Did you catch the first TLC special on the Duggars: ‘Jill & Jessa: Counting On’? They were very open in dealing with the scandals that rocked their family due to oldest sibling Josh Duggar’s behavior.
The special started off with Jill Duggar and Derick Dillard’s move to South America while Jessa Duggar and Ben Seewald began preparing for the arrival of their first baby. Then they talked about the first Josh scandal, when it was revealed that he sexually molested several girls as a teenager, including some of his sisters. Jill said:
You always think in the beginning of the year what the year will hold and it hasn’t been what we thought.
“We had moved on from there. To be thrown under the bus was really really hard.” She adds that as a victim, “You don’t want that rubbed in your face all the time, for everyone else to see…That wasn’t right whoever released that. It shouldn’t have happened.”
Jessa agreed with Jill’s point.
There’s an expectation that this family doesn’t have any problems. “People go digging up old bones. It was so frustrating.
“There was a period of time in our family where Josh was not to be trusted. [After counseling] That relationship was restored between all of us siblings and our parents.”
I wonder if it would’ve helped the Duggars at all if they had exposed this family secret on their own on ’19 Kids and Counting’ in some way? On one hand, that isn’t the kind of thing that people really want to talk about, but given how high profile their family had become and the fact that there was a criminal investigation (which is public information), it might have been better for them if they had dealt with this family secret on the show in some way.
Then the Duggars got rocked by Josh’s second scandal, where he admitted to having an Ashley Madison account and cheating on his wife, Anna Duggar. Jill admitted she was blindsided by the second admission.
Knowing now what Joshua was hiding…it wasn’t right for him to let us speak our words without having the full knowledge of what he was hiding.”
We were devastated. Over the years Josh had worked really hard to repair our trust in him.”
Josh’s other siblings seem to feel the same way. John-David admitted that he told Josh:
One of the toughest things I had to tell my older brother was, I don’t want to be like you anymore.”
Below is a clip with the Duggar siblings talking about their reactions to Josh’s second scandal. You can see how hard this is for all of them. Maybe this will motivate Josh to really work hard at getting the help he needs. Hopefully it already has been.