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The Jan. 14 episode of "Oprah" casts new light on Nadya Suleman. It is easy to judge the so-called Octomom. Her evasive double-talk, wild laughter and strange behavior in the media make it seem likely that she had octuplets, via in-vitro fertilization, as a path to fame and fortune. News of her ongoing financial struggles regularly make headlines. Overwhelmed and overdrawn, she contacted Oprah this summer.
Oprah called on financial guru Suze Orman to conduct a financial intervention. Along with a team of lawyers and accountants, Suze spent 150 hours investigating and reviewing her spending since the birth of her octuplets.
At the time of their conversation, Nadya had only $300 to her name, but spent $8,000 on Christmas gifts and $2,000 per month on private school. Suze instructed her to get rid of all non-essentials, including her personal trainer and staff of nannies, and head to church because she needed God's help.
And that infamous garage sale where Nadya sold photos of herself for $10 a pop? Well, that was the result of Suze's advice to eBay extra possessions. The garage sale and eBay auctions brought in approximately $1500.
Suze also suggested she get an agent and appear on TV shows and the like to earn money. Nadya balked at the idea, saying she did not want to exploit her children and everyone would judge her. Suze reminded her everyone already thinks she is crazy and she had nothing to lose.
True to her usual behavior, Nadya could not admit uncomfortable facts without a series of direct questions. Suze asked if she was making it financially when she had only six children. She easily answered yes although Suze knew otherwise from the financial documents. After Suze's cross examination, she acknowledged she struggled and her family lived day to day even before the octuplets.
Throughout the one hour show, Suze repeatedly cornered Nadya, forcing her to speak honestly. It looked brutal, but seemed to come from frustration and necessity rather than cruelty. Oprah was silent for much of the show. The audience also seemed annoyed by Nadya's evasive and, at times, nonsensical answers and explanations.
Suze Orman Goes Too Far
It was tough to watch, but Suze's harsh treatment seemed necessary to get through Nadya's facade. However, she hit an all time low by asking if, knowing what she knows now, she would have chosen to have the octuplets. After prodding, Nadya finally answered, "They wouldn't be here."
Nadya needs to look within herself and face the facts, but she already admitting to having a baby addiction. Suze's question was out of line, unproductive and went too far.
Although, Oprah and Suze both seemed to have genuine compassion and empathy for Suleman's family, the show featured more tearing down than building up and ended on a low point.