Ever since 16 & Pregnant‘s Nikkole Paulun announced she was expecting her second child, rumors have been floating around that the entire pregnancy was a hoax. Conspiracy theories hit a fever pitch this week when Nikkole exclusively revealed to Radar Online that she suffered a devastating stillbirth on July 28.
We originally relayed Nikkole’s story without mention of the hoax rumors. But, as more information emerged that seemed to demonstrate Nikkole was hiding something, we began to consider the unthinkable option that she may have lied. We decided to report on it only when Nikkole’s former best friend, Samantha-Jo Diggs, was recorded detailing how Nikkole supposedly faked the pregnancy.
“[Nikkole] showed me her fake belly and she said she did this — she’s doing it for money. That’s what she told me. She’s doing it for money because she’s going to get paid for this, I guess,” Samantha told The Real Teen Mom Talk. “She showed me her fake belly. It was kind of like — you know how a baby onesie buttons at the diaper? It was like a suit like that went over her arm — there was like a belly and it looks real when you have clothes over it.”
Samantha added Nikkole Photoshopped images of her bare belly to make it look like a bump.
In the time since her interview with The Real Teen Mom Talk, Samantha has continued to stand by her story and seemed to back it up by sharing a series of messages on Twitter. One conversation is apparently between her and Nikkole.
In those messages, Samantha begs Nikkole to come clean about it for the sake of mothers who actually experienced the devastation of stillbirths. Samantha also shared a screencap of a conversation with another one of Nikkole’s former friends, Courtney.
Both of the women claimed Nikkole showed them her fake belly and told them of her plans, but neither believed she would take it so far.
As we previously reported, Nikkole’s “exclusive story” contract with Radar Online prevented her from commenting on the issue until Sept. 10. However, in response to the allegations online, Radar approached Nikkole again to get her reaction.
“Everything that I have said is completely true and the rumors are just mean,” Nikkole said. “I just don’t understand how somebody that watched me go through all this can do this as a joke.”
Nikkole also released to Radar her three-page hospital bill, which shows she was charged more than $7,000 for blood work, labs, anesthesiology, a private room and medication. The date is listed as July 28, when Nikkole originally claimed to have suffered the stillbirth. It is also possible to make out Nikkole’s name at the top of the document, although many of the other details are blurred for her safety.
Honestly, the new evidence from Nikkole and Samantha just makes it more difficult to know what to think. As we said before, both stories are sad in their own ways.