An Australian woman who just gave birth to her eleventh and twelfth children – most with the help of fertility treatments – may be on track to become the next OctoMom.
Nadya Suleman made headlines first for having eight babies at once, but the outrage was over the six kids she ALREADY had at home. And much of that swirled around the doctors who allowed it happen.
So what’s the story with Dale Chalk? The first woman in the world to successfully carry two separate sets of quads (sadly, one of girls born the second time around did not survive), she has also had two single pregnancies – all thanks to IVF. Now she’s on birth numbers eleven and twelve thanks to a set of twins delivered recently in a Brisbane hospital.
Unlike OctoMom, Chalk is married, and her husband has income coming in to help support the family. Also unlike OctoMom – she says she’s done at eleven kids (remember, one didn’t survive). So hopefully not on track to fourteen like Suleman.
Still, her case has drawn criticism in her native Australia, especially after the second set of quadruplets were conceived. And it offers a look at one major bone of contention in the fertility debate: if the numbers per pregnancy can be kept down to just one or two, is it a family’s right to keep on going for fertility intervention if they can provide for the resultant kids?
After all, we might make fun of the Duggars, but no one is stepping in to tell Michelle and Jim Bob’s doctors to tie her tubes or give him a snip. They’re conceiving without fertility help, but like the Chalks, they’re also supporting their kids. Overpopulation issues aside, if the risks of a single birth – or even a twin birth – are not the stuff of the quadruplet or octuplet births that forced a major look at Suleman’s doctors’ ethics.