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Top 10 World's Oddest Mothers

VO: Rebecca Brayton WRITTEN BY: Katia Vaccaro
There’s nothing quite like giving birth, but these strange mothers have had extraordinary experiences. From the oldest mothers, to the mothers with the most children, and male mothers, these stories stand out as some of the most peculiar births in history.

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Script written by Katia Vaccaro

Top 10 Oddest Mothers

There’s nothing quite like giving birth, but these journeys through pregnancy are particularly unusual. Welcome to WatchMojo, and today we are counting down our picks for the Top 10 Oddest Mothers.

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For this list, we’ve compiled statistics from many different types of mothers: older ones, younger ones, female and male mothers, mothers of only children, and those of multiples. Whatever the case, these stories stand out as being among the most peculiar births in history.

#10: Stacey Herald

The World’s Smallest Mother

Despite multiple warnings from her doctors, Stacey Herald decided to do things her way and became a mother against all the odds. She’d eventually become a mom of three; holding the record for the smallest mother in history at only 2’4”. Stacey suffered from Osteogenesis imperfecta; a disease defined by symptoms like brittle bones, underdeveloped lungs and dwarfism. However, that didn’t stop her from pursuing motherhood, as she was able to care for her children from her wheelchair, as well as with the help of her husband, Wil, who measures at 5’9”. Sadly, Stacey passed away in August of 2018; leaving her husband and three children behind.

#9: Mahajabeen Shaik

The World’s Smallest Baby
This Indian woman was 23 when she first started experiencing severe symptoms of pre-eclampsia; a condition that puts both the mother and fetus in serious danger. She finally gave birth to twins via C-section on September 19, 2004, after only 25 weeks’ gestation. However, the status of the babies’ health was quite alarming: Hiba weighed 1lb 4oz, while Rumaisa weighed only 8.6oz and 9.5 inches – about the size of a cell phone. Luckily, although Rumaisa still holds the record for the world’s smallest baby, she’s not likely to suffer any side effects from her traumatic birth.

#8: Carole Horlock

The World’s Most Prolific Surrogate
On the eve of her 49th birthday, British woman Carole Horlock swore she wouldn’t have a 16th child… until she eventually changed her mind. Surprisingly, Horlock has only raised two of the children she has given birth to, acting as a surrogate for all her other pregnancies. A human laboratory? Not quite. In her own words, giving birth is “a magical moment,” and has both admitted and denied being addicted to it. Having been dubbed “Mrs. Rent-a-Womb,” Horlock has said she’s proud of being able to help people fulfill their dreams of starting a family. She’s cashed in pretty nicely on it, too, earning around $15,000 to $25,000 with each surrogacy.

#7: Elizabeth Ann Buttle

The Mother With the Biggest Gap Between Births
Elizabeth Ann Buttle is the proud mother of two: Belinda and Joseph. That fact alone may be nothing special, until you discover that Elizabeth was only 19 when she gave birth to Belinda on May 19, 1955. Still no big deal, right? Well, what makes this story so remarkable is that Elizabeth gave birth to Joseph on November 20, 1997, at the age of 60 – 41 years and 185 days after his big sister Belinda was born. Buttle still holds the world record for the longest interval between two consecutive births. In other words, little Joe could easily have been mistaken for both his mother’s and sister’s grandson.

#6: Thomas Beatie

The Pregnant Man
Thomas Beatie wasn’t always Thomas; in fact, he was born a woman in 1974. After undergoing gender reassignment surgery in 2002, he became a spokesperson and activist for the transgender community. Five years later, Beattie became pregnant with triplets through artificial insemination. However, this pregnancy was an ectopic one, and all three fetuses were lost after requiring emergency surgery. Thankfully, Thomas – now nicknamed “The Pregnant Man” – was able to conceive again with another three children. You might recognize him and his story from his appearance on Oprah in 2008, as well as numerous other talk shows like “The View,” “Good Morning America” and “Larry King Live”.

#5: Nadya Suleman

The Octomom
You might think it’s a strange nickname, but it’s a fitting one when you hold the record for giving birth to the most babies in one pregnancy to all survive: eight, that is. Widely known as “Octomom”, the birth of these octuplets to Nadya Suleman raised many ethical questions surrounding in vitro fertilization, especially considering Suleman already had six other children. Adding to her infamy, she even admitted she was on welfare, did porn and worked as a stripper to make ends meet. Whatever you gotta do to pay the bills, right?

#4: Zahra Aboutalib

The Forgotten Baby
Back in 1955, Moroccan woman Zahra Aboutalib was 26 years old and expecting her first child. After 48 hours of labor, she went to the hospital for a C-section. However, a woman died while giving birth right next to her; the trauma of this event causing Zahra to leave the hospital. After a couple days, the pain subsided and the baby stopped moving inside her. Zahra put this event behind her, adopting three other children. However, at the age of 75, Zahra ended up at the hospital with abdominal pains, but a 46-year-old calcified baby was discovered in subsequent scans. A four-hour surgery took place in order to remove the mummified seven-pound baby.

#3: Rajo Lohan

The World’s Oldest Mother
In 2008, Rajo Lohan gave birth to a daughter named Naveen at 70 years of age, and this Indian woman has said she wants to live to see her daughter get married. Here’s hoping Naveen doesn’t become a spinster! All jokes aside, Rajo made world headlines when she became the oldest woman ever to give birth for the first time. Other than the in vitro process putting her life in danger, she faced criticism from many who said that her old age would lead her to be unable to adequately take care of her child. Rajo has since lost her distinction to another Indian woman, Daljinder Kaur, who gave birth to a son in 2016 at the age of 72.

#2: Lina Medina

The World’s Youngest Mother

Born in 1933 in Peru, Lina Medina became the youngest mother in history at five years of age. Her parents rushed her to the hospital after her abdominal area kept growing in size. One month after hearing the news, little Lina gave birth to a baby boy via C-section. That’s when doctors also discovered she had mature reproductive organs, as a result of early puberty. She named the little boy Gerardo, who’d find out at age 10 that who he thought was his sister was actually his mom. Although there were incestuous rumors with regards to Lina’s father, the identity of Gerardo’s father was never known.

Before we get to our top pick, here are a few honorable mentions:

Omkari Panwar
The World’s Oldest Mother to Give Birth to Twins

Carmelina Fedele
The Woman Who Had the World’s Biggest Baby (22 lbs)

Donna Simpson
The World’s Heaviest Woman to Give Birth

#1: Mrs. Feodor Vassilyev

The World’s Most Prolific Mother

Hailing from Russia, Feodor Vassilyev’s first wife is said to have had 69 children between 1725 and 1765. In fact, this highly fertile woman had 16 sets of twins, as well as seven sets of triplets and four sets of quadruplets. The number later went down to 67, however, after the passing of one pair of twins. However, she holds the record for the most children born within the same uterus. Though we have very few details about the life of this incredible Russian woman, it’s safe to say she probably heard the word ‘push’ countless times during it.


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