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Cash-strapped Nadya Suleman, better known as Octomom, has turned to various X-rated money-making ventures to help pay the bills – all with the encouragement of Orange County (Calif.) Child Protective Services.
“They’re on my side–they’re supporters,” Suleman told FoxNews.com in an interview. “It’s ironic. Once I talked with a CPS worker in regards to the adult stuff, she was like, ‘Are you really doing that?’ Well, it’s not illegal. More power to you!’ So it was almost like a green light–like, ‘Do what you need to do to take care of your family.’ They were supportive. It was funny.”
The single mother of fourteen children has starred in an erotic video, posed topless and made personal appearances at various strip clubs.
A rep for the Orange County (Calif.) Social Services Agency, which includes Children and Family Services/Child Protective Services acknowledges that parents have “a wide latitude” when it comes to suitable employment options.
“The Social Services Agency makes every effort to help children be safe in their own homes with their own families whenever possible,” Terry Lynn Fisher, Public Information Officer for OCSSA, told FoxNews.com. “The law allows a wide latitude in parenting styles and in parenting vocations. I don’t think that anybody would ever want it any other way. So as long as children remain free from harm or danger, where there’s no imminent risk of harm or danger to the child, then the Social Services Agency would not become involved.”
Fisher noted that she could not comment on specific cases or even confirm or deny that Suleman has ever been contacted by the Social Services Agency.
Michael Weston, a spokesperson for California Department of Social Services, added, “Regardless of their employment, parents have a responsibility to provide care and supervision of their children in safe environment free from abuse and neglect.”
Weston also noted that he could not comment on specific cases.
After filing for bankruptcy in April, her house in La Habra, Calif. was set to go on the auction block. So in addition to adult entertainment, Suleman has turned to the most logical place to solicit funds from random strangers: the Internet.
Suleman has set up a page on GoFundMe.com, a “do-it-yourself online fundraising service,” where she is trying to raise a down-payment for a new home. Since launching the site on July 28, Suleman has raised only $2754 -- far short of her $150,000 goal.
But despite the trickle of donations, Suleman is not deterred.
“If someone donated $1 or $5, I’m grateful. Anything is helpful,” Suleman told FoxNews.com. “Because even if I’m doing OK, with 14 kids you can never have enough help. They deserve the best, so any donation is really appreciated. I’m very, very, very grateful to the positive supporters out there because, unbeknownst to me, there are many. There are more supporters than negative people out there.”
But Suleman may need to step up her fundraising game.
“When it comes to successful campaigns, usually they get off to a very strong start, and continue to gain a following. That path is not something that we’re seeing with Nadya’s page,” Brad Damphousse, co founder and CEO of GoFundMe.com, told FoxNews.com exclusively. “I imagine that her story probably does not resonate on the same degree as some of our more popular campaigns. For example, America’s tallest man being able to afford a pair of shoes, or the tragic shooting at a theater in Colorado. There’s really a story there; so people are likely to support those causes, share the link, and really create a successful a campaign. From what we can tell, that has not been the case with Nadya’s campaign.”
So, what could possibly drive someone to click on the “donate” button and give their hard-earned money to Suleman?
“I think that she’s doing the best that she can,” a grandmother from Torrance, Calif., who donated $40 to Suleman explained to FoxNews.com. “She has a heavy load on her shoulders. She loves her children -- she didn’t give them up for adoption. I think she’s a loving mother who is getting a bad rap. Everybody is making fun of her, and they don’t really need to. It wasn’t her fault that she ended up with that many children. She’s doing everything she can to support them and I think she has a good heart.
Superstition can also fuel donations.
“The one thing I do believe in is infinity -- the number eight,” Jesusita Chavez of Norwalk, Calif., who donated $8 to Suleman, explained to FOXNews.com. “She is working hard at finding a home for her kids. I like that about her -- she’s not giving up.”
But in case there are a dearth of kind-hearted grandmothers and fans of the number eight, Suleman has a plan B: Having “generous” men bid on the privilege of taking her out on a “date.”
“I have yet to go on this date, but I know it’s going to happen,” Suleman said of her profile on WhatsYourPrice.com, where bidding on a “date” with her reportedly opened at $500. “There’s been a lot of interest, but I don’t talk about it and I don’t talk about the prices. But it’s really a great opportunity to meet and greet and talk to people. In regards to ‘real’ dating, you never know! That was never my intention, but life is what happens when you’re busy making other plans. Finding Mr. Right is not a priority, but I’m definitely trying to generate revenue for my family. If I leave them for five minutes, I better be making money for them, because the only time I’m away from them is when I’m making money. That’s basically what it’s come down to.”