Compare Yourselves to The Duggars

How are you like the Duggars? How are you different from the Duggars? Suggested topics are clothes, food, religion, parenting choices, patriarchal/matriarchal roles and education. Or whatever relates or does not relate to you. Let's keep this a no-snark topic please.

Thanks to Celestie for her suggestion.

62 comments:

Anonymous said...

Impossible to compare. The Duggars seem like a different species. Not at all relatable, so am unable to compare, as I find absolutely no common ground.

Maggie said...

Should I have said contrast in the title? I thought that option was explained in the text.

I am not sure one has to relate to be able to compare. Or contrast.

mythoughtis said...

Description of me:
Moderate religous Presbyterian.
College degree myself, one child thru college, another starting. Both educated thru the public school system. Both paid for by us as we felt it vital for their future.
Worked all my life. White collar professional.
Two kids, I'm too old to have more, and didn't want more when I was younger. No hurry to be grandma. No hurry for my kids to get married. Not planning on living with them when I get older.
Not debt free, but working on that. Like the concept
Modest dresser, but would be considered Nike by the Duggars as I like slacks/jeans/capris, V neck sleeveless shirts. Shorts when I was younger.
Love my TV and internet, Like my Classis Hits Music, and radio talk shows. Love my trashy romance novels, murder mysteries, etc.

Anonymous said...

The main thing our family has in commom with the Duggars is that we are a Christian family - "born again", if you will. We also have daily devotions with our kids (ages 15,17 and 19)and attend church every Sunday. Our younger kids attend public schools, and our oldest attends a christian college in another state. Our only daughter (17) will definitely get a college degree, even though her "dream job" is to be a stay-at home mom (which I am) or a school secretary. What she ultimately decides to do with her degree will be her choice and her choice alone. I would consider my husband the head of our family, although we discuss all major decisions and RARELY is there a time when both of us absolutely CANNOT figure out a solution to a problem, and he makes the final decision for us. The smaller decisions of life, I just do my thing and he does his. We dress like our neighbors, play video games, listen to all kinds of music and watch movies. We do limit our two younger kids to PG or some PG-13 movies, though. Our whole outlook as a Christian family is to love God and love people. Getting hung up on CANNOT'S (extreme fundamentalism) doesn't really draw people to Christianity nor does it portray either the faith or it's followers accurately. Our kids also are taught about self-control and temptations, but rather than shield them from all that is negative or harmful in this world, we help guide them thru it - telling them we are proud when they stick to what is right, and reminding them of God's forgiveness and trying to help them to do better the next time when they fail.

Anonymous said...

I just meant: "Like comparing apples to oranges" as the saying goes...

bondhead said...

Mythoughtis: love the trashy romance novels. LOLOLOL I myself am a free thinker/modern woman. I love science/sci-fi/vampires/NCIS/Doctor Who, dogs/birds, supporting the home teams(Cubs,Soxes, Hawks, Bears), love gardening, doing my best to the envirnoment. Not that religious, but believe in God. Am college educated AA & BA. Never found mister right/prince charming. I do for myself. I took care of my Mother for 3 years till she died last year. I kind of look at life as an adventure, not Gods will. As for being modest, I am to a point, I don't wear anything slutty, pretty much what mythoughts wears except for the sleeveless tops I like 3/4 sleeves(big arms) and I dye my hair a flaming red color and I'm 51.

Anonymous said...

I paid my own way thru college, had a professional job, owned my own home, and only after doing all of that did I get married later in life, at age 36. My husband and I are proud parents of one child. We do not desire more. At my age, the risk, as explained by many doctors, is just too great.

Unlike the Duggars, we are happy with what we have.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said:
Getting hung up on CANNOT'S (extreme fundamentalism) doesn't really draw people to Christianity nor does it portray either the faith or it's followers accurately. Our kids also are taught about self-control and temptations, but rather than shield them from all that is negative or harmful in this world, we help guide them thru it - telling them we are proud when they stick to what is right, and reminding them of God's forgiveness and trying to help them to do better the next time when they fail.
* * * * * *

What a great "aha!" moment you gave me with that comment that getting hung up on CANNOTS is very off-putting and also not a very positive way to live, no matter who you are.

I also disagree with the hermit approach to life -- keeping yourself or your children away from anyone who might think, act, dress or belief differently than you do. That's hiding from life. Again, it is the exact opposite of what Jesus did, so how is that leading a Christian life? Jesus went out among the people, sinners included, without judgment. He led by example and love, not judgment and constant discussion of how Satan is around every single corner, and even right within our simplest thoughts, if we aren't ever vigilant.

Seems to me the Duggars particular belief system is that we are all sinners and only by extreme effort are we less sinful; whereas I have a kinder viewpoint of most of humanity.

Apples vs. Oranges said...

@Anonymous 4:43: really enjoyed your comment. Love the far more positive approach to life vs. the, as you put so well, "getting hung up on the Cannots". Well said and sounds like yours is a life well lived.

CappuccinoLife said...

In many ways we are like them--theologically conservative Christians (fundies, if you like), homeschooling, conservative mode of dress, etc. My husband is entrepreneurial much like Jim Bob, with a focus on real estate. We have the same beliefs as they do about birth control. We live out very "traditional" household roles-he works, I stay home with the kids.

But we vary from them a great deal. Starting with having only 3 living children. Totally reject anything from ATI. We're a cross-cultural/biracial family. Our food culture is different. Family style is different. The long lists of majoring-on-the-minor do's and don'ts (from ATI) doesn't exist in our house. And my husband especially is very intense about education. I pity a child of mine who decides college isn't for him-convincing his dad is going to be a Herculean task. :p We like to get up early in the morning and be on time when we have somehwere to go. :D

Nancy said...

I have absolutely nothing in common with the Duggars, other than having a husband. I wear jeans daily, have no kids, rejected organized religion years ago, no tinker toy house, no TV show, college graduate, gourmet cook, booze drinker, reader of banned books, watcher of bad reality shows, etc.

Anonymous said...

>How are you like the Duggars? How are you different from the Duggars? Suggested topics are clothes, food, religion, parenting choices, patriarchal/matriarchal roles and education.

I value children,so much that I am happy with the 2 I have.I want to put all my stock into them,which I do.I wouldn't sell my family out.We find balance in between God and living on earth,without feeling the need to hide from others..walking bet. the 2 worlds,as we're instructed to do.I teach my daughter to be strong and stand on her own.My son knows how to do things around the house.We value higher education and encourage it.
But IF my kids want to grow up to have a large family themselves,I would also stand behind them 100%.They can be whatever they want to be.I try to encourage education and the non-belief that certain things are 'bad'.(like being a democrat).I want them to be informed enough to see both sides to everything.

Anonymous said...

I go to a Orthdox Shul when I go to temple.

The woman dress like the Duggars in terms of not showing skin.

We do something simlar to courtship and some couples dont even touch before marrige.

We do see some big familes(like 10 or 11)

So, we do some simlar things to the Duggars. However, we do many things the Duggars dont. We dance for one.

Anonymous said...

Like the Duggars, I have been married for 2 1/2 decades, have a large family (6 children, not 19) and do quite a lot of homeschooling. Unlike the Duggars, I feel that our day-to-day life as a family with innocent children is private and sacred and is not and should not be on display for the world to gawk at.

MyBabiesRKidsNow said...

There IS no comparison, IMO. I am a hands-ON mother. (Even now, as my children grow.)
Therefore, I have NOTHING in common with them.

LuvMyFurBabies said...

The only thing I have in common with them is that I was raised in a Christian home. My take on the Duggar's brand of Christianity, however, is more like that of a cult.

They seem like nice people, but their way of life is just so NON-reality. At least, IMO.

My father was a Baptist deacon and died when I was a child. I never married and can't imagine living the kind of life that Michelle or her girls live. I have a Bachelor's degree in computer science, and have been self-sufficient for all of my adult life. Would that the Duggar girls have that at least as an option.

Deanna said...

Me? We have nothing in common at all. 55 year old mother of three, two in college, one in high school. I have a PhD, so education is extremely, extremely important to me. The lack of education in the Duggar home may be the thing that bothers me most (followed closely by the lack of interest in anything related to safety). My children knew more at age 10 than any one of the Duggar kids, and spoke better than the oldest ones while they were still in elementary school. We read, talk about current events, attend musical events, plays, etc. and not just with other people who share our points of view.

I'm a fiscal conservative, social liberal. Jewish. No belief in proseletizing or trying to convert anyone to my point of view. I wouldn't dream of sending my children overseas to try to convert children of another religion to mine. In fact, I find that repugnant.

I would never, ever want my oldest children to live at home with nothing to do besides housework. How sad. My children are out pursuing their interests, meeting people their own age, studying, working at jobs, enjoying their young lives very much. They are not cooped up at home waiting for their dad to pick their "chosen" spouse and have a courtship. They can go places alone. They can go places with people of the opposite sex, and date and even lose pieces of their hearts. They are wonderful young people with bright futures.

I don't doubt that Jim Bob and Michelle love their kids, but we part ways in that my husband and I have devoted ourselves to helping our kids have the most choices and opportunities, whether in education, sports, music, arts, services, or whatever. We see their lives as separate from ours, and we wouldn't dream of squelching them and making them into clones of us.

If one of my children ends up having ten kids by choice, I will love each and every grandchild. But I want my kids to have choices in life, something not a one of those Duggar kids has had.

breakingsilence said...

I'm a Christian. That's about the only way I'm similar to the Duggars. But even I'm not as conservative as they are!
I'm a female who loves her blue jeans, is currently in college, listens to rock music, and goes out alone on dates with the opposite sex. Not Duggar-like at all.

Anonymous said...

Unlike Michelle Duggar, I don't believe in breeding oneself to death.

Donna said...

Interesting topic/thread! :)

First off, I can't think of many similarities between our family and the Duggars. The similarities that I can think of is that we have a larger than average family (7 children; still not even close to Duggar-size) and we love our children (just as the Duggars do as well as most other parents out there). That's where the similarities probably end.

The main difference is that we don't engage in the traditional "patriarchal" model that the Duggars live. Another difference is that my husband (of 27 years) and I believe that children are children and that parents are parents. We do not put our children into parental roles nor do we expect them to be "buddies." That is a cop-out in our opinion. Being a "buddy" is different than what the Duggar girls are doing. Since this has been re-hashed over and over again on this board and others, I won't harp on that.

Although we are "Christians", we do not understand the type of Christianity that is "Duggar" (things like "home-church") for example.

Our kids are pretty conservative in their dress. It's really no big deal; they've never asked to wear anything outrageous, so it's not been a problem at all (kids are ages 26 through age 8). The "Nike" yelling from the Duggars is really infurating to me because it insinuates how everyone else is immodest, immoral, and corrupt, and apparently, "they" (the Duggars) are the opposite. I'm also sick of hearing the "defrauding" mantra. No one defrauds anyone; God gave each of us a brain and free will. This is all part of the patriarchal type brain-washing that puts women out there as some sort of "temptress"/sinner and men are constantly getting "defrauded." HA!! Also, it is pretty sick that those who subscribe to this ideology believe that a 5 year-old child, for example, can "defraud" a grown man. Sounds like some people in that patriarchal camp might have a few issues...ahem.

We are different in the fact that ALL of our children are encouraged to get a higher education (college, technical, whatever). In no way, shape, or form do we want to stifle our children from being whatever they want to be. We believe that they are to have their own journey on this earth and that they should have the freedom to do so. So far, it has worked out fine as both of our older boys have finished college and are doing what they wish to do.

I think the biggest difference is that we think that God gave us freedom to choose, freedom to use our free will, and the freedom to be that which makes us happy. Also, we believe that our children's freedom of choice is separate from ours at a certain age. We believe in raising them, nurturing them, to adulthood (and even later), but there comes a time when it's time for them to spread their wings and fly. They can always come back (and they do), but we realize that one day we will no longer be here on this earth and we want our children to be happy, strong, and free. We want them to live in this world without being afraid of others; we want them to see others as God intended us to see others and that is with love. I don't like the constant fear indoctrination that goes on. To be truthful, I grew up with some of that, and as an adult, I reject that sort of thought. I know too well how damaging this is to kids. I know, because I know what it did to me. It has taken me almost 30 years to get over. I don't ever want to put that burden on my own children as was put on me.

Anonymous said...

>How are you like the Duggars? How are you different from the Duggars? Suggested topics are clothes, food, religion, parenting choices, patriarchal/matriarchal roles and education.>

I am different in that I'm a married working mother of one child. I was raised Catholic but have been long-lapsed and don't believe in a God that has time to watch each and every move that I make, along with the millions of others on this Earth. I also don't believe God is personally invested in every little decision, nor wants to be bothered by me to help make daily decisions.

I also don't believe the higher power is male, per se.

I believe in Good and Evil. I believe in free choice. I believe we carry the seeds of great possibility within each of us, as well as great harm. I believe love is the most powerful force in the world.

As to more worldly differences: I believe in dressing modestly, but I also believe there is nothing wrong with seeing bare arms, bare legs in appropriate settings (i.e., wearing swimsuits while swimming, wearing shorts while engaged in sports).

As parents, my husband I focus on instilling values by providing a living example. We don't micro-manage our child, and as he grows older, he is given ever greater responsibility and freedom to make his own decisions (and then live with the consequences).

We live out in the great big world and come into contact with people of all sizes, shapes, colors and beliefs. So far, this contact hasn't been any detriment to our own core beliefs.

We don't give our son adult full-time responsibilities, because he's not an adult.

Even though out son was born healthy and at full term, I was cautious during his first months and did not expose him unduly to outside people and germs. I didn't leave town without him, or drive him around in a big bus across the states. I didn't turn him over to a teenager when he was 6 months old, for him to sleep in their room, be fed by bottle at night by them, and otherwise cared for by them.

I have bought used clothing for my child, especially play clothes, but I draw the line at shoes. They must be new to him. He got his own bed when he was two and never slept in a Pak n Play. I never fed him while he was lying on his back. I didn't breast feed in public wearing a huge breast friend and make all eyes turn on me.

My main beefs with the Duggars are

1. They poorly educate their children and purposely don't want them to obtain college educations or a skilled trade (anything that would involve attending a non-ATI-approved college or trade school). This has the result of curtailing their income and life choices. I think that's wrong on many levels.

2. They could not have 14, 15, 16 or more children without the required full time labor of their older children. While I would not argue against their right to their own belief system, I cannot support it if it requires children to work full time as unpaid laborers in the home in order to accomplish.

Anonymously Yours said...

@Donna: I am applauding your comments. I especially agree with your paragraph re: 'defrauding' - a concept only a man would've dreamed up and a man with issues, as you point out. Amen to that. There was a piece of that mentality (Eve and all subsequent women as evil temptresses out to 'make' men sin), and it has always bothered me greatly. Thank you for validating my feelings on that one.


Also I will say that your comments help restore some of my faith in those who claim being 'christian,' because those like the Duggars pretty much had me close to writing off just about everything 'christian'. A big thank you for that as well.

Carla said...

Could someone explain "defraud" and "Nike" as it pertains here? I took a Duggar-break and now I feel a little Duggar-lost. :-)

I was raised Mennonite next to many, many families like the Duggars. My mother was not all that fertile, so we only had my sister and me.

Today I'm an atheist parent in a very loving marriage. My children have been to church maybe 2 times for ceremonies? I enjoy my right to raise my children like I want to, and I understand others also get that right as part of that deal.

I can't cook. At all. I even tried the Tater Tot casserole and we hated it. I can't sew. Although I did sew a bean bag in home ec. So if you're looking for a smokin' hot bean bag, I could make ya one.

I do wish I could be as calm as Michelle is. It would take many, many meds for me to achieve this...

Anonymous said...

@Carla: Enjoyed your comment alot! Send me one of your bean bags! :)

"Nike" is a word the Duggar females call out to their brothers when an attractive (sexually appealing) female is nearby. It is supposed to be a call to their brothers to avert their attention so as not to sin in lust. (??)

"Defrauding" I have never understood the use of this term in this context, but in Duggar-speak it apparently, from the best I can tell, refers to women allowing themselves to be sexually attractive yet unavailable until marriage. As if being sexually attractive outside marriage constitutes fraud because sex is verboten before the wedding night.

I don't get it either, but that's my understanding of it. If I have misunderstood these concepts, I welcome others to correct my take on it.

Nancy said...

Actually, "defrauding" is a much broader term in Duggarspeak. It emcompasses ANY woman that comes in in the path of a male (and this includes sisters and mothers, per Gothard/QF literature) that could in any way, cause the poor, weak male to have impure thoughts. In their train of thought, it's all the woman's fault; boys learn from an early age not to even look at a girl, other than her face. That's NIKE! If a collarbone or accidental cleavage shows (the reason M's shirts are now up to her chin...lord forbid she bend over and ANYONE see a hint of cleavage). It's sad that her own sons have to sidehug her after about age 6. This is yet another example of what is perceived as her "coldness." Who on earth would put it in someone's mind that your mother could be sexually attractive? Only someone like Gothard who actually read Hamlet or Oedipus Rex, but forbids his followers the choice to read and interpret these texts for themselves. I think that's my fundamental disagreement with them; JB and M chose, however well or poor we think the decisions they made were, they had the freedom of choice to do so.

Their kids, unless they break away, are raised within a cult-like, if not all-out cult mentality that first tells you that you are weak and you must prevail over demons. (I took a scientology test for free in the '80's and laughed as they told me how tortured I was, blah blah blah...that's how cults (and religion) operate; prey on the vulnerable. And I'm sorry, that's why I left the fold. I am curious how many people found Jesus at a time of weakness (like Michelle, who feared the apocalypse based on an overnight stay with a friend. Not the smartest crayon in the box...

As for NIKE! It's is an extension of this that Joy poorly tried to explain on the episode in which the parents, Jordyn and Brest Friend, and Jessa/Jinger went on The View. I guess they were scared Sherri's cleavage or Elisabeth's legs would make teenage boys have impure thoughts. Ironically, Whoopi is the only one who dresses to Duggar standards; even her pants are baggy and there's usually a shirt hanging out over all the "parts" so she is appropriately covered.

Anonymous said...

Donna, I also want to thank you for sharing your experience as a Christian. (I am Anonymous 6-25 at4:43pm)
Most of the Christians I know have views and life experiences very similar to you and I. I think the media seems to show the extremes of Christianity (such as the Duggars, abortion clinic bombers, and "the world is ending!" preachers). Christians who are quietly living out their faith, loving those around them and trusting God in the uncertainty of their lives, are just not "seen". Anyway, thank you.

Nancy, you were curious if most people found Jesus at a time of weakness. In my experience, I would say often, but not necessarily. If someone becomes a Christian as an adult, it is often because they realize that this world as it is now, is NOT what God intended for us. We need him and his power to live. And we WANT him in our lives. For those who become a Christian as a child, it is often that they are taught about God since birth, and are ready to really commit to living the life that God has planned for them. Either way, the new Christian is trusting that God loves them more than they can imagine and has only good things planned for them! (Notice I said "good", not EASY! I have had many very hard times in my life, but I can honestly say that because God was with me during them, they were VERY GOOD - hard to understand, but that is wny God is God!)

And Carla, you're my kind of gal! My mom taught me to sew, and I hate it and avoid it except for mending. And your tater tot casserole - you're not missing anything :)

gettingbored said...

I'm married and both my husband and I have advanced degrees. We both work. I work as a teacher which affords me the opportunity to be a stay at home mom when my children are out of school on break.

We have two children and want no more. My children receive an excellent education in public school. I hope they both choose to pursue a college degree.

I firmly feel that the seperation of church and state is both a necessity and the wish of our founding fathers. I do not believe that our nation was founded as a Christian nation.

I believe that God gives us free will and the capacity to decide on the size of our family by whatever means we decide on.

I believe in God, and doing good works but eschew organized religion as it is nothing but a human attempt to domesticate God, and filled with man-made rules and rituals.

I dress appropriately for my age but wear what I feel like wearing within that context. And I firmly believe that each individual whether they be male or female is responsible for the regulation of their own impulses/thoughts, and that defrauding business is a cop out for guys.

I personally would not give Gothard or those of his ilk one shred of my money. Their religion is a scheme to bilk people out of their money IMO.

Anonymous said...

A rousing standing ovation for Getting Bored. My sentiments exactly.

ESPECIALLy separation of church and state vs. the fallacy that our country was founded as a 'christian' nation.

Thank you for such a clear, concise articulation of my beliefs. You said it better than I could have.

Anonymous said...

Agree with the poster who noted organized religion is HUMAN based. Seems to me that contrary to what is claimed, that 'god created us in his image,' religion tends to created god in a subhuman image - petty and vindictive.

Also agree with the poster who does not believe a god is intimately involved with each and every minute detail of human daily life. I believe that is a childlike wishful thought.

Considering The Crusades and various wars fought over basic religious fervor, I have wondered if religion has caused more problems than it has solved?

JMO.

Carla said...

Oh my. As a mom of boys the defrauding stuff is pretty terrifying. What does that tell a boy, that he could see something on a female that would make him lose control of himself? Yikes!

The sex stuff, I dunno. Seems to me if you teach 19 kids that way (the girls that under their modest clothing is a nest of hot blood lust that could drive a man insane on the street corner and the boys that their eyeballs could let something shameful into their brains so bad their naughty bits would never recover) that statistically a few of 'em are going to be seriously screwed up.

I don't believe Josh actually made contact WITH Anna before he finished his own personal honeymoon the first time around...and that's probably how it will go with most of them. But what if one of them are gay? Or gets pregnant out of wedlock? That's not going to go down well AT ALL.

Anonymous said...

Also as a mom of sons, I find the whole 'defrauding' concept ludicrous.

I realize teens are hormones on legs. However, I do not believe teens are incapable of some level of self control. WHY would parents want to instill a belief in their kids that lustful thoughts will control them? Certainly does not give the kids any credit, and I find that sad, unfair, and incorrect.

Makes me wonder about the person who dreamed up such a concept as 'defrauding' - did/does this person struggle with sex addiction himself?

Anonymous said...

I think alot of the kissing between JB&M D is staged/scripted by TLC.

Not saying there is not affection between them, but the constant shows of it seems phony and just part of their brand.

Seems like a teen's concept of being in love, rather than a mature, happily married for decades adult couple.

Ollie said...

I first became interested in the Duggars because on the surface our families seemed to have a lot in common. Like the Duggars we are Christians, have a larger than average family, do not use birth control, homeschool, are debt free, dress modestly and have conservative values. Yet as I watched the show I discovered the Duggars and our family actually differ on almost every issue above.

Religion: We are a very religious family, my husband is a minister, but unlike the Duggars we do not feel the need to "spread the word" to everyone and anyone. Our church doors are always open to anyone who wishes to learn more about our faith or even to those who have no interest in that but just need our help, but it is our firm belief that everyone is lead by God to the religion that is right for them. We do not believe that everyone must believe as we do to be good people or to go to heaven, we believe our way is best for us but that there is truth in many religions. Our church is involved in many interfaith activities, usually community service based, that include both Christian and non-Chrisitan religions. Our shared goals of doing good in the community and following what we believe to be God's will bring us all together much more than the often seemingly trivial differences of our religions separate us. We are also strongly committed to the separation of church and state.

Family Size/Birth Control: Our family is only half the size of the Duggars, and I'm only a few years younger than Michelle so I don't anticipate it getting much bigger. We believe that to fulfill God's intention for sex in a marital relationship the couple must leave themselves open to the possibility of creating life anytime they have intercourse. We also believe, however, that God designed humans with self-control and intellect not granted to animals so that humans could abstain from sexual intercourse at certain times if they felt they were not ready for a child, i.e. natural family planning.

Homeschooling: Unlike the Duggars, and many other fundamentalist Christians who homeschool, we do so mostly for reasons of academics rather than character. My husband has a master's degree, I have a bachelor's in education. We have higher academic standards for our children than those held by our local public schools, and our goal is that each one will be prepared for college. Whether our children attend college or not is their decision, but we do expect both our boys and girls to get some kind of post-secondary training.

Modest Dress: I have often wondered what the Duggars would do if my family were to see them and start calling out "Nike!" Although we would never do such a thing, we do dress more modestly than they do. For example, we do not wear sleeves shorter than elbow length and when we leave the house we wear closed shoes, never flip flops. Also, the tight shirts the older Duggars girls have worn in recent years would never be allowed in our house.

As long as I'm on the issue of modesty, my husband and I do not kiss in public, in part because we consider that aspect of our relationship to be special and private, but also because we realize other people really don't want to see that anyways.

Anonymous said...

This thread has actually given me hope that maybe, just maybe, the majority of those who consider themselves 'christian' are not NEARLY as judgmental, unthinking, and negative in their life and world view as the Duggars portray themselves on tv.

This is a huge relief, as the Duggars have been a MAJOR turn off to me, personally. So much of a turn off that I had just about written off all 'christians' as being the same or at least very similar to the Duggars, which is not at all what I consider to be 'godly'.

Thanks for this thread; thanks for the enlightening (and to me, HOPEFUL) comments.

Cyn said...

Like the Duggars:
Christian
We donate time and items to families in need (don't have the money lol)
We have a large family (5 kids)
We use a version of the buddy system
(mommy can not be and will not be every where at once)
We buy used clothing and or make do
We are debt free (except for the house)
We home school
We eat canned processed foods
We can't grow a garden to save our lives (LOL)
We shop at places such as Aldi and Farmer's markets
Till the children learn to walk they pass down shoes (after that we buy new)
Had I the money every one of my children would wear the modesty swim suits BUT simply for sunburn issues (we can put 50 spf on every 2 hours and STILL burn) as it is they swim in shorts and t-shirts to limit the sunburns
We agree that ONE person should have the final say in the household unfortunately I can't get my husband to be that person so it falls on me.
My children will not date until they are at least 17 and then only in groups.
When they are 18 they may date singly if they wish.
My children will go to college as long as THEY pay for it, and do not take out student loans.

Different from the Duggars:
When working with power tools my children wear safety glasses and safety gear.
When I finally let the 17 yr old mow the lawn he wore shoes (he was too scatter-brained to mow before then and I had visions of blood going every where)
I would not have let my children in the cherry picker at any age before 18
My children are NOT allowed to use a chain saw.
When we had cable they were allowed to watch TV.
My kids play video games.

Danielle said...

I am like the Duggars in that I believe that children are a blessing. I am different from them in that I wish to demonstrate that to the world without having 19 of them myself.

Anonymous said...

My husband and I are Christians like the Duggars, but we are way more relaxed about it. We stopped attending our Presbyterian church because they have gotten so caught up in certain things that we don't agree with anymore. We've been quiet about this to friends and family since we don't want to be a pain about our views. So we pray together and we are happy with this.

We are debt free like the Duggars. We didn't start out that way, but once we got older we decided that was a worthy goal. We love the freedom and serenity that it gives us.

I dress modestly when I'm out in public like the Duggar women. But I wear pants and skirts and sometimes I wear shirts that show a bit of cleavage. Unlike the Duggars, I wear shorts at home and wear a bathing suit while swimming.

We aren't like the Duggars when it comes to eduction. I attended college. My husband got a post-graduate degree.

We are different than the Duggars in that we only have one child. I had complications during my pregnancy and the doctor told me I shouldn't have any more babies. Unlike the Duggars, I know when it's best to stop. I truly wanted more children, but I realized that the one child I had needed her mother more than I needed more children.

Anonymous said...

I'm different from the Duggars because I don't believe that having "more" children makes you "better" parents or "more Christian" than a faith-filled couple with only one child.

Anonymous said...

I am enjoying all of the interesting comments on this thread. I love to hear how different people address issues of faith, modesty, child-rearing, and so forth.

I heartily agree with those in support of separation of church and state. The founding fathers were very clear on that concept, and it has served this nation well for over 200 years.

On the surface, you would think I'd have a lot in common with the Duggars. I'm frugal, dress modestly, working toward being debt-free (I have 7 years left on my mortgage and then I'll be there), believe in God, believe children are a blessing and should be nurtured as such, etc.

But there is just so much I completely disagree with. The fact that so much of the Duggars beliefs seem to be fear-based, such as the constant fear of sin. The fact that they believe every little thing could drag any of them right into sinful behavior. I can't imagine being raised and told every day that right under my surface lurks a sinful monster just trying to get out.

I really hate that it is all put on the female for causing lust in the male, as if males have zero control. I find that downright offensive.

I believe that God gave us brains of a higher capacity so that we could use reason and logic. I believe we have the capacity for wisdom, such as realizing that we may be putting our life in peril if we become pregnant again, and could be leaving behind a grieving husband and many children who need us alive and well. I find it highly irresponsible behavior to continue to seek pregnancy under those conditions. God does not want orphaned children.

Anonymous said...

IMO, EXTREMES in just about anything tend to be offputting and tend to polarize people.

Obnoxiously self centered and mean spirited moms.

Equally obnoxious religious zealots.

IMO the Duggars qualify as extreme in their alleged beliefs, thus the polarization. Again, if their real goal was 'encouragement', they have failed with a good number of people, and those who are inspired were, in all likelihood, already of the Duggar ilk.

TLC seems to go out of their way to pick extremes to showcase. They apparently believe viewers WANT a freak show and WANT to hate what and who they are watching.

TLC really needs to rethink their programming strategy.

Let Kate Gosselin rant and whine and poor mouth in the luxury of her mansion. Let the Duggars pray and be holy. But for god's sake, make them do it WITHOUT a tv camera recording these family scripted moments.

SuzanneDeAZ said...

In a way we are quiver full even though we have one child through adoption. We have never stopped ourselves from having children, it just never happened. However, we were given a chance to adopt one child so in a way we are QF in that we trusted God for the amount of chiildren to be blessed with.

Anonymously Yours said...

"But there is just so much I completely disagree with. The fact that so much of the Duggars beliefs seem to be fear-based, such as the constant fear of sin. The fact that they believe every little thing could drag any of them right into sinful behavior."

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

I so agree. What a joyless way of looking at life and people. Surely life is not to be wasted living in fear and guilt.

I agree with your other points 100%, the separation of church and state, children are blessings (but I don't need to birth dozens of them to prove my love for children OR god), and the treatment of women in the Duggar belief system is reprehensible. Women seem 3rd class citizens, to be managed by Patriarchs, and blamed for male lust. Ridiculous and stifling.

I also agree with you that human brains are to be educated and utilized. That to do anything LESS than use our intelligence to question, soul search, and decide is failing to maximize our own potential. Expecting a supreme being to manage every minute detail of human life seems arrogant and lazy IMO.

Celestie said...

More differences
Environmental foot print: Try not to make unnecessary car trips. Walk when we can. We wash dishes by hand, for the most part. Only use dishwasher for big loads that come with entertaining. Compost our garbage. Used cloth diapers, when we had them. Try to buy sustainable items, when we can. Recycle toys and clothing with friends and family. Also buy some new, (especially shoes) Grow small garden, which does not sustains us, but we enjoy eating fresh fruits and veggies and digging in the dirt. We share our produce with neighbors. Slowly replaced our appliances with energy savers. We try to be earth friendly.

Food: I provide my family with the most nutritious and healthy food I can. We are all healthy and trim.

Dating: I started dating at age 15. Daughters did as well. None of us carried any baggage into our marriages. Don't even know what that means exactly. We all married in our mid to late-twenties.

Showing joy: Not every day is wonderful, perfect or even sane. But when my kids smile and laugh, (which they do a lot) they glow from their very cores. When my DH kisses me and tells me he loves me, I know it is because he means it, not because his religion tells him this is the way he is to behave. When I yell at him or the kids, they know I'm really upset. When I laugh with them or at them, they know I'm happy. When I cry, they know I'm sad. I'm not crazy about whining children and put a stop to it. But I would never tell a child or anyone that they can't feel real emotions.

Celestie said...

We are Alike in the following ways:
Larger than normal family. We have 4
One husband, long term marriage.
Dress modestly: My interpretation is more liberal than theirs. I wear stylish age appropriate clothing. Usual clothing, pants or knee length skirts, shirts and flats. No cleavage or tight pants.
My little boys wear "little boy" clothing for school and play, (shorts & tee shirts). My girls (adults) wear what they want, they are adults.
Debt free: We live in a very expensive part of country, yet have no credit card or other debt, have a manageable mortgage, own one small car and one hybrid SUV.
Moral Codes: We both have a strong moral codes. Duggars from god, mine because it is the right thing to do.
Volunteerism: The boys and I volunteer at the humane society. I help fundraiser for a couple of charities, help out at schools. DH mentors young business men and helps at a food bank for homeless. We all volunteer for "cleaning up the beach days."
Differences from Duggars
I'm Secular Humanist, not a Christian. We don't pray about anything.
We base our decisions by weighing options, knowing what is right for our family, business and the earth, without harming any one else.

Family management: Joint decisions. Husband tends to lead in business decisions and I lead home decisions. We have an au pair for 3 hours a day 5 days a week. She gives little ones their lunch, iand does light chores, while I'm at my office for 3 hours a day. Boys have simple chores. Their chores will grow as they do. Girls are married, work and have lived on their own University days All children are encouraged to make age appropriate decisions. Girls were never required to help raise boys, although they have loved being with them. However, DH and I being older, the girls know that it will be their responsibility to raise the boys should we pass on prematurely. They volunteered to be named guardians. Also have a cleaning woman one day a week. Hey I'm old with two little guys, I need all the help I can get. :-)

Education: Husband and I hold graduate degrees. Our educational philosophy is educating the whole child: encouraging solid academics, supplemented with a variety of experiences and adventures. First two, kids public school k-12, private university for one, public for other. Graduate school for both, Doctorate for eldest. Second two, Private Kg and preschool so far, probably continue. In addition to attending school, we read, observe, touch, smell, experiment, listen, think and talk. Our "learning center" stretches from our backyard and extends to the world. Not going to home school. And hope boys stretch their education to life long learning, including college.

Travel: We travel both domestic and international. Take lots of fun and educational day trips with boys, (did also with girls when they were young) We have friends and family all over the world. These days, our trips are pretty little boy specific. As they grow older, the scope will be expanded. Both girls lived in foreign countries. One in Asia, one in Britain.

Sports: We participate in many sports. The entire family skis, swims and surfs. Younger girl was a college athlete.

Music: Kids start music lessons at age 7. We like most forms of music, except those with off color words and suggestive moves. We dance! We enjoy ballet, symphony, opera and musical theater. Older girl was a professional in Musical theater during highschool, and college.

Art: Boys are very artistic and we give them lots of tools to express their inner Picassos. Took olders to art museums and exhibits throughout their growing years.

Books: Kids exposed to children's literature from all over world. After age 12, we do not censor their reading choices.

Movies and TV: Boys are big Disney/Pixar movie fans on DVD. Sometimes in theater. They also watch a couple PBS children's shows on TV
We (and girls) watch whatever we want, whenever we want. We are adults.

Anonymously Yours said...

@Celestie: I have begun to realize through this thread that there are more here at DWoP that I'd actually enjoy meeting, and this comes as something of a surprise to me.

Most commenters herein seem to be far deeper thinkers, far far more open minded and tolerant of differing belief systems than the Duggars seem to me.


So, while I'd enjoy meeting many of the commenters herein, I would have absolutely zero interest in meeting any of the Duggars.

Anonymous said...

Hi!

How am I like the Duggars? I am the same age as Michelle. I am the youngest in my family. I grew up in a rural community. I am a woman. That's about it.

Differences:
I was raised as a Christian, but have not been to church in years (do weddings count?)
I have no children, however, I am a school teacher so I am surrounded by 30 nine-year olds for 5-6 hours a day. (Tomorrow is the last day before summer break!)
I wear age appropriate clothes, usually pants. My bathing suits are one peice. I do show some Nike cleavage on occasion.
I have two degrees and know what "perpendicular" means.
My voice has never been as sacrine sweet as Michlle's, even when I am doing different voices in my read-alouds.
I would never get involved with anyone named, JimBob. If I did, he would be Jim to me!
I am Canadian and am a Liberal. Our Conservative Party would be too left-wing for the Duggars.
I love all sorts of ethnic cuisine and culture.
I love stand-up comedy shows.
Fresh fruit, vegetables and Grade A cuts of meat are the mainstay of my diet.
I like going to foreign countries and learning about the different aspects of their cultures. I do not try and change people, nor do I think "we" are superior and have all the answers.

Anonymous said...

I have SO much in common with the Duggars:

-I am a Christian
-I do not practice birth control
-I have 11 kids
-I am married and never went beyond kissing before marriage.
-I don't show anything that is 3 fingers below my collarbone, and I only wear skirts, but not long ones.
-I wear regular, 1 peice bathing suits, but I also wear a cover-up.
-I homeschool all of my kids (ages 16, 13, 12, 8, 4, and 3)
-I always monitor what my kids are doing on the internet and they never watch TV without me or my husband there with them.
-We go to church every Sunday

The differences are:
-I got married at age 28
-I have a masters degree in English
-I NEVER buy used
-I only buy organic
-I don't force religion on my kids, but I do encourage it.

Amanda said...

I am from Arkansas..but I am an opened minded middle of the roader (?)

I am married...but most folks know I love my husband because of the way I treat him not because we show a lot of PDA

I am a Christian and my husband is the head of our household...but I am an important part of the decision making process and I would rather SHOW my Christianity rather than tell about it

I have no children but that does not make me less of a woman or my husband less of a man

I work full time

I read books (and they have not been approved of by my pastor)

I go to church in a building other than a house with people with different points of view and interests other than mine

If I ever have children I will not put them on television for money

Jess C said...

I have a pretty similar belief system to the Duggars- I consider myself Apostolic Pentecostal so I wear nothing but skirts and modest clothing- and I also don't wear make up or cut my hair. (Anymore I should say- I've only been devoted to the life for about a year and a half) My husband and I also don't believe in BC (we have a 4 month old currently and are open to more when the time comes), never used it- but that's mostly because we just see no place for it in a marriage. (God will create a life when He sees fit.) We read the Bible daily, are pretty careful in what we watch (even though I love a good reality show lol) and don't use profanity or anything. So basically we are 22 year old weirdos lol. I guess we are quite similar to the Duggars haha, don't know if that is good or bad!

Anonymous said...

I have NOTHING to do with the Duggars, the only thing we have in common is that we are human!

*I use birth-control
*I'm 33 and not married, but I have a loving boyfriend
*I only have one child, a 2 year old daugter, Alysa
*I am agnostic
*I have had MANY relationships
*I am from England, I moved to America 7 years ago
*Buying used is a HUGE no no for me
*I have a Bachelor degree in mathematics
*I will never homeschool my daughter, I want her to have lots of experiences
*I have a pixie cut!
*I show a lot of skin, I love mini skirts and love the low neck tops
*I am a feminist
*I love to travel, and education is so important to me.

nccalgal said...

Like many others on this thread, I am a Christian with conservative views and values similar to the Duggars, but I believe in living under grace and with the guidance and power of the Holy Spirit to overcome the challenges and temptations of life that may come along-not by a list of dos and don'ts(legalism). I believe in the sovereinty of God and strongly believe that He leads us in our journey, but I take full responsiblity for my actions and decisions-I don't "leave things up to God".
Although I do believe in dressing in modest manner, I don't think that means neck to ankles need to be covered nor should either gender's clothing hamper whatever activity they may be participating in. I believe it is wrong to judge people solely by outside appearence; just because they are dressed differently than us, or have green hair, body piercings and tattoos, doesn't mean they are morally inferior. How many times have we read about some upstanding citizen who abused his family or molested innocent children.
I have been married for over 40 years and consider my husband to be the head of our family, but we both have input when major decisions have to be made. I take care of finances and business decisions since that's my area of expertise while he manages all things electronic and mechanical. I have three grown sons who were educated in the public school system although now with all the shortfalls due to budget cuts, I might seriously consider home schooling if I thought my child was affected by it.
I have been a SAHM as well as worked outside the home while they were growing up. At times, I've been the primary bread-winner and at other times, my husband has been. We have a joint checking account but we both have money that we spend as we see fit and don't feel the need to account to one another as to how that money was spent.
I used b/c but always believed that if God intended for me to have a child during those times, it would have happened, but I still felt the need for "due diligence" on my part LOL.
Although I do believe that Jesus is the only way to heaven, I do not overtly "witness" to non-believers or tell them how to live their lives, but if they approach me, I will give them my reasons for that belief.

Nicole said...

" Again, if their real goal was 'encouragement', they have failed with a good number of people, and those who are inspired were, in all likelihood, already of the Duggar ilk."

I find the Duggars inspiring and encouraging in a number of ways...therefore I and my family are "Duggar ilk"? I suppose I could be offended, but mostly I think it's funny.

I also think it's funny that if you knew me, you might actually like me, even though I'm Duggar ilk. I have met and befriended a diverse group of people and friends throughout my life, and have found much to be inspired from in everyone I've befriended, whether they are fundamental Christian, atheist, humanist, whatever labels people give themselves.

I am a conservative Christian woman with a large family, who homeschools. You might be surprised that I don't fit the stereotype that description pulls up. I don't dress like the Duggars, I wear pants, skirts, capris, (no shorts, I've never liked them), I currently have my hair pretty long but have had it short before and in between, I wear makeup and in general like to dress stylishly, and in fact I get comments to this effect quite often. So do my girls. My girls are involved in ballet and modern dance. My boys do organized sports. My husband does computer work and is your typical hard-working family man. We go to movies (no r-rated), listen to many different kinds of music. We and our children have many different friends. We look for opportunities to serve in the community but we need to do this more. We go to church, we watch tv. We are both college educated. During the early years of our marriage, I worked full-time and we lived in several different areas of the country. I've met and loved so many people from everywhere we have been. People have loved and befriended me even though they are different than me. Being the way I am doesn't make me close-minded anymore than you living your life makes you close-minded.

So I don't know if finding things I like about the Duggars makes me "Duggar ilk" or not, but you might be surprised what you think of us Duggar ilk if you met us.

On a side note, I have a friend who runs a blog for moms, who got a phone interview with Michelle Duggar a while back. They talked for two hours, and my friend said that she was blown away by how sincere, kind, and do-anything-for-anyone Michelle Duggar is. She said we are dealing a with a seriously nice person here. That is commendable and admirable in a person, no matter how different someone is from ourselves.

Celestie said...

They talked for two hours, and my friend said that she was blown away by how sincere, kind, and do-anything-for-anyone Michelle Duggar is.

_____

As another poster said, I really enjoy the posters on this board. So many intelligent and interesting comments. I think we are all learning from each other. What fun it would be to sit down and chat. (if anyone had time)

Speaking of time, how many of us with small children, could find the time to give a two hour interview? I'm lucky if I can find time for a 2 minute shower.

Anonymous said...

Oh yes, as someone else already said -- probably one of my greatest differences with the Duggars is that I would never consider putting my family on a reality tv show. There is no reason strong enough to change my mind on that score. At most, I might allow a special news segment or one-time special about my child, in the event he does something spectacular before he reaches adulthood. I mean, like inventing something that helps clean up massive oil spills, or reducing air pollution, or makes cars that used to run on gas run on some easily produced clean, renewable fuel instead. Then sure, I'd allow a one-time only special.

Other than that, my child's life is going to remain his and private.

Anonymous said...

I first became aware of the Duggars when TLC finished their house they were building. I was mostly interested in the house.

I watched a few episodes, mostly because the kids were interesting.

First of all, I don't attribute everything to God. The Duggars said Michelle suffered a miscarriage and they thought God was punishing them for using Birth Control. Everything is a "blessing" or a punishment. How about there are good or bad consequences to behaviors? How about teaching children to make choices, rather than choosing for them. At first it was interested to see the Duggars shop the thift stores and stuff like that. Then it got really stupid and staged.

I've also observed that older children from large families often don't get married or have small number of children because they got a gutful of raising their siblings.

Kat said...

Religion: raised as an Evangelical Lutheran, now a Deist/Pantheist

Education: public school K-12, currently attending a private college that offered me a full academic scholarship. Plan to pursue a masters and doctorate.

Work: Like the other Duggar girls, I spend my days surrounded by small children. The difference is that I get paid for it since I am a daycare assistant.

Politics: Socially very liberal, fiscally moderately liberal.

Nicole said...

"Speaking of time, how many of us with small children, could find the time to give a two hour interview? I'm lucky if I can find time for a 2 minute shower."

My friend did say that Michelle requested to schedule the interview during the late evening hours because she said she tries to do phone interviews after her youngest ones are in bed. Granted this is a good time to spend with teens and older children, but I guess it's no different than moms who work and have to spend some hours away from their children. Not every minute of our time needs to be or even should be spent with our children. Sometimes we need to do things with our lonesome!

Anonymous said...

Similarities to the Duggars: I'm a born-again Christian. I believe that children are a blessing. I believe that a mom should be at home with her pre-school-age children if at all possible. I have tremendous admiration for Michelle's patient, loving, unruffled dedication to her children.

But I am totally unlike Michelle in my physical make-up. I was so, so, so exhausted when my children were little, which is one of several reasons we decided to stop after two babies. How does Michelle do it? I was overwhelmed with just two.

On top of my constant fatigue, my husband was military. That meant that we didn't live near any relatives who could help. By the time I put my roots down in any community, it was time to pull up stakes and move elsewhere, usually to another continent. That meant that I seldom had close friends or fellow church members who could provide encouragment or advice. My husband's enlisted salary didn't allow for hiring any outside help. On the rare occasions his family or mine came for an extended visit, mine tried to be helpful, but his were overbearing and demanding, adding a further dimension of stress to my mothering efforts (not to mention my marriage).

Michelle, on the other hand, has exceptional organizational skills, a wealthy husband, and well-established roots in her community, not to mention a high level of physical energy and health. Her children have also been blessed with physical and emotional health. Not one of them even seems to have had acne!

I truly believe that not one family in a million could hope to emulate the Duggars' success. God simply doesn't give us all the same raw materials. We can only work with the raw materials He gives us. I'm sure Michelle has many struggles which she doesn't necessarily air on the show, and which I don't intend to minimize. All the same, she has been given resources which most of us haven't. You can't produce Duggar results without Duggar resources.

Anonymous said...

Me:
Religion: Islam
Pediatric Nurse. Went to a state university.
Modest (wear headscarf) but also like to wear jeans, pants. Wear capris at home.
I watch Tv and browse the internet. Had no parental supervision.
Didn't go through the whole only- holding-hands after engagement because in Islam, after engagement, a couple is allowed to kiss.
Me and my husband both work outside the home,

Anonymous said...

How am I like the Duggars?
I require oxygen to breath and food and water to live.
How am I different from the Duggars?
I believe the Earth is 4.5 billion years old not 6,000.
I never believe something just because someone told me to. I make up my own mind.
Religion and faith are two entirely separate concepts to me and one doesn't necessarily go with the other.
I don't pop out a child on a yearly basis; in fact I've been trying to have one for more than 2 years. I also don't believe that God my inability to have children is a punishment from God for sins I've committed.
I never went to school at a dining room table but did graduate from college.

Anonymous said...

alike: Family is very important to me, too.

I try not to yell at another person.

When I have kids - I like the idea very much of not discipling them in public.

what we don't have in common: a lot. For example that I am not married yet and don't have kids yet so I don't have a lot of responsability.

Alberta Rose said...

Marriage is something that is to be worked on, not abandoned, knowing the difference between socialization and being social, relying on Godly wisdom, using screen media to spread the word of God, and looking beyond surface details for the good (I smile every time I think of the kind words Michelle said about Dolly Parton).