Jon & Kate Plus 8 is a reality television show produced in the United States by Figure 8 Films about the Gosselin family, consisting of parents Jon and Kate and their eight children—a set of fraternal twin girls and a set of sextuplets (three girls and three boys, all fraternal). The show follows the family through their daily lives, focusing on the challenges of raising multiple children. The show originally aired on Discovery Health, but has aired on TLC since season 3. It is consistently one of the highest rated shows on TLC. The family originally appeared in a one-hour special titled Surviving Sextuplets and Twins.
Katie "Kate" Irene Gosselin is one of five children. She has three sisters and a brother. Jonathan Keith Gosselin is the middle child of three boys. The couple met on October 5, 1997 at a picnic. They were married on June 12, 1999.
The Gosselins' desire to start a family was met with infertility. Kate underwent medical testing and was diagnosed with polycystic ovary syndrome. The couple turned to fertility treatments and immediately began intrauterine insemination. In February 2000, Kate became pregnant with twins. On October 8, 2000, Cara Nicole and Madelyn "Mady" Kate Gosselin were born, six minutes apart.
They began thinking of having another child and, according to Kate, a biracial infant of a teenage girl became available to adopt while Kate was an obstetrics nurse. They decided not to adopt the baby, but instead returned to fertility treatment. In October 2003, Kate became pregnant again. Five weeks later, (after being hospitalized for over-stimulated ovaries) at the initial ultrasound, the doctor announced that there were six sacs with seven yolks (embryos). According to Kate, this was emotional news for them. The doctor suggested selective reduction, but the couple was strongly against it.
The sextuplets were born on May 10, 2004 at Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center in Hershey, Pennsylvania. All six children were delivered within a span of three minutes with more than fifty doctors, nurses, and other specialists involved. Since the sextuplets were born in Hershey, they were called "Hershey Kisses" by the nurses and doctors who delivered them. In late 2008, the family moved from their Elizabethtown, Pennsylvania home to a larger residence in Wernersville, Pennsylvania