Social workers will help quintuplets family with anticipated 'rollercoaster of emotions'

The Buthelezi quintuplets.
The Buthelezi quintuplets.
Image: Masi Losi

Gauteng Social Development MEC Nandi Mayathula-Khoza says social workers will offer the Buthelezi family emotional support as they come to terms with caring for five babies.

Mayathula-Khoza on Sunday visited the Clinix Botshelong–Empilweni Private Hospital in Vosloorus‚ Ekurhuleni‚ where the Buthelezi quintuplets were born on September 6‚ 2018.

To their parents‚ who she named as Prudence and Joe‚ the MEC said: "OK‚ there would be this little business of five times lack of sleep‚ scarce indulgences‚ and lots of off-sick days."

". . . A little word of encouragement‚ we know that the road ahead is not a bed of roses. When couples first find out they are expecting twins‚ or Higher Order Multiples like you‚ the initial feelings can be overwhelming. Concerns about how you will manage‚ money worries‚ and general anxiety over housing and space can flood the mind."

Mayathula-Khoza said the Gauteng provincial government had assigned social workers to assist the family.

"This we do because we know that it can help to know that you are not alone and that there is a shoulder you can cry on as you experience the rollercoaster of emotions that comes with Higher Order Multiples."

She said Ekurhuleni is home to three sets of quintuplets and that she hopes to one day bring them together.

South Africa welcome its fifth set of quintuplets, now known as the Buthelezi quintuplets, since 1960. Here is their miracle story.

"These children‚ the four girls and a boy‚ have placed Ekurhuleni and indeed Gauteng in the world map. They join a tiny elite club of South Africa’s quintuplets. Ekurhuleni is home to three sets and no other province has attained that feat. So‚ Siyanda‚ Sibahle‚ Simesihle‚ Silindile and Sindisiwe are our historic children and we are proud that they call Gauteng home‚" Mayathula-Khoza said.

"We think it may even be ideal to bring our Ekurhuleni ‘quints’ families together at some point . . . to enhance the quality of life of the children and families. We all benefit from knowing that we fit into a group. Having shared interests and experiences unites us. There is an enormous sense of belonging we gain from being part of a collective."

Mayathula-Khoza added‚ "Benefits include general friendship and shared communication about what it means to be a multiple birth parent. There is also an opportunity to share what worked for you as well as the joy of helping others through challenging times."

The Buthelezi quints each weighed more than a kilogram at birth. They are expected to be released from hospital once they weigh 2kg.

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