For 34 weeks an expectant father and the community of a Canadian town believed that a local woman was pregnant with quintuplets, only to discover she wasn't pregnant at all.
Barbara Bienvenue, 37, of Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Quebec, went to the hospital to deliver her five babies when a nurse pulled her boyfriend aside, ABC News reported.
Bienvenue was never pregnant.
"I lost everything, it was my whole life," her boyfriend Paul Servat told the Toronto Sun.
At first, she told him she was expecting twins but it soon turned into triplets, then quadruplets and then quintuplets.
All the details had been ironed out. The kids were to be named Alexander, Sebastian, Charles and Rosalie, and a Cesarean section was to be performed on February 22 at a hospital in Montreal.
Servat told the Toronto Sun that her belly grew, and she even experienced morning sickness and lactation.
A local French-language newspaper, Le Canada Français, gave light to the story on January 23, raising awareness in the community and inspiring them to create a Facebook page that accepted donations.
"The spouse, who was also jilted with this whole story, has been reimbursing some of the associations," Local police spokesman Sgt. LucTougas told ABC News. "He was also very stunned. Right now, this woman is at the hospital undergoing psychiatric treatment. We suspect some mental issues."
Bienvenue experienced a phantom pregnancy, also known as pseudocyesis, a disorder in which a woman experiences all the symptoms of pregnancy, but is not pregnant.
So far, the police department has not received any formal fraud complaints from those who donated money to the couple.