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Octuplet Grandfather To Oprah: "I Question Her Mental Situation"

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CHICAGO — The father of the California woman who recently gave birth to octuplets told Oprah Winfrey that he hopes people don't punish his grandchildren for his daughter's irresponsible behavior.

Ed Doud said in an interview taped Thursday for "The Oprah Winfrey Show" that the actions of his daughter, Nadya Suleman, and her doctor were "absolutely irresponsible." But he also issued a plea for the public's help, according to excerpts of the interview released by Harpo Productions Inc.

"You know what? She needs help. I say to everybody now _ people _ we do need help," Doud said. "Do not punish my daughter for what she had done and do not punish the babies, because they were given by God."

A California-based nonprofit called Angels in Waiting has offered Suleman round-the-clock care and a place to stay with her 14 children. It would cost about $135,000 a month to provide the 12 caretakers necessary for the children, money that would have to come from public donations, founder Linda West Conforti said in Los Angeles.

The organization has the trained nursing personnel and experience in caring for very sick children, she said. The group, however, could only provide care for a limited time without the donations, she said.

Suleman, a 33-year-old single mother from Whittier, Calif., already had six children when she gave birth to octuplets in late January after undergoing in vitro fertilization. She is unemployed and lives with her mother in a three-bedroom home.

Property records show Suleman's mother, Angela, owns the home and is $23,225 behind in her mortgage payments. The house could be sold at auction beginning May 5.

In response to a question about whether he thinks his daughter is mentally stable, Doud said, "Now I'm no psychiatrist, but I question her mental situation."

Doud said he hopes Suleman will finish her education and start working so she can help support the family.

The show is scheduled to air Tuesday.

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