Amazing Family of Dwarfs and Average-Sized

ByABC News via logo
March 22, 2004, 9:48 PM

April 24 -- The Roloffs of Oregon say they are a perfectly balanced family.

Parents Matt and Amy Roloff and son Zachary are little people, while Zach's twin, Jeremy, their sister Molly and youngest son Jacob are average-sized. It is common for those who have dwarfism to have average-sized children.

"It's actually more common than you think," said Matt Roloff, 42, who designs and sells computer systems. He wrote a book about his experiences as a little person, Against Tall Odds, with Tracy Sumner.

Matt said that based on the medical odds, he and his wife expected to have children of different sizes.

"Amy and I had a 50 percent chance of having a dwarf child, so when we had the twins, we had one of each, which was perfectly aligned with the odds," Matt said.

Amy Roloff, 41, coaches the children's soccer teams and is fulfilling her dream of being a mother. She says people seem more shocked about the number of children she's given birth to than their varying sizes.

"Well, I think they're surprised just by the fact that I have four kids because a lot of people only have like one or two nowadays, and they think that's overwhelming," she said.

When Amy was pregnant with the twins, who are now 13, she didn't gain that much weight, but at her height, it was certainly obvious that she was pregnant.

"Well, I think of it as a Weebles wobble, you know, but they don't fall," said.

Independent Kids

Matt has diastrophic dysplasia, a relatively common form of dwarfism characterized by short limbs and orthopedic problems, he had to get a number of surgeries on his legs when he was younger. But his parents never held him back or coddled him, and he even had a paper route. Now Matt says he is raising his children to become just as independent as he is.