octomom days behind her.
In 2009, Suleman became pregnant via IVF treatment with eight babies, despite being an unemployed mother of six. She claims her doctor encouraged her to implant 12 embroys, fearing none would survive, and instead, she gave birth to eight children: Jonah, Nariyah, Josiah, Maliyah, Isaiah, Noah, Jeremiah and Makai.
In order to keep 14 children in her home, Suleman claims she turned to porn and bikini photoshoots as a way to make money. Her film won her four Adult Video Network awards.
“Everything I ever did was for money to put food on the table,” she said. “Everyone thinks I had all these donations and help, but I didn’t – I did everything on my own and paid everything out of my own pocket, so I was Octomom for four years. The last two years of it were so dark. I descended down a very dark and destructive path.”
The pressure to make ends meet eventually lead Suleman down a destructive and “toxic” path.
“The consequence of exploiting myself was deep toxic shame and self disgust. To continue I had to numb and that’s when I started with the prescription drugs.”
Suleman went on to have numerous plastic surgery procedures in an effort to keep the money coming in. She denies ever using welfare money for the procedures.
“I admit I’ve had plastic surgery but not half of what the media have said I had. I had a breast augmentation after breastfeeding three kids, which I paid for myself as I was working. I had a tummy tuck after the octuplets after a media outlet promised me $100,000 to pose nude,” she said. “I have had no work on my face but I admit that in 2008 I injected my lips and it looked horrible. I was so embarrassed and ashamed. In 2009 I did it again because a media outlet paid me. I was so embarrassed I denied it, but it feels so freeing to finally tell the truth. I don’t want my girls to go down the path of plastic surgery and wanting to change themselves.”
But in March 2013, it all became too much to handle, and Suleman decided to “kill” the persona of Octomom.
“It was like I’d escaped prison. That character of Octomom was dead. We packed up all our things and I quit my manager,” Suleman confessed. “I’d rather be homeless with 14 kids living in my van than allow any of my girls, my daughters, to go down the path I had gone down. If I had stayed in that life, I might be dead right now.”
Suleman’s mother passed away in 2014, and her father is paralyzed following a drunken fall and receives around-the-clock care in a nursing home. Suleman has two austistic children to care for along with her other children. One child, Aidan, needs constant care and cannot speak.
Suleman has severe back damage from the octuplet pregnancy, and doctors are surprised she can even walk.
Since shedding the Octomom image, Suleman has been focused on her family and works as a counselor and family therapist. She receives no help with child care or chores.
Suleman claims she has been celibate for the last 15 years and has no interest in getting married or being in a relationship at this time.
“I’m married to my family and kids; I don’t have time to take that away from my kids and give it to some stranger,” she said.
She now hopes the public will move on from her Octomom persona and see that she is a hard-working mother who is doing her best to raise healthy and happy children.
“No one hates Octomom as much as me.”