Two photos in the graphic show a woman with an abnormally large pregnant belly. Below is a third photo of the same woman smiling as she walks down a road with eight kids of about the same age.
Facebook’s fact-checking system has flagged the graphic – viewed more than 1.7 million times so far – as possibly false.
Are the photos in the graphic genuine? Did a woman really give birth to eight children from a single pregnancy in 2009? We checked.
Octuplets born in 2009
A Google reverse image search reveals that the photos and the claim are genuine.
The first two photos were taken in 2009. Nadya Suleman, dubbed Octomom by tabloids, made headlines in January that year after she gave birth to a healthy set of octuplets – eight babies from a single pregnancy – conceived through in vitro fertilisation.
Suleman faced a backlash after media outlets reported that she already had six children and no financial means to support them. Her case also drew criticism from the medical community, which raised questions about the ethics of implanting embryos in a healthy woman who already had six children.
The second photo was taken in 2020 and shows Suleman with her eight youngest kids. She regularly posts photos of her children on her verified Instagram account.
Yes, a woman depicted in a viral graphic named Nadya Suleman did give birth to eight children in 2009. They turned 11 earlier this year. – Naledi Mashishi
For publishers: what to do if your post is rated false
A fact-checker has rated your Facebook or Instagram post as “false”. What should you do? First, don't delete!
Click on our guide for the steps you should follow.
Africa Check teams up with Facebook
Africa Check is a partner in Facebook’s third-party fact-checking programme to help stop the spread of false information on social media.
The content we rate as “false” will be downgraded on Facebook and Instagram. This means fewer people will see it.
You can also help identify false information on Facebook. This guide explains how.