ABC News’ Mary Pflum reports:
The McCaughey residence in Carlisle, Iowa, is home to the famous McCaughey septuplets.
The siblings made history in 1997 when they became the first set of septuplets to survive infancy. When they came home, the septuplets, their parents, Kenny and Bobbi, and their big sister Mikayla, settled into a life of diapers, bottles and birthday cake — all multiplied by seven.
And today, all seven of them — Kenny, Alexis, Natalie, Kelsey, Nathan, Brandon and Joel — are turning 16.
They’re more than siblings. They’re friends, and they always back each other up, no matter what.
“We all just are able to — to help each other,” Natalie said.
There are lots of benefits to having so many siblings.
“There’s more opinions in the house,” Kelsey said. “And just more people to hang out with and get close to and just tell anything to. It’s fun.”
It may be fun, but they don’t always agree, and they have very different tastes in music and movies. For example, while Nathan and Kenny like rock, Kelsey and Alexis like any kind of music but rock.
Two of the septuplets – Nathan and Alexis – have cerebral palsy. All seven are spitfires – young adults who can’t imagine life without one another.
The siblings each have their own room at home, an amount of breathing space that they credit with helping them to get along so well.
Sweet sixteen is a rite of passage for any teenager, and the McCaugheys are no different. Three of the septuplets have a steady boyfriend or girlfriend and they’re all excited about driving. With six of the seven septuplets recently getting their learner’s permits, plus their older sister, there are plenty of siblings fighting over one available car.
Having to share the car isn’t the only downside of being a septuplet. The children say they’ve had to endure bullying.
“I guess they don’t like us because we’re different from a lot of people,” Kenny said. “There’s so many of us. Like, it’s not normal for a mom to have seven kids at once.”
Added Nathan of the bullying: “It’s probably just a lot of jealousy that goes around.”