Free Discussion May 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 Thank you!


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Anonymous said...

Yeah, that couple went away for nearly a week for a vacation to Disneyland. Really sounds great. Let's go half the country away from our NICU bound two daughters because we need a break. Nevermind that the poor children don't get a break from medical treatment and the attendent pain and discomfort.

Anonymous said...

There is simply no way to justify Jim Bob and Michelle flying out of state not once, but twice, in the space of a couple of weeks while their critically ill daughter languishes in the NICU.

They left for Wisconsin within days of Josie being readmitted to the hospital. What kind of mother does that? Certainly not any "Mother of the Year"!

I can't imagine that there is a soul on this planet who would support this decision. It makes me personally sick actually.

There is something mentally wrong with the both of them. I hope that TLC stops filming this trainwreck of a family, because look what happened to the Gosselins with too much exposure? Not saying that the Duggars will get divorced, but the public opinion of this family has gone down the toilet, right along with all the poop they always film and show.

Anonymously Yours said...

IMO the Duggars are a great example of how Americans have missed the insidious lowering of standards on so many things in our country.

Thanks to the Duggars, TLC has actually managed to put 21 faces to this 'dumbing down' phenomenon.

And then TLC goes about the business of christening their Duggar brand with the name of "christian family" and, sadly, some will buy ANYTHING, so long as it falls under anyone's categorization of 'christian'.

I find it disheartening that anyone considers the Duggars role models on any level.

The leaving the older daughters to stand watch over a struggling preemie is simply the latest example that these people fall far short of the lofty ideals they mouth.

Examples of their falling short in the intelligence department occur weekly.

The ONLY examples the Duggars offer IMO is one indicating we've taken a detour and are on a very wrong path.

Anonymous said...

How about quality rather than quantity. The other blog has a place to send donations. I still hope the Duggars stop. This whole tv thing has gotten uncomfortable and swarmy. I feel so so sorry for all these tv kids. Why do the parents think this is ok? Be up front about the money which is what it's all about. At least let us know what the little actors get out of this.

NotTheHospitalsJob said...

The best thing for Josie would be to remain in the hospital as long as she can, considering that even if she was home, her parents will either a) leave her home with her 19 and 20 year old nannies; or b) worse yet, drag her along on their merry adventures gathering undeserved awards and ill gotten gain
Regarding the above (from April's thread): No. Just: NO.
It is not the HOSPITAL'S job to take care of this "blessing." Aside from what is medically necessary, and for however long she needs hospital care. Rather, it is the PARENTs' job to take care of thier own "blessing." Oh wait; this is JimBob and Michelle DUGGAR - of course what was I thinking. ? They only BREED the child/blessing. They do not CARE for it.
That is the jobs of the older girl Duggars.
Whoosh - I almost got caught up in Logic there for a minute!

AngryandIncredulous said...

Anonymously Yours said...

IMO the Duggars are a great example of how Americans have missed the insidious lowering of standards on so many things in our country.

Thanks to the Duggars, TLC has actually managed to put 21 faces to this 'dumbing down' phenomenon.
Anonymously Yours: Word to the above, and all of your post. What is more: since they didn't know the baby would be readmitted....what were they really planning when they accepted this WI thing?? To leave the baby at HOME with the Older Duggar Caregivers?? Ie; the older girls? Because that can be the only other logical assumption....
Unbelievable. Truly.
Oh, and whatever happened to M's assertion that she was to be "the baby's primary caregiver?"
You know what?? Maybe it is for the BEST she is NOT!

Anon. said...

Logic Check: If a struggling preemie like Josie can go without constantly hanging off her ma's breast to nurse on demand beneath 'my brest friend,' WHY have we watched MaDuggar, since way back when Jackson made his arrival, do this, even when she's supposedly out and about (i.e. visiting the public school)?

Even before this most recent PR faux pas of leaving behind their special needs preemie, as a strongly PRO breastfeeding mom, I wondered what was up with that whole baby beneath a blanket constantly vs. just nursing the child in a more discreet manner like most breastfeeding moms do?

Now, more than ever, it seems that MaDuggar's making a bigger deal of on-demand breast feeding was just one more part of The Duggar Brand.

Anonymous said...

I have to say I'm actually grateful for Josie's being readmitted. Otherwise, she'd have either been left with the siblings or taken to WI. Maybe things worked out just how they were supposed to since JB and Michelle were intent on going either way.

Amanda said...

I just told my husband about JB and M leaving town and he looked at me and "So, the tv crew will watch her" bahaha

Anonymous said...

Another thing about the Duggars running on "Duggar Time"...One of the 49 Character Qualities that they so reverently follow is Punctuality over Tardiness. They don't seem to practice this one enough. For shame!

Anonymous said...

Angryandincredulous said:
whatever happened to M's assertion that she was to be "the baby's primary caregiver?"


Clearly, Michelle uses a different Duggar dictionary for this term, as so many others. In Duggar-time, "primary caregiver" means she will be the one to accept any Mother of the Year awards on offer; will be the primary person who jets off to conferences with JimBob, will be the primary person who will "give" Josie over to the "care" of her worker bee daughters, and will be the primary person sitting on her ass while the daughters, with gladful servant's hearts, continue to do the heavy work around the household.

And that's how you arrive at "primary caregiver" in Duggar speak.

Iliketheduggars said...

"Logic Check: If a struggling preemie like Josie can go without constantly hanging off her ma's breast to nurse on demand beneath 'my brest friend,' WHY have we watched MaDuggar, since way back when Jackson made his arrival, do this, even when she's supposedly out and about (i.e. visiting the public school)?"


Uh... as far as we saw Josie was never nursing. The doctor said she could go home when she was able to take full bottle feeds.

It's possible Josie may never nurse at all.

Iliketheduggars said...

Sorry, I'm not willing to pass judgment on the Duggars just yet.

I've been in a situation where I was recovering from a critical illness and required to care for a newborn and other children. I can not imagine the stress of having to care for (even with help) a preemie and 18 other kids.

The trip does concern me in other ways, though. What if Michelle really IS too ill to manage all this? What if Josie is? WHY IS TLC STILL FILMING???

I can just hear the producers..."Your fans want to know. You have an obligation to keep this going" (cr*p we've heard on this very board) "... we won't get in the way... why don't we just do field trips with the other kids? They need some time away from the house... We'll do some things with Josh and Anna and Amy... I'm sure they want to help you during this time, so you don't lose your audience... and your MINISTRY... think of all the people who need your example..."

Is this scenario far-fetched?

Anonymous said...

I don't know why you guys are all so bitter. I think Michelle is an incredible mom. I think its incredible she flew half way across the country leaving behind her very sick premie to speak at a conference about being... an incredible mom! Not to mention its obvious that all those people who came out to listen to her obiously needed her much more than those 17 kids she gave birth to. Really quite incredible. Jesus would be so proud! i believe its in Mathew that he states public speaking should be put above taking care of your children. Yeah, that must be right.

Anonymous said...

What is so wrong with JB and M leaving to re-charge themselves. If anyone has had a loved one in the hospital for a long term stay, it is very stressful for the family to continuously be there, day after day, for weeks. I have been through that with my mother and had to take a break to rest and recharge. My dad and I, like them even went to another state. I see nothing wrong with recharging themselves for the long road ahead and not knowing waht is coming. In my eyes I see at being prepared.

Just Another Anonymous said...

The point is not that Josie may not breastfeed. The point is the whole fluff and flurry, "See me! I am breastfeeding with my baby attached at all times. Therefore, see what a great mom I am" is and has always been so unnecessary.

The point is that if a sickly preemie like Josie can survive without My Brest Friend treatement, so could her previous 4 siblings.

The whole walking around with a baby attached beneath a blanket is an unnecessary call to NOTICE that the MaDuggar Brand includes more devotion to her kids than any other mom ever to have walked the earth.

IMO, this is overkill and phony.

Many women go back to fulltime work because they have to help support their family. Some privately pump their breasts for the wellbeing of their baby, yet they do not blow a bugle and make a big deal of the extra work they are doing for the good of their baby.

THIS I can respect far more than MaDuggar and all her Notice Me - I am holy and I am a devoted mom.

IMO, this is contrary to true humility and modesty.

Anon. said...

Seeing the Duggars as phony and self righteous does not = 'bitterness'.

Anonymous said...

How many families with half the children can live the life? I am sure we could find many of them needing breaks and field trips. I wonder about the Bates family. Or is it possible they are not funded by tlc. This is not the real world. If it was, no one watching.

Marybeth said...

I would never judge another person. I've been in her place, my child was born 6 1/2 weeks early and went straight to the NICU. There were days I had to force myself to go visit my baby because I hated seeing her there, I hated the nurses watching my every move and I hated not being able to take her home. So I will not judge.

Frankly I think this whole thing has gotten out of their control and they don't know how to stop it. Do I agree that she should have gone to Wisconsin? No. Do I understand? Unfortunately yes.

As much as I love this show and have taken up the devil's advocate so many times for this family, I do think it's probably time they pull the plug and get their priorities back in order. Something isn't right in the House of Duggar.

Anonymous said...

They didn't go away to rest and recharge. They went to a speaking engagement that they were probably paid quite well for. They weren't resting, their pride was being fed by all the people that worship them. It seems that some people almost worship the ground they walk on.

Enough already! said...

Anonymous said...
What is so wrong with JB and M leaving to re-charge themselves. If anyone has had a loved one in the hospital for a long term stay, it is very stressful for the family to continuously be there, day after day, for weeks. I have been through that with my mother and had to take a break to rest and recharge. My dad and I, like them even went to another state. I see nothing wrong with recharging themselves for the long road ahead and not knowing waht is coming. In my eyes I see at being prepared.

5/02/2010 1:18 PM

What have these people done that they need to "recharge"? Every need that they have is met courtesy of their oldnest daughters. They need not lift a finger for anything! (And DON'T - from what I've observed.) The only thing that they need to "rest from" (IMO) is procreating.

Shame on them.

Anonymous said...

"They didn't go away to rest and recharge. They went to a speaking engagement that they were probably paid quite well for. They weren't resting, their pride was being fed by all the people that worship them. It seems that some people almost worship the ground they walk on."


Some will worship anything or anyone, ESPECIALLy if the term 'christian' is woven into the facade.

mythouhtis said...

I think they have missed a few admonishments along the way... maybe the ones that say pride goeth before a fall, and that pride and boastfulness are sins.
They need to pray that they be refocused on what matters. Of course, I thought that is what the premature birth would have done, but obviously not.

Rest and recharge means go home, rest, sleep, shower, check in with your other kids... you know, the one year old who needs her Mama?
Find your laundry room, go grocery shopping, check your kids homework.

It does not mean going several states away, and possibly conceiving number 20 while you are thre. I assume they got a hotel room as part of their compensation?

And where has Michelle's family been during this crisis? That's pretty telling when she is the youngest of 7, and not one of her family has come to the hospital or to the LR home to help out.

Anonymous said...

It appears that the Duggar's were seen at the ATI conference according to another blog. I wonder if both Jim Bob and Michelle went to the conference or just Jim Bob went with the family and Michelle stayed behind in Little Rock? It appears to me that Josie is not really a priority to them if they can get up and leave her two times since she has been readmitted to the hospital. I thought they were supposed to make Josie a priority for the next year? I know that life should not end when you have a sick baby but it doesn't appear that they are making any concessions to their social life!

Anonymous said...

"Something isn't right in the House of Duggar."

I agree. It really, truly makes me sad that this family has become so poisoned by all of this.

"And where has Michelle's family been during this crisis? That's pretty telling when she is the youngest of 7, and not one of her family has come to the hospital or to the LR home to help out."

That's a great point. I've never thought of that. Maybe they refuse to be on TV. Or maybe they refuse to have anything to do with the Duggars.

With the Gosselins, it was easy to see that their family was struggling. That they were being fake. That they were not saying genuine things. With the Duggars, it's different. They put on a great show. They act. They rehearse the constantly smiling faces. And I think at one point, they were genuine. But things have gotten BAD. It sickens me how little "parental" attention Jordyn Grace gets. I just have to wonder: Is it REALLY better and more holy to be an emotionally absent mom of 19 kids, than an involved mom of 2 or 3 kids?

kellan said...

Well, if Michelle so desperately needs a break from pumping her breastmilk and not doing chores or childcare all day, then a GREAT way to do that would to have a "girls" day with the older girls. Lunch, pedicures, take a walk, get ice cream, whatever. That way, Michelle could get a "break" from her life and the girls could get a break from caring for all the other children that Michelle and Jim Bob have long forgotten about. But, instead, they are going out of state to speak to a crowd for some more $$$. Seems super relaxing to me (um, not).

When you have a child (healthy or not) that little life becomes your ultimate responsibility and priority. Unfortunately, your needs take the back burner during their early years. That's what "having little blessings" is all about. Serving others, not yourself.

Anonymous said...

How many families with half the children can live the life? I am sure we could find many of them needing breaks and field trips


That's not the point. The point is that the Duggars both left the state when they have a premature baby in NICU. How about if Michelle needs a break so badly, she goes alone to the conference, or takes along one of those hard working older daughters (who never seem to get a break btw) as her "chaperone." In the meantime, dad stays at home to tend the rest of the brood and be on call if a need arises unexpectedly with Josie. It's a simple and rational solution.

But I can tell you that I was raised in a large family and my parents took their jobs as parents seriously. I'm a full time mom myself. I know how bone tired you can get. The thing is -- my parents pushed through it and so do I. When my child is in need, then my needs DO NOT MATTER. They must and are set aside, until my child is out of danger.

I understand that those who are Duggar fans want to find something positive in all they do. I guess I don't understand why the Duggars break had to be out of the state. Couldn't they just take a nice drive into the nearby countryside, meditate for the day on their blessings instead? Taking a break doesn't mean you must go far away.

Anonymous said...

Some will worship anything or anyone, ESPECIALLy if the term 'christian' is woven into the facade.

Yep. The Duggars are fast becoming yet another example of people who become famous because they are "so Christian," but underneath the smiling facade, they have turned into something that Jesus would be very displeased with.

It's like the Jimmy Swaggarts, or the Jim Bakkers, or any of the uber religious ones -- they always end up in the news for indescretions. The Duggars won't have a sex scandal, but their sin is really that they don't care as they should for putting their family ahead of their desire for public attention, money and fame.

TLC has marketed them quite slickly. But just as they have marketed Kate Gosselin as this hard-working yet loving single mom (as we all know, that's a complete sham), they're doing the same with the Duggars and it's becoming just as huge a sham.

I don't care what two consenting adults choose to do. Jim Bob and Michelle can be phony Christians for the rest of their days. What I find objectionable is that they make their older girls raise the children for them, make them be on television and lose their privacy, probably don't pay them an equal share of the profits, and basically exploit their kids for money and fame. That's the real sin. Give me some good old heathen parents who will care for their babies beyond 6 months, won't smother them under a tent, will actually stick around if they're sick and in need, and will nurture and love them instead of passing them off to a sister-mom. Oh, and who will allow them a private life. Yep, that's a biggie.

Marybeth said...

If Jim Bob, himself, took the kids to Big Sandy for the ATI conference that's great, in fact, I hope he did. The kids deserve a vacation and to see that life outside the Little Rock house still exists for them and that they are still a priority to their family. Michelle, I'm hoping stayed behind with Josie. I have seen, nor read anything about this trip other than internet rumour and speculation. But those kids deserve all the outings and fun they can get.

Anon 3:14 said...

Re: the trip being internet speculation.

Go to

Click on the Conference Brochure and you will see a thank-you note printed from the Duggars thanking everyone for the encouragement.

Keep scrolling down and you will see another printed note from a woman who says Michelle prayed with her at the conference and that later she listened to the Duggars speak.

That's a lot of pretty good proof and not something I'd call speculation.

Jen said...

Is the realwomenrealilife conference linked too ( for proof) the same thing as the ATI conference.

I thought they were different conferences.

The first trip after Josie was readmitted (that most people are pretty sure she went to) and second trip after Josie was readmitted - the ATI conference which people are still not sure she went to or not ( although people are pretty sure Jim Bob and at least some of the kids went.

Anonymous said...

It's as interesting to see what makes it into the show as what doesn't make it. An example is that we know Michelle went to a planning board meeting shortly after Josie was born, to speak out against allowing a local mini mart to have a liquor license. As far as I've heard, that did not make it onto this so-called reality show.

Let's see if there is any footage of Jim Bob and Michelle at the WI conference, and if so, what they say about leaving their preemie back in NICU to take this trip. (I'll bet it doesn't make the show either.)

Let's see if their visit (any part of it) to the Big Sandy makes it to the show. (I am leaning toward "no")

If I'm right, why will none of these things be shown, since they are clearly part of Duggar reality? Because they all put the Duggars in less than favorable light. It would show them putting many things before their newborn. It would show viewers the depth of their links to ATI/Gothard views. It would show them interfering in the business of others to impose their own religious beliefs.

TLC is not interested in showing the Duggars' true reality, only the sanitized version. It's ATI-lite. The version where teenage girls don't mind sharing their bedroom with their younger siblings, don't mind doing all the cooking and cleaning, don't mind being full-time buddies to their siblings, starting around 6 months of age, don't mind "surprises" like being told they will be donating blood.

The same sanitized version where a man whose parents could afford some secondary education for him would rather run a rinky-dink used car lot and hope the TLC money doesn't dry up soon.

The one where you can't kiss until pronounced man and wife, but you can have almost obscene hand holding and watch your mom sit on your dad's lap and kiss all the time like horny teenagers.

The one where it's considered normal that you wouldn't trust your 17 or 18 year old child to go somewhere alone because they might succumb to sin and temptation. Even with the benefit of your fabulous Christian parenting.

Yeah, that reality.

Land of Make Believe said...

Oh, give me a home
Where the Duggars all roam
And the girls rarely get to play.

Where never is heard
A discouraging word
At least NOT while
the camera's in place.

Anonymous said...

Re: the girls going out alone,the issue seems pretty moot,imo,now that they are well-known.It's probably much safer for them to go out together in groups.

Anonymous said...

I've been a lurker but never posted. I'm a judgemental person and it's something that I'm trying to work on.

I've had friends with preemies who went back to work while they were in the hospital and visited the baby so they could save their maternity leave for when the baby came home. Some of these babies have had life-long problems and continue to see specialists, OTs, PT, and other help. Recently though I've got to read first hand about life in the NICU.

My friend's sister had premature twins and one passed away at one week old. The other has been in the NICU for two months now. She has a blog where she updates all of us about life in the NICU. For her it's a full time job. There are weekly NICU support meetings. She goes daily to hold her son in a kangeroo pouch hold. He is having more surgery and will be in another 2 months at least.

Reading her struggle made me realize that JB and M have no clue about the responsibilities of a Premiee baby. It's a life long committment It's not just another trophy on their shelf of fertility to pass on to a sister-mom. I've stopped watching and now I'm really glad.

Nicole said...

I'm not convinced that JB and M don't understand the lifelong commitment to their preemie. Josie has been doing well for a preemie and isn't showing signs of disability or long-term problems yet, why borrow trouble? It's entirely possible that Josie will be normal and healthy as she grows. They have stated, repeatedly, that they are prepared to see her through this and love and care for her. I don't agree with all the Duggars do but I don't see any evidence that they are clueless or naive about their baby's condition.

As far as the trip to Wisconsin goes, I have two thoughts. One is that many parents leave their premature babies in the NICU to go to work, daily. You have to put your trust in the caregivers there, and this situation is generally accepted. Michelle spent two days away from the baby. Obviously I don't for sure, but she may regard this speaking engagement as a responsibility similar to a job, rather than a spotlight moment for her. She has otherwise spent every moment at her baby's side throughout this ordeal. Also, while Josie is still fragile, she is healthy as far as preemies go, and isn't still clinging to life precariously with the likelihood of dying at any moment. It's been assumed that Josie was in the NICU when Michelle left, we don't know if this is true or not. Hospitals have graduated nurseries, and babies are placed in a less intensive nursery when they no longer need intensive care, where they are basically just monitored and watched for a while before they are discharged. It's likely that this is where Josie was at during this time, since her readmittance to the hospital wasn't due to something of a critical nature. She does have plenty of family members, sisters, brothers, grandmothers, to give love and companionship to her during her parents brief absence. I don't see this as a burden to them, Michelle usually fills this role and the other family members would probably love the chance to hold and feed her.

Overall however, the trip to Wisconsin might very well have been a mistake and wrong for them to do. If I'm being honest however, there have been times when I have done things as a parent and later realized it was a mistake and I shouldn't have done it. Does this make me an unfit parent deserving of condemnation? Maybe. I have no doubt there are parents better than me. But is there any perfect parent who never makes a mistake? The Duggars have stated repeatedly they don't see themselves as perfect parents and make mistakes. I don't think it makes them wholesale failures worthy of total rejection. I hope I am not a complete failure either as a parent because I make mistakes. Just my thoughts.

Anon 3:14 said...

There are mistakes as parents and then there are acts that are unforgiveable.

A mistake as a parent is when you rant and rave at your child for bringing home their first "F" on a math test.

It's unforgiveable to leave your infant in the hospital so you can trot off to be "inspiring" to others at a conference how many hours away? For how many days?

Oh, I'm sure JB will rationalize it something like this........"I prayed about it and jesus told me that we should go to Wisconsin, and if something would have happened it would have been his will" and blah, blah, blah.

It'll be the usual "do as we say, not as we do" rhetoric that comes from these two procreators.

Hey, JB & M, whatever happened to putting others before yourself? Does Josie fall into the category of "others"?

If this issue doesn't wake up their "fans" as to what these two are about, then nothing will.

Anonymous said...

There truly is a difference between a parent going to work on a daily basis and traveling several states away for a speaking engagement. I wouldn't doubt that they don't see this as their job but they don't run the risk of being fired if they cancel and don't go to the event like other working people might have to worry about.

People also will save up their time for when the baby comes home but the Duggars don't have to worry about that either.

Anonymous said...

Nicole said: Josie has been doing well for a preemie and isn't showing signs of disability or long-term problems yet


Has there been a recent update on Josie's well being? The last I heard, she's still in NICU and there has been a long silence on anything that discusses her progress. She went home once, for less than 48 hours and then had to be re-admitted some time ago. That's all we know.

So I don't think any of us can say she's "doing well" and showing no signs of long-term problems. We just don't know. I hope she's okay, but the extended return stay, the silence on her progress, is not raising my hopes.

Anonymous said...

It's probably much safer for them to go out together in groups.


Yes, thanks to their father's decision to air their personal life for financial gain, these children are too well known to the general public by far. Unfortunately, all sorts of perverts and wierdos know know all about them, where they live, their birthdays, their favorite foods, even the layout of the home they live in. It's very creepy.

I'd never put my child out into the public venue willingly, for this very reason. Nothing is worth it.

Anonymous said...

My daughter has flown from Wi to Ar and back twice in the last three months; one of those times to Little Rock. It is about a four hour flight. I don't see that as earth shattering to leave your baby in safe circumstances for a four hour flight when you could take a chartered flight back at a moments noticel.

Cyn said...

Where did all the regular posters go? OR did some of them turn into the slew of anon posters?

Duggars are not perfect never claimed to be. By plane they were less than 4 hours away (in WI). The same amount of time it would have been had they gone back to the house in Tonitown for the weekend to do household things or just to get away.

Churches even the big ones do not pay 'serious' money for speakers.

Kitten said...

I'm guessing the silence on Josie is for the same reason there was silence after her birth - Why should TLC give you any info now, when they can (they hope) garner big ratings by saving it all for the Mother's Day special? Nothing new here...Wouldn't be surprised to see Josie "come home" again next week, just in time for Mother's Day, this time with cameras recording her every blink and yawn. In fact, I'll probably be surprised if she doesn't.

I'm Not Crazy Yet said...

I wouldn't leave my well two month old baby to fly four hours out of state, much less my struggling-for-life preemie. Would. Never. Dream.Of. It.

But I guess my less modest standards offer better mothering than Michelle's modest "can't see Mama skin"'s mothering.

Anonymously Anonymous said...

I think the Duggar parents have down an outstanding job of preparing their many, many quivers for life.

Their award winning School of the Dining Room Table, whose boast so far is that, though several have graduated from high school several yrs ago, NONE have made it onward to college.

The avoidance of those outside their tight little circle of 'believers' with the thought that 'outsiders' are sinners and will surely lead them to sin and ruination.

Their whole 'courting' process including no premarital kissing.

The dressing like Holly Hobbie dolls.

The ridiculous and insulting calls of "Nike".

The no music/no dancing.

The whole 'questioning' is sinful approach to spirituality.

Yes, they are well prepared for life.

In an old-time cloistered nunnery/monastery.

Good luck with that, Duggarettes. You are well prepared for a world that does not exist outside your parents' backward heads and history books about monasteries and convents of old.

IMO, this does not qualify as stellar parenting. Or superior ethics. It qualifies, instead, as misguided at best and as negligent parenting at worst.

Slew of Anons said...

One reason for the slew of Anonymity is that pro-Duggar bloggers tend to be extremely defensive. So defensive as to thwart any real extended conversation. To these, it seems that any even questioning the Duggar lifestyle as seen on TV is heresy and intolerable. Thus, many who might enjoy an exchange of ideas give up and move onward to more interesting conversations than 'gee, Michelle Duggar is a wonderful mom and Jim Bob is a great patriarch.'

Another Anonymous said...

@Kitten: IMO, you are correct. Josie is just one more commodity to be marketed and sold for the highest possible ratings.

How this can be allowed for their struggling preemie is incomprehensible. Especially by those who consider themselves to be 'encouraging' and inspiring.

Anonymous said...

Yes, it may be a four hour flight from Arkansas to Wisconsin, but there is also the travel time to Wisconsin Dells. There is not a large airport near there. Add at least three hours travel time (1 1/2 hours there and back). You just have made the short trip 7 hours. Any delay in the airports with weather, etc. and it can be much longer. In a case of an emergency, that's quite a bit of time.

Sharla said...

I let through just a couple of comments about commenters, but talking about the blog is not the purpose of the blog. Explanation has been made and we need to go back to the Duggars now, please.

Sharla said...

Please remember that opinions both pro and con Duggar are OK here. We try to keep fights and attacks at a minimum. We don't want commenters to leave or feel that we favor one side over the other.

Anon said...

Thanks to the moderators. This is very good to know. Much appreciated.

grannyD said...

Keeping 4 grandkids everyday I understand the need to have what we call adventure days occasionally. Although 2 are at public schools ... during the summer vacation we do travel a couple of hours to see and do new things...I felt as if tonight's show was some of the same type thing. I do question however the road travel for very long when car sickness is so prevalent. Josie was more alert tonight than before...but I have wondered why there has been no press releases or such about her condition since she was readmitted. I don't agree with all of the Duggars standards...but I do admire them for the time I see them spend with there children and intertest they take in them.

sixseeds said...

i've been gruesomely fascinated by the duggars for a long time and just found this blog. i have a question i hope someone can answer: do the duggars believe in universities? what about any sort of education conducted by a professional teacher/instructor? thanks all.

Nicole said...

Nah, I for one don't think Michelle's the Perfect Mother and JB the Perfect Patriarch, no matter what, even though I have defended the Duggars often.

I happen to think Michelle and JB are indeed GOOD parents, and that they have succeeded admirably in many things that have me stumped. I do find them inspiring in many ways, and I feel they have good hearts and good intentions. I'm just waiting like everyone else to see how this TV experiment pans out for them, as well as their unconventional child-raising practices. It may turn out well, or bad, or somewhere in between. They're good people and I hope for the best for them and their children.

Anonymous said...

My daughter has flown from Wi to Ar and back twice in the last three months; one of those times to Little Rock. It is about a four hour flight. I


Not to belabor the point too much, but as another poster pointed out, the Duggars weren't speaking at a venue at or near to the airport. There was a bit of a drive involved to arrive from the WI airport to where the seminar was being held.

I'd imagine there is a bit of a drive from the Arkansas airport to the hospital as well.

So it's really going to be much more than a simple 4-hour time difference, assuming that if you got news that your preemie was in emergency status and you went immediately to the airport, that you could even get on a flight right away.

These are thoughts that cross my mind as a parent. When I watch any reality show and see how people choose to behave, I always automatically compare it to what I would do in the same situation.

Ever since Josie was born, I've been growing more concerned that Mr. and Mrs. Duggar don't seem to understand the gravity of the situation, or else they just don't feel Josie's needs take precedence over speaking at these engagements. It's such a puzzle to me, because they are always saying what blessings their children are, and they are gifts from God, etc. Yet they treat Josie almost casually, as if she just needs to gain a little weight and catch up with the others.

As if it's a mere inconvenience that she's in the hospital, but not something that should require them to change their plans.

I can't connect with that mentality as a parent. If any religion leads you to put the needs of strangers before the needs of your children, then that can't be right. What parent does that? Or rather, what good parent does that?

Anonymous said...

The flight from Arkansas to Wisconsin may only be 4 hours but you have travel time to and from the airport and where they were staying. You don't just arrive at the airport and board the plane, you should add on another 2 hours for checking in and getting through security.

I know some churches do pay quite nicely for speakers to come, I wouldn't be surprised if a love offering isn't taken up at some of them as well.

Anonymous said...

Last night I watched a few minutes of the show and JB and the kids were at a farm or something of that sort and JB made the comment to one of the kids when passing a pumping station that that is where mamma should be. Just struck me as a little odd. I am holding out hope that at least one of the kids breaks aways from the cult and ventures out into the real world. Now that would be good reality television.

Swissmiss said...

Does anyone know if Josie ever left the hospital again?

I realize she is a micro premie, but even last night's shots of her at 4 lbs. 4 oz. were shocking to me. She looks like a little old man - don't mean to be hurtful.

That knitted cap with the brown trim made her skin tone look even worse.

I question if the Duggars are going to be able to keep her at home in a 'normal' (for them) environment for a long time, given her fragile condition. Do they have a separate guest house on their property where Michelle could live separately with the baby for a few months?

I can't believe that being passed back and forth among siblings once she gets home (with all their germs) is going to be good for her for a long, long time.

Please, Michelle, take this as a sign from God - NO MORE CHILDREN.

Given the way the kids get car sick, I think they should stick close to home. Or maybe they could get involved in a drug trial to combat car sickness - they would have a large group of subjects who could test it.

Midwest Mom said...

I don't "admire" the Duggars for the "time" they spend with their children on these contrived field trips.

Spending time with your children is part of being a parent.

Billions of great parents all over the world do it every single day of every year without getting paid for it by TLC and without sacrificing their family's privacy and without getting faux "Mother of the Year" awards from some club that advocates birthing until you drop.

The Duggars are nothing special. In fact, their lack of regard for their children's privacy is appalling.

Anonymous said...

I just heard a "blurb" on the Today show that the Duggars would be on the show tomorrow. Someone made a comment "Is there room in the studio for all of them?" so I assume they will be there in person. Ann Curry commented that maybe they would get a real look at Josie finally so she may have been questioning or assuming that Josie would also be there.

I put this out there for the fans and critics alike. I am a fan am will be watching hoping for news of if not a glimpse of Josie.

Anonymous said...

I would like to make a comment on posing anonymously. I don't always do that but on controversial topics I have found that some who don't agree with me like to use intimidating tactics like "I know where you live because of where your ISP originates." The moderator on this forum protects us from that type of behavior, but I am a little shy after some bad experiences in the past.

Anonymous said...

"I can't connect with that mentality as a parent. If any religion leads you to put the needs of strangers before the needs of your children, then that can't be right. What parent does that? Or rather, what good parent does that?"

First of all, I don't think the Duggars' religion, which is Baptist, advocates that, or having the number of children they do. That is their own personal conviction. Also, leaving your child to attend to other responsibilities, such as a job, and putting others temporarily in charge of your child during your absence, doesn't qualify as putting strangers' needs above your child's. If it did, that would mean all working mothers are putting strangers' needs above their child.

Cyn said...

I looked up where the conference was... the airport is less than 40 miles away with the interstate going past both. At most they were 5 hours from them by plane, they have enough money OR TLC could have simply chartered a plane is something serious was happening to Josie.

Do we know when Josie went back in to the hospital that she went back into the NICU? or if she was just admitted to the hospital itself?

Right or wrong they have already done it; people that didn't like the Duggars to begin with add another tally to the side of why they don't like the Duggars. The ones that do like the Duggars have added another to their column in the area of they do things I wouldn't do but it's their life not mine.

Would I personally have left Josie? That would depend on what her actual medical condition is. Since we don't know her actual condition she may have only gone in for a few days of observation and they felt they could leave her in their capable hands. We simply do not know. We may never know.

What we do know is the people that were running the conference, and the people that paid money to attend the conference didn't have the issues we seem to be having with leaving Josie in the hospital while they gave their speech.

We also learned the Duggars do not have an issue with speaking to people of slightly differing faiths either as the conference was put on by Assemblies of God, and the Duggars themselves are Baptists. Both sects have differing basic theological tenants, and usually do not have speakers from other denominations come speak at their conferences, at least in my experience. you don't usually ask a southern baptist to come speak, where there might be speaking in tongues, prophecy, and dancing in the aisles while worship is going on.

The Duggars' co-speaker was a blue-jean wearing (gasp) FEMALE preacher, I admire their ability to get along with most anybody while still holding their own beliefs.

Anonymous said...

Flying to Wisconsin from Arkansas is about an hour & half flight nonstop.(I looked it up). It's not 4 hours. It's 2 hours from Chicago to Orlando. It's 4 hours to LA from Chicago. If you include the prep to going(we have seen how long it takes the Duggars to move it). Then this trip was a long trip.

Judy said...

Well, the commericals for their Mother's Day "Josie comes home" special are airing. . .

Common sense, please said...

It is definitely NOT an hour and a half from Wisconsin to Little Rock!

There are no nonstop flights from Little Rock to Milwaukee (nor to the closer airport). WIth the stopover, it is abotu 3 and a half to four hours. Milwaukee is about 120 miles from the Dells, so with getting luggage, a car, etc., it's AT LEAST two more hours, probably closer to three, to get there).

With the time it takes to get to the Little Rock airport, check baggage and go through security, fly and do a stopover, get to Milwaukee and get bags, drive to the Dells, it is pretty much the whole day.

Josee looks way, way too sick to have been left. She still is not home.

And if those Duggars put that itsy bitsy sick baby on the Today show to announce baby #20, I sure hope there will be a complete boycott of the show and they will go off the air forever. That will make me sick, sick, sick!

Anon 3:14 said...

Good thing the Duggar children didn't go along on the Wisconsin trip with JB&M, otherwise there might have been a repeat of the Ethiopian know, the eye rolling and nose-holding when things happen they don't agree with.

Anonymous said...

JB&M are merely the birth parents, at this point.

And their daughters have become teen moms.

It's not funny, it's very sad to see what has become of this family.

Anonymous said...

Drive time, flight time, just a few days away, doesn't really matter, there are people that think it is just wrong and there are people who will try to justify that it was ok since it was just a few days. After seeing Josie last night I think she looked worse than we had seen her before. Her color was off. I know she is micro preemie but she really doesn't seem to be gaining weight well.

I figured they would be on the Today show either tomorrow or Friday. They are becoming way too predictable. When a "big" announcement is coming they are on the Today show. I just hope they don't throw in an announcement of and number 20 is on the way.

Anonymous said...

I hope Sean (TLC producer) does a little better job of editing from now on. The episode where most of the family went on a hike (JB was leading) gave me the creeps at the end........Michelle was in the interview chair and she said that JimBob was "loving on the children" while she was with Josie at the hospital.
Given that term "loving on" was used in a previous episode to describe what JimBob was supposed to do to soften Michelle's cervix, Michelle needs to choose her words more carefully. Really, it made me sick.

Anonymous said...

I watched an older episode this morning, and I was SO irritated with JB. At one point, he and Michelle were waiting for Josh to arrive with a tire or something like that, and JB said, " Josh says he'll be here in half an hour." Michelle said, "Half an hour?" And JB said, "Boy, I'll tell you what... how does it feel to have 18 children." UG, he drives me nuts. I'm sick of his out of place announcements and awkwardness.

Lexie said...

I wouldn't have a problem if parents really did take a day or two to themselves in a situation like this. But that's not what happened and there was no need for that to be in another state either.

My real problem is that this conference has been planned at least for several months. In that time the Duggars had plenty of chances to cancel. THEN! Josie was sent home in early April, right before this conference. If I was J'chelle I would have canceled that trip ASAP once I knew the day Josie was coming home. If she hadn't gone back to the hospital, what on earth did JB and DQ plan to do with her?! Bring her with them?! Or were they just going to pawn her off to one of her older sisters. That my friends is why I will never have any respect for those parents ever again.

Anonymous said...

I wondered the same thing about what Michelle would do with Josie had she not gone back to the hospital. These conferences are not put together last minute, sometimes plans are started a year in advance. I do not know how long they knew about this speaking engagement but they should have canceled not knowing when Josie would be able to come home. Surely they would not even think of traveling with her so the only other option would have been to leave her in the care of the older girls.

JaxMom said...

People has an update on Josie. It's very disturbing that the little girl has to have enemas every 6 hours! I really hope they figure out what is going on with her.,,20366751,00.html

Anonymous said...

Lordy. Enemas every six hours? That is one sick baby.

Josie really is not well. No preemie, even a micropreemie, who has been hospitalized to two months PAST her original due date, looks like that unless there is something seriously wrong. She actually looks worse than she did a few weeks ago. It's a little shocking actually.

And imagine her, still, going home to that house of Horrors, with all the howling monkeys. It is just too scary to think about...seriously. RSV is like the least of her worries, and that is a big one anyway.

Anonymous said...

Here's the article:

It's been a rough couple of months for Josie Brooklyn, the 19th child of Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar – but as Mother’s Day approaches the family has good news about their micropremie.

Josie, who was born on Dec. 10 at a gestational age of 25 weeks and weighing just 1 lb., 6 oz., is gaining approximately 2 oz. a day and now weighs 5 lbs., 14 oz.

"She loves to eat," says Michelle, smiling, as she feeds Josie. "When she feels good, she looks at you and smiles and talks. She's definitely a talker and has the sweetest personality."

That Josie is gaining weight is positive, but doctors are still searching for answers to several digestive issues she has: She currently needs enemas at 6-hour intervals.

"We are identifying what needs to be done to find a more permanent solution," says Josie's physician, Dr. Robert Arrington, co-director of the neonatal intensive care unit.A Scary Start
At just 8-days-old Josie suffered a perforated bowel. She was rushed to Arkansas Children's Hospital where Michelle and Jim Bob (who have 17 kids at home ranging in age from 20-years to 4-month-old Josie) set up their lives in the neonatal intensive care unit, praying she'd live. "We placed her in God's hands and thanked him for every day she was with us," says Jim Bob.

She survived without surgery and continued to stabilize – so much so that she was released from the hospital on April 6 with the understanding that doctors would follow her closely on an outpatient basis – with surgery likely in her future when she was bigger. "I was excited she was home," says Michelle, "but I was worried because I've never cared for a baby so tiny before."

Her fears were realized just two days later when Josie had to be rushed back to the NICU after her vital signs dropped.
Happy Homecoming
Michelle, Jim Bob and Josie Duggar

TLC / Scott Enlow
Josie's emotional, though brief, homecoming will be featured in a TLC Mother's Day special, 19 Kids and Counting: Josie Comes Home, on Sunday, May 9 at 8 p.m. Her trip back to the hospital will be shown on the show on Tuesday, May 11 at 9 p.m.

The Duggars are hopeful Josie will continue to gain weight and get to a place where further testing and any possible surgeries can be done, maybe even taking her home again in the next weeks.

"This has been such a difficult time for our family," says Jim Bob. "But good things have come out of this experience for us. We've drawn close together and we thank God for every day Josie is here."

Meanwhile, the 17 Duggar kids still at home are glad for the time they get to spend with their sister. Kids 18 and over were the only ones able to visit her at the hospital during flu season, but with that ban lifted, some of the younger ones are taking their turns with mom Michelle, getting to hold their newest sibling. "Our parents have done a wonderful job," says Jana, 20. "They pay attention to our hearts."

Anonymous said...

Also, leaving your child to attend to other responsibilities, such as a job, and putting others temporarily in charge of your child during your absence, doesn't qualify as putting strangers' needs above your child's. If it did, that would mean all working mothers are putting strangers' needs above their child.


But that's comparing apples to oranges. If my child was a preemie in NICU, I would take a leave of absence from my job and do whatever was necessary so I could be there every day. I still take off from work whenever my child is out sick from school and stay home with him.

On the other hand, when he is healthy and well, he went to daycare as a preschool age child and he goes to school now, and I go to work. I work in the same town as he goes to school, so if something happens, I can get to him quickly (within 20 minutes).

I work to put food on the table and a roof over our heads. I work so that I can properly care for my son. That's putting his needs first.

I'm sorry, but your analogy just doesn't work. When my son is ill or needs me, I drop everything and am there for him. I'm just sorry that the Duggar parents do not have that same kind of love and devotion for their own child. Poor little Josie, I hear she has to undergo enemas every 6 hours. That little baby has been through so much in her short life - you'd think the least her dumbbell parents could do is be there for her, but apparently that is just too much to ask of them.

I say again - two able bodied parents jetted out of state leaving their little preemie who is failing to thrive, when one could have gone and the other stayed behind. Their decision was selfish, and superficial. There is nothing laudable or excusable about it.

Judy said...

re:Jana's comment in the People article, "They pay attention to our hearts." The whole "hearts" talk in this family is really strange to me. I've heard it before. What do they mean, exactly?

Anonymous said...

I've been watching The Today Show since 7am (it is now 9am) and I haven't seen any ads showing the Duggars being on today. I wonder if they had to cancel, or reschedule?

Laurie said...

Maybe they were running on "Duggar Time".

Anonymous said...

No appearance by the Duggars on the Today Show this morning. No mention of them at all, and no mention of an appearance tomorrow. This seems very odd to me. Hope they didn't cancel because of problems with Josie.

Anonymous said...

The Duggars didn't appear on the Today show, as was scheduled for this morning.

Does anyone know why?

bfroggycarpenter said...

I just came across this article that might answer some questions....or just create more! LOL!|main|dl3|link3|

Anonymously Yours said...

Just saw local story about a couple about JB&M's age.

They, too, have a large family.

14 kids.

There's a thought provoking difference, though, between them and the Duggars.

In stark contrast to MaDuggar's TV voice over, "...and I delivered every one of them!", this couple has four biological children and ten ADOPTED ones.

Most of the adopted children have serious special needs.

I'm thinking two things: 1) perhaps this might help people reconsider any moral objections to birth control and 2) IMO this couple deserves a "Parents of the Year" award far more than the Duggars.


Anonymous said...

All I know is that Jim Bob would never willingly turn down an opportunity to be on The Today Show. So either the Duggars got bumped by the show itself because of other news/people they wanted to have on instead; or the Duggars had to cancel at the last minute. Considering that they didn't cancel their WI trip, nor going to the Big Sandy, if they did indeed cancel The Today Show, something could be seriously wrong in their world.

I don't know what The Today Show featured -- was it late breaking news on the Gulf oil spill, or something else that could have pre-empted the Duggars?

winsomeone said...

A little off topic, but do the Duggars vote? I know Jim Bob held a state office briefly, but seems like with so many of them of voting age, it would have shown them making their way to the voting place at least once? Plus I have never seen a flag on display on their property, or any patriotic clothing..just seems a bit odd. Maybe they don't believe in that sort of thing?

Cyn said...

Winsome>> they are helping Jim Holt with his campaign.

The way the Duggars were brought to 'national attention' was because they were coming out of a voting area all lined up like little duckies.

Yes the Duggars vote, and are still active in local and state politics.

Anonymous said...

What, no Today show special segment, for announcement of #20 again today? The Duggars were supposed to be on yesterday, and were a no show. A lot of people thought they would end up there today.

We can speculate that either the family got wind of the negativity towards any possible future pregnancies, and has decided to keep this great news to themselves, or something is gravely wrong with Josie.

Why else would Jim Bob ever give up a photo opp or chance to exhibit his virility ("20 kids, and I produced all the sperm myself!") and pump himself up in front of his adoring audience.

I hope everything is OK with Josie. We're all rooting for you, little pussycat!

Anonymous said...

"Do the Duggars vote? ...Plus I have never seen a flag on display on their property, or any patriotic clothing..just seems a bit odd. Maybe they don't believe in that sort of thing?"

What I do know is that another poster who lives in the area saw signs for Jim Holt in Josh's yard as well as signs for gun rights and a few other signs he/she was unable to read. It appears that the Duggars have very strong opinions on who/what to vote for, and since JB did hold office and he and Jim Holt have supported each other's races, I can't imagine that they wouldn't vote.

grace said...

"A little off topic, but do the Duggars vote?"

I just passed by the Duggars house today, and they have a large "Jim Holt" sign in their yard. So, Im sure they do vote. Josh's yard is absolutely covered in political signs.

But other than that, I saw another interesting thing in the Duggar's yard. A police car with big red letters that say "security" across the side of the car. It's parked out front, facing the road, as if it is on "patrol". I could be mistaken, but I don't believe anyone was actually IN the car. I think it was just a weak attempt at scaring people off. Also, they now have a gate on their driveway (but not around the whole house) So now, at least, random people can't just drive up their short driveway.

Maybe Jim Bob is finally waking up and smelling the coffee.. his family is not safe. Although what would be better than a cop car out font would be to QUIT the show.

Anonymous said...

I saw a comment elsewhere that the children swap the household chores so no one is stuck doing the same thing all the time (except the older girls who must take care of the younger siblings every day of the year). So, do the boys also take a week of doing laundry, doing the cooking, doing dishes, doing grocery shopping? (Somehow I doubt it.)

Anonymously Yours said...

re: "Do the Duggars vote"?

This is JMO:

Since JB tossed his hat into the political ring as a one trick pony (anti abortion), I'm guessing, yes, they do, and I am imagining they encourage their kids to 'vote the Bible,' i.e., no same sex marriage rights, no abortion rights, no alcohol sales, creationism - ooops, that name didn't sell, so now it's 'intelligent design' taught in schools, regular prayers in school, and tax breaks to faith-based organizations and home schooling.

One Quiverful goal is sending off as many 'quivers' as possible for god, and this, no doubt, includes voting 'righteously' according to their fundamentalist beliefs.

My guess. My opinion.

Anonymously Yours said...

"Maybe Jim Bob is finally waking up and smelling the coffee.. his family is not safe. Although what would be better than a cop car out font would be to QUIT the show."


Though an optimist by nature, IMO you are probably giving the Duggars, especially The Patriarch, much too much credit by assuming he has awakened to the REAL 'realities' of his unwise choice to exploit his family and, so, will alter the course.

My guess is 'you can tell JBD, but you can't tell him much' is a truism.

If JB actually possessed the smarts and wisdom that ought to be part of any Patriarch's skill set, he'd have known in advance that signing his fam on for a 'reality' series was an unholy mess waiting to happen.

Mary said...


Do you really think that Michele is going to take cae of Josie when she comes home. She will be in girls room. The girls wil learn how to care for he

JB I think it would be nice if you sent the older girls away on vacation for a weeek You could send your over worked Mother (kids grand ma or Amy)with them

One episode I watched was when the went to Disney world they were given 3 rooms. JB said ok this one for girls, this one for biys, this one for me and Mom. the infants and toddlers were in girls room.

Michele does nothing but make new babies


Anonymous said...

The genie is out of the bottle. The family privacy has been sold off and I don't think they can get it back. Everyone knows where they live, down to the exact address and location of the bedroom windows. I think it is really, really sad that a police car has to patrol their home, but really, what was Jim Bob thinking?

The price of being a celebrity is loss of privacy, and potential danger. Sure, he has made a boatload of money having cameras in this kids' faces morning, noon and night, but is it worth having patrol cars and creepers sending notes to his daughters?

I can't imagine what on earth he is thinking. Get the family off the air, and try, try, try to regain a semblance of a normal life again.

Anonymous said...

Here is a link to Jana's Mother's Day video. She looks lovely. Once there you can see the others listed down the right hand side.

Anonymous said...

"Since JB tossed his hat into the political ring as a one trick pony (anti abortion), I'm guessing, yes, they do, and I am imagining they encourage their kids to 'vote the Bible,' i.e., no same sex marriage rights, no abortion rights, no alcohol sales, creationism - ooops, that name didn't sell, so now it's 'intelligent design' taught in schools, regular prayers in school, and tax breaks to faith-based organizations and home schooling.

One Quiverful goal is sending off as many 'quivers' as possible for god, and this, no doubt, includes voting 'righteously' according to their fundamentalist beliefs."

What I don't understand is if these people are so Christian and godly why would they be in favor of gun rights? Someone had mentioned earlier that in the backyard there were signs for gun rights. I mean the idea of a gun is to take a life whether its a bear or a human, or whatever. They are against abortion because it's killing an unborn child, but a gun is used to kill other things as well. JMO but godly people don't kill for the sake of killing. It's hard for me to picture Josh owning a gun (...and God forbid using it!) so why is he promoting this kind of stuff?

Marybeth said...

This hasn't been mentioned in awhile, but since I was in the mall yesterday, for the first time in 2 years, I thought I'd bring it up.

I saw an Aeropostle store (didn't even know what one was until I saw the store and people were mentioning the name) and they had sale banners in the window: T-shirts 2/$10 and Polo shirts Buy One Get One Free. I went inside and also found a clearance rack with items similar to what Josh has worn on the show for as low as $9.99. At those prices, that seems fair for a frugal family, especially one who is trying to present an image for a business.

In addition I'd like to point out, that I've seen all the episodes except the last one, and I've only seen him wear 1 pink Aeropostle polo shirt and 1 blue Aeropostle t-shirt. That's 2 items, not an entire wardrobe from this store. It hardly seems like something to get all worked up over, and at sale prices it certainly seems that it's possible they bought them at a fair price.

Anonymous said...

How many tv reality people live in Arkansas? The infatuated fans want to see touch and worship. The parents have sold their privacy. They are entitled to gun rights opinions quiverful opinions and as many kids as they want. But public will comment and kids will suffer for parents allowing this. I hope they stop this reality tv and resume real private life.

Nicole said...

These kids are SO sweet. From all appearances, none of these children feel neglected by their mother. Can JimBob and Michelle Duggar really be that horrible if their children are as sweet and happy as this? I guess it's possible, but doesn't seem likely.

Kitten said...

As far as guns and hunting - while many people in Arkansas do, indeed, hunt, the Duggars don't even like to garden, and don't show much affinity for the great outdoors. I would be astonished to learn that any of them actually hunt.

Steve knight said...

this is scary of michellse said this
Michelle told exclusively that is definitely a possibility. “We would love more!” Michelle reasoned “I’m 43 almost 44 this September, I know that my mommy years are probably numbered and I don’t know how many more children God will see fit to give me.”

seems only giving birth is being a mother?

Steve knight said...

How would you know what neglect is if you lived it all your life?
it is required for the children to be happy. they are trained up to be happy all of the time. this is a big part if the ati lifestyle.

Anonymous said...

maybe tlc didnt want to on the today show becuase it would hurt the ratings for sundays show.

Nicole said...

A child doesn't have to have lived in all points of the spectrum to know if they are neglected/happy or not. I was neglected as a child (raised with NO siblings, opposite of the Duggars)and I knew it. I also wasn't happy and I knew it. The older ones would for sure know it by now. I don't live with the Duggars so I can't say for sure, but the children seem genuinely happy, not fake happy.

A common theme in many of the kids' videos was that they appreciate their mom giving them individual time and attention. Yes of course they could have been told to say those things and they really didn't mean them. But I'm choosing not to take the cynical route. I just see evidence that Michelle is a very good mom.

Should children be "raised to be miserable" rather than "raised to be happy?" Not seeing how this is a bad thing. I see evidence that the children are loved by their parents, well-cared for, given attention, their needs and wants are met, they have fun together as a family, the kids appear to be good friends with each other, they get along, and are raised joyfully in their family's faith. They have all the ingredients necessary to be happy with their lives, and to me it looks like they are. Maybe that's a different case with some other ATI families. But that's what I see in the Duggars.

Celestie said...

I think the Mother's Day video was sweet. Any mom would love to have an individual shot of each child saying they loved her.

I would be shocked if any of my kids said that their mother spent "one on one time with them." Of course I do, I spend most of my time with them (the little ones), as I did with the older ones, when they were children. It was what good mothers do. I make time for each of them alone almost everyday. Not once every so often, on a ride to the store. You can't know a child if you aren't in contact with him all the time.

Anon 3:14 said...

If the Duggar children seem genuinely happy it would be good to remember that we don't see everything that goes on in their lives, as some posters have pointed out time and time again.

It is quite possible and even probably that some of them are not that happy, just "keeping sweet" for the camera as instructed by the Duggar House Rules.

Anonymous said...

re: "Should children be raised to be miserable rather than raised to be happy?":

Modeling an ability to lean toward optimism can give kids a powerful tool for coping in life.

However, teaching children to be honest with themselves and others about their emotions is equally powerful and necessary in life.

Encouraging children to 'eat' their genuine feelings is not emotionally healthy.

IMO, there is nothing ethically superior about merely acting cheerful and 'sweet'. The real measure of morality is how well you treat others, including offering them emotional honesty and sincerety.

Anonymous said...

In psychology there is a concept called "positive self talk" which is something we teach people who are depressed and down much of the time. I think the Duggars are teaching their children this coping skill as well as providing everything that is necessary in their lives for them to be happy. I see no evidence that these children are neglected or abused and I have seen much of that in my practice. They appear to be genuinely happy and well cared for.

Anonymous said...

It is quite possible and even probably that some of them are not that happy, just "keeping sweet" for the camera..."
Amen. On one thread here someone posted a link to a podcast of the older 4 girls talking about their experiences at a girls' retreat. It was very clear by what they sad that at least Jana was not happy. She talked about learning to overcome some "contention" toward her family members. Of course this wasn't mentioned on the show.

Anonymous said...

Amy posted on Facebook that Josie is 6 1/2 pounds.

Cyn said...

You might want to re-listen to the podcast.... Jana was talking about PRIDE. And being prideful.

Not that she was having "contentiousness" with her family members. And I heard nothing but happiness from the girls, where did you hear sadness?

Anonymous said...

Does anyone have a link to the Happy Mother's Day webisode? I can't seem to find it. Thanks.

Cyn said...
Mother's Day video's this one is Jill's but they are up and down the right side... And one of the girls is doing the filming (you can hear them talking to the younger ones)

Steve knight said...

I doubt the kids get enough one on one with parents since they have to schedule one day a week to get it. The duggers mock working parents about spending time with their kids but the duggers only spend a little time once a week with their children.

Anonymously Yours said...

"The duggers mock working parents about spending time with their kids but the duggers only spend a little time once a week with their children."


You are right: the Duggars do, in their passive aggressive way, mock others who live a more normal lifestyle. It is within many of the stupidities that fall from The Patriarch's mouth, as he uses his grand, blanket judgement of those who do not live the Gothard lifestyle, whether the subject is debt or choosing to limit family size, or how music can lead to sin or those who choose to date NORMALLY prior to marriage....and, even sadder, you hear it in some of the things the kids say as they, too, over generalize and rotely repeat what they've learned from their parents: that those in the real world just do not measure up to Duggar moral standards.

And, no, it is not a case of the simplistic sentiment of 'you are hearing what you WANT to hear' - Personally, I have no desire to believe people can be this ignorant - these are not things I WANT to hear from the Duggars or anyone else. It is, in fact, what they actually SAY.

In fact, not only am I not reading into their words what I want to hear, truth is, I find it extraordinarily disheartening that 19 off spring are being taught to fear and loathe those who live a normal lifestyle and consider THEIR way the only real route to morality.

roddma said...

Im sorry for anyone who go thru bad childhoods and pasts. But why do some use their less than perfect pasts to justify the Duggar's ways of life? Jim Bob and Michelle use the excuse of 'baggage' to keep the children from dating and being normal. They dont want children to make the same mistakes as them or go thru the same thing. this is understandable but "protecting" can go too far. Like all other public figures, the Duggar's have faults an even admit it. I'm not saying they dont have good qualities. I think the problem comes as someone mentioned when the public blindly holds them up as Christian role models. I'll cut them slack on Wisconsin, a little anyway. Sometimes these things are planned in advance and difficult to cancel.

Anon 3:14 said...

Going on contrived field trips and cleaning house is not inspiring to me.

bonehead said...

I think that the Duggars have strayed away from their original beliefs and now make things up as they get older, to keep the children attached to them. They have no control or not teaching the younger children respect for others things, they run wild, with very little supervision, and do not practice safety. There is a lot of difference between the older ones and the younger ones(watch the older episodes, before a lot of the younger ones were born). Their homeschooling is a joke. I watch JimBob his only thing with the kids is take them on a trip, it's like he does not know what to do with them other wise. And what is wrong with JimBob watching & playing with them in that fenced in yard. When the Bates visit them, the kids were playing in the yard, and there were twice as many. I grew up with a lot friends who came from large families, and we all lived in the big city(Chicago)and they all managed to play in the yard(and these yards were half the size the Duggars rented house yard is). We also had no one to watch us, most of the time, we were told, not to leave the yard. I also think that baby is safer in the hospital than at home. I also don't think JimBob & Michelle get it, this baby is different, she is sickly. They were treating Josie as if she were normal. And we all can guess who her buddy is? Jill. I also noticed that Jana has made herself disappear. Perhaps she does not like being on camera? JMO

Anonymous said...

I have been thinking about why people are upset about the size of the duggar's family.Where I live it was not uncommon for families to of 17 or more children only about 30 years ago.I do not believe that there was a stigma associated with it.It was customary for the older siblings to help out.In fact they would oftem times have to leave school for this.For some reason it is not looked at the same way as the duggar family.
After saying that,my experience with children of such large families is that they are generally happy with their upbringing.
My piont is that we CAN NOT descriminate against people because of the amount of children that they have.We are all human and all have the right to have children(However many we want)
Luckily times have changed since kids had to drop out of school in order to take care of their siblings.We also have government departments to protect children.As for the strict rules that the duggar children have,we also can not discriminate against it because as people they have the right to raise their children to believe in the same things as themselves.
When the children become adults they will be able to choose their own path in life.

Anonymous said...

"Tammy" posted that she "cracked up" seeing the Christmas decorations still up because, after all, this was filmed after Easter. Really, Tammy? It made me very sad. It showed that time stood still for months at that house as the family dealt with this crisis. Not funny, just sad.

Anonymous said...

to Anonymous at 8:47 a.m.:

I think the reason larger families used to be less unusual has a lot to do with the fact that there was no readily accessiblity to birth control, as there is today. Married women didn't have the options that are now available. As we can see, now that birth control is available, many couples freely avail themselves of it.

If we read stories written by women back in the day, we find that it was an extremely difficult life for many. Having child after child broke down the body and if the mother survived childbirth, she often died young just from being worn out.

So thank goodness for birth control! As to family size, that still remains up to the individual couple. I'm of the mind that Earth's resources are being over-taxed as it is, so I think limiting family size is a good thing. However, I don't believe in imposing my will on others, and am satisfied in making that choice just for myself.

I also firmly believe that no one should have more children than they are capable of raising on their own. If finances are already tight, or your parenting time and emotional availablility is already wearing thin, then I think parents should behave sensibly and at least consider not having more children than they can adequately care for.

I have no problem with siblings helping out. I have a real problem with making your older children raise the younger ones, with having the older girls take the babies into their rooms at night once they turn 6 months old, with making them do all household chores, and basically turning them into unpaid household workers. That's what I have a real problem with.

Anonymous said...

"with having the older girls take the babies into their rooms at night once they turn 6 months old,"

We have never seen evidence of this and in fact have seen Jordyn still in the parents room well past 6 months.

Anonymous said...

The Duggar family has definitely had their faith tested in the past few months I think. I don't necessarily agree with their beliefs on some things, but I have to give them credit for the way they've handled the situation they are in and the fact that months later they still are strong in their faith and are able to find positives. Hopefully, Josie will soon reach the point where they can fully diagnose her condition and take steps to correct it.

I felt sad when Michelle was talking about how she panicked when Josie's heart rate started acting up. What a scary situation for her and the girls! I'm sure they are enormously thankful they stayed close to the hospital with her.

Anonymously Yours said...

re: the days when HUMONGOUS families were more acceptable:

A couple thoughts: 1) when living in an agrarian society, often many kids are required to work the farm.

This hasn't been the case for most of us in this country for a very long time.

Life moves on. We are now in a technological age. Who KNOWS where we will head next, but am doubting it will be a return to an agrarian lifestyle for most.

2)The Duggars live in a bubble. And they live as if the world has not progressed in many decades.

JMO, I find it SAD and not at all a measure of morality, that they do not consider it an important part of 'raising up' (?) children to be well prepared for the world THEY will live in, not the world their GRANDPARENTS maneuvered through.

If all 19 kids want nothing more in life than what they have experienced to date, then living on JB&M's Gothard Acres will be fine for them (though I have no idea how they will financially support as many kids as JB&M have chosen to have in today's economy, especially with their sad lack in education & work and life experience.

Due to his apparent lack of education and smarts, my guess is that the $ JB has at this point is more a result of just having happened to luck out with a few real estate deals. Just happening to be at the right place at the right time can have some serendipitous results, including financial.

PLUS, let's not overlook that he has the TLC bucks rolling in now, and surely it can escape no one's notice how very much the Duggar lifestyle has improved, thanks to the TLC income.

Check out the places JB provided for his family BEFORE they fell into the TLC gig and, so, became the recipients of free furniture, help finally finishing the new house JB had been puttering along with for quite awhile, free home decor, freebie new piano, etc.) - they were rather poverty line prior to TLC, so good luck to the 19 trying to repeat history WITHOUT TLC's financial aid.

Celestie said...

Question for someone in the know. How did the Duggars first come to the attention of TLC? What was the connection, who sought who out?

I've been reading a number of large family blogs, most Christian, homeschooling types, some Gothardites, some not, some with adopted kids, some large bio families. Some so very, very fundamentalist, they make the Duggars look like flaming liberals. Some, not so much, they encourage and send children to college and urge them to find themselves good mates. Most are pretty attractive folk. Made me wonder how the Duggars were chosen to be Reality STARS? Did JB seek out TV reality stardom for his family as yet another way to make money? Or did reality TV find him on the capitol steps with the little governor?

Any one know for sure? Not what the Duggars put in their book.

Anonymous said...

I am anonymous 8:47.I was not talking about living in an agrarian society.I am talking about where I live in Eastern Canada.Some had large families and some did not.The point is that we are still people like they were then.Some people still do have large families and some dont.It is a choice that we are allowed to make.If we start to say that people are only allowed to have a certain amount of kids we are getting into very dangerous territory.Maybe some people do not agree with birth control and that is ok because we are in control of our own bodies.Also I have seen no evidence that Jb and M can not support their family.I think that the real issue is not the size of the family but the expectations that they have on thier kids.

Anonymous said...

We know the little ones sleep in the girls' bedroom. Now, maybe it's not at 6 months, but closer to 7, 8 or 9 months. Either way, when the babies wake at night, it is their buddy's responsibility to tend to them, because Mama Duggar is sleeping comfortably in her own quiet bedroom.

Again, I say it is wrong to make your older children tend to the younger ones, even unto the night time hours. If you want to have 19 children, then you ought to be the one taking care of them babies. If you can't or won't, then stop having them babies.

Michelle seems to think the fact that she got pregnant a certain number of times and "delivered all" of her children makes her Mom of the Century. She needs to put away those phony awards and step up to the plate. Personally, I don't think she has it in her.

Cyn said...

A few thoughts came to me.

The first anon this morning said 30 years ago... that would make it 1980ish... NOT 1880s; 1980's gave us Madona, Cyndi Lauper, Cable TV, I had a home computer and access to the internet all be it limited, and we certainly had access to Birth Control, gasp we even had sex ed in school where they taught these things...

Second thought.. I don't know any one on or near the poverty level that can come up with the CASH of 250,000.00 to buy the new house site alone. Much less the housing kit, and the other properties they have bought and paid cash for. The Duggars (JimBob and Michelle) chose to live in the smaller houses so they could pay cash for the other properties, and the building with out going into debt. TLC wanted the house finished to make filming better and easier so they got or donated around 25k to the house project. The rest the Duggars paid for and had paid for before the first show aired. I live at the poverty level we make less than 25k a year and we have a family of 7. I will never see 250,000 (quarter of a million) all in an account in my life time or not until I am very old, the Duggars are not and have not been near a poverty line since Josh was little.

This has nothing to do with luck, TLC and others may want to paint JimBob with the stupid stick... but the man is far from stupid, he has business savvy that most would envy, and has been discussed in early interviews they did BEFORE TLC came along and right after... Go do google searches and look for interviews done in 2000-2004. Check their book out of a library.

All the details are out there if one chooses to do the research.

Anonymously Yours said...

Yes, I agree: we ARE 'people like they were then' regardless of Agrarian society status.

However, the WORLD continues to evolve - uh, uncomfortable word for some, so - spin and change - and it's up to parents to prepare their kids by giving them the tools and skills the kids will need to survive and thrive in current life.

Being fully prepared but for a world that exists now only in history books does not seem like the product of excellent parenting, IMO.

And we fully agree also that we all have the right to decide our own family size.

We all have a right to control our own bodies. We all have a right to make these CHOICES for ourselves.

It is folly, however, to hope everyone will agree and commend us for whatever choices we make. Some will commend us for having a huge family, while others will commend us for opting to remain childless.

Abe Lincoln was right: you can't please all of the people all of the time. The Duggars and their fans would be wise to remember this.

Anonymously Yours said...

Ever hear of a person buying a piece of, what is at the time, relatively worthless property? They buy it for a song because it's languished on the market seemingly forever, and no one wants it.

Occasionally they luck out down the road when a developer (including cell phone tower developers) decides this property is the one wanted to develop, and so luck absolutely CAN be a huge factor in real estate transactions.

Smart/Dumb, like beauty, are in the eyes of the beholder. For those who find JB savvy, great!

But others of us consider JB to be luckier than he is bright.

To each her own.

PS - a good read: I enjoyed your thoughts even though I do not fully agree with them.

Anonymous said...

I'd say anyone who sticks 14 kids in a three bedroom house with one bathroom is pretty near the poverty line. They were living way poor in the old days. TLC finished the house and gave them furniture. If not, they'd still have Grandma's mismatched old fashioned doilyware.

Anonymous said...

re: the blogger who finds Jim Bob 'savvy':

I'm not sure to which early Anonymous posting you refer, as I see no reference to '30 yrs ago', so I'm a little confused on that one.

However, I am curious: what do you (and anyone else) think the chances are that the 19 Duggar kids will be able to successfully use their existent skills to create for themselves the lifestyle they are now living?

Do you think it will be less difficult for the next generation to reach this level or equally difficult as it was for their parents, or more difficult in today's world?

Cyn said...

They were 'found' after a picture was placed on the front page of the NY times magazine. Parents magazine saw it and did an interview (link below), after the parents magazine Discovery Channel talked to them.

Here are a few of the early interviews... even then they talked about how the kids were running through the house and climbing on things and about it being chaotic... And the parents magazine article talks about how they were even then saving for the kids to go on to college IF and when the kids wanted to. (pictures were added later as ads)

PS when you do the google searches you have to go back to like pages 5-6 to start finding the right articles for the time period you are looking for... the first few pages are currently all about Josie and the newer things going on.

Anonymous said...

My grampa bought a few acres of land out in the boon docks.

He bought it CHEAP because at the time, nothing was out that far in the country and no one was interested.

Time was his best friend. Over the years, development creeped slowly towards my grampa's land.

When he sold it, he made a tidy profit.

He knew nothing about real estate. He wasn't especially smart or savvy. He was just very lucky.

Mary said...


If I remember coorectly JB did not believe in insurance. He had the mindset pay as you go. I wonder who is paying for Josie care? Anyone who been in a hospital know how much this can cost.

Anonymous said...

Just a couple of thoughts:

First, about filming Josie in the delivery room and in the NICU with bright lighting - bright lighting is common in these rooms because medical personnel have to be able to see what they are doing. When Josie was very small they kept her isolette covered to give her a darker environment. As for loud noises, NICU's just like ICU"s are busy and noisy places. I doubt if even the honking horn bothered that baby although I too thought it was a dumb thing to do.

On the baby's being moved to the big girl's bedroom. Michelle's baby's are usually born about a year and a half apart. I would guess that she would wait until the current baby is about a year old before moving her/him. By that time the child will probably be sleeping through the night most of the time.

If you look at the episode after the next one being advertised it is about the Big Sandy trip and Michelle staying at home with Josie who was of course still in the hospital.

Cyn said...

The Duggar land was worth over 1 million, the seller wanted to get rid of it and wanted 900,000 for it.

Jim Bob offered 200,000. The seller rejected it. A year later the property is still up for sale and he came back to JimBob and accepted a 250,000 offer for it.

If that's not business savvy and instead "luck" then I should be so "lucky". They bought with cash every property; and business they have run with CASH, the only debt they every had on property was the first house they owned. After that everything has been done without debt.

They were willing to sacrifice deeply to do anything and everything they do with cash and never debt. Again this is not luck that is planning and takes a head for business. JimBob had enough money and property to pay two hundred and fifty thousand dollars for the land alone. Can anyone show me where anywhere in the world that is poverty level.

The house kit he paid for?
Was a combination of 2 kits +extras costing over 150,000.

So far with just the land and the kits he had over 400,000.00 in the home. None of that accounts for labor (he and the kids did most of it), the materials for inside the house, painting, the kitchen furnishings etc. TLC provided (with donations to make the filming look good) 25,000.00. (scroll down about a page or so)

As money came in they paid for each step of the project. TLC wanted it done faster so they paid for finishing touches. Duggars operate on Duggar time; no TLC they would have simply moved to either another rental or into the house while finishing construction over their heads (they have lived that way before)

I've commented several places on this blog alone (always under "cyn") on how I think the Duggar children could support themselves and their future off spring.

I found the blog in Oct 2009 go through the achieves from then forward you'll find me, as I'd rather not start those "debates" again. Look more in the "free discussion' type areas.

Anonymous said...

Cyn said:
The Duggar land was worth over 1 million, the seller wanted to get rid of it and wanted 900,000 for it.

Jim Bob offered 200,000. The seller rejected it. A year later the property is still up for sale and he came back to JimBob and accepted a 250,000 offer for it.

* * * *

I'm not arguing with your post Cyn, but I merely wanted to point out that the land couldn't have been worth $1 million, since no one was willing to pay anywhere close to that price for it. It might have once been worth that (a little unlikely for Arkansas real estate value though), or the owner certainly could have asked for that much. But land, like everything else, is worth whatever the going market value is.

In this case, the land was apparently worth $200,000 - $250,000.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said:
NICU's just like ICU"s are busy and noisy places. I doubt if even the honking horn bothered that baby although I too thought it was a dumb thing to do.

While some NICU's may still be quite noisy places, studies have shown that loud noises have a very negative effect on pre-term babies.

"Premature infants in the NICU are often exposed to continuous loud noise despite research documenting the presence and damaging effects of noise on the preterm infant's development. Excessive auditory stimulation creates negative physiologic responses such as apnea and fluctuations in heart rate, blood pressure, and oxygen saturation. Preterm infants exposed to prolonged excessive noise are also at increased risk for hearing loss, abnormal brain and sensory development, and speech and language problems."

This is why loud noises should be avoided whenever possible, like honking a car horn repeatedly with your newly released preemie sitting right there. It's not just that the noise might startle the baby, it causes physical reactions that can be quite dangerous and have long term effects.

Amanda said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

If Jim Bob is, in fact, so 'savvy', why is is blind to the huge disadvantage he has put his kids at by so limiting their education and life experiences?

MO4 said...

I saw an Aeropostle store (didn't even know what one was until I saw the store and people were mentioning the name) and they had sale banners in the window: T-shirts 2/$10 and Polo shirts Buy One Get One Free. I went inside and also found a clearance rack with items similar to what Josh has worn on the show for as low as $9.99. At those prices, that seems fair for a frugal family, especially one who is trying to present an image for a business.

In addition I'd like to point out, that I've seen all the episodes except the last one, and I've only seen him wear 1 pink Aeropostle polo shirt and 1 blue Aeropostle t-shirt. That's 2 items, not an entire wardrobe from this store. It hardly seems like something to get all worked up over, and at sale prices it certainly seems that it's possible they bought them at a fair price.

It is product placement.If not the name would have been blurred out.

Anonymous said...

Mary, I had a 30 week preemie who was much bigger than Josie. His bills came in around $100,000. He came home at 4lbs10oz and looked similar to Josie. Until they get some fat under their skin, they do look like little old men.

As a mother of a former preemie, I worry about the germs Josie will be exposed to when she comes home. You have to be extremely careful not to get rev during flu season and vigilant about handwashing.

Josie most certainly has serious issuers to face later in I've and will need therapy to help with her development. I'lla be curious to see how they'll have therapies and specialized preschool as Josie gets older.

Marybeth said...

Jim Bob believes in health insurance and always has. They don't have health insurance that covers maternity--that they pay as you go. Luckily the Children's Hospital takes all children regardless and I'm sure the details will get worked out, although the baby would be covered under the policy.

Anonymous said...

The state (i.e. the dreaded government) is paying for most of Josie's care, as she is considered disabled, due to her extreme prematurity,

Her bills are probably well over a million, on their way to two million dollars at this point, with almost six months in the NICU.

Private insurance caps out and the Duggars would be left with a gigundo bill. They aren't paying it. Medicaid is.

Anon 3:14 said...

Will there be an episode in the future showing JB & M leaving Josie behind in the NICU while they trot off to speak at the Women's Conference in Wisconsin in April ?

This is reality tv, right, so let's bring forth the realist of the real: two parents leaving behind their very ill preemie while they make an appearance for their fans several states away.

Cyn said...

If instead of paying that loan payment, or that mortgage payment you were able to save that money, how much money would most of us have at the end of the year? In two years? Ten years?

What if instead of paying interest on a loan that money (up until the market went south) was making 12% a year on average in a money market account?

I never said it was moral or immoral I simple stated it does make business sense or make a person business savvy to realize that if your paycheck is going back out the door in the form of payments instead of into a savings account you are less able to do things with your money.

Millions of people across America are figuring that out daily.

My OTHER point was no where on Earth is the poverty level able to pay 400,000 (close to half a million) just for the land and part of the materials to build a home.

As for the dump... I get two addresses for the dump in Tontitown both say the recycle center, and garbage pickup. Which one is the actual dump and which is the drop- off location?

Anonymous said...

Very interesting thoughts "You Guessed It: Anon." That's a great point. While I agree that living frugally and within one's means is better than charging up a lot of credit card debt, I too am unclear on the concept of why it is less moral to have a mortgage than to try to buy a house outright. Because to be realistic, most people would then never have a house if they waited until they had saved up $250,000 or more in cash. This is because while you are saving for a home, you still need to live somewhere. You will be paying housing costs of one kind or another, usually rent.

So if you have the income that would enable you to qualify for a good mortgage (not one of those zero down, balloon payment, rip you off mortgages), why not invest in a home of your own. That way, your monthly housing expense isn't simply going straight to the landlord with nothing to show for it at the end of 15 to 30 years. Instead, pay the same or slightly more on your mortgage and pay it off in a reasonably good time.

While I certainly understand the appeal of working for yourself, I don't consider it to be necessarily the more moral choice over accepting a job with an employer. An honest living is just that - you work at a job, you get paid. An added benefit of working for an employer is that you might be benefits, like money paid into a retirement plan, paid vacation days, some sort of health/dental/vision coverage. Especially if you are a family man, wouldn't it be better to have those benefits to bring home to your family rather than running your own handyman business and paying the costs of those benefits out of any profit you might have?

I'm not denigrating choosing to work for yourself; merely saying it's not the morally better choice and often it's the lesser choice if you are trying to support a family and provide for their needs.

The Duggars are an extreme in the way they present being able to live under their guidelines. I'd say the Bates were probably more representative. Before the remodel of their home (a TLC freebie), they had quite a small home and the family was simply cram-packed in there. I don't know what sort of health coverage they had for all those children, but as a tree cutter, I just can't imagine Mr. Bates is rolling in the dough. Probably another reason families like the Duggars would dress their kids all the same is because then you have automatic hand-me-downs. The older ones outgrow and the younger ones then get their clothes the following year. Saves on the clothing budget even more.

I had a friend in college who had 8 other siblings. Her parents were Catholic. Anyway, they managed to get by but she recalled years when her mother would sew new elastic into underwear because they couldn't afford the buy new underwear. Yet they strongly believed in higher education, the higher education that the parents weren't able to obtain. They couldn't afford to pay for college, but each child was expected to get a job when they were able and save up, get scholarship money, etc. And every one of their 9 kids did attend college and graduate.

I'm not against large families per se. I admire people who work hard, live frugally, set aside money for a rainy day. But the Duggars live in some fantasy world where education is treated rather lightly, they have very fixed ideas on what their children can and should do as adults and only direct them and provide them with limited tools to achieve those narrow goals.

Cyn said...

Tax break on mortgages:

Let’s say you pay $10,000 in interest one year, which creates that tax deduction. If you didn’t have that deduction, the $10K you kept would be taxed, and if you are in a 30 percent bracket, you would have to pay $3,000 in taxes. In keeping a mortgage around, you are essentially paying $10,000 to the bank to avoid paying $3,000 to the government.

I'd rather send the government 3k and keep the other 7k to invest but hey that's just me.

Anonymous said...

To: You Guessed It: Anon

I agree with some of what you said, although the red shirt analogy was off because Jim Bob bases his no-debt beliefs on a Scripture ("Owe no man anything but love.") I doubt there's a verse about red t-shirts. I am a Gothard Parts 1 and 2 Seminar Graduate. I went when I was in my early 20s years ago. I would now be very reluctant to recommend these seminars to anyone. There is some good to them, but there's a lot that is based on opinion. Many of the verses used are out of context that support these opinions. I have a mortgage, but it is a ripoff. With all of the interest you pay almost triple the original price. I love and admire the Duggars, but wish they'd stop procreating. I thought Michelle looked pregnant in the episode. If any of her babies deserves to not have competition for a while, it's Josie.

Mary said...


Does JB talk all the money or does some of the children get a cut of the TLC pay check? I mean they are "actors" on this show.


Anonymous said...

they live across from the landfill..where the garbage is DUMPED

Cyn said... 360 shot from the air of the Duggars house and surrounding property... which side again is the dump on?

Cause I can't find it... I saw a few buildings and a couple of parking lots but I can't find the landfill the size it would need to be to be the actual dump for Springdale and surrounding areas....

Anonymous said...

Cyn, although you talked about tax breaks for mortgage interest vs. simply paying straight taxes on that income -- you didn't really address the concept that one way or another, most people must pay for housing.

My point was that having a mortgage, wherein you are paying toward ownership of your home eventually, is better than paying rent month after month for the same period of time, and ending up with nothing to show for it.

For those who are paying a mortgage, the tax credit for the interest paid per year is simply that - a tax credit that can be applied to their federal return each year and reduce their taxes.

Again, I wonder why the Duggars or anyone else would think it would be better to rent instead of taking that same amount of money and applying it toward a monthly mortgage payment on a home you can call your own some day? One way, you are technically living "debt free" but you are unlikely to be able to put much aside toward the full purchase price of a home. I mean, let's say you could set aside $500 a month, or $6,000 per year. In ten years time, you still only have $60,000 plus whatever interest you earning on the savings. It would take 20 years to accumulate $120,000.

Now, if you were living rent free, then you could sock away more money. But if you are a Duggar type person, you're having a child every year or two, and that costs money. And how many people get to live rent free? That means you're living in your parents' basement or something similar. For what, 5 years, ten years?

If someone can outline how a growing family, living on an income from someone selling used cars, or trimming trees, can save up $150,000 for a home, I am certainly interested in hearing it. *By the way, real estate values are fluid and different around the country. Where I live, homes start in the mid 200's, in a fairly undesirable part of town. Anything halfway decent and large enough for a family of say, 8 or ten people, would be at minimum $300,000.

I'm not knocking the idea of saving the full purchase price of a home -- just asking how in the world that gets accomplished by the average Joe?

Sharla said...

Anonymous, in case you are new, I've asked commenters to please not address each other personally. Thanks. It helps avoid flame wars.

Also the last time I paid interest on a mortgage it was an income tax deduction not a tax credit. I hadn't heard anything about a change but with all the housing upheaval there may have been.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...

Hi! I'm new to this forum but do watch the Duggars' show occasionally. I pretty much don't believe in anything that they believe in, but yet am still fascinated by them (in the way one can't look away from a car crash). Basically-I just had a baby in January and I would NEVER put her carrier down on the floor when she was first brought home in order for 10+ kids to crowd around her. AND...she was full term and completely healthy!

I really think that the Duggars have no clue as to the care this child needs. I know it would disrupt their pretty family life-but what this child needs is for one parent to stay with her at a different location-clean hotel, etc/rented house...whatever-and give her time to grow and mature and gain strength before allowing her to be around their horde of children. The parents can switch on and off this duty so the same one wouldn't always be away from the kids. AND obviously they have plenty of "helpers".

It is apparent that they don't fully acknowledge how fragile Josie's immune system is-she should not be around so many children and so many interruptions!!!

Iliketheduggars said...

"While I agree that living frugally and within one's means is better than charging up a lot of credit card debt, I too am unclear on the concept of why it is less moral to have a mortgage than to try to buy a house outright."

It's not. The Duggars never said it was. If some fancy preacher raking in money from his financial courses says it IS, well then, I don't think I need to point out the hypocrisy.

We are Christians (albeit pretty darned liberal). We tithe and give over our tithe to whatever strikes our fancy. We believe in good money management, and no debt sounds ideal; yet even when we had a chance to get out of debt, we didn't; and we then spent years digging further down into the spending hole.

Why? When we married, we blended two families, and we made decisions in the years after that bonded us as a family, and that gave the kids opportunities they didn't have while stuck in daycare 12 hours a day. We spent thousands on vacations, leisure items, specialized summer camps, etc. In addition, we kept up our tithing and even helped out extended family members. Today we are just beginning to pay down that debt, but we have an exceptionally close family and thriving kids from "broken" homes.

Family was our focus. Money was a distant second. We made the "moral" choice for our circumstances, and I'd bet the Duggars (if they could first get past our circumstances, lol) would agree (and I could care less if they didn't).

The Duggars didn't buy a house early on because they didn't want debt, and they had a plan for achieving home ownership without it. Most of us don't have that luxury.

The Duggars have made somewhat unique financial choices appropriate for THEM. Not automatically appropriate for the rest of us, not even for the Duggar children. And definitely not an indictment of our choices.

Iliketheduggars said...

"I'm not knocking the idea of saving the full purchase price of a home -- just asking how in the world that gets accomplished by the average Joe?"

I don't think it does, unless kids do live with their parents awhile to save money; or receive a fixer-upper as a wedding present; or buy, fix, and flip homes a few years until they've moved up; or you reconcile yourself to the idea that you are going to buy a dump at first, and hopefully fix it up enough to enough money to buy something nicer. And you have to live in an area with depressed property values.

I think there ARE people who find those ideas preferable than going into debt, and that's fine. I suspect most people would rather take on the burden of debt to ensure good neighborhoods and schools for their children. Of course, if your children don't mix much with the neighbors and are homeschooled, those wouldn't be concerns.

If I recall, JB grew up in a fairly unstable home environment. Likely this explains his aversion to debt, and his pride that he managed to achieve home ownership without it.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the link to that article. In it, Michelle says:

"Nothing is by accident and he allowed Josie to be born that day and we know that God has a special purpose for Josie.”

Well,how I saw the situation was that Michelle health was seriously compromised and the doctor felt to continue the pregnancy any longer could lead to disastrous consequences. It's an interesting viewpoint, to say God "allowed" Josie to be born that day. To me, I'd see it more based on a medical decision by the doctors involved that a C-section birth was required immediately due to the risk to Michelle.

“It is a miracle,” Michelle proclaimed. “We are so thankful for each one of these children. Just the fact that she survived is a miracle. We’ve grown stronger as a family.”

I do agree that it is a modern day miracle that Josie could survive such an early birth. A miracle due to advances made in modern medicine, brought about because some families support and believe in a higher education for their children, and a rigorous education at that. The brain is an amazing thing, and when provided the right tools to explore, learn and create, amazing things happen.

I wish the Duggars would see that restricting their children's education is actually doing them a disservice and who knows what they might go on to create, invent or develop if they were allowed to really learn.

Anonymous said...

Just because you couldn't find the landfill doesn't mean it isn't there. It is a Waste Management landfill and is across the road from their place and about 1/4 to 1/2 a mile down the road. Been there and have seen it.

Kitten said...

I'm sure the Duggars' adherence to the "debt-free" lifestyle explains in part why the children remain at home until they marry (the other part being the Gothard/Nike issues). That may also explain why the older girls are apparently so willing to take on so much of the household work - perhaps that is how they "pay" their parents for their room and board while waiting for a husband. They don't work "outside" jobs like Josh and John-David because that's not "proper" in their lifestyle.

A child living at home and beginning fulltime work at age 16 could save quite a lot, even at Arkansas minimum wage ($6.25/hr). Assume 40 hrs/week and 50 weeks/year (minimum wage jobs often don't offer paid vacation time). That's $12,500/year gross income. Since you don't go out much, and you wear thrift store clothing, you could save at least $6,000/year, maybe even more. Now, if you work more than one job, or have a job/business that pays more than minimum wage, you could save even more. Plus, one thing that Sammons teaches is to invest in businesses that make money with very little oversight (video games, coin changers, etc.), enabling you to make even more.

In Springdale, there are any number of 2-3 bedroom homes for under $50,000. Not easy, but not impossible. Depending on how driven you are to get married.

And of course, when God gives you 14 children, he will provide a TLC show to help you support them. :>

Marybeth said...

Michelle recently blogged about Jana's career aspirations. There was a discussion awhile ago, either last month or the month before about the girls being midwives and what that would take, and while Jana is still considering that, we all seem to forget her musical talents. It seems Jana is quite the harpist and considering teaching and performing as a career. Here are some quotes from the article, as well as the link:

Concerning Jana’s interest in midwifery, Michelle says, “Jana has helped with a doula. She hasn’t worked alongside with an actual midwife yet. She’s assisted with labor and delivery, kind of getting her feet wet to see if she really likes that realm of work.” If Jana were to decide to become a midwife, a minimum of one year of clinical training is required, including at least 1,350 hours under the direction of a supervising midwife. A midwife candidate must also pass the North American Registry of Midwives written exam and skills assessment to become certified. Training is less rigorous to become a doula or childbirth educator. However, according to Michelle Duggar, Jana may choose music over midwifery.

“It’s interesting, she’s doing some music studies, and she’s pursuing some more in-depth harp. There’s good money to be made in harp-playing because it’s not something a lot of people do,” said Mom Michelle of her oldest daughter. All of the Duggar children learn how to play a musical instrument at an early age. Jana Duggar has excelled at the harp. She also gives music lessons to others. “Music is something she likes to do. I wouldn’t be surprised if she became a music teacher eventually,” Michelle added.

SherryInBA said...

I have been by the Duggar house too. It is right next to the Waste Management facility. And I'll put it this way: Their house and property is nothing like it looks on TV.

Anonymous said...

I am the anonymous poster who addressed another directly, and I apologize for accidentally breaking the blog rules. Thank you for letting me know :) And I'm embarrassed that I said the wrong thing about how mortgage interest works re tax returns.

I was interested to hear that you can purchase a home for as low as $50,000 in Arkansas. That is indeed quite low compared to what I see in my state. I agree that if a couple can purchase a fixer upper for very little, then have the skills and know how to repair and renovate, that's a great way to move your way up the property ladder.

I would really like to know the details of Josh and Anna's home. In different venues, I've heard it belongs to his grandmother and they are renting it from her; it was the grandmother's and he bought it from her (no sales figure given), JimBob bought it and Josh rents it from him.

Another option is perhaps they are purchasing it from the grandma, paying the existing mortgage and then some extra toward the purchase price. Who really knows. Has Josh ever said distinctly the situation?

While you could allow some children to remain living in your home into adulthood, even allowing their spouse to move in too, how many families have that kind of room. I can also hear the neighbors grumbling about living next door to a clown car of a house.

Now extrapolate that to the Duggars' 19 kids or the Bates with however many they have. That's a whole lot of family living in one house with practically no privacy.

Wonder how much longer Josie must stay in NICU. Isn't she over 6 lbs by now? I guess they have to do some surgery on her - bowel obstruction?

Cyn said...

Josh stated he got it from his Grandparents and it had been a rental, and he had to do extensive repairs to the house.

When they moved it it was not completely finished, or furnished.
(it was the episode where Anna's sister was visiting and I'm not in the mood to go schooling through all of season 2 to find it)

In another episode I could have sworn it was Josh paid something (the amount was not specified) towards the house itself, and did pay for all the repairs that were needed and the upgrades that were done. I currently don't have the time to do all the scanning to find it again so I will not say for positive that it did happen.

Anonymous said...

Sherry,what does it look like? How is it different than on TV? I don't doubt you, just curious how much they can do with cameras:)

Marybeth said...

You can purchase homes in the 50s all over the country right now--I live in california and we're in escrow on a house that we bought in the mid 50s (3bd/1ba) nice neighbourghood, FHA approved so it's not a dump, and a lovely garden and yard....they are all over the place if you know where to look for them. Look in Michigan and they are going for under could put that on your credit card....oh wait, Jim Bob wouldn't approve...

Anonymous said...

I would guess that Josh probably got a "family deal" on the home. Or maybe he paid some amount to his grandparents, then took over any remaining mortgage amount. Especially with his grandfather becoming ill, I could see why Grandpa/Grandma would want to get rid of any rental properties with him no longer well enough to attend to them.

So that takes care of Josh. Now, what about the next boy? Any more run down rentals available for purchase?

Out of curiousity, I did a quick Google search "homes for sale $50,000" Lots of sites, but the first one showed that there are apparently tons of homes for sale in Akron OH in the $50,000 range. Interestingly, it said there were over 5300 homes for sale, but only 18 actual sales last month (!?). Could be a terribly economically depressed area I suppose - no jobs. Median income was in the $36,000 range.

I also searched in Little Rock, Arkansas and found a huge range, from homes in the millions of dollars, down to under $39,000. Don't know a thing about the areas of the cheaper homes, they were usually under 1000 sq ft, one bathroom, often older homes that need some TLC. But yes, a couple could certainly buy a home outright if they diligently saved for several years & had family that would let them live with them absolutely rent free. Not that I want to live in Arkansas, no offense to anyone from there :)

Anonymous said...

I saw an Aeropostle store (didn't even know what one was until I saw the store and people were mentioning the name) and they had sale banners in the window: T-shirts 2/$10 and Polo shirts Buy One Get One Free. I went inside and also found a clearance rack with items similar to what Josh has worn on the show for as low as $9.99. At those prices, that seems fair for a frugal family, especially one who is trying to present an image for a business.


It could be quite possible that they bought those used as well. People can send any type of clothing to a second hand store, not just ugly clothing. Just because it's brand name, doesn't mean it's new.

Elizabeth said...

I began watching the early Duggar specials on TLC back when they had 14 (?) children and remembered thinking what a wonderful family they seemed to be. Over the years, I have lost a lot of respect for JB and Michelle, not because they continue to have children, which is their right, but because the family dynamics seems so different. Back when they were first in the news, the kids were well behaved and home schooling seemed to take priority. Now every episode is just one big chaotic mess-small children running wild; no evidence that any of them are being educated except by the older kids; the older girls who should be enjoying their teenage years and young adult years raising their siblings, etc. I feel so sorry for the older girls and wish they would be able to have their own lives. I fear that public opinion is turning on this family the way it did for The Gosselins and it's not pretty. TLC needs to think about making this an occasional special rather than a weekly series. It's getting very boring.

Mary said...

I have a question that has bothered me its JB and the boys hair. They spend a great deal on hair gel and fixing thier hair I have never seen males take as long fixing thier haye as the males in this family do, Is this not bringing attention to them selfselfs. The girls all have long hair and do not spend half the time as the boys. All thisa talk about God and not bring attention to them selfself is pure crap enough JB and your hair

Anonymous said...


Michelle says there's good money in being a harp player?

Anonymous said...

Aeropostale is not a very expensive store like Abercrombie or Hollister. You can get a lot of deals at Aeropostale. So it really isn't that Josh buys his clothes there it is that for many years they wouldn't wear name brand clothing. In the earlier years they wouldn't wear name brand clothes, it wasn't modest because they want you to see their countenance not their clothing. I am sure they could have easily found name brand clothes several years ago at resale shops just like they "seem" to now.

Anonymous said...

I just wanted to point out with the whole Aeropostale discussion that these shows always blur out brand labels that aren't paying for advertising. If it weren't product placement, they'd have to blur it out so it wasn't competing with the products that are paying for their ads. It took me a while to realize this, too, but now that I have I think it's silly that we've discussed this for so long when the answer is so obvious.

Cyn said...

Harpist do seem to make a great deal of money per hour... the link takes you to harpist's for hire in the Arkansas Fayetteville area. some live close others are willing to travel to the event.

Cheapest one I found was $50-$100 per hour, the better harpists were charging $250 and hour up to 2500 for an event.... Sounds better than minimum wage at McDonald's.

ohiomom said...


Michelle says there's good money in being a harp player?"

My husband has a cousin that plays the harp and majoring Harp Performance in college. She does performances at churches, weddings, etc on the side and can make at least a couple hundred dollars or more. Geez, some people have to work about a week to earn what she can in at least an hour or so. When she graduates college, on top of doing performances, she would also like to give lessons. I wouldn't make fun of this talent and "the money that can be made". I know we all have different opinions of what makes a great salary or a valuable profession. Keep on playing Jana!!

mythoughtis said...

Hey, if Jana can make a living at playing the harp, that is great.
The Harp is a beautiful instrument, and I love to listen to talented musicians... it's a skill I completely lack.

However, what she might find is that in order to make a living at it (Curch function not being enough to do so)

1. She has to play at night, and on the weekend at that.
2. There will be alcohol served at many of the events she plays at.
3. There will be women dressed in tops down to 'here' and skirts up to 'there'. It is not acceptable to shout 'Nike', or to ask your escort to look down.
4. There will be conversations in her hearing that will be less than proper, both language and content.
5. Paying adults do not want to be preached at, looked down at, or have a chaparone following the musician around.
6. She WILL be accosted by strange men, who will be drunk, and have trouble believing she doesn't want to go home with them.

7. She will have to travel, often overnight, and be away from her family - what will her future husband think of that?

Anonymous said...

Jana not only plays the harp, she also plays the violin and the piano and I think I may have seen her with a guitar. You can give performances without a college degree and you can also teach all these instruments. Lessons are very expensive nowadays and she could support herself very well doing this. If you have heard her play the piano she is excellent; I think she plays a good as Erin Bates.

This would explain also why she attended a music class with Erin, maybe she wanted to see if that was something she wanted to do.,

Anonymous said...

Yes there is very good money in playing the harp and Jana and her sisters are extremely lucky to have parents who believe that music is important and who have seen to it that each child is exposed to music at an early age. They have also exposed them to a variety of instruments, which I think is great.

I myself started taking harp lessons last year. It is not an easy instrument to play. My teacher is a professional and she has supported herself her whole life by playing the harp. I hope to get a part time career going with it at some point and if I do, I will make more money playing at one wedding for approximately 90 minutes than I will make working all week long at my job.

I think Jana is a very lucky young lady to have been provided with a harp and with lessons for many years. I hope she is able to study music and go on to have a wonderful career with her harp.

Anonymous said...

I think a qualified harpist can make a decent side living doing weddings and other events. However, I'm not sure that Jana could command up to $2500 per event - that would be quite a bit of money and you could certainly find highly talented harpists willing to accept much less for the same thing - such as $300 to $500 per event. What I found when I did a search was that harpists are available for about $175 starting price (for an event), up to $500 or $700. In scanning their bios, most have studied music, have music degrees, have performed in a variety of locales. One harpist had her music featured in some Disney movies, played with Seal on a recording, performed for various celebs, etc. -- and she charged up to $500 per gig. Nowhere near $2500.

Anyway, I'm not sneezing at Jana's chances to earn a little money on the side playing for weddings. I don't know of too many other events that might call for a harpist.

However, what I predict more likely for Jana, and right now for any Duggar daughter, is that she is going to be engaged to someone soon. Then she'll get married, she'll be a housewife like Anna, maybe help her husband at his business, then she'll be pregnant within the first year of her marriage. She probably won't ever really work as a harpist, or as a midwife. At most, she will work alongside her husband, doing the books, or answering phones, etc.

She has plenty of experience in running a household, raising children, obeying the male figurehead. That's what she's been trained to do, and I think Michelle's talk about harpist work or possible midwife work was just that, pretty talk but of no real significance.

Marybeth said...

Years ago they weren't wearing name brand clothing? I beg to differ. All those little boys were wearing "polo" shirts and tan pants--many of which had little alligators or actual polo players on them if you look closely. So yes, they did have name brand clothing, all bought at the thrift store. And I don't know any non-name brands that make tan dress pants for boys that size. She was also buying denim for them and I would be quite surprised if some Levi's and Wranglers didn't get into the pile.

Marybeth said...

I think the bulk of money Jana would make would be from teaching, not actual performing. I agree that most performances would be for things that would be "agreeable" to their lifestyle. But then, she is an adult and I'm sure having a chaperone with her would not be all that unnatural, especially for an unmarried female in the south, but I could be wrong.

The Duggars have always had their own rules for living, but never said we couldn't live the way we want to live. No there was no dancing or drinking at Josh's wedding, but they wouldn't condemn people for drinking at their own weddings. But Michelle protested a liquor license at a local mini-mart near their home, you say? Yes, because she feels liquor shouldn't be "easy" to get and so near her home and her small children; back when they had a mini-mart Arkansas still sold all liquor (beer and wine included) in seperate liquor stores.

She could get lucky and perform with an orchestra, she could play weddings for church families they know (face it this family knows A LOT of people) an that would eliminate a lot of those problems, she could also play for a church as part of their regular services.

My money is still on teaching.

Steve knight said...

I don't think she could make much unless she learned more music. the duggers have such a limited type of music that it would not appeal to a wide audience. To be really good you need professional training and hours a day practice. It's pretty hard making much money with music. it is a lot of work to be a professional musician. and few make enough to pay the bills.
Hard to get that time when your a full time sister mom.

Anonymous said...

The list given above by another poster regarding what Jana would face playing at a wedding was very thought provoking. This sums up why I worry for the Duggars. It's true that the harp is a beautiful instrument and Jana may have some talent. However, her parents have done her a real disservice by not teaching her how to function in the real world. When I say this, I don't mean that the family has to agree with everything others do - I can certainly understand why they don't (on some issues). Disagreeing is one thing, but I wish they would have equipped their children to exist around others whether they agree with them or not.

The list of the problems Jana would face at a wedding was a real wakeup call. I thought of my own wedding. We hired a cello player. Had there been a harpist like Jana Duggar, we would have likely hired her. I am a conservative Christian, but Jana would have been in for the shock of her life. My wedding, along with the weddings of many of my conservative Christian friends, was on a Saturday evening and featured a strapless wedding gown and alcohol.

I believe all of the Duggar children will realize they're going to have to make some concessions if they plan to be successful in the real world.

Cyn said...

I don't know of too many other events that might call for a harpist.

Art shows
Museum openings
Charity Events
Music Lessons

I only copied and pasted the link I did not suggest Janna would receive 2500 per event only that some on the one place I looked did get it.

And at 50 an hour which was the lowest I found it still beats McDonalds or the corner grocery at minimum wage of 6-7 and hour (some cities are higher but where they live I'm betting it starts there).

Why are we assuming that Janna will stay at home and do nothing but raise children? Michelle worked the first 4 years before they had children, and worked after they started having children as well, so that in their later years neither has to work a 9-5 job. Many families that are nothing like the Duggars work together in starting and operating family business.

It was also mentioned in the article that Janna was already giving lessons so she is already earning some kind of money with her talents, and she is probably saving it for her hope chest to bring to her future husband to start their home and family with.

None of which is inherently wrong just different that most of us would and do do things.

Oh NO! My ears! said...

Time to set the record straight a little bit here.

It is EXTREMELY difficult to make a living in music, even with a degree from a well known conservatory. No one untrained, without a degree, is commanding $2500 for any event. Even with a degree, most people charge much less (like a fraction), because the economy is not supporting huge money for the arts at the moment.

My son is a piano performance major at a well known conservatory. He knows people gigging for a hundred dollars a night, when they can get the work. No way are people like Jana being paid hundreds of dollars every night to gig. There are loads and loads of extremely talented performers, all vying for the same jobs. And they aren't easy to get. Most take connections, along with talent and drive.

Jana is NOT talented at the piano. Maybe she can play at a local church, but she does not have any real ability. I have carefully listened to Erin Bates play as well, and while she is better, she is no prodigy either. It doesn't mean that some fundy parents won't hire her or Jana to teach their children, but she will not be getting gigs and teaching out of their bible belt area (which they won't want anyway, so everyone is happy).

Just because someone has had lessons, as the Duggars have on piano and violin, does not make them in the slightest talented. They still screech on those instruments like crazy.

And because it is very difficult to get music jobs, only the best and well trained get them. Except of course, in the Bates/Duggar circle, where degrees and talent don't matter as much.

Anonymous said...

My sister is an accomplished and talented harpist. You can, and she does, make a decent amount of money depending on how many events she does per month, plus lessons. But she lives in an area where people are willing to pay much money to outdo each other at events, ha ha. Usually, she can only fit in one event per weekend, so the money she makes is relatively modest, considering. She lives in an upscale urban area where the "upscale urban" clients don't bat an eye at the cost, whereas she rarely has clients from outside the area due to the fee (people are not worrying about competing with the Joneses like they are in her city). I can't imagine there is a huge demand for harpists at events in Arkansas - there isn't here in Ohio - but with the cost of living there maybe she could make a decent living if she travels a little or is willing to work at events which aren't exactly Duggar-like in conservativism.

pumpkin said...

I would like to comment on the price for musicians. I live in a major metropolitan area with a high cost of living. I am getting married next month.

We are only paying our wedding musician $200. That's it. The DJ for our reception is getting $1200. We shopped around, some were more, some were less, but that seems to be about average here, and we live in an expensive city.

Even if our organist plays weddings every single weekend, he would still need a second job (he actually has three) to make ends meet in our city.

If one of the Duggars continues to live at home and have zero expenses, playing at weddings or private parties, they could make some nice pocket money, but it wouldn't pay the rent if they were on their own.

IliketheDuggars said...

"My son is a piano performance major at a well known conservatory. He knows people gigging for a hundred dollars a night, when they can get the work."

"No one untrained, without a degree, is commanding $2500 for any event."

Wow. Hmmm. We live in the Midwest; practically all our friends are amateur musicians without ANY kind of degree, many of whom don't even read music other than tab sheets, and I doubt any of them would even accept a gig for $100 a night. Most play out 2 or 3 nights a week at restaurants, private parties, wineries, weddings, coffeehouses, etc.

Granted, some of those venues would not be looking for a regular harpist, but some would, and would probably pay more. Our moderately-priced Mother's Day brunch featured a string quartet; why not a harpist?

When I was in high school, many moons ago, I made $75-$150 a gig playing viola for special church services and weddings. I wonder if some of those professional musicians aren't using the "I can't get $100 a night" story as a plea for more money from Mom and Dad... ; )

Anon 3:14 said...

...." But Michelle protested a liquor license at a local mini-mart near their home, you say? Yes, because she feels liquor shouldn't be "easy" to get..."


Michelle's disdain for alcohol sure did not stop her and her family (all children included) from dining at a barbeque restaurant with a "Budweiser King of Beers" sign hanging right over their heads.

That episode made me laugh, the "do as I say, not as I do Duggars".

I guess it's different when the meal is free though.

Anonymous said...

Nobody would hire an entertainer with home permed stringy hair, wearing a polo shirt,floor length denim skirt and the ever popular rubber flip flops.

Steve knight said...

I keep seeing people post who do you think that child will not do what Michelle did when she was young. well because when Michelle was young she was not a ATI/gothard quiverfill person. The female children are only taught to be stay at home moms. They are not taught to go out and find a job and take care of yourself. This is why the only way the daughters will go out and work is if they escape that life style. If they do they will be very lost for awhile. they are not prepared to live in the real world.

Oh NO! My ears! said...

Oh, the fundy set will still hire Jana in her jean skirt and flip flops, because their peers all dress the same way.

Degreed professionals cannot get orchestra jobs and there aren't enough weddings and events to make a decent iving---not by a long shot. We know people working in the pit bands of major city ballets and operas, with degrees from excellent conservatories, and they still struggle.

It's a fallacy to think someone like Jana or Erin Bates can earn more than pocket change with theirlack of training and education, but it won't matter, since their main "job" will be birthin' babies.

CappuccinoLife said...

For those interested in how a young, growing family can save 100% down for a home, here is a series of blog posts about that subject:

The above blogger is a QF family (don't know if they're ATI too).

However, this concept is also taught as desireable by Dave Ramsey, a financial "guru" who is far, far from QF or ATI.

There are certainly circumstances where it's simply not possible. But for many families that option could be possible, or at the very least putting down 50%. However, one of the requirements is purchasing in an area where cruddy condos don't start at half-a-million, and the saving years living in less-than-desireable situations in order to be able to put the money away for a better house. That is likely the reason why the Duggar's were crammed into a 3 bedroom rental before they moved into their new home.

I think the Duggar's like their way of doing things, enjoy being debt free, and believe that's a very worthy goal. I don't think their believing all that translates into disdaining those who believe or do differently. Maybe I'm an odd one but I didn't feel "hurt" by any of their debt-free advocacy, even though we have a mortgage. I totally understand where they're coming from and admire that, even though we've done something different.

Willow #1 said...

A few years ago, my boss hired a harpist to play at our company Christmas party. We had a private room in nice restaurant. The harpist was really great and we all loved it. Just another idea for Jana. She could advertise. I think the harp is becoming more popular and that could bring her more students. I took piano as a child and always regretted that I didn't study enough to become a piano teacher. Jana could have a job she loves and still have another one to help with expenses. Why not? I hope Jana goes for what she enjoys. If she starts out with determination, she will find a way to make it work.

Willow #1 said...

I just do not understand why JB and Michelle can't hire a nurse to help out with Josie. Its one thing to have the girls raise healthy children, but they shouldn't have all the worry (as Jill did when calling 911) about Josie. JB and Michelle - don't be so afraid of someone accidentally influencing your children - you can keep the nurse and Josie in a separate area - they need it anyway. (Most nurses do not show cleavage with their scrubs). Michelle, even if she wanted to, cannot do it all. Get a nurse for a few weeks/months and if all is well, then great. Just make sure first. Please.

Nicole said...

"Nobody would hire an entertainer with home permed stringy hair, wearing a polo shirt,floor length denim skirt and the ever popular rubber flip flops."

Hmmm...How can anyone not notice that Jana is actually drop-dead beautiful, has been styling her hair lately in a loosely curled and flattering 'do, and looks enviably gorgeous by anyone's standards. It's also doubtful that Jana would wear the above-mentioned everyday outfit at a harp performance, especially a paid one at a wedding, for example. I think it's obvious Jana is classy and has good taste. She isn't a clueless country bumpkin.

saokay said...

It's wonderful the Duggars have seen to it that Josie has been getting the very best life saving care. Do you think they understand this care has come from women and men who've had many years of advanced education, training and access to scientific knowledge?

I wonder what the Duggars think about this given their children have received Gothard style education which has little science and only a few approved courses after GEDs and those just for boys. Do Mr. and Mrs. Duggar appreciate that the life saving skills and science Josie is benefiting from comes from the kind of education and learning they have strongly discouraged for their own children?


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