Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar criticize the ‘Duggar Family Secrets’ docuseries. A family member tells them to ‘stop playing the victim’

TODAY -- Pictured: (lr) Michelle Duggar and Jim Bob Duggar appear on NBC News'

Michelle Duggar and Jim Bob Duggar call new family docuseries “sad” (Photo: Peter Kramer/NBCU Photo Bank/NBCUniversal via Getty Images via Getty Images)

Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar are breaking their silence on the new docuseries digging into their lives and beliefs.

The couple – made famous by their TLC reality shows and subsequent scandals involving eldest son Josh, who is serving 12 years in prison for child pornography – call Prime Video’s Shiny Happy People: Secrets of the Duggar Family, in which they did not participate, “pejorative and sensationalistic.” Among the assertions of the doc, there is that the 19 children and counting the parents covered up Josh for molesting five girls, four of whom were their daughters, when he was a teenager and failed to get him treatment. Their daughter Jill Duggar Dillard, one of the victims, participated in the doc and said her parents pressured her to defend Josh when the allegations surfaced.

“The recent ‘documentary’ about our family is sad because it shows the media and those with bad intentions hurting people we love,” the couple said in a statement posted on their website on Friday. . “Like other families, ours too has experienced the joys and heartbreaks of life, just in a very public format. entertainment these days.”

The statement continued, “We have always believed that the best chance to mend damaged relationships or reconcile differences is through love in a private setting. We love each member of our family and will continue to do whatever as we can to have a good time.” relationship with everyone. Through triumphs and trials, we have clung that much closer to our faith and discovered that through the love and grace of Jesus we find strength, comfort, and purpose.

(Screenshot: @DugarFam via Instagram)

(Screenshot: @DugarFam via Instagram)

Amy Duggar King, who also denounces her family in the doc, criticized her uncle and aunt’s statement.

“News flash: If you had gotten the real, real help from Josh that he needed a long time ago – real therapy – we wouldn’t be in this mess,” Amy said in an Instagram video. “These beautiful girls wouldn’t have so much to heal. You’re not a victim here. Stop playing the victim.”

Amy also took issue with Jim Bob and Michelle saying they preferred to ‘reconcile the differences’ privately, writing: ‘Anyone notice what seems to me… gaslighting? ‘Private executives’ are what we let’s talk !”

The four-part document examines how the ministry that the family has long followed and touted on its shows, Institute in Basic Life Principles (IBLP), teaches that wives should obey their husbands and that children learn to follow patriarchal norms and not to ask questions. The teachings include that when bad things happen, members should pray to put it behind them or ignore it rather than speak up, former IBLP members have claimed.

The doc examines how this teaching was at play around the assault allegations against Josh, but also how he also cultivated a toxic environment within the IBLP ministry. Bill Gothard, who founded the IBLP and promoted “male superiority and female obedience”, was accused of sexual harassment and sexual assault by more than 30 women, some of them minors, which led him to resigning in 2014. The doc examines how Josh was sent to an IBLP in 2003 when his parents learned he molested girls. There, he did not undergo therapy for mental health, but did manual labor instead. Jim Bob picked him up early.

On Friday, Jill also posted a video to Instagram following Jim Bob and Michelle’s statement disparaging the doc. In it, she thanked fans for supporting her speaking out. She encouraged them to order her next book, Count the cost, co-written by her husband Derick Dillard.

“I know it will be difficult,” Jill said of the book’s release, “but I pray it also helps other people have a voice to maybe realize they’re not alone.”

Count the costannounced earlier this week, will detail the “greed, manipulation and betrayal” as well as “the secrecy and lies” they faced, the couple have promised.

Jill – the fourth Duggar child – waded into this in the doc. She claimed she was forced to do the Megyn Kelly interview in 2015 to defend Josh after his assault allegations became public. She said she didn’t make a dime on the reality shows, which ran from 2008 to 2020, even as an adult in her own spin-off, Counting on, which forced her to go to a food bank to feed her family at one point. She also claimed that she did not want to film the birth of her first child for Counting on, but she was told she had to.

Jim Bob’s sister Deanna also appeared in the documentary, along with Jim Bob and Michelle’s former best friends Jim and Bobye Holt, who spoke about the couple covering up for Josh’s childhood abuse.

Happy and Bright People: The Duggar Family Executive producer Blye Pagon Faus previously told Yahoo that she hopes Jim Bob and Michelle will watch the docuseries “and maybe there will be some kind of reflection and changes.”

The docuseries is part of a long-running dismantling of the television family, whose conservative faith and lifestyle were at the center of their shows. 19 children and counting was canceled in 2015 after Josh’s abuse allegations first surfaced. Spin off counting on was removed in 2021 after Josh – now a father of 7 himself – was arrested on “the worst of the worst” child pornography charges. Earlier this year, Jinger Duggar Vuolo – the sixth Duggar – released a book detailing her upbringing in sectarian ministry and how “fear was a big part of my childhood”.

Leave a Comment