A Canadian woman convinced her boyfriend, the city, and herself that she was pregnant with quintuplets for 34 weeks.
It was only when Barbara Bienvenue, 37, went to the hospital to give birth to the babies this month that doctors took her boyfriend aside to tell him that she was not pregnant and never had been.
“I lost everything, she was my whole life,” said her boyfriend Paul Servat, adding that Mrs. Bienvenue had told him she was expecting twins, then triplets, then quadruplets, then quintuplets.
He added that her belly had grown, she had morning sickness, and was producing milk.
Marie-Pier Gagnon, a journalist for Le Canada Français, reported on January 23 that the couple was expecting quadruplets.
They were supposed to be named Alexandre, Sébastien, Charles, and Rosalie, and were to be born via cesarean on February 22 at the CHU Sainte-Justine hospital in Montreal.
Photos of a colorful room with cribs wall-to-wall accompanied the article.
Mrs. Gagnon wrote that the news had sparked a social media movement to help the couple, and donations were pouring in.
Then, on March 20, Mrs. Gagnon published another article revealing that Mrs. Bienvenue had never been pregnant.