Free Discussion March 2010

Please use this for Duggar sightings, speculation, or general discussion. Note that this is Duggar discussion not other families, TV shows, or personal stories. If you wish to discuss other TLC shows, please visit TLCwithoutpity.blogspot.com. Thank you!

358 comments:

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Anonymous said...

It would of Josies due date this month. I hope she is going to to home with the next couple weeks.

Anonymous said...

Do you the older boys have buddies? Or is just the older girls. I am wondering, not trying to be mean.

I think the older girls are just great people.

I know they do a lot of "parenting", but some teens the same age need to work at bad part-time job to keep their family and siblings off the streets.

I also think that Michelle will always come and help if one the older girls needs it with the buddy/buddies.

I dont think its wrong if they want to stay at home moms. However, I think each girl sould take a class or work on a skill so they can get a job. If god forbid, there husband dies/gets sick of loses his job.

I would love that if in one the episodes. that the older girls can job shadow/work experince at jobs that they wanna do :).

Anonymous said...

Michelle shouldn't "HELP" raise her kids! she should be the one raising her kids, and the older girls should be helping...

Conspiracy Theory said...

In the episode where JimBob makes pregnancy announcement #19 (the homemade waterslide episode), something just never seemed quite right.

After JB made the announcement, you hear the voice of the producer (or was it the cameraman?) saying, "JimBob, you really know how to keep the series going".

As others have pointed out, JB is a savvy businessman. Having his family on television is now part of his "business" (i.e. because they get paid nicely for it).

Perhaps JB knew that the only way to keep the series going was to add some more drama/controversy by impregnating his wife once again.

Although other posters have laboriously pointed out that the family got along just fine "before TLC", that was 5 children ago. Their clothing, makeup, trips, iPods, seem like "extras" the family didn't have in the earlier one-hour specials.

My theory is that JB (and Michelle, who isn't allowed to "defraud" her husband by saying no to sex during her fertile time) will do anything and everything to keep the big TLC paychecks coming in.

And they are hiding this lifestyle behind the "we let God decide" mantra.

I like hamburgers & french fries, but eaten everyday, I'm going to probably have a heart attack at some point. But I could justify it as saying that it's God's will that I consume hamburgers & french fries all the time. The Duggars are doing whatever they want and calling it God's will.

I predict that at least one, if not more, Duggar children will someday get the real truth out there. I hope a tell-all book is forthcoming.

nccalgal said...

Even if none of the kids pursue higher education while under their parent's roof, it doesn't mean that they won't in the future. Once on their own they may see the need for more education. Not all teens go straight from high school into college. Every June the local TV stations feature news clips of parents marching with one of their children getting their college diploma. The community colleges are bulging at the seams with older adults who for whatever reason have decided they need to update or upgrade their skills and credentials. They do this while supporting families as well. The only thing we know for sure is that none of the older ones have left to go to college full time, they may be taking on-line courses or going part time to a local college for all we know. For as much business as Josh has at the car lot, or John-David with his towing, they could be working online courses in between calls and customers.

Jen said...

I noticed the girls wearing more "hip" clothing in the last episode. I also noticed Jinger wearing a skirt that showed some skin! I always notice people on here harping about their modest clothing but I thought they looked pretty normal.

Sandra said...

I have 11 yr old twins (they are my youngest) that enjoy the show. I don't watch it because I believe it is exploitation. I do however, read this blog from time to time (yeah, I know, weird, huh?)

From what I can determine, the shows are only showing tidbits of what occurs on a daily/weekly basis concerning this family.

I am sure that the older kids do lots of stuff that we are not aware of (which, by the way, is what We want, isn't it??)

As for the kids having no 'free will', well, my kids don't have free will either on a few things...I require that they take college prep classes in high school,participate in athletics...I have certain requirements regarding clothing, and their activities....I also require that they attend a D-1 university after graduating high school....

I have also successfully 'brainwashed' my kids against giving in to peer pressure, alcohol and drugs..

My point is, we all as parents have certain rules regarding our kids...the Duggars do too, they just do it for everyone to see.

I certainly don't agree with a lot of stuff they do (college is a MUST, imo), but not everyone feels the same about every circumstance.

I wish this whole idea of placing children on reality shows was never thought of to begin with. There is no telling where this 'reality' stuff will go from here. My guess is, it won't get 'better'.

Anonymous said...

The Duggar daughters didn't look all that "normal" or even "comfortable" during the episode where the family participated in the 1k marathon...the girls were wearing long skirts.
They can't even wear elastic-waist long running pants? Absurd.

Anonymous said...

Michelle comes and helps the older girls if they need it? That sounds backwards to me, it should be the girls coming to help their mother with HER children.

Cyn said...

In one of the early yearly shows Josh was helping with his buddy as they were going out the door for something (I have forgotten where they were going, I just remember the voice over talking about 'helping out a buddy')

James is buddy to Jennifer. Other than that I don't know who is who's buddy.

I have no doubts the girls have more experiences than we know about simply because until the accident outside the car lot we had no idea John David was a volunteer fire fighter...

I, like you, would like to see it, but doubt we will.

If we actually saw the older children living lives outside the "Duggar compound" where would the drama be?

Ancient of Days said...

"...where would the drama be?"
___________

I don't want drama; I want an accurate depiction of how such a large family lives its daily life. We get only what's filtered through the religion-based proscriptions of the Duggars and TLC's market reach.

Where's the truth? How can we learn from canned and contrived episodes? And, you know, that's why I watch the Duggars (though less frequently these days) and read about them: I want to learn from those who are not just like me.

Cyn said...

Ancient...

It's why I liked watching the Duggars as well, and read their book, and went on to read the books that were indexed in the back of the Duggar book.

Something happens though when TLC (and the rest) go from yearly 'specials' to weekly shows. It starts to be more contrived, more canned, and just flat out fakery.

I am with several others and wish that they would go back to just yearly specials. I think we saw more real life in those than we have ever seen in the weekly episodes, that editors edit to fit that weeks 'theme'. When does real life have a theme??

Anonymous said...

James is buddy to Jennifer. Other than that I don't know who is who's buddy.

Maybe James helps with Jennifer, but Jill is definetly her "primary" buddy. In every photo, Jill is holding Jennifer, and when they did Noah's Ark and JB was scaring Jennifer with his beard and makeup, Jennifer ran to Jill (not her mommy) for protection. Maybe the little boys help out sometimes with buddy duties, but the older girls are doing the majority of the work imo

ARealMom said...

Anonymous said...
Michelle comes and helps the older girls if they need it? That sounds backwards to me, it should be the girls coming to help their mother with HER children.

3/01/2010 1:21 PM
****************
This is at least the second time I have read this and I could NOT agree MORE!
My "Goodness" how convoluted everything has become!
Yes Michelle, continue to "help." So that those who worship the ground you walk on can praise you for *HELPING with YOUR children*, and point you out as the Matriarch of the World to the rest of us lowly, "regular" moms who actually gee, I dont' know...MOTHER our OWN children.
Oh, and that means CHILDREN, teens too. BEcause we regular moms realize and see and ACCEPT that our children GET OLDER AND BIGGER. (and mature in knowledge and outlook, a point I am not making casually when discussing you and J.B. as parents).
SOmeday, M.D. WILL be too old to procreate (Lord can it be now??) And she BEST be realizing by then, that ALL her kids NeedED her , all that time. I write this in the PAST tense, b/c except for numbers maybe 16 - "X".....the other older ones will be GONE by then! (we hope)
How sad your life is, MIchelle Duggar. And I say that with total sincerity.

Anonymous said...

It's sad how the tide is turning on the Duggars. I remember when the tide started to turn on the Gosselin family, and once that happened, things went downhill quickly.

If I were the Duggars, I would get my family off tv now, before they are dragged through even more Enquirer and People articles questioning everything they do. Before long there will be all kinds of accusations, and then they are really sunk.

Moonpie said...

There was a quiz on TLC's webpage (I saw it a while ago but it might still be there) that listed four buddy groups head by Jana, Jill, Jessa, and Jinger. Some of the older boys weren't, in the group and it said they were too old to need a buddy.

Cyn said...

The older Duggar children are paired with younger siblings to help with chores (jurisdictions), schoolwork and music practice, and to be a mentor and friend. The buddy teams are:

Team 1: Jill, Joy-Anna, James and Jennifer

Team 2: Jana, Jason and Jackson

Team 3: Jessa, Jeremiah, Justin and baby #18

Team 4: Jinger, Jedidiah and Johannah

Joseph and Josiah are old enough to take care of themselves and function as Jim Bob's helpers now that Josh and John-David work outside the house.

another RN said...

I work with 90% men, so I had to ask their opinions on the clothing rules. Now, of course this is unscientific, but EVERY guy I work with said that a skirt, whether short or long is far more of a "turn on" than pants. Many of them said that a skirt makes them think "impure" thoughts, regardless of the length; but pants are just that, pants. Everyone wears them, no big deal. Surely track pants for running a race wouldn't make all of the males lose control-a little common sense here, please!

I have to wonder, as some of the other posters have stated, if things are starting to go downhill. No doubt, JB knows how to make a buck appear out of the air, but he doesn't seem savvy outside of his insulated world. He has followed a rigid set of rules for years, and now that he is wandering outside of that realm, he doesn't seem to have the experience to see the big picture. I don't think he realizes how damaging all the exposure is to his family. Additionally, while he may repeatedly make statements about how they are modest and that family comes first, it seems obvious to me that money comes first. Debt free or not, 18 kids (not counting Josh) are a LOT of mouths to feed, let alone the medical expenses that may not all be covered. It has to weigh heavy on his mind and perhaps the strain doesn't allow him to see the forest through the trees. I know they have a substantial income, but they also have a substantial amount of kids, and they haven't shown any signs of stopping. Not to mention, what if college does come into the picture for some of the kids? I hope it does, but yikes!

Anonymous said...

I agree that the things seem to be turning on the Duggars. I don't think their family will fall apart like the Gosselins, however, once the gossip magazines, like the Inquirer, start having talking about your family it is time to get your family out of the public eye. For people who have sheltered their children so much to now having an article in a rag mag is not a good thing.

The Duggars need to wake up and see they are taking their family down a bad path.

I like the Duggars said...

"Something happens though when TLC (and the rest) go from yearly 'specials' to weekly shows..."

I think it's called "exploitation." At first the network calls the shots on a few themes, convinces them to do a few activities they wouldn't normally do in the name of "family fun," and goes downhill from there.

Unfortunately, by the time the family realizes it, they are bound and chained to the entertainment contract, in which real live human people are reduced to brands and props by the courts (since they uphold that cr*p).


"I am with several others and wish that they would go back to just yearly specials."

Me too... because it isn't their lives anymore. TLC rules their lives with, I'm afraid they'll find out later, an iron fist.

Hoping they can get through this "season" and then stop. If their contract was as bad as that OTHER family's, they may be filming now because they HAVE to... anyone know?

I like the Duggars said...

"Michelle comes and helps the older girls if they need it? That sounds backwards to me, it should be the girls coming to help their mother with HER children."

Actually, one of the things J&M do a great job with is when they give a kid a job, it is THEIRS... as far as most people can tell. They seem to bend over backward to let the kids own that responsibility. Even if the girls wear prairie dresses from the 19th century all the time (they had learned to sew, remember?). Even if they turn the laundry room into a closet (makes the laundry chore easier for a kid). Even if half their menu comes off the back of the Campbell's soup can (that's the way I started cooking). Even if it takes four years to build a house (remember how proud Josh was when he first explained it, back in the yearly special?).

My guess is that Michelle only steps in when absolutely necessary, and guides the girls when they are away from the camera, behind the scenes, so that they can take pride in their accomplishments... including caring for the younger ones.

Anonymous said...

"Actually, one of the things J&M do a great job with is when they give a kid a job, it is THEIRS... as far as most people can tell. They seem to bend over backward to let the kids own that responsibility."

I think that is fine with every day chores. But it should not be THEIR JOBS to parent or take care of their younger siblings. Jim Bob and Michelle chose this path whether they think they had a choice or not and it is up to them to raise their own children. Children step in to help their parents with the kids not the parents stepping in to help take care of their own kids.

Anonymous said...

The skirts issue though isn't ONLY about modesty for them or those of us who dress like them. It's also about women remembering their place and wearing feminine clothing. Any guy I've talked to has always said that when a girl is in jeans, attention is automatically brought to their rear and thighs. That really cannot be the focus with modest long skirts, and you look like a woman.

Anonymous said...

They are overexposed. There were always people who found the Duggars to be creepy, who found Michelle's voice and demeanor to be that of a baby, and there have always been people who love and adore their every move and who thought Michelle's voice and demeanor just meant she was 10000% sweet all the time, but most people were pretty neutral about them before the last year or so.

But what happens with overexposure is that people get sick of you. The large majority who were neutral start to get more negative. The irony is that the more episodes they do, the more money they make. The more kids they have, the more morbid interest there is, and thus the more the TLC machine keeps going, thus more money, thus more exposure, thus more kids, thus more money.

You see the issue. What really gets my goat is when people gripe about the Duggars being criticized. Here's the thing: if you put your life and your family on TV for me to watch week after week or even month after month, if you take money in exchange for putting your life in the public eye, you are opening yourself up to the good AND the bad.

Yes, you may gain fans. But you will also get people being very vocal about why they dislike you, disagree with you, etc. It's just part of the deal of public exposure, which is why I have such a problem with parents signing their kids up for it.

If adults want to put themselves out there to be judged, good and bad, then have at it. But don't do that to your kids, too. You aren't giving them any choice about it and that's wrong to make them a public figure like that.

The tide has definitely turned with the Duggars. And the longer they remain in the public eye, the worse it will get. I was just reading a story about them being a cult on another website and the comments were consistently negative. The are starting to come more and more to the attention of the tabloids, too, never a good thing.

I don't understand how their need for modesty jives with their show. I guess it's only about physical modesty.

Ohio Buckeye said...

@Anon:"...They are overexposed. There were always people who found the Duggars to be creepy, who found Michelle's voice and demeanor to be that of a baby...

what happens with overexposure is that people get sick of you. The large majority who were neutral start to get more negative...

What really gets my goat is when people gripe about the Duggars being criticized. Here's the thing: if you put your life and your family on TV for me to watch week after week or even month after month, if you take money in exchange for putting your life in the public eye, you are opening yourself up to the good AND the bad."

&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&

Well said! A little bit of Duggar goes a long, long way, and what was mildly interesting from a large-family-mode-of-operation-curiosity heads to a more crtical stage once the inconsistencies about the Duggar professed beliefs and life style began to emerge.

Even the likes of another TLC mom-of-many has diehard fans who interpret every action of their idol as wonderful and righteous. So it is with the Duggars.

JMO: I'm just not one who believes they belong on a tv pedestal.

SuzanneDeAZ said...

Do you think now that the 80 days are up after Josie's birth that Mrs. Duggar will soon be with child?

Anonymous said...

I find it odd that with all their focus on modesty, the world knows that the 80 days of abstinence are up and they can now get it on and "let God decide" about a 20th baby.

(Do they not believe that God knows they now have a special needs micropreemie? Do they not believe God knows and understands they will need to put in a lot more time and energy (possibly permanently) on this child? Do they not think God would understand if they held off on trying to create another child? Especially so soon?)

To me, I would think modesty would include not putting yourself in the public eye (most especially your young daughters!), it would include not letting the whole world know when you are free to have sex again after the last baby, it would include not having medical procedures such as births filmed at ALL for public consumption.

I guess I have a crazy idea of modesty.

Laura said...

AnotherRN said:

"Additionally, while he may repeatedly make statements about how they are modest and that family comes first, it seems obvious to me that money comes first. Debt free or not, 18 kids (not counting Josh) are a LOT of mouths to feed, let alone the medical expenses that may not all be covered. It has to weigh heavy on his mind and perhaps the strain doesn't allow him to see the forest through the trees. I know they have a substantial income, but they also have a substantial amount of kids, and they haven't shown any signs of stopping."

Exactly. In my opinion, the Duggars are just as materialistic as any other mainstream person. Just instead of collecting books, clothing, or European vacations, they collect children. To some, that may be more noble, but really, how?

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
The skirts issue though isn't ONLY about modesty for them or those of us who dress like them. It's also about women remembering their place and wearing feminine clothing. Any guy I've talked to has always said that when a girl is in jeans, attention is automatically brought to their rear and thighs. That really cannot be the focus with modest long skirts, and you look like a woman.

*****
I know plenty of woman who wear skirts and/or dresses and their "place" is equal to that of their husband's. Wearing a skirt has nothing to do with "remembering your place."

In some situations a skirt or dress is not appropriate attire. If the Duggars (or anyone else) were so concerned with modesty but did not want their daughters wearing pants, then leggings coupled with the skirt or dress would be appropriate. And yes, they would still look like women.
Just because a person chooses pants does not make them look less womanly than a woman in a skirt.

roddma said...

"The skirts issue though isn't ONLY about modesty for them or those of us who dress like them. It's also about women remembering their place and wearing feminine clothing. Any guy I've talked to has always said that when a girl is in jeans, attention is automatically brought to their rear and thighs. That really cannot be the focus with modest long skirts, and you look like a woman."

The Duggar argument on pants is invalid. Whats good for the goose is good for the gander. Maybe men should remember their place too and not wear bare midriff shirts, tank tops, and muscle shirts. The empahsis is entirley on women dressing modestly as not to defraud men. Pants can be tight on a man so maybe men shouldnt wear them either? Dresses can be just as immodest and less feminine.

How do dresses define womanhood? I cant see the point of wearing skirts every day. they would be uncomfortable to me and you have to watch how you sit. Feminine clothing is more than long prairie skirts.

Anonymous said...

Why cant the older boy have a buddy(not a team).

I think it wrong, the girls have to shop and still help the buddy or buddies. It seems like all the boys have to is tow, sell cars or fix things and then the day is done for them.


I think even John should have a buddy(when hes not towing) and if a girl buddy who needs help in the bathoom, then I see its more modest for one the girls to do it. However, I am sure John can help with the school,music, make a sandwhich, get a cup of water..

I like the Duggars said...

"Even the likes of another TLC mom-of-many has diehard fans who interpret every action of their idol as wonderful and righteous. So it is with the Duggars.
JMO: I'm just not one who believes they belong on a tv pedestal."

Well, I do like them, and think the vast majority of criticism here is unwarranted... and I agree with you. ; )

In fact, I don't believe they belong on TV at all. I figure the money was seductive, and they were naive enough to think they could control the negative effects. If they get out soon enough, maybe they still can.

I like the Duggars said...

"Exactly. In my opinion, the Duggars are just as materialistic as any other mainstream person."

I don't remember them saying anything about materialism, just debt. They don't have things they can't buy with cash. Now that they have more cash, they have more things.

"Just instead of collecting books, clothing, or European vacations, they collect children. To some, that may be more noble, but really, how?"

Well, it is a lot more self-less and self-sacrificial to spend your money on another human being than on clothes and vacations... so in that way it could be considered more "noble."

But I don't think they do it to be noble, or martyrs. You're exactly right, I think they seriously enjoy their children, and spend the majority of their time and money on having and raising them. What's wrong with that?

Not noble, just different from most of the rest of us (me included, nowhere near 19 kids).

I like the Duggars said...

"Additionally, while he may repeatedly make statements about how they are modest and that family comes first, it seems obvious to me that money comes first."

I don't know how that relates to the other two, exactly, but did I miss an episode where they said they didn't care about money? If they are following the traditional patriarchal head-of-the-household family style, it is Jim Bob's job to provide for his family financially, and as well as possible.

Where he differs is that he has tried to find ways to bring in substantial income without being away from his family 16 hours a day all their lives. He's not always succeeded at that, by the way, but we see him at a point in his life where many of his business ventures run themselves, to some extent, leaving him more time to focus on his family... since family is the priority.

They don't like debt. And they try to be content in whatever financial circumstances they find themselves. But I don't ever remember them dissing the making of money.

Ohio Buckeye said...

"...I figure the money was seductive, and they were naive enough to think they could control the negative effects."

&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&

Hard to say if is naivete or arrogance that allows the Duggars to believe they can control the negative effects of being on tv.

JMO, the Duggars, especially The Patriarch, do not fit my own criteria for 'modest' or humble. They just talk alot about it, always patting themselves on the back about how modest and 'servant's heart' they are. To these eyes, there's a pretty large gap between what they say vs. what they do. There are more important ways to be 'modest' than making your womenfolk wear prairiewear.

Anonymous said...

We live in the 21st century, where girls and women can play ball, ride horses, climb ladders, paint, etcetc.

All of those activities are ridiculous in a long skirt or dress (just like the run they did, when the boys were in jeans, also ridiculous).

Their whole claim to modesty makes no sense at all. They are among the least modest people I know of, since no person I know talks so much about sex, conception dates, shows births or breastfeeding on Tv, etc.

Boundaries said...

To me, I would think modesty would include not putting yourself in the public eye (most especially your young daughters!), it would include not letting the whole world know when you are free to have sex again after the last baby, it would include not having medical procedures such as births filmed at ALL for public consumption.
*******************

Father's Day will never quite hold the same meaning for me after...well, you know. lol
There are just some things NO ONE NEEDS to know, ya know? (spoken to Mr.&Mrs.J.B.D.)

Yeah, I agree: somehow the things they choose to "share" don't come under the umbrella of modesty. Modesty is NOT just what is SEEN, it can be what is said too. Boundaries, People. *Boundaries*

The King of Freebies said...

The Duggars obviously care about making a substantial income and have cleverly figured out a way to do it that most of us will never be able to !

Sell your family's privacy on television and poof, you can afford anything you want (except new shoes for your children) not to mention the freebies that come along with said television series.

Midnight Serenade said...

If materialism and money isn't a motive, and all they want to do is to show the world that children are a blessing and exactly how a family with 19 children manages and survives, why not do it for free? Why collect a paycheck from TLC? I don't understand...

Anonymous said...

We can safely say that when they are filming the boys are asked to do some things. But we don't know what goes on when the cameras aren't there. During the switch of jurisdictions the boys seemed very out of place doing any of the helping. The way they do things when they are filmed doesn't seem like they do it very often.

Bubbles said...

There is no way to know what the Duggars receive from TLC *nor* what they do with those funds. For all we know they donate every penny of it to charities.

Anonymous said...

I guess it's not immodest for the Duggars to talk about how long they wait to be intimate after the birth of a baby, or how the girls "keep track of" Michelle's cycle, or show the birth educator talking about "cervical softening", or show JimBob have a pre-marriage sex talk with Josh....as long as it brings in the big TLC paychecks ! All bow to the almighty dollar !

Anonymous said...

Happy Birthday to Josh Duggar.

How's that application to Law School coming along ?

Deanna said...

The Duggars have no problem whatsoever letting other people know what they don't consider modest (the dresses at Kleinfeld, that other women were trying on, the women on the View, people on the street when NIKE is called).

I feel I have every right to call hypocrisy on a family that won't allow a wedding dress with a real neckline, but shows a live birth on TV.

Ohio Buckeye said...

@Anonymous12:08: great post and thanks for trying to help others understand that modesty of spirit is far more commendable and important in real life than insisting that women wear long skirts and use the "Nike!" code.

Ohio Buckeye said...

I'll have to take your word for it that you had no trouble doing 'everything' in a skirt.

However, it's a hard one to swallow that girls are not hampered by this kind of clothing when participating free-spiritedly in anything very athletic.

I suspect that to some, the real message is that skirt wearing is restrictive only in activities that women should not participate in to begin with.

Anonymous said...

Christian modesty? What would that be anyway? I am a Christian and I am modest in dress and action but it is not like the Duggars. The Duggars are not the poster family of Christian modesty.

I do find it confusing that it is immodest to show a stomach during an ultra sound, and actually that has just happened recently she has had ultra sounds before where they did not cover her stomach, yet perfectly fine to show the birth. If anything an ultra sound is a lot more modest than giving birth. Michelle has to have her stomach covered during an ultra sound yet the exact same stomach can be shown cut wide open showing them pulling her baby out. It is immodest to show your thigh and s like nakedness but it is perfectly fine to be shown with your legs spread apart birthing a baby. They are not consistant with what they say and do.

Why anyone needs to know how long they wait before they resume marital relations after the birth of their children is beyond me. No one and I mean no one needs to know that for any reason. That is personal and private.

Marybeth said...

Michelle writes in her book that the girls feelings towards modesty in clothing are far more "modest" than hers are and she finds it surprising! Remember she began her marriage still wearing pants and there are pictures of her in the book still in bell-bottoms on the car lot with Jim Bob. The girls are allowed to choose their own clothing, as we've seen them grow out of their "prairie" girl dresses and dress in what they call "modest modern." Not all the girls wear ankle length skirts and we've seen the boys wear shorts covering the knees.

As someone who also wears skirts-only I've found them to be far less constricting than pants ever were and far more comfortable on a daily basis. I don't miss pants at all--even on mommy walking group day--I'd do a 5k in a skirt.

She also writes in her book as a reply to an email question "what type of birth control do you use?" ...she replies "An interesting thing happens when you have seventeen-going-on-eighteen children. Complete strangers start asking you about your birth control practices! It's okay. By now we're used to it." Clearly she's still amazed that complete strangers feel comfortable to approach her and ask her the most intimate of questions, yet she's willing to answer them. This was true before the show started, because in the very first 1 hour special the kids interviewed commented how complete strangers would walk up to them wherever they would go and ask them questions about their family--this was back when there were only 14 kids.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous 1:49 pm: I'd never let my children be shown on TV, let alone shown naked, no matter WHAT their age, because I know what creepazoids are out there.

A naked baby is one thing if you are visiting a friend or family member.

A naked baby on national TV is quite another thing. It's weird that they're ok with such things, yet their daughters all have to wear skirts and Victorian-era bathing suits.

It's like they don't even realize their show is being broadcast to millions and millions of people.

Marybeth said...

I think the person who wrote "it's like they don't realize they're on tv to millions and millions of people" hit the nail on the head. They don't watch tv, even their own show--they do see it on tape/dvd--but not in the same context that we watch it--it's usually on a computer screen. That's not "tv." They do drag out the tv to watch their parents/siblings appearances on news programs if it's on broadcast tv that they can pick up free, but otherwise they don't have "tv" as a reference point at all. That could be why they are so free with their comments, because they don't realize they are speaking to the entire world.

I maintain that the comment about the conception date of Josie was made "couple to couple" with the camera in the background, not speaking to the camera, and was not exactly meant for the world to hear. There is also something more open and free about the Southern culture that I learned living there. People will just talk to you about themselves in a friendly and "homey" fashion and that could be part of their "tell it all" style as well.

SteelMagnolia said...

"I guess it's not immodest for the Duggars to talk about how long they wait to be intimate after the birth of a baby, or how the girls "keep track of" Michelle's cycle, or show the birth educator talking about "cervical softening", or show JimBob have a pre-marriage sex talk with Josh....as long as it brings in the big TLC paychecks ! All bow to the almighty dollar !"
________________________________

Standing up and applauding you in Alabama!!!!

I like the Duggars said...

"Hard to say if is naivete or arrogance that allows the Duggars to believe they can control the negative effects of being on tv."

Probably both sides of the same coin, in this case... ; )

Cole said...

I wonder if anyone else noticed this... I was watching the replay of last weeks show yesterday and in one little preview thing before a commercial they showed Michelle in the NICU while (i guess) the nurses were inserting the feeding tube. I saw a little sign on the foot off the isolet that read JANIE not JOSIE it was not the sign they normally show (the flower with her name like in ladybug print). did anyone else see this???

Anonymous said...

It is not considered a sterile procedure to insert an NG tube. If gloves are worn it is to protect the health care provider, not the patient. Washing hands with proper handwashing technique is all that is needed. The tube is being inserted thru the nose which is a non-sterile environment.

For comparison, consider feeding your baby with a bottle. You wash your hands, prepare the bottle, place the lid on and put it in the baby's mouth. You don't sterilize the nipple after touching it when you make the bottle, you just take proper precautions with handwashing and of course using a bottle that was properly cleaned.

Anonymous said...

But the baby you are feeding with a bottle (with bare, just washed hands) is full term and healthy. A preemie, particularly a tiny and ill micropreemie, is much more susceptible to germs and illness.

I have never, ever seen NICU nurses, not ever, working with bare hands, even clean hands. In fact, I have never seen a nurse in general work with healthy children with bare hands. Maybe it is an Arkansas thing.

Anonymous said...

Michelle and the kids are VERY aware of the camera. Michelle talks about "her producer", they have watched special lighting and shades being installed in their home to make it more like a studio, the kids are mugging for the camera people all the time.

No way do I think that the Duggars are just talking to the camera like folksy, homesy, couple-ish, not really realizing they are talking to the whole wide world.

Honestly, if that is the case,t hen Jim Bob is way stupider than the great businessman people have claimed he is (and I might agree).

I still contend that Jim Bob is taking the safety of his daughters too lightly, by allowing so much personal footage of them. It just isn't right or appropriate, even if he really is that naive. Someone should give him a clue.

Robin said...

Amish and Mennonite women wear nothing but dresses all the time and they do everything that needs to be done while wearing them. I see them riding bikes all the time wearing dresses and skirts. I work as an EMT and one of our medics is mennonite. She wears her skirt and headcovering all the time.

Also, have the Duggers ever said that they wear dresses because of the Bible verses that say women should not wear clothing of men? I'm sorry I do not know it off the top of my head.

Midwest Mom said...

2:09pm post: "There is no way to know what the Duggars receive from TLC *nor* what they do with those funds. For all we know they donate every penny of it to charities."

-------

They buy used and save the difference. That is a quote we've heard them say many, many times.

Anonymous said...

JimBob isn't the only Duggar that likes being in the limelight.

JB's sister has her own website as a singer. You can even hire her for special occasions.

Hmmmm...sibling rivalry?

JB & sis surely do like being out there for all the world to see !

Anonymous said...

Further to the poster who said that the NG tube is not a sterile procedure, I might hazard a guess that the nurse wasn't wearing gloves because she had better control and a feel for what she was doing without them. Josie is so tiny and they have to be so careful with what they are doing, that even wearing the gloves may inhibit the nurses sensation for what she is doing slightly.

Anonymous said...

Well, then I think it's past time they understand that they are on TV, which means literally anyone with cable or dish or even an internet hookup can watch their show, see their naked baby, ogle at their daughters, find salacious interest in their details of when they can start having sex again, when they conceived different children, etc.

That means millions of people. They have become a public entity. Anyone does once their face is "out there" and their lives are displayed for all. When they first agreed even just to the specials, it surprised me. Living in Texas, I had heard of the Duggars and knew what their belief system was and it honestly shocked me that they would agree to anything like that. I wouldn't in a milllion years, I wouldn't for a million dollars. Some things (such as my family's privacy) are just too valuable to be purchased at any price.

Celestie said...

One poster mentioned that the girls dress in a feminine way. I don't see anything feminine about those "tree trunk" denim skirts and unisex (polo) shirts. There are many pretty dresses, blouses and skirts on the market these days. Ruffles are in. I am a very modest person, but no one would confuse me with a tree trunk or a prairie girl. You don't have to wear unattractive to be modest.

Anonymous said...

Do you think now that the 80 days are up after Josie's birth that Mrs. Duggar will soon be with child?

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
No I do not think so.
emotional stress delays or inhibits ovulation

The Physical stress (on her body from the past pregnancy) delays or inhibits ovulation

Making breastmilk (even with pumping) delays or inhibits ovulation
Breakmilk made by mom for preemies is different than for full time babies so I would think her body would know it was caring for a preemie I think that would delay or inhibit ovulation

Anonymous said...

I'm one who's generally been critical of the Duggars, and if not critical at least very analytical about everything they do. Although I complain about them, I do so because they intrigue me, and I follow this blog (like a hawk, haha, just like the girls with Michelle's cycle), and I never miss a show, so I obviously like them on some level. Today was one of those days for me when I noticed both the good and the bad. As another poster mentioned, Grandpa's birthday "display" was on again today, but so was the ice storm episode. I've been part of the discussion about college vs. no college and the kids learning practical responsibilities. I have to say that I was EXTREMELY impressed by the whole family in this episode. I'd seen it before, but man did it strike me how much this whole family knows about practical, real life tasks. I can't say much about the nutrition, so cooking is a bad comparison, but growing up I learned nothing about everyday tasks such as repairing things, etc. Honestly, even if the Duggars don't go to college, I think they're much more prepared for the real world and much more independent than a lot of us think. Of course, money has to be made somehow, and I'm not sure how they'll go about that part, but the older boys and JB were very knowledgeable and creative with the generators and Josh and John went into town for gas (growing up I never would have been allowed to drive on the ice like that), and the Bates were able to come in and do the trees. I really think there's something to be said for learning trades and responsibilities the way these kids have.

Anonymous said...

can the duggars say no to them flimming somthing?

Jess C said...

I can't help but think that there s something up with Jana. She seems so unattached in the more recent episodes, and I don't think it is her being shy, I think she just is over everything. After hearing her comments from that podcast a few weeks ago, I felt such sadness for her, and am seriously wondering what she meant by her portion of it. She is a lovely girl and I really feel for her, I think she is going through something, and needs someone she can talk to and honestly open up without being afraid of someone judging or "telling" on her. We are the same age and I go through a ton of things daily, and I can't imagine what it would be like to have to hold it all in and hide.

I've found the last few episodes very interesting, especially Jill's random little speech about homemaking. I thought it was very unusual, and I agree with a lot of users that she is the spokesperson because she seriously has no real thoughts of her own. She never seems to mind anything, is primarily happy, and is just fine with everything. Good for her, I say, and I believe she is the only one.

I recently started separating myself from a church that preaches very similar values and doctrines as the Duggars and am a part of a new congregation that is much more free and open. The Duggar girls are very close to my heart, because I personally know what it is like to be pressured into things you have no real idea about because it's your familiy's way, or "what God wants". I don't doubt that they are possibly happy with the life they lead, but I also know they are human and the tremendous pressure to be perfect in your family's eyes and in the eyes of God can be completely consuming. I am interested in what is to come the rest of the year for this family, especially for the older children/young adults, and will probably only watch for that reason.

pumpkin said...

I would just like to make an observation.

In a recent episode, the camera showed a shot of the Tontitown, Arkansas sign that lists population as just over 2,000 people. It occurred to me that this would mean that about 1% of the town's population is a Duggar.

I found that quite shocking. One out of every one hundred individuals in the town is an offspring of Jim Bob.

B said...

I have to agree with the poster who said out of all the girls Jill is the most die hard when it comes to reciting the lines her parents feed her. I think Jessa and Jinger would head for the highway if given the opportunity and Jana looks disgusted every time the camera catches her face, which if you notice isn't all that much anymore. Not to be mean but Jill seems to be the "slowest" of the girls so maybe that's why she's so easily influenced by her parents.

And I agree trotting the Grandfather out when he was practically senile was unnecessary and innappropriate.

Anonymous said...

Just wanted to point out something interesting... I watch the reruns in the afternoon, and I noticed that the oldest Bates girl's name is spelled at least two different ways. Once I saw "Michaeleh" and once I saw "Micheaella," and there may have even been more. I'm assuming that the first time they showed the name (can't remember which came first and which came second, because I don't know the order of the episodes) it was incorrect and they corrected it the next time, but it's still interesting.

Marybeth said...

I have always felt a kinship with Michelle, because, like her, I came to practice my own religion when I got married. My beliefs and practices grew as our marriage grew, just as hers did with Jim Bob. I too stopped wearing pants and began wearing skirts and dresses, I began to cover my hair, and I only wear long sleeves, not because my husband told me to, but because I read the Torah and after studying with my Rabbi and talking with his wife. Michelle has written and said that it was a decision she made, not one that was forced upon her. Personally I've found that it's more freeing and I feel more comfortable than I've ever felt and I don't miss pants at all. I do all the things I've ever done and more--considering I now chase around a toddler. She's said her girls can choose what to wear and they've all chosen modest clothing---more modest than she would choose.

I don't see their showing the birth of Josie as being immodest, as it was a c-section. We can be sure, as they have never shown her previous vaginal births on the show, that Michelle wouldn't consent to show a vaginal birth. Their show is seen on The Learning Channel and Discovery Health--both networks that carry other documentary type shows that depict live births. I think that is why they are on those networks--it's perfectly logical.

The Duggar philosophy on faith is to lead by example and that's what they do. They are showing how they do things and how their faith works for them. They've never said that any of us viewers should live as they do, practice as they do, or believe as they do, but when asked questions they will answer as best as they seem able. They will explain how they've gotten to where they are and why the believe what they believe and what's happened when they've gone against it.

I agree that the show has changed with the 30-min format and is not as true to life as the 1 hour specials were. However I don't agree that their core moral beliefs have changed, just the way we see them on screen. I think TLC and advertisers provide them with freebies and toys for use on screen like iphones and laptops and other product placements, but that's just capitalism, and afterall, Jim Bob is a registered Republican and former politician, should we expect any less?

Kelly said...

Jana seems downright depressed. She has a forced smile, when she is smiling at all. Who can blame her? She is still forced to go on these idiotic field trips with her family at age 20, and act like it is fun.

Earth to Jim Bob! The last thing you want to do when you are 20 is trail all over the US with you 18 siblings on "field trips"!

No wonder Jana looks depressed! Now that she has been out of the compound, she sees how other people live. Poor girl. I hope she gets out soon.

Anonymous said...

Jess C....

What podcast are you talking about? I'd like to listen to it if you can point me in the right direction.

Thanks!

Cyn said...

MOST of TLC's little blurb's and or pop up windows are incorrect. Especially when it comes to info on the Bates.

The Bates house was a lot bigger to start with that TLC claimed it was. The Bates do NOT live in Clinton TN, and the Church they attend is not in Knoxville...

I gave up on TLC getting the pop ups right years ago.

Anonymous said...

Just because TLC televises other births, doesn't mean that a modest family should show THEIR births. As far as I am concerned, this is one of the biggest hypocrisy of this family.

Anonymous said...

I think if showing the stomach during an ultra sound is considered immodest then a c-section would also fall in the immodest category because it too shows the stomach.

jessica said...

" We are the same age and I go through a ton of things daily, and I can't imagine what it would be like to have to hold it all in and hide."

Michelle has said several times that she treasures the fact that their older children come to them about things, and they have many late-night heart to hearts. I have to assume this is true for Jana as well.

texas lonestar said...

Actually, Johanna's non-c-section was televised, back when they were doing one hours specials. I've often wondered if Michelle regrets that, since they haven't filmed any of the other births - except for Josie's.

Anonymous said...

I think it's funny that Michelle says that the girls choose what they want to wear. Growing up, I'm sure they didn't technically have too much of a choice, because there probably weren't pants in the house for them to choose from in the first place. Of course, when they go shopping the parents probably suggest skirts and they go along with it because that's what they're used to. A choice would be having both pants and skirts presented to them initially at home and they get to choose what to wear each day.

Not a Duggar fan said...

Michelle is only interested in her babies, actually her infants. Once they are weened and handed off, she absolves herself of all responsibility. I have never seen her sit and talk with a single one of her children, and I am hard pressed to believe that she sits around having heart-to-hearts with any of her girls. She simply is not interested in the lives of her children, outside of pregnancy and nursing.

Marybeth said...

When I said Michelle's previous births weren't televised (vaginal births), I meant showing the baby actually coming out of her vagina. TLC and Discovery Health do show vaginal births with the vagina showing on other programs/documentaries.

Cyn said...

Michelle is only interested in her babies, actually her infants. Once they are weened and handed off, she absolves herself of all responsibility.
******************************
Michelle interacting with a child other than an infant.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wk4IkbFfDO0

Cheaper by the Duggars (episode) has Michelle taking the younger boys to the store with none of the older girls along to help

Trading Places Duggar style has Michelle working with the boys around the house.

Duggars on Safari at the beginning of the episode has the older kids leaving with Dad and Michelle staying behind with the younger kids 'and will catch up with them later'

The first time the Duggars are filmed going to El Salvador Michelle stays behind with the younger ones for how ever long they were all gone.

The episode list could go on and on... I'd almost say that every episode has a shot here and there of Michelle talking with or dealing with a child besides the current infant. The fact that I have not seen every episode is the only reason I can't say for a fact that every episode has her talking with/dealing with another child besides an infant.

And TLC if you are listening no we do NOT need to see some private one on one time with the older children. The entire point to having private time is it's private, the rest of the planet does not need to see it.

Anonymous said...

I've wondered myself about the girls going out alone after seeing the episode where the Bates said they go by twos in their family. What made me believe this might be different for the Duggars was in an episode at the car lot where John David said, "This used to be Jana's van." I figure if Jana wasn't allowed to drive anywhere by herself, why have her own van if someone always had to be with her?

Marybeth said...

Regarding what I wrote about Michelle saying the girls can choose what they wear and they choose more modest clothing than even Michelle would choose. Someone else commented that in order for there to be a choice pants would have to be there to choose between. The girls go shopping with Michelle and pick out their own clothes. We've seen this in the 1 hour specials and in the 30 minute shows. They also know how to sew their own clothing, giving them the option to pick out what clothing they would like to purchase and what clothing they would like to make for themselves.

Michelle and Jim Bob have said that they do prefer that their children dress modestly to show off their faces, however if they truly wanted to wear pants they would allow them to do so.

Marybeth said...

I've noticed that Jana has been missing from the limelight of the shows lately. It could be that she isn't coping well with the stress of the newborn in the NICU. She might not be interested in being on TV anymore. She could be engaged and they're holding back the announcement until Josie is out of the woods.

Anonymous said...

It would be nice if Michelle would mosey on up to the the boys room and make sure that they have pajamas on and sheets on their beds.

Jane in California said...

I hope that the adult children are getting paid directly by TLC for any time they are filmed. I really don't think it would be right if JB and M are still taking all the money, when rightfully if one of the adult children is being filmed, an equal portion should go to that adult.

Anonymous said...

I don't see the older children as being immature at all. They're just not as worldly. John David runs his own business - at 20! I don't know ANY 20 year olds that run their OWN business. And Jim Bob may have helped him get started, but he's not around to really help day to day. And yes, Jim Bob once owned a towing business, but he sold it many years ago to an employee.

I bet the older children have many activites, friends, and ventures that we do not have any idea about. And isn't that what we want- for them to have lives "off screen"? I also bet that the girls have been taught the same business principles that the boys were taught. I bet any of those older girls could start her own business if she took a mind to. And I think instead of being embarrassed by this, Jim Bob would be proud.

Midwest Mom said...

Regarding the Duggar girls not going anywhere by themselves......Jill wasn't allowed to go babysit the family friends by herself, she had to take JoyAnna along with her. And maybe the van was entitled "Jana's Van" because she was the only girl old enough for a driver's license at the time the van was purchased.

And thank you to the prior commenter for pointing out that just because we don't see it on tv, doesn't mean it's not happening. You are absolutely correct, because we don't see JimBob and Michelle having sex, yet she keeps turning up pregnant! And given how "free" JB & Michelle are with their "couple talk" (i.e. Father's Day conception and they "forgot" the cameras were on them), the next thing we'll probably see is them actually doing the deed.

luvmybabies said...

" I am hard pressed to believe that she sits around having heart-to-hearts with any of her girls."

When the Duggar family was on the Mike Huckabee show last year, they were asked a question something like 'what is the biggest reward of parenting so many children?' Michelle without hesitation responded that it was that the older children share their hearts with them, and that they cherish their late night talks, where the children come to them voluntarily and talk about their lives with their parents. They also write about this in their book. I never did this with my parents. I think it's remarkable, and it shows some great parenting on Michelle and JB's part that their relationship with their older children is this open.

I have no reason to believe Michelle is making this up. Talks like these haven't been filmed, and I hope they never are. We don't see everything. It doesn't mean it isn't happening.

Anonymous said...

I have never heard the parents say the girls could wear dresses if they really wanted to. We do not require our girls to wear just dresses however we do have a dress code on what is and isn't allowed and since my girls knew certain clothing wasn't allowed they didn't even look at them. I imagine since the Duggar girls know that pants aren't allowed they don't even bother to look at them.

I wonder if Michelle realizes though that she or the buddy is dressing the little girls in little legging sets and they aren't really dresses. The little tops are longer than other tops but they are not considered dresses. They are even dressing the little girls differently than they did when the older girls were younger. They older girls were wearing little prairie dresses with tights instead of legging sets.

I guess the issue with other families showing vaginal births on shows is I don't hear them claiming how modest they are like the Duggars do.

Marybeth said...

It would be interesting to know how TLC pays the family once the children turn 18. Also now that Grandma lives with them full-time since Grandpa died, does she sign a contract with them too? Does everyone who is filmed have to sign a contract? Does Amy receive a paycheck or does being filmed necessarily mean you get paid? Did the Bates receive any money for the episodes they appeared on? I'm sure they had to sign waivers to appear on the show. I would imagine for the shows that took place in their home they were paid at least a fee for using their home as a location, if not an additional fee for appearance.

That's the weird anomoly with "reality tv" because they can claim it's a documentary not a tv show and therefore not pay everyone a weekly fee (Grandma, Amy, The Bates etc.) but pay the family as a whole an appearance fee and then whomever happens to be in camera range just "happens to be in camera range" and signs a waiver (people they interview on the street, people who come to visit, hotel/store employees they film, etc.) I'm sure the adult children have to sign seperately but who knows if they are paid seperately. That's a question for TLC.

Judging from the lessons that Jim Bob and Michelle have ingrained in their kids from an early age, they all have savings accounts. They begin with one in the "Bank of Mom" with their earnings from doing their chores. They wrote about this in their book. So I'm sure if they had any large amounts coming in it would go directly to the bank earning interest.

Marybeth said...

The boys beds have bothered me too. The girls always have properly made beds and the boys never have sheets on their beds or they have sleeping bags. What is up with that? Is it a boy thing? I'm convinced from the 1 hour "move in" special where they filmed them "going to sleep" they were all fully dressed that obviously Michelle didn't want the kids filmed wearing sleeping clothes and we've never seen the kids wearing pajamas as that wouldn't be "proper." However in the book we know they wear pajamas because that's one of their chores is after 3 days to put their pjs in the laundry and get a new pair ready to wear.

The other thing that bothered me was the building of the house the girls room is smaller than the boys(the book has a map of the house)--ok at the time they had 10 boys and 6 girls--then 7 girls. Now they have 9 girls and 9 boys still at home. When they had the NY designer putting beds in the girls room there was no mention of how they were going to make room for even the newborn currently sleeping in Michelle and JimBob's room. Now there are pack and plays at the end of the pretty beds in the girls room. They might have to sacrifice some pretty beds for bunks or start marrying off daughters to make room.

Cyn said...

Could it simply be the girls want to keep their room looking pretty to go with the pretty beds, and the boys simply do not care as long as the floor is picked up?

The older boys are quite old enough to make their own beds, and several times we have heard Michelle talk about 'accidents' the boys had had the night before, and needing to strip the beds.

Every one swaps jurisdictions every other week or so, so it could be that the times we have seen the boys rooms it was a boy in charge of it that week...

Any of these could explain no sheets on the boys beds, and frankly if bed wetting is an issue washing a sleeping bag in those big washers is much easier that replacing a mattress every other month or so because of odors, and or stains.

It IS the reason my kids bunk bed mattresses are made of vinyl (it cost more to begin with but I haven't had to throw one out since I replaced the regular kind) and my other kids sleep on blow up mattresses on their platform beds. (you can haul those into the back yard wash with the water hose and life is good again)

Anonymous said...

It is good to remember that just because we don't see it on tv doesn't meant it happens, but on the flip side just because we see it on tv doesn't mean it is really happening when the cameras are turned off.

kels said...

I think what is confusing is that the Gosselins sort of set the example for a TLC reality show and now we're sort of expecting the same from the Duggars. The Gosselins would allow pretty much ANYTHING to be filmed. I mean bath time, spousal arguments, potty training, getting the kids dressed.. I really don't know if Jon and Kate had ANY boundaries for what could be filmed. The Duggars, however, clearly have boundaries. There's a lot of things we don't see that obviously take place every day in the Duggar home. But that doesn't mean it never happens.

I like the Duggars said...

"Regarding the Duggar girls not going anywhere by themselves......Jill wasn't allowed to go babysit the family friends by herself, she had to take JoyAnna along with her."

I don't remember this one... did they say she wasn't ALLOWED to babysit by herself? Because there are a bunch of reasons why they might send Joy Anna along... maybe the family had several kids, or their ages were spread apart, or Joy Anna was friends with one of them, or Jill wanted some help, or she and Joy Anna wanted to spend some time together, or they wanted Joy Anna to start getting some supervised experience of her own so she can start babysitting when she is older... lots of possibilities if they weren't specific.

I like the Duggars said...

"It would be interesting to know how TLC pays the family once the children turn 18. Also now that Grandma lives with them full-time since Grandpa died, does she sign a contract with them too? Does everyone who is filmed have to sign a contract? Does Amy receive a paycheck or does being filmed necessarily mean you get paid? "

On another TLC family reality show, regularly appearing family members were offered payment of some kind.

I like the Duggars said...

"The boys beds have bothered me too. The girls always have properly made beds and the boys never have sheets on their beds or they have sleeping bags. What is up with that? Is it a boy thing?"

Around here, yes, it is a boy thing. Drives me bonkers, always has, but we have to choose our battles, I guess... ; )

Anonymous said...

I was the OP who mentioned that the girls don't truly have a choice between pants and skirts since pants aren't presented to them to choose from each day. I guess technically they do have a choice, since the parents supposedly don't directly tell them what to do. What I meant by my original post was that I don't think their "choice" is without influence or heavier weight on the skirts side. It may still be able to be considered a choice, but I don't feel that it's necessarily what I would consider to be an equal or informed choice. For a person to make a true choice between things, it seems like he/she should be presented with all of the facts and equal consideration on both sides. We all have influences from our parents' beliefs, and that's all I'm suggesting. A 5-12 year old girl isn't going to suggest that they buy pants at the store when it seems frowned upon in the family.

Anonymous said...

I am not sure the Duggars have boundaries. I saw, for the first time, the episode where they had the grandfather's funeral. I have to say I thought that was the most disturbing episode I have seen of the Duggars.

I know that death is a part of life but to have the cameras at the funeral home when picking out the casket and flowers was just too much. Showing the kids and other family members grieving was another invasion of their privacy.

I think having a memorial would have been fine since he is the father of Jim Bob. But to film the funeral service and some of the preparations for it was wrong.

At one point there was a camera shot from afar showing the family walking by the casket paying their last respects and right by the line of family members was another cameraman up close right by them filming. I wonder if this man had any idea before hand that they were going to have a show of his funeral and if so the way they did it. I found it very disrespectful to his memory. If Grandma Duggar had any say in that filming then shame on her for doing that to her husband. If not then shame on Jim Bob for not putting more boundaries around that episode.

Anonymous said...

Does Grandma Duggar actually live with JimBob & Michelle now? Was this mentioned on an episode? I know she's on a lot of the episodes now but I must have missed it if they said on the show that she had moved in with them.

Midwest Mom said...

What boundaries do the Duggars have?

They have been filmed:

Discussing the conception date of Josie (Fathers Day !, how lovely).

Discussing Michelle's cycle and how the older girls watch it.

Michelle/JB at the Bradley Childbirth class wide-eyed and smiling at the instructor's suggestion of "cervical softening".

Anna's home-birth. (in re-runs there is a "warning" before the episode starts that there is mature subject matter in the episode).

Discussing with adult son Josh the no-kissy no-sex before marriage mantra after he proposed to Anna.

JimBob discussing with Josh the subject of marital relations with Josh prior to the wedding.

Josh & Anna going into the hotel room on their wedding night.

Josh & Anna's "tour" of the "bedrooms" at their honeymoon rental house. (Josh said, "I see she's already made the bed". Ewwwwwww.)

The constant Public Displays of Excessive Hand-holding between Josh & Anna on the car trip from Florida to Arkansas. (So much so that they needed to prop their arms ups with a pillow in the center console of the car).

Younger Duggar children jumping on each other, a younger girl jumping on the cameraman's back, one boy stomping on a younger girls back, boys dragging each other across the living room tile floor, children sliding down the rental house stairs on their stomachs, children leaning into the oven despite an older sister's admonishment not to, a younger Duggar boy snatching candy off the baby-shower table at Anna's baby shower.

This is just all I have time to type right now.

Boundaries? Not a word I think of when it comes to the Duggars.

Hannah said...

I dont think Jill is slow. I think she was just born to be like her mom(some people are). I do think some the others might not follow in there footsteps.

Jane in California said...

I was surprised to hear that the boys' beds are often not made up, or that they simply toss a sleeping bag on a bare mattress and sleep in that. How very odd.

I'm sorry, but I don't consider that a "boy thing" or a "girl thing". I consider that a standard of living thing. When you go camping, you sleep in a sleeping bag. When you are at home, you live like decent folk and put sheets on the bed, topped with a quilt or blanket. Seriously, it's not hard to take a moment or two each morning to make your own bed, and children should be taught this, regardless of sex.

I see in the Duggars a predisposition to let the boys basically do little or nothing. Apparently they believe this is the best training for becoming adult men like Josh, who stand around yapping to a camera while his wife is the pack mule and loads the car, takes care of the baby, cleans the house, and of course, gazes adoringly at him whenever possible.

I'm glad to see that one of the older boys at least seems to have some initiative. He got that on his very own -- that was not learned by watching his dad or Josh. But as to the younger boys - they are being taught to live slovenly, rely on the women folk to pick up after then, and to behave like hooligans indoors and out.

Honestly, I'm shocked that a mother would not take the time to ensure proper bedding in place for all children.

Celestie said...

I have a feeling that JB collects all the money from TLC and decides how it will be used. I also have a feeling that it is for the family.
I don't see JB and Michelle spending money on luxuries for themselves, like KG does. I also think that everyone over 18 has to agree to have themselves filmed. Even if the older children have contracts, I'm sure the JB decides what is the "best way" for them to spend, invest etc their funds. Those girls will never see that money, it will be turned over to their husbands.

roddma said...

"...Clearly she's still amazed that complete strangers feel comfortable to approach her and ask her the most intimate of questions, yet she's willing to answer them."
I was amazed when we first got married about" when are you going to have children?" question These are such personal questions no one can answer.Some can't or dont want them. Not everyone sees children as blessings like the Duggars but not necessarily burdens either. I guess it would be equally hard for a couple childless by choice to explain their position like it is for Michelle to explain her 19. We shouldnt have to keep explaining our choices but you will keep getting asked.

roddma said...

The Duggar girls dont know any style of dress but long skirts and dresses. How can they shop for anything else? They were raised in dresses and skirts so naturally they are more modest than Michelle. I wont believe the Duggar girls have freedom to wear pants until I see it. Their beliefs forbid pants but many Gothard followers still may wear them. Modesty doesnt mean just long dresses and skirts to me.

Deanna said...

The children's bedrooms (and I use "children" in a sad tongue and cheek way, since Jana and Jill are adults, bunking with toddlers) do not have enough beds. That is why poor Hannie is still in a pack-n-play (pity her back in the future) at age 5. So is Jennifer. And Jordyn. Or those little girls climb in and sleep with the big girls. There isn't even privacy and independence for SLEEP! I can't imagine having to attend to toddlers in my bed or room, as a 20 year old.

Also, aside from no sheets, sometimes, we have seen the little boys sleeping, fully clothed, in the girls' room. What is up with that?

We have seen Jim Bob, *in bed*, in his tighty whitey t-shirt. Is that modest?

We have seen his cleaning out poop in the toilet. Not very modest (and I didn't want to see that either----!!!)

There are so many things about this family which are inconsistent.

Marybeth said...

Here are a few responses to previous postings I've made that people have replied to:

I think some people are confusing "modesty" with "real life" and what it's like to have a reality show. While I agree that watching Jim Bob snake a toilet was unpleasant, I think the message here was, "we do it ourselves, we don't call a plumber, therefore you too can do it yourself, it's not that difficult." They lead by example. It wasn't immodest, it was teaching--leading by example, the whole purpose of their ministry.

I do think that they were a bit "short-sighted" when they planned the building of their house. They have said in the past that they let the kids decide the bedroom situation--did the kids want seperate rooms, multiple rooms, or 2 large dorm rooms? The kids chose 2 large dorm rooms. Well that's great, but at the time the oldest kids were still only middle teens--did they bother to think ahead to what an 18, 19, 20 year old might want? Obviously not because there are no other bedrooms for kids to move into should they want to.

In past episodes when they lived in the previous homes, the boys and girls did not have seperate rooms---the little boys slept with the girls in the same rooms. I guess that "buddies" can sleep in the girls' room with them if the girls don't mind. I don't think that is unusual behaviour in any household. The family meets as a whole in the boys room on a nightly basis for family time (before they moved to Little Rock) so the rooms are not "off limits" to the opposite sex within the family.

I do believe that I heard Jim Bob say that Grandma and Grandpa moved into the guest room (off the laundry room--map in their book) when Grandpa was dying, and now Grandma lives with them permanently. She certainly lives with them in Little Rock full time. I believe it was written in the book that they lived there as he was still alive when the book was published.

As for Johanna in the pack and play, she isn't 5, she's 4 and ready for a toddler bed. My 3 year old is still sleeping in a pack and play and that's the only bed she's ever slept in--we're still deciding what kind of bed to move her into next.

Some of the beds in both the boys rooms and the girls rooms are full size (double) and some are twins. I've never understood that. I suppose two small kids can fit in a double bed just fine.

One thing we have over looked, each bedroom has a loft--they can always escape up there!

Marybeth said...

I haven't been able to get Jana out of my head. In the first 2 seasons she was very prominent. She talked to the camera in interviews and was featured in activities. While I've only seen 3 episodes this season, I've noticed that even towards the end of last season she was keeping her head down and wasn't the focus of much.

I am hoping that she's engaged and just can't announce it because the family is going through so much pain right now. I really hope there isn't anything wrong with her.

Marybeth said...

The comment about the younger girls in leggings and longer shirts and "that not being dresses" caught my attention. I think I know the reason for the change in attire. The Duggars haven't had little girls since Joy Anna and she's now 11? 12? And it's the first time they've had toddler girls running around in front of a camera. I'm guessing they are going with leggings and long shirts/dresses because that is the best way to be modest on film when you have toddlers rolling around on the floor with a camera filming them. How many of us with little girls (me included) have had a toddler wearing a dress lift up their skirt to show off their panties underneath at the most inoportune time? (like in front of the Rabbi?) I think they are adapting to the situations as they occur.

If you saw the 1 hour special where they lived in the old house and the kids were playing kick ball, the girls were wearing dresses but had on long pants underneath them. It was because a) it was obviously winter and very cold outside and b) they were playing kickball. And 2 if you saw the 1 hour special where they were building the house you saw a few of the girls wearing the men's 1 piece pants/coveralls worksuit because it as a) very very cold outside and b) they were building a house/laying the pipe for the radiant heated floor.

So there is precident set in the past for the little girls to have "pants" on under their dresses/long shirts. Only now they are leggings. Afterall we have seen the older girls adapt from prairie dresses to modern style, why not let the toddlers adapt to modern style as well. We have heard Michelle and Jinger and Jessa use the phrase many times "we dress in modest modern."

Check on those kids said...

I still think that either Jim Bob or Michelle should go and check on their boys and make sure that they have clean comfortable bedding and a fresh pair of pajamas on thus ensuring a comfortable nights rest!!!!

Chris said...

I know our doctor does not recommend long term use of a pack and play as a bed. My baby only wanted to sleep in her car seat and I was concerned. When I went for a check up the doctor and I talked about it and he gave me some hand outs on sleep , one of the hand outs was on extended pack and play sleeping. It included several articles that said long term use was not recommended. They were fine for vacations, naps at grandmas etc but once the child was walking the matress in the pack in plays were to thin and not supportive of the growth of a toddler. It warned of posture, back and neck problems.

I was very suprised to see the duggars ususing these with kids over the age of 2! I'm a thrify shopper and there is never a shortage of toddler beds on yard sales of thrift stores. I don't like the idea of used matresses, a new toddler size serta is only about $50, but as we saw with the boys bunk bed episode Jim Bob doesn't mind used matress so it shouldbe very cheap to get a toddler bed fully set up. Or maybe they need to consider being a 2 crib house? One crib for J&M room for the first 6 months and then one for the girls room for 6 months-2 years?

Kelly said...

There are a couple of newer videos up on the TLC site. One is of the kids tearing around the house on a "Candy Hunt" (bedlam, chaos). Jana is in that video, and actually smiled. The kids are out of control, as usual. The little boys are actually getting BIG, so all that out of control behavior looks more chaotic because there are so many of them and they are no longer 5 years old, but a bunch around 10.

Then there is a Christmas cookie baking episode where the kids are climbing all over the very counters where they are rolling out or frosting cookies in their SHOES. YUCK! No one tells those kids to get off the counter. It is just kind of gross that anyone will eat those cookies that they have touched with their dirty hands made on a dirty counter.

I just wish we would see some (any) manners in those kids! All they do is shriek around the house and climb all over everything.

Midwest Mom said...

If Jana were engaged/being courted/betrothed, wouldn't she have a smile on her face at the very least? All we've seen this season is a very depressed-looking young woman. If she's engaged and that unhappy, why be engaged?

Also, I can't imagine Johannah is still in a pack-n-play. A child that age needs a quality mattress for adequate spine growth. Must be the same Duggar line of thinking as the used shoes. No long-term thought of the health consequences of substandard mattresses and second-hand shoes.

Anonymous said...

"I wonder if Michelle realizes though that she or the buddy is dressing the little girls in little legging sets and they aren't really dresses. The little tops are longer than other tops but they are not considered dresses."

I haven't seen this, in what episode are the younger girls wearing tunic tops and leggings instead of a dress and leggings?

Are you sure they are tunic tops and not shorter dresses?

Where I live it is common for modest dress wearing little girls to wear shorter dresses then older girls. It helps with crawling, learning to walk, and general little girl play.

Legging are also common place. The local Public school even requires leggings or pants under all skirts and dresses. They will even send the girl to the nurse office get a pair if they don't have one on under their skirt or dress. High school and middle school don't require leggings or pants but many girls still wear them under their skirts because it is modest and in style.

The Duggars are modern people why wouldn't they wear modern clothing that still stays within their religions standard of modest attire?

Captain Tucker said...

I would like to comment on the bed situation. I was the oldest in a large family. My younger siblings, from time to time, would sleep with me - until I left home. Also, bed sharing is a very common practice. I was astounded when my 2nd little girl was born and people were shocked that we chose to put her in the room with her older sis!

I do wish the oldest girls could have their own room seperate from the littlest ones, but I have a feeling a few of them will be married and moved out within the next few years. As far as the boys and the state of their beds go, boys can be ruff on beds. If some had wet the bed on the day of filming, then they may have already removed the sheets. Also, boys (and some girls) tend to wallow in their beds which can remove sheets and make the bed very disheveled.

Smaller children often sleep better in bed with another child. My youngest sister, as a toddler, was very close to me. She would often come to me at night instead of my mother - not because my mom wouldn't take care of her or because she perfered me. She just liked to get in bed with me because I would sing to her.

Jess C said...

There is talking with someone and talking TO someone. I get the feeling that when one of the older girls have an issue, they probably get talked TO instead of it being a conversation, unless it is sometihng that is "okay" to be spoken about. That's just the impression I get. And with there being so many children to be watched after constantly, and them traveling all the time, I don't see how there is a lot of time to give these young women that individual attention they need. I've seen episodes where they do try and single out a child to spend a day with, but that's usually only on birthdays. Most of the time, it's the "girls" or the "boys", which is somewhat understandable considering the number of people in the household, but it is still really hard to compete for attention.

I like the Duggars, I think they are an adorable family, and have very captivating qualities. But I don't like the show so much anymore, it's not as interesting or as authentic as I believe it was in the past specials. I think they are overexposed and a parody of themselves in many ways now.

I'm just concerned about where the show/family are going,I just want them to see what concerns other people have for them and the overexposure.

ash said...

Blogger Captain Tucker said...

I do wish the oldest girls could have their own room seperate from the littlest ones, but I have a feeling a few of them will be married and moved out within the next few years.

----------------------------------

This is one of the things that bothers me so much about the Duggar lifestyle, as far as the girls are concerned. In their belief system, the accepted standard is that girls should live at home under their father's roof until they are married and under their husband's roof. I think that this can lead to an unhealthy perception of marriage, since it is basically the only acceptable route for leaving home. Girls in these situations are more likely to rush into marriage (either with someone they haven't gotten to know well enough yet, or just with the wrong person) because it's the only way for them to get out and start living like an adult.

If any of these girls doesn't happen to find their perfect match and get married within the next few years, what lies in store for them? Sharing a room with little kids when they're 25? 30? Ugh, you could hardly blame someone for rushing into the wrong marriage if that was the only alternative. Where do you draw the line? It's just wrong whenever a situation is created that gives people incentive to get married for any reason other than pure, devoted love, a strong relationship that has been tested and survived, etc.

Anonymous said...

I don't understand the pack n play either being used for a regular bed. Since the Duggars have chosen to have as many children as possible and having so many young ones at once you would think they would have invested in several cribs instead of just one.

Ohio Buckeye said...

There is talking with someone and talking TO someone. I get the feeling that when one of the older girls have an issue, they probably get talked TO instead of it being a conversation."

&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&

I believe your observation is accurate. JBD seems to love his role as Patriarch, The Imparter of All Knowledge.

I see no modesty/humility in JBD. Instead, I see arrogance and a failure to value the opinion of others. IMO these are poor leadership qualities and less than a commendable behavior for a dad.

Marybeth said...

Regarding Jana being engaged and still being unhappy--

there are several reasons why she could be courting and still not have a happy face on camera

a) she was quoted in the book as saying she loves taking care of the new babies (with a picture of her playing piano wearing a baby bjorn-type carrier) and it could be that she is having "surviors guilt" over Josie being in the NICU while she's courting a Beau

b) she could also be unhappy that they moved to Little Rock and her Beau is either back in Springdale/Tonitown or somewhere even further away, therefore she's unhappy about not being close to him--homesick

c) she's unhappy because they aren't announcing it because Josie is fighting for her life on a day to day basis so Jana's happiness is taking a backseat and she's remembering what a frontseat Josh's engagement took (not a very "Christlike" behaviour to have, but she is human afterall, and a girl who could be feeling left out)

while an engagement/courtship is just conjecture on my part---these are valid reasons as to why she could be engaged or be courting and still be unhappy on camera...if she's courting a Bates it would even make sense as to why she was sad in the later episodes last season, as that's when they last saw the Bates, at least on the show.

Anonymous said...

It's interesting that the focus has switched almost completely from the babies and young children to the adult age offspring and their affairs. I think it shows how the show will endure for a few more seasons.

Celestie said...

he little boys are actually getting BIG, so all that out of control behavior looks more chaotic because there are so many of them and they are no longer 5 years old, but a bunch around 10.

_____
I was just thinking, when the older girls were the age of some of these boys, they were already heavily involved with childcare, home making (cleaning and laundry) and cooking. It doesn't seem much is expected of the little princeses.

Deanna said...

I'd be seriously depressed if I were sharing a room with a bunch of babies and toddlers, if I had no privacy for even my own thoughts, if my life consisted of cooking, cleaning, laundry and childcare of my mother's children, 24/7, if my father dictated my every move, and I had no say in anything, even as a legal adult.

No wonder Jana looks sad. It's a pretty sad state of affairs for her.

Midwest Mom said...

" I think it shows how the show will endure for a few more seasons."

-----

The show will endure a few more seasons because JimBob & Michelle won't stop endangering her health and that of any future children. They need to stop. Her babymaking days are over and I don't believe for one second that her obstetrician has told them, "of course, yes, you are perfectly healthy, go get pregnant again !".

Freak Show Central continues on.

Jane in California said...

I agree Deanna -- for the older girls especially, it seems their life is one day after another of drudgery, and they can't even escape at night for some peace and privacy, as they are on call 24/7 to care for their younger siblings. It's no wonder that Jana has been looking depressed lately. I do not find anything admirable about having a ton of kids and then making your older children raise them for you, in addition to cooking, cleaning the house, and oh yeah, being responsible for your boy siblings purity of thoughts. Is there anything else they can pile on those girls? If so, I'm sure they have and will.

As to the homeschooling - I have nothing in particular against it, if done properly. But it appears to take a back seat to most everything else and further, doesn't seem to be any real schedule. It's catch as catch can, with the kids left on their own to do most of the work. I think this is because the Duggars don't really value education or an inquiring mind. They want their kids to know the bible, to be obedient, to have some very basic skills that will enable the boys to have a small business of their own, and the girls to know the home arts.

I'd go so far to say that they don't want them to explore further, because that might create in them desire to go to college, to choose a different life path than their parents.

I think with the older children (and pre-show), they were much more strict and those are the children we saw behaving so well on an early dinner out (14 Kids and Counting?).

With the younger kids, we can see the breakdown in discipline. Those children are more than merely rambunctious - they run wild at times and seem to have extremely poor manners. Sure, they're cute (now), but add a few more years and that stuff will be mighty unappealing.

However, I hold out more hope for at least some of the younger ones to break free of the mold their parents set for the kids. They've had more freedom and have been exposed (albeit slightly) to different sorts of people and lifestyles. Let's hope at least a few of the Duggars do break free.

I also hope for the older Duggar girls that they at least marry a less fundamental version of their father, someone who won't immediately start in on having 15 kids. I'd love to see them get a break from having to be caretaker. Good luck girls!

Jane in California said...

To anonymous at 8:42 a.m.:

I too am from a large Irish Catholic family - 8 kids. Yes, the older kids helped, but they did not have to raise the younger ones. We had chores, like folding laundry and putting it away, setting the table, clearing the table, doing the dishes, drying the dishes, etc., that were divided up between us. Saturday night was our night to cook dinner and give mom a break.

We did not have our baby brother or sister sleep in our rooms with us once they turned 6 months old. We weren't on diaper duty, we didn't have to monitor our brother's thoughts, and we were allowed and encouraged to participate in outside activities. In short, my parents were strong on family, but as equally strong on letting us be individuals with lives outside of caring for house and siblings.

I still don't give the Duggars a pass. If you have so many children that you must require your older daughters (not sons) to raise them, you've had too many and are not a good parent.

Celestie said...

Jane said
I think this is because the Duggars don't really value education or an inquiring mind.

----
I think you have hit the nail on the head. Homeschooling, if done by motivated and educated parents, certainly has proved to produce brilliant results. Just letting kids teach themselves and taking bus rides to dubious destinations, doesn't an education make.

i think unschooling requires a lot of intellectual stimulation from the parents, and a broad array of experiences. I'm not seeing this in Duggarland.

Cyn said...

We seem to be reading quite a bit into 1 or 2 facial expressions, and extrapolating from there.

If she had a bad day that day (who of us hasn't)what makes us jump from that to:
1)She's engaged and not happy about it
2)She's upset because she can't announce 'her engagement'
3)She's depressed about having to take care of her mothers children.
4)She's upset because her 'fiance' is far away or farther away.

Why can't she simply have had a bad day? Or better yet what if JOSIE had a bad week or day and she's simply worried about her new sibling? Janna is the one that actually wants to work with children, and not only helps out with her siblings she volunteers at either a nursery or a daycare (I don't remember what they called it). Maybe she is just missing the other kids she helps take care of...

Anon 3:14 said...

I just viewed a re-run of the episode where the Duggars visit the local public school.

At the beginning of the episode, Josiah is clearly shown trying to awaken Jackson, who was sleeping in JANA'S BED in the girls room. (The name "Jana" was stenciled on the headboard).

Just more inconsistencies from this family.

Celestie said...

The episode where Ma and some of the kids go to the public school, was one of my favorites. They go to a school where the children are attending an assembly. All is quiet and orderly. Then they go into a quiet and orderly classroom to sing or something. None of the children are misbehaving, but are polite and attentive.

Then they go home and chaos reigns, while Ma tries to get one of the kids go get his book and settle down. One of the Duggars remarks that it must be hard for the teachers to handle that many kids. LOL Teacher was doing fine, Ma Duggar was the one who was having problems. The child seemed to behind in grade level as well. My kg boy is reading. The Duggar boy, about 6 or7 or so, was just learning to sound out letters. My kids also knew their shapes and color by age 2 or 3. They are not brilliant, it is just an easy thing for a mom to teach, if she spends time with her kids.

Ohio Buckeye said...

@Celestie: Good point.

Suffice it to say that the Duggars are not exactly the flagship model for homeschooling for obvious reasons.

IMO, they give a bad name to homeschooling and being 'christian'.

The ONLY thing the Duggars have INSPIRED me to do is read more than I watch tv.

mom of 2 said...

I am the youngest of a large Catholic family. We are all well educated and happy in our lives. But the rules are different in a large family. Sleeping arrangements are flexible. My 8 yr old sister gave me a cold bottle during the night instead of waking my Mom and I slept in a crib for too long. I shared a room with a brother, then a double bed with a sister until I was 16. The Duggars probably have the best intentions that the boys and girls sleep in their own rooms, in pyjamas with sheets on their beds. But they have a large family so they let things go. It's called survival. The small things aren't important.
I have 2 children who each have their own room- sheets and comforters. If I added 5-6 or 7 kids it would be a different story. It's all good- we all survive large families and most have great memories. I do!

Ohio Buckeye said...

In the very contrived visit to the public school episode (including Ma D walking around the school suckling her baby beneath a blanket the entire time), I also found it tacky that they used this episode to make sure we all know that, though they homeschool, their tax $ do support public schools. Wow, am I supposed to be impressed? Inspired? 'Encouraged'? Grateful?

The Duggars are going to have to aim WAY higher for me to experience ANY of those feelings because of them.

SteelMagnolia said...

Heard this on the radio on my morning commute today (which is really a sad commentary on the channel):

A suggested TLC show?

"Little People Who Hoard and Have 19 Kids".

SteelMagnolia said...

OK, that's IT! I am so DONE with TLC - and I really mean that now! There is a show after The Duggars called "Miss Turkey Trot". I kid you not. Won't be going there anymore.

Iliketheduggars said...

"i think unschooling requires a lot of intellectual stimulation from the parents, and a broad array of experiences. I'm not seeing this in Duggarland."

Just as a point of information, "unschooling" and "homeschooling" are not interchangeable terms. The Duggars have never claimed to be "unschooling."

There are a lot of complaints about the Duggars schooling being just a lot of "workbooks and computer." Interestingly, many homeschooling families I know pulled their kids for the very same reason... except most of them weren't lucky enough to add "and computer." So at their worst, the Duggars may be providing a more varied education than they'd be receiving at some schools.

And didn't Arkansas rank awfully low in quality of education among the 50 states? Like number 49? If so, the "minimal standards" theory doesn't hold much water, since the state "ain't settin'" the bar too high to begin with...

Iliketheduggars said...

"I just viewed a re-run of the episode where the Duggars visit the local public school.

At the beginning of the episode, Josiah is clearly shown trying to awaken Jackson, who was sleeping in JANA'S BED in the girls room. (The name "Jana" was stenciled on the headboard).

Just more inconsistencies from this family."

I don't understand... what inconsistencies?

Iliketheduggars said...

"Suffice it to say that the Duggars are not exactly the flagship model for homeschooling for obvious reasons.

IMO, they give a bad name to homeschooling and being 'christian'."

I don't see that.

We actually don't know anything at all about the children's achievement levels... no way whatsoever to determine whether they are ahead of or behind their public school counterparts. Maybe they are so good at homeschooling that the kids are light years ahead, and they don't go to college because they've already learned all that stuff. ; )

As far as their Christianity... they serve others, don't seem to hold a grudge, and are certainly loving. Christ served, loved, and forgave. True, they won't ever attain His level of perfection, but that probably wasn't ever their expectation, so we'll always find some mistakes or inconsistencies.

Frankly, there are a lot more wacky religious folk out there than the Duggars... I think a few fundamentalist kingpins in my neck of the woods could actually learn a thing or two from them.

Anon 3:14 said...

Celestie, loved your comment about the public school episode.

I noted, too, that when Josiah was in the interview chair in that episode, he was trying to discuss the differences between homeschool and public school, and he kept saying there are more children in public school. Is that all he could come up with?

I had to laugh at the violin song the girls played for the public school. Wasn't that tune "A Mighty Fortress is Our God?". They just can't leave their religion out of anything, can they?

Anon 3:14 said...

"Maybe they are so good at homeschooling that the kids are light years ahead, and they don't go to college because they've already learned all that stuff."

=====

Or maybe they have applied to college and been turned down.

Or maybe the children have been told there are no funds for college despite JB's proclamation that "one may become a doctor, one may become a laywer". Yeah, right.

Or maybe the children have been brainwashed into believing that college is a place full of sinful people who will turn you into a sinful person also ! Beware !

Or maybe they don't go to college because they are just unable to get there ON TIME.

Marybeth said...

No they can't leave their religion out of anything. The only music they are allowed to play or listen to are hymns, so I'm not surprised that they played one in their public school performance. I am surprised that they were allowed to, however.

As for their homeschooling they use Switched on Schoolhouse and Accelerated Christian Education--both programs they purchase. Michelle went to public school and Jim Bob went to a private Christian school. So yes they have high school diplomas and they monitor their children's educations, but are not in charge of the curriculum--they choose the program and purchase it. So far the kids have been graduating (with GEDs) at the age of 16 vs age 18 had they gone to high schools. It's been written in the book and mentioned on the show that the kids do get their GEDs so they do pass tests, they also pass the tests given by the state as they go along--this was also in the book.

Marybeth said...

I think Cyn has a point. While what I said about Jana was purely conjecture (an engagement) she is the daughter who is most attached to babies. She could very well be taking Josie's premature birth the hardest. She could also be missing her volunteer work back home, as I'm sure someone with her giving heart, she's become emotionally involved with the babies and kids she works with.

Deanna said...

My kids have all gone to public school and not a one ever sat on the computer all day doing Photoshop. That is the sorriest excuse for an education I have ever seen. Those computer programs too---the kids just keep plugging in answers until they get it right (no penalty for being wrong). Not much learning going on there, because learning involves being active, involved, analytical, curious, etc., not just punching A, B, C, or D until you get a giant YAY and moving on to the next question.

Seriously, I think the acknowledgement that the kids are totally schooled on the computer, including the little ones (whom Michelle used to pretend to teach) is a sad story of education in Duggarland. I suspect that there is a lot of fooling around on the computer, and little, if any, learning. The Photoshop was just one example.

Marybeth said...

I don't see how Jackson sleeping in Jana's bed is "inconsistant." Like I wrote earlier, the boys and girls slept together in 2 rooms in the earlier houses before the big house was built. They also slept more than 1 kid to a bed as there wasn't enough room in the earlier houses.

It's no secret that this is a close and loving family and the kids are not just siblings but friends. It's not unusual in large families for kids to "double up." I think that because in the last few generations that families have shrunk down to 2.3 kids we just aren't used to it anymore and the Duggars are now an anomoly so everything they do is unusual, hence they have their own show.

Ohio Buckeye said...

"Suffice it to say that the Duggars are not exactly the flagship model for homeschooling for obvious reasons.

IMO, they give a bad name to homeschooling and being 'christian'."

Frankly, there are a lot more wacky religious folk out there than the Duggars... I think a few fundamentalist kingpins in my neck of the woods could actually learn a thing or two from them.

&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&

Not being the wackiest fundamentalists in the woods is hardly a role model I'd want my kids to emulate.

Don't mean to demonize the Duggars. There are actually a few things about them I find commendable.

But their overriding message is one of self righteousness and their approach to life seems fear and guilt driven - just seems such a negative view of life and the world - hardly my idea of a religious ideal. JMO.

Iliketheduggars said...

"My kids have all gone to public school and not a one ever sat on the computer all day doing Photoshop. That is the sorriest excuse for an education I have ever seen."

I guess I'd have to respectfully disagree... I loved it when my kids did long-term projects on the computer. The two who are teenagers now were in a school gifted program that pulled them out of class one day a week, and I'd say about 25% of the time they were working on a wide variety of computer projects. Now, as teenagers, they are WAY more proficient on PowerPoint, Excel, and all the media programs than I am... they have shown an interest in and talent for filmmaking... one volunteered to make the slide show for his younger brother's elementary banquet, and the teachers were so impressed they tried to persuade him to start a business (he politely declined; wasn't sure he wanted to work that hard. They had contacts lined up already!).

I don't think developing computer skills are EVER a waste of time... not in this age OR economy. That's one of the contradictions that makes me like the Duggars... yes, their clothing rules are dated by about 100 years, but no kid is going to leave that household computer-illiterate.

Ancient of Days said...

It's no secret that this is a close and loving family and the kids are not just siblings but friends. It's not unusual in large families for kids to "double up."
________________

The Duggars appear to think that sexual temptation is lurking around every corner, and thus they have their "Nike!" always at the ready. Have the parents ever considered that that very temptation may arise in the innocent persona of one's sibling? There is a a certain point at which attraction is just that--attraction--and I'm not convinced that the Duggar children have learned when it's appropriate and when it's not.

It's not as though they can't afford proper sleeping accommodations for their children, having sold out to Mammon as they most certainly have.

Anonymous said...

"The Duggars appear to think that sexual temptation is lurking around every corner, and thus they have their "Nike!" always at the ready. Have the parents ever considered that that very temptation may arise in the innocent persona of one's sibling?"
---------------------------------

I find the sleeping thing strange, too, since this is the same family who has a rule that each person must lock the bathroom door so they don't risk turning on their siblings if one of them accidentally walks in on them.

Hannah said...

I dont think its right for the kids to share beds. A bed mattresses on the floor would be better.

Ancient of Days said...

I find the sleeping thing strange, too, since this is the same family who has a rule that each person must lock the bathroom door so they don't risk turning on their siblings if one of them accidentally walks in on them.
_____

Oh, my, I'd forgotten about that, if I ever knew it at all. Now I feel even queasier than I did while I was writing my previous post.

Deanna said...

Nothing whatsoever wrong with developing computer skills. It's a good thing. But I am not sure those kids are learning anything on the computer that is of actual academic content.

Photoshop is just fine (as an elective), but Josiah showing how he pasted different heads on the Duggar bodies and Jim Bob was so gosh darn proud of that... well, that is not much to expect of a 13 or 14 year old who is proficient at the computer.

On the bed note, I think they all need real beds too. Not pack-n-plays for preschoolers (oh, their aching backs!), or boys and girls sharing beds. Nike indeed. Perish the though!

Midwest Mom said...

"I don't see how Jackson sleeping in Jana's bed is "inconsistant."

@@@

It's just plain weird. A 20-year-old young woman sharing a bed with her 5 (6?) year old little brother is just plain wrong.
Jana is his sister, not his mom !

That must be how JB&Michelle keep getting pregnant, they never have to worry about a young child crawling into bed with them when the child has a bad dream, etc. The younger children crawl into the beds of the older sisters !

Ohio Buckeye said...

"Being careful to lock bathroom doors so as not to turn on siblings"????

One more example of why the Duggars give being 'christian' a bad name.

This is just plain WEIRD.

Would it not make more sense to simply teach it's impolite to enter any room w/o knocking and forego yet another bizarre and completely unnecessary reference to sexual temptation?

Iliketheduggars said...

"But their overriding message is one of self righteousness and their approach to life seems fear and guilt driven - just seems such a negative view of life and the world - hardly my idea of a religious ideal. JMO."

On the last part I agree with you wholeheartedly, and it is my big beef with fundamentalism.

I guess what I find interesting about the Duggars is that even with the fear-and-guilt worldview, they do NOT seem all that self-righteous, at least not to the extent that they verbally proclaim it to or force it on others (ie, cousin Amy). Also, despite the extremely unhealthy (imo) beliefs and behaviors typical in fundie families, they show an awful lot of love to those kids, and even to others in the outside world. And I don't believe it's entirely for the benefit of the cameras... the happiness and kindness of the kids is proof of that.

That's one of the reasons I'm kind of happy to see the little ones running around like wild animals, or even misbehaving... in a typical fundie family, there would be serious guilt, consequences, withdrawal of love, etc., for even milder, active-kid kind of behavior. The Duggars are the rare fundamentalist family I've seen who consider a lot of that "normal development" rather than "evidence of man's sinful nature that must be broken," kwim?

I really don't agree with many of their beliefs or practices. But they are loving those kids. Making a mistake by making a show out of them, imo, yes (I'll be thrilled when it's over). But first and foremost they love their kids, and I really believe they do what they think is best for them, whether it turns out to be or not.

Jane in California said...

Ohio Buckeye said:
Would it not make more sense to simply teach it's impolite to enter any room w/o knocking and forego yet another bizarre and completely unnecessary reference to sexual temptation?

* * *

I agree. I've said before, but I'll repeat myself. Raised in a large family, 8 siblings total. We had two bathrooms between ten people. We were actually discouraged from locking the bathroom door as little kids because sometimes we'd need to holler for mom or dad to come help us (shampoo in the eyes, etc.) and then they'd arrive to a locked door.

However, we were taught basic manners and one of them was when you encounter a closed bathroom door, you either come back later or knock politely. A closed door usually indicated an occupant. It's not rocket science and we all "got it" from at least age five onward.

The Duggars are abnormally concerned with lustful feelings, in themselves, in their children, and in others. They seem very convinced that lying just beneath the surface of each and every one of us are uncontrollable lustful urges that could so easily take us over, to such a degree that we might even have such thoughts about our ten year old brother or sister. All I can to that is ewwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww!!!

I think all their over emphasis does is constantly put thoughts into their own minds, and those of anyone inflicted by their constant reminders.

If they are so concerned with lustful thoughts, they ought to be putting a halt to any filming of their growing or adult chldren, as JB has already spoken of inappropriate marriage offers coming via e-mail from goodness knows who all.

Both my parents had good common sense, but my mom had a very protective instinct. She didn't allow us to speak to strangers, and she never would have allowed us to be filmed and put out there for any and all to watch our private lives. Thank you Mom and Dad for protecting me!

Ohio Buckeye said...

@ILikeTheDuggars: I liked your post alot. Very thought provoking, so thank you!

As previously noted, I, too, like a few things about the Duggars, and that would include, as you point out so well, that they do seem to genuinely love their kids, and that is always nice to observe anytime, anywhere. So, serious kudos to them for that. I wish, though, they'd love them enough to protect them from making their life a tv show, but that, like everything else, is their decision to make.

I wish I could agree with you about the self righteousness. I see and hear it everywhere on that show, including innocently-intended but very telling interview comments by not only JBD, but also by the kids themselves, comparing their family to what 'others' would probably do, and the comparison is always clearly negative toward those in the real/outside world. This qualifies as self righteous IMO and seems anything but humble.

While I appreciate & accept that kids are typically raised to embrace the basic values of their family, these kids are given zero opportunity to learn about anything BUT their parents' belief systems and seem to be taught to consider others somehow more sinful than they. It is just hard for me to respect this.

Ohio Buckeye said...

I came from a large (not by Duggar stds) family, and had no problem sharing my bedroom and its one teensy tinsy closet with my two sisters. We were nothing less than thrilled when we moved to a house that had TWO bathrooms.

So, I don't think it's such a bad thing for sibs to learn to accommodate others by sharing a room in a way that is respectful the needs of your roommates.

HOWEVER, I will be forever grateful to our parents for giving us each our own BED. And, though I loved being both a big and little sister, and especially enjoyed nurturing and playing with my younger sister while we were growing up, I respect our mom alot for not EXPECTING the older girls to act as pseudo moms to the younger kids.

JMO I believe the Duggars do their girls a huge disservice on many levels.

kitnkaboodle said...

Those pack 'n plays have HARD bottoms (and thin ones)! I hated even using one when we traveled, for my babies/toddlers.
They don't have beds??? (I dont watch the show so I am relying on what I read here). Don't they "make" enough money surely by now, to afford BEDS for everyone??
And why are young children sleeping with their older sisters?? I mean occasionally ok, but ...?? OK EVERYONE should have thier OWN bed available to them, alright?!
Jeesh.
And if you insist upon infantilizing the youngest ones by keeping them in Pack 'n Plays whatever, then at LEAST put them in a regular crib that has a relatively thick mattress! Be kind to their backs (and heads, and necks, and knees, etc)
I dont understand these people.

Anonymous said...

I watched the episode this afternoon where JB takes the girls to camp, and they ride horses. First of all, Jinger could barely get on the horse because of her skirt. I also could barely watch JB's awkwardness at the end when they got off the horses and he gave it a really strange pat and said "yeah, good.... good horse. yeah, uh... that was.. that was a lot of fun hehehehe."

Celestie said...

Seems to me, you can not spend as much time with each child or "know their hearts" if you have 19 kids, as you would, if you had 2 or 3. There just isn't that much time in the day.
If Michelle stopped to hug each child, each day, it would take about an hour of her time. I know around here a couple of good hugs and kisses takes a couple of minutes, maybe more.

If she sat down for a talk, or to listen, or spend real time with each one it would take most of the day. Plus she is pseudo teaching them, nursing a baby running a house and of course making whoopie with jb. Oh and least we forget, speaking out against individuals rights to buy or sell liquor in her neighborhood.

jessica said...

" There just isn't that much time in the day.
If Michelle stopped to hug each child, each day, it would take about an hour of her time."

I sure hope Michelle takes this hour or more each day to physically touch and connect with each child. We can't assume that she doesn't simply because that amount of time giving hugs seems ludicrous to us. She's probably used to spending lots of time doing things that for small families takes just minutes. I recall her saying once that it takes an hour and a half just to get ready to take the whole family somewhere.

Marybeth said...

Free Discussion March 2010 (1)
Michelle and JimBob didn't have 19 children just t... Michelle and JimBob didn't have 19 children just to have 19 children. They had 19 children to raise them, nurture them, train them, teach them, love them, and watch them grow into adults. They didn't plan on having 19 children either. As someone else who doesn't use birth control, you roll the dice and see what happens, as it happens, we have 1 child, they have 19, my Rabbi has 8, my sister has 4. I would say that reproductively speaking, they are an anomoly. They have also said in their book that they don't plan their children, they just happen. Just by looking at they way they look at each other it's plain to see that they are still head over heels in love and it's obvious how 19 children happened. Michelle is not a brood mare who is being forced into service, she is making love to her husband and 19 children are the precious result. Every time she gets pregnant she's amazed, especially this last time---even after so many the kids are amazed with each announcement--the announcements that have been televised you can see their surprise and joy on all their faces. This is a family, an entire family that welcomes each new member.

It's been said a few times by posters that Michelle's OB told her that she shouldn't have more kids and that just isn't true. Her doctor has been filmed on several episodes and quoted as saying that Michelle is one person who was just made to have children and she does it well, she knows her body and she's very healthy. Her doctor never said on screen that Michelle shouldn't have any more kids and was on screen when her 19th pregnancy was confirmed--the same OB that delivered Jackson, Johanna, Jennifer, and Jordyn.

Both JimBob and Michelle have written and said in their book and on tv in the specials and their show that because she is a stay at home mom and he works from home they spend on average more time with their kids than most working parents, even with so many kids. They make time with each child each week one-on-one and spend time each day with them as well. They also have prayer time in the morning and evenings as a family as well as school time throughout the day.

When running errands, Jim Bob and Michelle make sure to take a few kids with them to get time with them as well, something a lot of parents do as a way to get time with their kids as a way of multitasking. The kids will go shopping, to help with the rental properties, and Michelle wrote that often she takes the kids to meet other moms for play dates at local parks.

Ancient of Days said...

When running errands, Jim Bob and Michelle make sure to take a few kids with them to get time with them as well, something a lot of parents do as a way to get time with their kids as a way of multitasking.
__________________

If I were one of nineteen children, I guess I'd grab at any attention I could get, even though my parent was dividing his or her attention between a reduced passel of young'uns and the delights of the pickle aisle at the grocery store.

I don't know: "Multitasking" smacks of the parents I've seen with their children in tow but their real attention directed toward the person at the other end of the cell phone.

It's okay to do several things at once, but kids are not things, they're not tasks, they're not items on a list. They need a parent's undivided attention at least once in a while.

And, yes, I'm realistic, and I know that sometimes we have to shop and be parents at the same time. That's for those of us who have a reasonable number of children and can give both kids and errands equal attention. The Duggars don't have the same luxury, or the same pleasure.

Midwest Mom said...

"Her doctor has been filmed on several episodes and quoted as saying that Michelle is one person who was just made to have children and she does it well, she knows her body and she's very healthy. "

----------

That was BEFORE Josie was born prematurely during the gallbladder/preeclampsia situation.

The doctor has been silent on the issue since that time.

Anonymous said...

Just because JB & Michelle wrote something in their book, that makes it "true" ?

Why, because they are such a fine religious family ? ?

Perhaps, just perhaps, they write what they think their particular like-minded public "fans" want to hear.

I'm not buying this whole "we spend quality time with EACH child EACH week" kool-aid they are putting out there.

How is that happening when she's pumping breastmilk 6 or 8 hours a day at the hospital ?

Deanna said...

Marybeth, I appreciate your efforts to protect and defend this family, as I suspect you are really defending the lifestyle (unless you know them personally).

I don't know the Duggars personally, but have a very discerning eye. From what *I* see one TV, I do not see a nurturing, protecting and caring mother. I don't really care what Michelle *says* she does, in her book. By watching her in real life, which after all is what their reality tv show is, I see a detached, clueless and careless mother, who pays absolutely no attention to any of her children, with the exception of her nursing baby.

Even that poor sweet Jordyn, little doll that she is, has no real relationship with her mother, since she has been passed off to her older siblings to raise.

Michelle may say she spends time with each child, but she does not even carry around or hold her own babies---she expects her older daughters to do that. That is a basic minimum in mothering, and Michelle cannot even meet that very low standard.

She shows her cluelessness and out-of-touch behavior every week. Michelle doesn't discipline or teach (this is now quite obvious, and she has practically admitted as much), and she has also shown herself to be detached. I really wonder if deep down, Michelle Duggar is depressed. She has changed so much from the early episodes, when she really was a much more hands on mother.

The only hope is that she will stop reproducing, that the older girls will someday have a life of their own, and that Michelle will have to take over the care of her own remaining children, since there will be quite a few little ones left. With JoyAnna as the only girl in the middle there, I sure hope she doesn't end up being the matriarch for the whole younger brood.

another RN said...

Both JimBob and Michelle have written and said in their book and on tv in the specials and their show that because she is a stay at home mom and he works from home they spend on average more time with their kids than most working parents, even with so many kids.

************************************
I have heard this statement from both the Duggars and other posters many times. Exactly what statistic is that based on? Did JB do a longitudinal, peer reviewed study to come up with that statement? I have read studies and the general concensus is that there is a difference of about 90 minutes per WEEK of time that stay at home moms spend more time with their kids. Additionally, the study (I believe it was published in 1998, done over 20 years) stated that the time stay at home parents spent with their kids was geared more towards household chores than individual relationships, IOW, more quantity than quality. My point is not to disparage anyone, nor argue which is better, but that these gross generalizations are judgmental and inaccurate. As a now "public figure" JB Duggar has an obligation to be accurate and truthful in his statements. It is those kind of generalizations that draw the battle lines between those with different lives. In reality, we are all in this together and I find the Duggars to be divisive, rather than inclusive. We don't get to a better place by making comparisons and one-upping one another.

With the amount of income the Duggars have, can't they get decent beds for their kids? Sharing is one thing when you don't have resources, but they do, so is it really necessary to the extent to which it occurs?

Anonymous said...

I agree that Cyn has a point. We can't make any assumptions about Jana. Maybe she just had a headache or PMS. I hope she isn't getting depressed, but I would venture to guess that those girls are at risk for it. I had to "help" raise my siblings and felt trapped and unhappy and went through a severe depression at 16. I hope the same thing isn't happening. The expectations of those girls are unfair. What if Michelle's OB (the female one she had before) had been married off and forced to follow such rules? The girls should be given choices and opportunities, within their value system, to explore their talents and reach their full potential. If they want to be moms, more power to them, but if not, or not right away; they should have that choice. What a waste of human talent to be forced to follow only one way. There are so many great women who have changed the world! I hope every girl gets the chance to see what she is made of! (and IMO, be given the chance to reflect how exactly in God's image she was made...)

Ohio Buckeye said...

Enjoyed AnotherRN's post.

I'm guessing JBD hasn't the faintest idea what a 'longitudinal, peer-reviewed study' is.

And, even sadder, he's going to make darned sure his kids don't know either.

JBD strikes me as the type who doesn't want to waste time on scientific data. He seems a classic case of 'don't confuse me with the facts because my mind is made up.'

Cyn said...

That was BEFORE Josie was born prematurely during the gallbladder/preeclampsia situation.

The doctor has been silent on the issue since that time.

The Doctor only spoke on the show, and not with media itself. We have not had a reason to see Dr Sarver yet and won't till either Anna gets pregnant or (please not for at least a year) Michelle.

Nor have we heard from the doctors that delivered Michelle, the nurses, the hospital. They would know her medical condition better than any of us can speculate. If you see Michelle having to find another OBGYN then will know Dr Sarver no longer thinks its safe for Michelle to continue to have children. Till then....

Anonymous said...

When I read about how one of the girls always seems to be holding the babies and not Michelle it reminds me of something my mom told me. I'm an only child and was with my mom constantly. She told about how when I was 8 months old we were at a picnic and some teenage girls were there and they wanted to hold me and carry me around while my mom ate lunch. I suppose if someone had taken a picture of that then people would think that my mom just dumped me off on others to raise.

Marybeth said...

Every child has their own bed. The youngest 2, Johanna and Jordyn are still in Pack and Plays. While some don't consider that a "bed" it is still their own. Why the kids choose to occasionally crawl into bed with each other is anyone's guess. My daughter is about to turn 3 and minus the first 7 months she was in a Moses basket next to our bed, she too is still in a Pack and Play. They make a regular mattress that fits inside a Pack and Play to use as a crib. It is possible that the Duggars have purchased those. We are getting our daughter the "next step up" bed on her 3rd birthday.

Jane in California said...

Marybeth said:
What happens in their real life when the cameras aren't around is probably a lot different and a lot more calm, cool, and collected where Michelle and Jim Bob can settle down and be parents.
* * *

Their show is portrayed as their reality so I think it's perfectly valid to base our opinions on what is shown, and that alone. I mean, if the majority of the time, there is calmness and order in the household, why doesn't that show up on the show? If what is shown is not representative of their reality, then why do the Duggars allow a false impression to be out there?

It's clear that the income from this show has been a real boon to their lifestyle. That's why I don't understand why all the girls must share one large room, even having the babies in there. The boys share a large room too, but apparently they don't have to have any of the babies in their room (because they're boys and less is expected of them.)

But if you are going to pack the girls room with all the kiddos, at the very least provide actual beds for all children. I don't agree with the overuse of the Pak n Plays. If they couldn't afford any better, I'd give them a conditional pass. But they can afford better so I guess JB is too cheap to do so.

People do defend Michelle and say she is very hands on --- but that is not shown on the tv show. It seems to me that the show is trying to present her in the best light possible, so if she were indeed actively involved with her children, we'd see it. Yet we don't. She walks around nursing the current baby, but at 6 months she hands them off to the older girls to care for. The girls do the bulk of the cooking and cleaning. The girls take care of the babies at night and all day. The girls help with the teaching. The girls do the grocery shopping.

I don't care that we only see a portion. It's still representative of what really goes on. I'm a very firm believer in having only the amount of children you can afford - and I mean that not only in terms of financial means, but emotional and physical means as well.

I see Michelle as an example of what not to do most of the time. She seems loving but very detached. She doesn't step in and stop dangerous behavior. She puts too much on the shoulders of her daughters. She doesn't use good common sense (a gift from God as well).

Kelly said...

If this is "reality" TV, then we are seeing the chaos and confusion of the Duggars' real life, where the older girls raise the children and do all the cooking and cleaning and laundry and the little kids and boys just run around like maniacs.

Since Jim Bob is the producer of the show, if he didn't think that his family was being portrayed accurately, if indeed they were quieter, Michelle was more involved, the boys actually did something besides run around, then I really do think we would be seeing it. The fact that all we see is pretty consistent indicates that this really IS their household and their lives.

Celestie said...

Both JimBob and Michelle have written and said in their book and on tv in the specials and their show that because she is a stay at home mom and he works from home they spend on average more time with their kids than most working parents, even with so many kids.

_____

Being in close proximity does not mean you are spending any meaningful time with each child. It is physically impossible to give one on one time to 19 children every day.
And don't forget Ma has to spend a whole lot of time managing that hank of hair she has. Just brushing it through each day would be very time consuming. Just because they wrote it in their book, doesn't make it true.

another RN said...

Interesting points regarding "reality TV." We all know that much of it is contrived, fair enough. However, let's be honest. If I were the producer of my family's show (I wouldn't let my family on TV, but go with me here...) I would want us to be seen at our best most of the time. If JB is the producer, how much is being edited out? Are the older girls rebelling or becoming withdrawn, or none of the above? Are the younger ones even naughtier than we see? Are the schooling moments only shown when things are calm? Does Michelle really never lose it or do they portray her a certain way? (I find her equanimity disturbing, almost numb, no true, deep emotion there, JMO.) Truth is, we don't know the truth, but either the producers are trying to make them look bad or things really are that chaotic. Why would JB allow his family to be shown in that light?

Anonymous said...

This is suppose to be a "story of their life" that they are portraying on tv. If they are different when the cameras aren't around then what they are showing is a lie.

If Michelle is really so hands on then why don't we see it more, and I don't mean just giving a hug to one of the children when it is their birthday. If the kids are so calm then why does it seem they are always just running around, yelling, climbing on things and being rough with each other, why don't we see some of that quiet time reading their books or having their devotionals with their parents?

Would that get boring? Yes it would but not any more so than seeing those kids being unruly all the time but at least that would be their "real" life, if that is how it truly is.

Ancient of Days said...

Both JimBob and Michelle have written and said in their book and on tv in the specials and their show that because she is a stay at home mom and he works from home they spend on average more time with their kids than most working parents, even with so many kids.
____________________

How exactly do Jim Bob and Michelle know the amount of time working parents spend with their kids? I doubt they're acquainted with any working parents, or that they read sociological studies. Perhaps they're making an unfounded claim that serves to support their own agenda? That wouldn't surprise me at all.

Ancient of Days said...

By the way, I take what Jim Bob and Michelle spout off on TV and in their books with the proverbial grain of salt. Saying doesn't make it so.

The recent "Hug Josie" episode, with its contrived trip to the park and home-schooling claptrap, proved to me that they're all about furthering their agenda, and lining their pocketbooks--regardless of the facade they have to construct.

Steve knight said...

I love how I hear that Michelle keeps getting surprised that she is pregnant. Well that's the results of unprotected sex. I guess someone needs to teach them sex makes kids not god.

another RN said...

How exactly do Jim Bob and Michelle know the amount of time working parents spend with their kids? I doubt they're acquainted with any working parents, or that they read sociological studies. Perhaps they're making an unfounded claim that serves to support their own agenda? That wouldn't surprise me at all.

*******************************
Well said, Ancient; better than I could have done. I think this is why I watch the Duggars. I cannot justify a lot of their choices and beliefs, so I watch and hope that maybe I will learn something. The truth is, I am always disappointed. Every time someone asks a question or disagrees, JB and M have some canned, ideological response that seems to require little thought. Having grown up in a strict religious setting, this tactic is well known to me. The church "leaders" have been asked these questions and have rote responses to them for their flock to recite. I see this often with not only the Duggar parents, but the children also. Additionally, I have noticed that whenever science, higher education, or research are involved, there are statements made by many folk that these items are secular and caused by people being tempted by the devil. Yet another way to not have to look at themselves.

I don't see the Duggars as having much tolerance for anything that threatens to shake their held beliefs. They never seem to be able to admit that they may be making mistakes. Admitting imperfections, to me, is TRUE modesty. I wish JB and M would stop spouting how they spend more time with their kids, they are more involved, how other people view money; IOW, how superior they are to everyone and just open their eyes and get in touch with reality-the good and the bad.

abbie said...

I think Michelle has become prettier since the birth of Josie. They are darn lucky they didn't lose that baby and hopefully we will not soon hear an announcement that JimBob has gottn Michelle pregnant again.
And a personal thought. I know the oldest boy is now married but for God's sake WHY is she always sitting on his lap, etc? I was a newlywed too but never sat on my husbands lap like that constantly. When does she hold the baby? You just know before the year is out she will be pregnant again too.
Their children are polite and repectfull no matter what anyone says about how many there are, I have friends with 2 kids who can't even take them out in public because they act like a bunch of banshees. So someone is doing something right.

And JimBob and Michelle have an income thats quite tidy from commercial properties so they don't rely on TLC a la K8 G. for day to day living. Although I am sure it helps immensely. That bus they ride in wasn't cheap, I am venturing a guess of $500k or more. Bet they get about 8 miles a gallon, if that. Wow.

Anonymous said...

I can't remember how much they paid for that bus but it was no where near $500,000. It belonged to some hockey team that had owned it.

Marybeth said...

What I meant about life being different when filming wasn't going on was simple: no camera men, no film crews, no chaos from outside direction, no staged interviews. That is not part of anyone's "normal life" or "normal day." Therefore when the film crew isn't around to direct what is going on and ask for interviews, I'm sure behaviour is very different.

Have any of you ever been interviewed on tv? Or for that matter spoken in front of large group of people? When you do you automatically act differently--nervous, shy, or the opposite--more outgoing and anxious. So in a sense, what you see from the children on screen is not necessarily what they are like when they aren't "acting."

I'm sure things with a film crew around is very hectic for Michelle as well, in fact she's mentioned it on the show. "Who's the worst for walking on the freshly cleaned floor?" And Michelle's response was "Mr. Scott (I believe that was his name--one of the crew members.)" So having them around does make their daily life different than when they are not around.

Why do they choose to do it? Some say money, some say ministry, some say encouragement of others, some say to further their personal agenda. We can only speculate.

Ancient of Days said...

Every time someone asks a question or disagrees, JB and M have some canned, ideological response that seems to require little thought.
_________

another RN, you've hit the nail on the head. In matters of religion, the Duggars are robots: they receive information, but they don't process it. I realize they accept everything on faith, but that faith needs to be examined once in a while to keep it stronger. They seem almost frightened to take out their beliefs and test them and find them rock-solid.

Ancient of Days said...

And JimBob and Michelle have an income thats quite tidy from commercial properties so they don't rely on TLC a la K8 G. for day to day living.
____________________

I sometimes wonder if they do have that tidy income. Jim Bob, after all, is the Original Smuggar, and he may just be exaggerating what he's amassed as far as property goes.

I don't have to know his portfolio; I've got my own teensy-weensy one to worry about. I just wonder why we even know about the land he owns. He shows little humility, on my view.

Marybeth said...

There is a simple reason why there are no babies in the boys' room--the last 4 babies to be born have been girls. Had they had a son any of the last 4 times he would be in the boys room with the other brothers.

They built 2 large rooms because that's what the kids said they wanted. While I think that was short-sighted (pre-teen and early teens making that decision might not realize they won't want to share a room with toddlers when they're 17, 18, 19, and 20) it was a decision the parents let the kids make as part of the family in building the family home. Michelle has repeatedly said she was honestly surprised the kids felt that way, but at the young ages they were when they were building it probably made sense. Now it does seem ridiculous.

Ancient of Days said...

So having them [the crew] around does make their daily life different than when they are not around.
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I believe the original premise of the show was to demonstrate how a very large family conducts its "daily life," and I'm fairly certain that's what most viewers want to see. If it's difficult for the Duggars to follow what they "purposed" to do at the first, then perhaps they should leave the new family business. As it is, they're being true neither to themselves nor to us.

Deanna said...

But even anyone who has not yet raised children to adulthood knows that that is what happens with children: they become adults. Since JB and Michelle seemed to know from the time they built that house that the girls would be living at home until they married, they certainly must have known that those girls would be over 18 years old and still at home.

A normal and sensible parent would say to themselves (if not to their children), "I know that the kids want to all bunk in together now, but we'll build a couple of extra rooms for the future, when the older kids want to have some privacy".

Of course, the Duggar parents do not want the older kids to have any privacy (possibility for too many impure thoughts, I guess) and they need them to do nighttime childcare. So, it is moot.

But let's not pretend that 20 year olds sharing bedrooms with ten younger siblings, including a couple of babies and toddlers, is not absolutely bizarre. It doesn't matter whether people did it "in the old days" when homes were smaller and people had less money. The Duggars have PLENTY of money and a ginormous home. Their kids could be split by gender into two rooms each, and at least it would be a little more normal.

IDModo said...

I was just on a joke site and found this gem:
Minister: Children are a gift from God!
Old Lady: Rain is also a gift from God, but when we get too much of it, we wear rubbers!
Thought this might add a smile to some people's day...

Willow #1 said...

Just because the kids voted at one time to all have the same room, does that mean they can't change their mind when they get older? Would it be possible to make a couple more bedrooms there? Seems it could be worked out IF the older children wanted it. Its the least they deserve for their hard work, IMO. (If JB and M had 3 babies/toddlers in their room at night, instead of 1 at a time, the progression of pregnancies might slow down). As I've said before, I think JB wants Michelle all to himself as much as possible. JMO

Marybeth said...

The kids have been around cameras enough to have learned that if the "act out" they will get attention. Just as kids not in front of cameras know that if they "act out" they will get their parents attention (in both cases good and bad attention.) The same reason my child immediately begins "performing" when I try to talk to another adult and she's no longer the focus of my attention.

I would also guess that it's not exactly natural to try and read a book, study, or concentrate on writing a paper, or do research while having a camera trained on you, even if you're "used to it." That is probably why the Duggars have decreed that filming only go on 4-5 days a month and from that film the shows must be pieced together---hence why they seem so contrived. Also why they aren't up to date and why they involve trips, vacations, and visits--you can film a lot with that kind of activity in a 4-5 day period and turn it into several shows---remember what Dollywood and the Bates turned into?

Marybeth said...

I love how I hear that Michelle keeps getting surprised that she is pregnant. Well that's the results of unprotected sex. I guess someone needs to teach them sex makes kids not god.
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At 43 she had a right to be a little surprised, most women over 40 tend to be. And as someone who also practices unprotected sex throughout her marriage and has only 1 child, I'd say G-d has other plans for us.

Marybeth said...

The bus belonged to a Canadian semi-pro or something hockey team (they often comment on the lingering smell of sweat.) He says he paid $15,000 for it--doesn't say if that was Canadian or US. He also didn't mention if it was in working order when it was purchased either. Many of his vehicles he has purchased have needed repairs, hence the low price.

Anonymous said...

I think the large bus was purchased for less than $100,000 with all its equipement and stuff.

For those who thought it was more expensive, they were incorrect.

Ancient of Days said...

Some people have reached a point in their faith where there is no return. They know what they know, they believe what they believe ....
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Then, on my view, their faith is not an active faith. You can not live something daily if you do not examine it daily. That doesn't mean you doubt what you believe, but you do reaffirm it by giving it constant thought, as well as feeling.

God will provide, as the Duggars say. Well, He or She provided brains as well as bedroom skills, and I think it's time for them to focus on using the latter rather than having faith in the latter.

Anonymous said...

I don't believe that if the babies had been boys that they would be in the boys room because several times they have shown a few of the younger boys waking up in one of the girls beds.

I just don't really see that the house is a calm relaxing environment when the cameras aren't around. Young children are going to act the way they know how to act and that would be how they are every day. The older kids could learn to be different and "act" different, but the younger kids are just being themselves.

Bubbles said...

According to this article, the Duggars paid $2100 for the bus in a sealed-bid auction.

http://forums.parenting.com/blogs/daily-fave/posts/duggar-family-interview-buy-used-save-difference

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