Faked pregnancies may seem like the stuff of Hollywood melodramas and beach reads, but they happen in real life more often than you might think. There are plenty of reasons why women have faked being pregnant, whether they wanted to get back at an ex or were looking for money.
These fake pregnancy stories have to be read to be believed. Many of the women don't seem to know what pregnancy is really like - if they did, perhaps they wouldn't be pretending to carry triplets for 10 months or disemboweling a pet dog to fake a miscarriage. Some faked pregnancies have even extended into fake childbirth.
Prepare yourself: These extreme fake pregnancies were motivated by everything from sheer pettiness to downright derangement. None of them are likely to inspire much sympathy for the people who pretended to have - or lose - a baby.
Anita Parker was accused of committing a despicable act in May 2016. She had pretended to be pregnant in an attempt to get her estranged husband back but soon realized there was no way she could stretch the ruse out forever. Parker disemboweled her pet Chihuahua, Dolly, and smeared the dog's guts around her bedroom to fake a miscarriage.
Parker was taken to the hospital, where the staff told her husband that she had never been pregnant. Soon after, he discovered the dog's body in the garbage. Parker was charged with felony animal cruelty.
On November 10, 2008, Leslie Wilfred called her family from the hospital where she was supposedly giving birth to tell them the twins she was carrying had died. She said they had taken a single breath before dying, and returned home with a pair of urns.
The whole family mourned the loss, but the babies had never existed. Wilfred's tubes had been tied before her marriage to her second husband. Experts later determined that the woman had Munchausen syndrome, a condition in which someone invents medical problems due to severe emotional difficulties.
A Texas woman named Yesenia Sesmas faked a pregnancy for several months before November 2016. That's when she traveled to Kansas, murdered a friend named Laura Abarca-Nogueda, and stole her newborn daughter.
The crime caught up with her quickly; Sesmas was arrested a few days later, and the baby was returned to the victim's relatives. In July 2018, Sesmas was sentenced to 55 years in prison.
In April 2017, an Italian woman allegedly decided to purchase another woman's baby after faking her own pregnancy with a false belly she bought on the internet. There was one small hitch in her plan: The baby was biracial. Realizing that she would be unable to explain the baby's ethnicity to her family and friends, the woman returned the infant three days later.
Seeing as surrogacy is illegal in Italy, she wound up getting arrested. The baby's mother and a man who helped put together the baby-buying deal were also brought in.