Dinner at Octomom Nadya Suleman’s house is no easy feat.
The 42-year-old mom of 14, who became famous in 2009 after she underwent IVF treatment and became pregnant with eight children, offered fans a glimpse into dinnertime at the Suleman household, which includes a whopping 24 vegan tacos.
“One of our favorite family fun night meals,” Suleman captioned a picture showing the octuplets, now nine, standing in front of plates piled with tacos and eight bottles of water. According to the hashtags in the caption, the tacos include a mixture of organic beans, chopped spinach, red bell peppers, yellow bell peppers, orange bell peppers, and daiya cheese.
While Suleman appears to be living a happy and healthy life with her children, in December, she opened up about the struggles she faced raising 14 children, struggles that she said once drove her to feel empty inside.
“Every day I would wake up with the most ugly, dead, visceral feeling inside of me,” she said. “I didn’t want to live. I felt less than human as that character I was pretending to be, to survive and provide for my family.”
That “character” Suleman remembers is the ‘Octomom’ persona, a name that “nearly destroyed me and my family,” and one she no longer responds to.
“What [Octomom] was disgusted me and I did not want my children to remember me like that. I was forced into doing things I didn't want to do because I was so terrified I couldn't support them and give them the life I deserved,” she added.
Suleman’s financial struggles at the time led her to star in an adult film and work as a dancer in a strip club to complement the government assistance she was receiving. Ashamed by her actions, Suleman said she began taking benzodiazepines, a prescription anti-anxiety drug.
Suleman quit working in films and clubs when a man firmly told her, “You do not have to do this,” a moment she said changed the course of her life.
Soon after, Suleman and her family moved back to Orange County, California, where she grew up. She got a job as a part-time counselor and works to provide for her 15-person family.