March 5, 2009

Eight (Or Fourteen) Is Enough

When I was 16, I took a test to get my driver's license. I had to take tests through school to get to the next level. I had to take tests to get into college and, more importantly, to get out of college. For each job I've had, I've been subject to extensive interviewing, references and past performance checked. Kind of like a test. I have professional certifications for which I had to take - you guessed it - tests. But, for the most important thing in my life, I was never tested. Because you don't need a license to have kids. And right now I'm thinking that testing prospective parents might not be such a bad idea.

I mention this because of sick of hearing about Octomom.

I'm a big benefit-of-the-doubt glass-is-half-full kind of guy. I truly like to believe the best in people understanding that I will eventually be sorely disappointed and let down by the human race. As such, I'd like to believe that this woman really wanted fourteen kids. But does someone who truly cares about kids have herself injected with a litter? Does she have her lips botoxed and hand out interviews to the highest bidders? Does she hire a publicist? Does she refuse 24 hour child care from willing donors when those offers do not contain a deal for a reality television series? And does she willingly bring eight children - on top of the six she had - into the world when she has no possible means to support them?

I'm going to argue that the answers to all those is a big no.

I do not want to financially support irresponsible behavior. Or insatiable egos. That's not why I report to work every morning and do the most kick ass job I can. I do it for me, and my family. I'm selfish like that. But the problem is this - I'm not willing to turn a blind eye to children caught up in bad circumstances regardless of the decisions their parents made.

One of my favorite books - read last night, by the way - is The Giving Tree. It is, perhaps, one of the finest metaphors for parenting. The tree loves the child. Every so often, the child at various ages returns to the tree, wanting something more from it. And the tree, loving the child as it does, gives of itself until it is old and has nothing left to offer. Eventually they are both old and want nothing more than each others company. Like I said, the perfect metaphor for parenting. And if the metaphor holds true - which I think it does - its impossible to parent, to give of yourself, if you're more concerned about yourself than you are your children.

So, what's your take on the whole Octomom thing? And do we or do we not put enough emphasis in our society on understanding what it takes to be a parent?

Posted by Chris at March 5, 2009 6:34 AM
Comments

Unfortunately this woman will get a ton of money, either from MTV or the State of California, or both. This will lead to other misinformed, wacko girls/women to doing the same thing.
The doctor should be held accountable for his actions, as he was clearly in on it.
I have a good friend undergoing in-vitro right now and all they ever place inside of her are 2 at a time.
I do feel bad for those kids and I pray they will somehow be okay.

Posted by: Maribeth at March 5, 2009 6:45 AM

You know, I was stumbling around on the web last night and got caught up in two stories.

The first was Octomom. Yes, I've seen news reports and such, but I was kinda curious now that she's doing interviews and keeping a blog.

Here's what I see. She's obviously somewhat intelligent. I mean, her vocabulary is slightly above par for the average joe, so, yeah. And every single word in her blog and on her videos are canned "What the people need/want to hear" responses to the public outcry. She's trying to win people over, but if I were to judge from the facts and from what I see of her other kids...she's full of crap. She's putting on a show. In all honesty, I think she thought this might make her famous and able to live off the good deeds of others for the next 18 years or so.

Now, another story I read. And this one, this one touched me like none other. If you take the time to read it, brace yourself. It might anger you. http://www.tampabay.com/features/humaninterest/article750838.ece

or here... http://www.tampabay.com/specials/2008/reports/danielle/

The first link is just the full story in text. The other one is like an expose that was done and it was done well. Pick one. Or check out both.

Anyway, upon completion of exploring both of these stories, I'm gonna go with "For the love of god, can there please be a test before we are allowed to reproduce and severe consequences if you reproduce *illegally*???"

I have three kids. Three beautiful kids. They are not by any stretch perfect, but they are perfect for me. I am not always the perfect mom. But I am what they need. I've taught them to love, laugh and to speak up when they have a need not being met. Did you know it's okay to tell your parents "I need a hug"?? And that it's okay to be honest with your kids when *you* make a mistake? It is. My boys may get into the occasional bit of trouble and come home with sand in their pockets, making me have to vacuum the couch daily. My daughter may have become an emotional teenager...but by god, they love me and I love them and I know their needs are met.

I cannot imagine having so many kids that you can't possibly meet all of their needs physically AND emotionally. 3 was my limit. It was a good number for me. Some people do well with more. Some people are happy with 1 or 2. Then some people are just attention whores who use their children to fill some void in their life that has nothing to do with wanting to be a parent.

On a happy note to end...Parenting: Best Job I've Ever Had! And damn glad to be able to finally stay at home and do what I love ALL the time.

Posted by: Holly Reynolds at March 5, 2009 7:02 AM

For someone who wanted to remain anonymous, I sure am seeing a lot of her creepy face on TV. I think that you can't tell people how many children they are allowed to have, but that infertility doctor should have been like, "Um, ma'am, you have six kids. Your vagina is not a clown car." I work at an infertility clinic, and I admit that when I see people coming for IVF or whatever, and they already have kids trailing along behind them, I get pissed. I want to say, "Hey, stop being selfish, some people who have NO kids could have used your appointment." So while I think that the number of children you have is a personal decision, there's got to be a point where you just let it go! And I think that point is after 6.

Posted by: Stephanie at March 5, 2009 7:09 AM

While I understand that when you venture into the area of reproductive rights, it becomes a bit of a slippery slope, I can't help but have an opinion anyway.... The first is, I have two children and of course I love them more than anything else on the planet, but even with two I am concerned that I am able to find a good balance in life. And I don't know the woman, maybe she's got some crazy juggling skills, I can't help but think that it's hard to devote your time to 14 children and give them individual attention and quality time. I mean, hell, I think there are limits in daycares on the kid to adult ratio, and I'm guessing she'll have surpassed that in her home.

Also, financially, to care for 14 kids? I don't think people should be allowed to SPECIFICALLY CHOOSE to have multiples if they cannot afford it. I'm not talking cases where it occurs naturally (there was a recent case of quints, I think, where the family was REALLY STRUGGLING - but they did not plan for that). TO CHOOSE to add to your already full household, well, I kinda think your bank statement should be held into account.

Y'know, even if she gets bankrolled by reality shows and handouts, I wouldn't trade my life, family and struggles for all that media money. I think TRUE REALITY will bite her on the ass when the cameras are gone and the interest is gone and the money isn't rolling in. I wouldn't want to be her in a million years.

Posted by: Sarah at March 5, 2009 7:57 AM

I'm with you all the way on this one. I don't care how many children a person has as long as I don't have to support them. I'm VERY tired of working 70-100 hours a week so that someone else can sit on her ass and collect my tax dollars. The more I read/see about this woman the more she disgusts me.

Posted by: MariaV at March 5, 2009 7:59 AM

I am stealing this from a blogger called Nilbo...his appraoch to the Octomom things was...she will get hers...she will have 8 teenagers to deal with.

Posted by: William at March 5, 2009 8:11 AM

It makes me ill the way our society rewards the very worst behavior.

Wanna get rich? Make yourself into a freakshow. It's cheaper than playing the lottery, and the odds are much, much better.

Posted by: Elise at March 5, 2009 8:13 AM

The doctor(s) involved should either lose their licenses or get one hell of a reprimand. They had no business helping her do this, knowing as they must have what her present situation was. Doctors have to make moral and ethical decisions all the time that make this one seem trivial, which begs the question as to whether these specific doctors can be trusted with their decision making in any other case at all.

Society likes to think it has all the answers to parenting and spares no energy in making sure parents know what they're doing wrong. This, of course, is hypocrisy of the foulest stench because society, in general, is so close to the lunatic fringe in most every aspect of our culture that its giving advice to parents is like a Nazi advising a Rabbi on Torah translation. The only people that will ever understand what it takes to be a parent to their children are the parents of these specific children, because each rugrat is different, as are the respective parents of said rugrat. There is no one-size-fits-all answer, which means that there's really no way too understand the effort it takes to be a parent without actually doing it for the kids in question.

Posted by: You can call me, 'Sir' at March 5, 2009 8:37 AM

Back when I was a teenager, I had an idea that they should put birth control in the water and then if you wanted to get pregnant, you had to apply for a license and then you'd have to take a pill in order to get pregnant.

Of course, now I see all of the complications there are in that, but I thought it was a great idea at the time.

When stories involving stupid parenting come out I'm always reminded of this quote from the movie Parenthood: "You need a license to buy a dog, or drive a car. Hell, you need a license to catch a fish! But they'll let any butt-reaming asshole be a father."

Posted by: Leah at March 5, 2009 8:52 AM

I share this frustration regarding the idea that you don't have to take a class or pass a test to be a parent. In my job I see so many children who are casualties fo their parents' epic stupidity and selfishness.

I think Octomom is without a doubt selfish, and unstable. These kids don't stand a chance and that makes me crazy. She'll get lots of financial gain from this. It's sad to say that she has done this as nothing more than a publicity stunt. It breaks my hearts for the children.

Posted by: Kate at March 5, 2009 8:53 AM

Funny story..I went to a wedding probably around 2 years ago. The girl getting married was a friend of my wifes and a 3rd grade teacher in her professional life. A lot of her students came to see her get married so the priest having to deliver a message pulled out The Giving Tree. At the end his message that he got from the story was that the boy never really did anything wrong but rather the tree was an enabler and the tree was the one doing all the wrong things, not the boy. Dumb ass priest

Posted by: Darren at March 5, 2009 9:02 AM

This story also disturbs me. From the get-go, what really bothered me is the fact that in this country, high order multiples seem to be the hot item. When word hit the presses that a woman had octuplets, people started raving, wanting to catch a glimpse of these infants. Once it was found out that this woman is the freak of nature that she is, that she has six kids already, and that she is single - well, the public fascination turned into an outcry.

What bothers me is that there are shows out there like Jon and Kate Plus 8 which specifically glorify the fact that people are having HOM's. An entire show is dedicated those freaks and the exploitation of their children, yet America eats it up. Not to condone Octopussy, but obviously she was emulating Jon and Kate and the Duggars and just about every other TLC family, in thinking that if she had a gaggle of children, she'd strike it rich.

We need to seriously look at ourselves and what we glorify in this country before simply labeling this woman as a lunatic. I agree she is psychologically unstable, and I personally think she should have all her kids taken away. The problem is, this issue has become an issue because every single American seems to think that one woman spitting out large numbers of babies is something fantastic. And if that woman spits the babies out all at one time - well that makes it even more mesmerizing.

Maybe once we stop with the reality shows and million dollar book offers and free houses and 16 passenger vans that are given out like candy to these people who knowingly inject themselves with drugs and embryos, maybe then this problem will cease to exist. I am all for fertility treatments. But this abuse of the system and medical science is beyond my comprehension - and people need to stop glorifying what are not "miracles", but people playing God.

Just my two cents!

Posted by: Snickrsnack Katie at March 5, 2009 9:08 AM

Personally, I think she saw a big cash cow on the horizon when she decided to have this many kids. I don't know how your wife looked days after giving birth but I can tell you, I certainly did not have my hair and nails done and I certainly wasn't channeling a movie star by putting collagen in my lips.

What she is doing is nothing short of child abuse. She doesn't have the money to raise them and you could be Mother Theresa and not have the time to care for 14 at once. Did you hear the tapes they played today when she "lost" one of her six while she was pregnant? Yeah, this isn't gonna go well I don't think.

Posted by: The Stiletto Mom at March 5, 2009 9:19 AM

Sometimes I want to write a book called "The Taking Boy." It would be exactly like The Giving Tree, but I'd be the boy. That would be the only difference. (If, in fact, I'm already not the boy.) Someone already ran with my idea for the "Philistine Prophecy," so it's probably been done already. Including having me as the tree. No, they boy. Me as the boy.

I wonder if the octomom is real, or just a symbol. Like maybe she's a Jungian archetype that we've finally started to pay attention to, so in a way, we're all the octomom. Maybe we all secretly want 14 kids and collagen injections and invitations from Oprah in our own little ways.

Sure, maybe the "14 kids" for someone else would actually be "self-actualization" or something from Maslow's heirarchy of needs, or maybe the "collagen injections" for another person would be "financial security" or "overcoming that fear of clowns," but are we really so different underneath?

Posted by: rpm at March 5, 2009 9:44 AM

I think it's not any of my business to call judgment on what she did or why she did it. It's not my place to say she's not right in the head or an immoral, selfish person. My only concern is for those children and how they're going to grow up and be provided for. But otherwise, I just don't care. If she really IS doing it for money/TV shows/whatever, then the more attention we pay to her and the situation, the more she's getting exactly what she wants.

But for all any of us knows, she could love each and every one those kids so much that they'll all grow up secure, confident, and knowing that they'll always have someone who cares about them and has their back.

Posted by: Sparkle Pants at March 5, 2009 9:49 AM

I think that this is a good time to point out that having Children is a huge choice and one that shouldn't be taken lightly. I, for one, choose not to have children many years ago and have never thought twice about it but what is funny is that society in general pressures me into thinking that my decision is wrong. Obviously because I am female and have a uterus and am 31 years of age my only option in life is to bear children.

I weighed the issues and thought very hard about it. In one life I have to feed, clothe, protect, educate, discipline, shelter, love and basically give my life over for one goal raising a child. In the other life I am free to do whatever I choose whenever I choose without limitations or taking anyone else’s needs into consideration. I opted for the later and I think that makes me pretty smart because I am not going to have a child and regret it and then, more than likely, not be the kind of parent it needs.

My co-workers, friends and even some family constantly berate my choice and chant the same things I hear from most "You'll change your mind, you still have time." or "Once you have one all the other stuff doesn't matter." or "My life had no purpose until I had my baby and yours will too when you finally have yours.". I cannot tell you how much this infuriates me. These are also the same people who think Octomoms' children should be taken away. What about all that change shit you were talking about? It didn’t seem to phase her any, this woman is still only thinking of herself!!

I think her children should be taken away. It is obvious that she is worried about more than just being a good mother; it is obvious that we are going to pay for those children anyway. I don't know about you but if we are going to pay to raise them I would at least like to give them a fighting chance.

The point that I would like to make is that you are right.....there are tests for everything but anyone can just pop kids out. I agree that raising children is one of the most important jobs anyone could have, these babies will lead this country some day. Nothing about children should be taken lightly. But I can't help but wonder if Octomom had decided not to have any children how she would have felt when constantly berated that she should.

Tangent Complete.

Posted by: Kelly M. at March 5, 2009 9:55 AM

No, we don't put enough emphasis on parenting. I'd love to require a license or something, but of course that's silly. I fear that the type of people who require education most, are the ones who would fight to avoid it.

Posted by: Brad at March 5, 2009 9:55 AM

The way I look at it is this was her stupid decision, she should have to figure it out with no aid, none. If she can afford all the plastic surgery then figure out how to feed your kids, her priorities are fucked. Those poor kids didn't ask for this, I do feel sorry for them.

Posted by: Kami at March 5, 2009 10:10 AM

Agreed. What kind of a person continues to get pregnant when they can't provide for the kids they have? And how did she afford fertility treatments? I just don't get it!

Posted by: Shannon at March 5, 2009 10:12 AM

There was a story on the news last night - a 911 call placed by Octonutjob back in October. She was still pregnant and was hysterical - screaming "I'm gonna kill myself" (with her screaming kids in the background) Apparently the nanny had taken one son out for a walk and she didn't know. She thought he was missing. The 911 operator had to plead with her to stop threatening suicide in front of her kids. The nanny & son walked back in the house while she was still on the phone, and then she was happy.
She is mentally il. I cannot believe that CPS has not stepped in.
I cannot believe that the Doctor has not lost his license. He was very irresponsible in allowing both invetro's to occur - without ensuring she could properly care for all these children. Just the fact that she wanted so many (especially as a single Mom) sets off warning bells doesn't it? Why didn't he insist on a psych evaluation before proceeding? I guess he wanted his 15 minutes also.
It's not physically possible for one person to adequately care for 14 children. Not physically and certainly not emotionally.
She has the right to choose, but when her choices are detrimental to minors, well, then it's time to step in.
JMHO.
Here's the link to the 911 call: http://www.myfoxla.com/dpp/news/octomom_911_Calls_20090304

Posted by: LaineyDid at March 5, 2009 10:23 AM

The whole thing makes me totally ill, and NO, we as a society do not place nearly enough emphasis on what it takes to be a great parent.

Posted by: Writer Dad at March 5, 2009 10:24 AM

I refuse to give OM any acknowledgment or more publicity. She doesn't deserve it.

And here you go, Cactus, just contributing one more web entry to her ego. Tsk tsk tsk...

Posted by: oakley at March 5, 2009 10:48 AM

I love The Giving Tree with all my heart :D And, I agree with you about That Woman :P

Posted by: Heather at March 5, 2009 10:54 AM

I have two adopted children. They both have significant special needs and were adopted as school aged children. My husband and I had to prove that we were financially, physically and mentally capable of caring for these children before we were allowed to adopt them. These were children no one else wanted, who had waited years to find an adoptive family. We love them both and want absolutely the best for them. We are so glad we were given permission to have them in our family, but it kind of makes the system look screwy by comparison.

Posted by: Kathleen at March 5, 2009 11:44 AM

I think what she has done is disgusting, and I think that her children should be removed from her care because no sane person would ever want to have that many tiny children at once, and NO single person, sane or not, could possibly provide the amount of time (let alone money, what with her being unemployed and all) to properly care for that many children. It's repulsive.

At the same time, I lay a HUGE amount of blame at the feet of the doctor/doctors who let this happen and even aided it. They should no longer be allowed to practice medicine in any form, because I believe that they violated the basic rule of medicine: DO NO HARM. What they did was harmful to those babies and, I believe, to the mother.

Even so, I have a hard time with controlling reproduction because I have a hard time figuring out who should get to decide what the parameters of good parent material are. Would I be deemed a good parent because I am not religious? Would a potential parent who believes in spanking be allowed to reproduce? Would someone who doesn't have a lot of money but has a LOT of love to give be allowed to have a child? Who decides these things? And then, beyond parenting, who decides how MANY kids you are allowed to have? Is it purely an economic decision? I don't know- there are too many variables, too many opinions.

Posted by: heels at March 5, 2009 11:57 AM

What, and have less emphasis on things like reality TV and the latest mode trends?

Sorry about the snark, but I think just about anything else useful has already been said and this whole thing just makes me very uncomfortable/upset - and I'm not even a parent.

Posted by: Hannah at March 5, 2009 12:16 PM

I have said more than a thousand times to my husband that there should be a license to be a parent...you have to get one to be married, to drive a car, to charge for plumbing work (at least, I think you do!). But any dumba** can have a kid.

I also add, jokingly, he and I would probably not be able to have a kid. All depends on the rules, I guess!

In anycase, Octomom drives me nuts. She's the definition of selfish. I ache for her children because of what they will endure. Look, Octomom and her parents and family may love those kids, but they can not even afford to keep a place to live at this point. Love is a great thing, but you need to be able to provide for, at least enough for survival and she can barely do that for the kids she already had. There's no doubt that society will need to provide for those kids. And as much as that pisses you, me and the rest that don't want to have to pay for that woman's 'mistake', those kids are the ones that lose here. They are the ones that will pay for their mother's selfishness.

She angers me. I just think that every child brought into this world deserves a lot more than this.

And, no, I don't think that we put enough emphasis on parenting. How to change that, I don't know. But it should be. We should be teaching others that being a parent is a hard but VERY important job and should NOT be taken so darn lightly.

Stepping off the soap box now.

Posted by: cyndy at March 5, 2009 12:27 PM

Re: Octomom- *sigh!

I don't think we do put enough emphasis on educating kids about these types of issues. A clear example- the little boy in England who got some 13 year old girl pregnant and now has a son. Nuff' said about that.

I have 5 second cousins (3 different dads), their mom is a crack head (I'm pretty sure!). Not a part of their lives much. She's around, but takes no responsibility. Yet, after years of neglect, the oldest (age 21) decides to date an 18/19/20 year old who already has a baby. His younger sister (age 20) just graduated HS and is now pregnant. Their younger sister, (18?) sound like she's pretty close to becoming pregnant herself. The next youngest brother is being raised by their grandmother because his dad wants nothing to do with him, and the youngest is being raised by his father. None of these kids have someone to look up to and learn from. They think that parenting is easy and can be done at any age. I disagree.

On a bigger note, abortion standards. My religion says I should be pro-life (I'm Catholic), and in my heart, abortion is sad, but I still say let the mother decide. There are exceptions. However, if society teaches kids that it is okay to sleep around, get pregnant and abort the child (or rely on the morning-after pill), nobody is ever going to learn responsibility.

In the case of Octomom, it sounds like she's expecting America to raise her kids for her... it's pathetic.

Posted by: Laura at March 5, 2009 12:32 PM

The Giving Tree was one of my favourite books growing up, probably because it was one of the books that was not allowed to be mine, but was my father's. He would read it to me when asked, but it always had to be put back on his shelf, never with our rag-tag pile of ratty books. He said that while he was happy I liked it, it was more a book for Daddies than it was for kids. I see now what he meant...

Posted by: suze at March 5, 2009 1:18 PM

No worries...when all those children are teenagers, Octomommy will comit suicide. Trust me on this. Having babies..raising toddlers...easy peasey compared to just trying to have one cohesive conversation with a teenager.

I just finished an undergraduate program. A Bachelors in Management and thank goodness...I'm now using management techniques to motivate and manage my child. I would love just one elective titled "how to fucking understand your teenage child". But alas...this is not to be.

ALL parents should have to have a parenting license....by the time their kid turns 14.

Posted by: Kristy at March 5, 2009 1:32 PM

I can't even comment on Octomom she infuriates me.

But Holly Reynolds post on Dani broke me, my heart breaks for that child.

Posted by: Deirdre at March 5, 2009 2:43 PM

I can't stand the Giving Tree. It's like a treatise on how to be a selfish horrible person. I get what you are saying about unconditional love but the tone of the kid/adult is so nasty for the whole book. Give me what I want and I'll leave you and never be grateful or even happy that you gave it to me. Notice it never says the boy is happy or that the boy does anything other than take everything from the tree until the tree is nothing but a stump. Ugh. It makes me shudder every time I see it.

Also octomom = horrible doctors irresponsible decision. Crazy people can't do that without a doctor's help which is supposed to include psychological evaluation. It sucks that this horrible extreme case is now going to make it harder for people to make responsible choices for their own families.

Posted by: tulip at March 5, 2009 2:48 PM

The plastic surgeon I work for will not do procedures on people he thinks are unstable in any way shape or form. He goes by his gut and I used to think that was selfish of him. However - he has yet to be wrong. Doing procedures on an obviously unstable person - or if there's even a shadow of a doubt - is the fault of the doctor. It's the doctor who was getting PAID to do the infertility treatments. The cash cow belongs to him.

Posted by: k8 at March 5, 2009 3:11 PM

I think what she is doing is child abuse. (I also have a low opinion of those people who have 18 kids.) You cannot possibly parent 14 kids properly. There is no way they will get the attention they deserve and need.

Posted by: Jodi at March 5, 2009 3:31 PM

It's my hope that CPS will fully investigate whether they release those 8 babies to this unstable character, and honestly they should look into the 6 she already has. When she turned down the help from the 'Angel' organization (I don't remember their full name) I realized she was truly in it for what she can get out of it, be it notoriety or monetary gain. And at that point, I decided those kids need to be with someone stable that wants to actually 'parent' them, rather than 'have' them.

Posted by: coolchick at March 5, 2009 4:18 PM

I was at the dentist's office yesterday, and we had a conversation about bringing 14 kids for their semi annual check up. Think about it. Who could do that? And what would the bill be?

Think about how tired a parent can be with just 1 or 2 children. Where would the energy for 14 - full time children come? And only one parent at that.

And that's not even considering a thousand other things that children require. How about Scouts, and little league? and on and on.

Posted by: cassie-b at March 5, 2009 4:30 PM

I agree with Tulip completely! The Giving Tree is a horrible book - whether or not the author was referring to a parent/child relationship, or a man/woman relationship, I would NEVER want to be used the way that tree was. I cried every time I read that book as a kid, and I won't buy it for my child's library. I guess some people take it differently, and see it as unconditional love. Well, that boy didn't love that tree. He used it, destroyed it, and forgot about it.

Posted by: Snickrsnack Katie at March 5, 2009 4:52 PM

Even if octomom could support her children I am guessing that we would all still have an opinion about her. There have been families in the past ( I can't for the life of me remember the name of the family that was so widely talked about a few years back,) they too had 14 children, but I remember every one screaming about the baffling number itself 14, the #14. They did not receive assistance and they were a two parent family and still that seemed to piss people off and they also did it the "natural" way. The children (octmom's) are all that matter and they should not be judged or punished especially by being taken away from their mother. I think octomom thought she was going to get a payday, not a bashing, but really she deserves neither.

Posted by: Shannon at March 5, 2009 6:42 PM

um. sorry to be off topic, but I need 'the weeklies.' thanks.

Posted by: Stella at March 5, 2009 9:06 PM

You know, I've never felt this way about anyone who had multiple kids, but she did this on purpose. There is no doubt about it. Sick twisted woman.

I feel for those kids.

Posted by: Issa at March 5, 2009 9:21 PM

I can't believe that she would willing have that many more children when she already had so many. Especially without the means to support her family. I've seen interviews on tv and everything she says seems fake, and I saw her mom and her mom even said she was tired from helping with six kids. She is just waiting for her big payday and I hope nobody gives it too. I truly feel sorry for these children having been brought into the world by this selfish woman.

Posted by: Adi at March 5, 2009 10:36 PM

My gosh, I don't know what the hell this lady was thinking. Oh wait, she wanted money and publicity and we are giving it to her, that's what is sad. The media hypes this all up and gives her the attention she wants. Just my personal opinion. I can't imagine having one child, let alone 14.

Posted by: Dianna at March 6, 2009 2:01 AM

When our second child was born, I gave my husband The Giving Tree with a poem I wrote about him being a dad as a gift. I was book shopping one day, and in the second hand section of the Dutch bookstore, the English title from my childhood stared back at me. I think it is a very fitting gift for new parents.

Parenting is a gift we give our children, a gift because we give all of ourselves...but we expect a return. We want our children to grow up to be successful, happy adults. The gift we give is also one we are given in return. It's reciprocal. And it's the most absolutely beautiful long-term gift we could give, or receive.

Posted by: Tera at March 6, 2009 2:54 AM

Totally ot: I find it funny that the two people who dislike the giving tree have the same name!! Hi Snickersnack - Katie! I'm tulip - Cate! :)

Posted by: tulip at March 6, 2009 9:57 AM

I read the second comment (Holly's) and the long article she posted and I couldn't read any further. Nadya Suleman and the controversy around her initially makes me angry, like the woman in that article, but ultimately very sad. In the end, her kids will probably get better care because of the money and media attention focused on her. But I think about the kids like Dani (in that article) who come from smaller families, escape all media attention, and will never be okay. And it breaks my heart just a little.

Posted by: mandy at March 7, 2009 11:07 AM

I always had a difficult time with The Giving Tree. Even as a small child, it made me cry. I still feel burdened and weighed down by the book once I reach the end, and I suppose that's why I've never introduced it to my 3-year-old.
I think it's because there's no balance in the relationship. It just makes me sad that one party keeps giving, giving, giving and the other keeps taking, taking, taking. I don't want my relationship with my parents or my children to be like that.

Posted by: Amy at March 7, 2009 10:01 PM

Re: The Giving Tree: I think (and it is one of my favorite books) its the saddest story I've ever read. The tree loves unconditionally, but the child doesn't care for more then his own idle pleasures until he's old and used up and no one else wants him... only then does he settle for loving the tree. I can only hope my life doesn't turn out like the tree's.

re: Octomom- She's a moron who obviously doesn't care about her kids, or if she does, she doesn't have the mental faculties to understand what she is doing and shouldn't have them.Either way, she shouldn't have kids.

Posted by: Debra at March 9, 2009 4:15 AM

i'm sorry, but i have always hated the giving tree. i don't think the role of parents (or anyone) is to give and give and get nothing in return. it's the saddest, most depressing book i've ever read.

Posted by: Gayle at March 9, 2009 5:59 PM

Spoken like a true genius. That woman is nuts.

Posted by: Chino at March 9, 2009 9:43 PM

Spoken like a true genius. That woman is nuts.

Posted by: Chino at March 9, 2009 9:43 PM

Some time ago, I really needed to buy a building for my corporation but I did not earn enough cash and couldn't order something. Thank heaven my fellow suggested to get the loan from reliable bank. So, I did that and was satisfied with my short term loan.

Posted by: JodieCooke34 at March 13, 2010 7:58 AM


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