TLC’s Doubling Down with the Derricos is a new series following the unique Derrico family. Karen, 40, and Deon, 49, have 14 children together from four births. After two miscarriages, the parents welcomed Darrian, 16, and Derrick, 11. Then came the multiples, starting with Denver and Dallas, 10. Then came Daiten, Daician, Deniko, Deonee, and Dariz, 8. That’s right, they had quintuplets. Afterward, Diez and Dior, 3, were born. Unfortunately, there was a third brother, Carter, but he passed away soon after the delivery. He’s the only child whose name begins with a ‘C’, to keep his memory special and unique. And finally, in 2019, Karen gave birth to Dawsyn, De’Aren, and Dyver. They became a family of 16 including the parents. However, Karen and Deon may be welcoming baby number 15.
Baby Number 15?
In the clip released by TLC, we could see the moment Deon and Karen realize they may be pregnant again. The couple lounges in the kitchen while their children play in the background.
“The pie smell is making me sick,” Karen says casually as she munches on pickles. This causes Deon to ask if she’s expecting. So Karen checks her calendar and discovers her period is one week late.
“You need to take a pregnancy test,” Deon says. The couple seems delighted about the prospect of baby number 15, but Deon’s mother, GG, is not.
“What is it you want me to say? You want me to say ‘Oh god, I hope it’s positive?’ When is the line drawn, for real?” she asks the couple. Later on, GG related, “Not another baby. It’s overwhelming with the ones that are here.”
How could a couple have so many multiples? Well, Karen has overactive ovaries, which tend to release multiple eggs per cycle. And that’s how they may be anticipating their baby number 15.
“Having four sets of multiples back to back is getting struck by lightning, while getting struck by lightning” says Deon, who is a real estate investor. “Many parents know with just one child, two children, it’s a job. But when you have soon-to-be 14, it’s a job.”
Love and Challenges
“We have our good days and our bad days,” says Karen. “But there’s always enough love.” She’s a stay-at-home mom with a background in childhood education, a smart tool for a mother who runs a tight ship. She wakes up everyone at 8 a.m. for homeschool, with her two eldest helping out. “...I felt like G-d was always preparing me for this, and I never knew it.”
Many people are curious about the costs of a large family, and Karen relates that she spends between $2,500 to $3500 on just groceries every month. However, while many people expect her to feel beleaguered and resentful, this isn’t the case for Karen. “This is us, this is our life. We chose to have a large family, we also chose to make sure that we can provide for our large family.”
Karen and Deon chose to feature their family on TLC to help others who struggle with raising multiples, children with health issues, and worse of all, grieving children. “We have a lot that we have dealt with, that we have gone through and we had no one to turn to,” Deon says, “There was no book to read. There was no one that resembled us or resembled our situation that we could refer to.” In fact, many viewers reached out, thanking them for their transparency and sharing their own experiences.
In season two, the couple discovers that Diez may require brain surgery. “His head is very elongated — that may be a thing called sagittal craniosynostosis,” a doctor says on the show. “It can cause coordination issues, developmental delays. We’re going to put you [in touch] with a team of neurosurgeons in UCLA.”
“Out of all the things I’ve ever fought in my life, this has to be the hardest one,” Deon says.
A Growing Family
Furthermore, their audience notices how well-behaved their children are. Many people expect a home with a large family to be completely chaotic, but that’s not the case for the Derrico’s. According to Karen, the parents started reinforcing good behavior and setting boundaries when their children were young. Deon adds that they are aware that children could disrupt others in public. “We don’t think it’s our right to infringe on their peace, their privacy, their quiet. And so we raise our children, not just for our home, we raise them to exist around other people.”
And when asked if there will be baby number 15, Karen advises the viewers to “stay tuned”.