Multiple Births

Birthing is easy compared to naming


These are not the actual Suleman octuplets. We have chosen not to picture them to protect their privacy.These lifelike dolls may be purchased for those who wish to simulate the octuplet experience.      

The only octuplets known to survive infancy were born to Nadia Suleman on Jan 26, 2009.

Especially taxing for a multiple-birth mother is the challenge of coming up with names for each child. Ms. Suleman claimed to use a “pseudo-biblical” naming convention, although the meaning of that phrase is not clear. Five of the children’s names are found in the Bible: Noah, Isaiah, Josiah, Jeremiah and Jonah. But Maliyah, Nariyah, and Makai seem to be mostly pseudo, since they are not in the biblical record. Some reports suggest Maliyah is a play on the biblical name Leah, which means “weariness.” That seems plausible, given Ms. Suleman’s situation.

All the children have the same middle name “Angel” which is also of a biblical origin. Ms Suleman has claimed that this middle name was given because the children were all “little angels.” However, it is equally plausible that Ms. Suleman had simply grown weary of child-naming. This theory is reinforced by the case of Maria Sepulveda of Mexico City, who also gave birth to octuplets on March 10, 1967--four boys and four girls. Maria named all the boys Jose and all the girls Josefina.

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