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I Confess ... I Like the Duggars

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Here's why.

Momlogic's Gillian: I admit it. I have ranted about those "weirdos" with 18 kids. I've sat in judgment, laughing and pointing my finger at the TV -- cackling about those crazy cooks who have all those children that have names that start with the letter J (who does that anyway?!?). I've made fun of their big bus, their homeschooling, Michelle Duggar's crazy hair and Jim Bob's, well, everything. Then I watched an episode of their show "17 Kids and Counting" on TLC and I have to say, I kinda -- wait, no I really -- like them.

woman watching the duggars and loving it

Don't get me wrong, I think the excessive amount of children is a little much. And the name thing -- well, that's still kinda creepy. But the family seemed, dare I say it, normal. While it's not a normal life, their story kinda inspired me. They appear (yes, I know it's reality TV) to genuinely enjoy each other's company. The kids were KIDS -- not obsessed with GameBoys and World of Warcraft, and they played with each other with huge smiles on their faces.

Michelle and Jim Bob seem to really be in love -- obviously they still do it regularly. And their house ran with an eerie efficiency -- like everyone knew their place and pitched in -- happily. I just watched the episode where their 18th baby was born. The entire family picked the new baby's name and the scene was, to put it simply, really sweet. The whole family had an opinion, and they enthusiastically picked the new addition's name. Then they all toured the hospital where Michelle would eventually deliver, and the whole family participated in the experience -- and seemed to really get a lot out of it.

While I still think they're a little off (I can't believe anyone would that many kids), their story made me smile. I admired the love and commitment they have to each other and to their family -- which is way more than I ever got as a kid.

I learned something from you, Duggar family, and even though we'll probably never meet, I want to thank you. You touched my heart today. (Although, Michelle: I still think it's time for a makeover, girl!)


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17 comments so far | Post a comment now
Amy January 30, 2009, 12:53 PM

I agree 100%

sg January 30, 2009, 1:48 PM

According to the US Census of 2000, 19% of all American women over 45 years old have no children. If in our culture of diversity, we can tolerate on average 30 million women with no children, surely our collective conscience can tolerate one family with 18. It is not like she is exactly making up for the 30 million childless women.

We all love diversity until someone does something different.

michelle January 30, 2009, 7:53 PM

Sg, wow. You have a good point, I would never have though of it that way. Gilian, I like the Duggar’s too. If they were my neighbors, I’d be friends with them. I don’t always agree with what they believe in, but I like them the same anyway.

GRITS January 30, 2009, 8:42 PM

Those Duggar children appear to be surprisingly well-adjusted, confident and happy. By all indications, they conform to the strict household rules and expectations. This family is an interesting case study.


GRITS January 30, 2009, 8:45 PM

Those Duggar children appear to be surprisingly well-adjusted, confident and happy. By all indications, they conform to the strict household rules and expectations. This family is an interesting case study.


Katie January 30, 2009, 9:38 PM

I agree. I think they seem like a great family. 18 kids is def not for me but they handle it well and provide for their family. Their children have manners and are very loved.

mary January 31, 2009, 2:25 AM

This article and the comments that follow sound like advertisements for that show.


ashley January 31, 2009, 10:12 AM

I have only watched one episode, when they all went to New York to be on I think it was the Today Show. Anyhow, it was kinda boring. I can’t stand looking at the mom’s hair. Hello, this is 2009!! Anyhow, I guess lots of people like them or they wouldn’t still be on TV right.

Jill February 1, 2009, 4:18 AM

What I have an issue with is that it’s impossible to give 18 kids the individual attention they need. The older ones end up taking care of the younger ones (and the Duggars do - each older child has a younger ‘buddy’ they’re in charge of).

Michelle also said in an interview once that she doesn’t get involved when fights break out - she lets the kids work it out for themselves. Children need a little discipline - how on earth are 3- to 5-year old children supposed to “work it out” without help?

My other problem is the girls wear their hair long and wear dresses because their father likes it that way. I don’t have a problem with fathers being in charge of the home but I do draw the line at such strict dictation of personal style. It worries me when girls are taught that they should do or act or dress in ways to please men - even good Christian men.

It also bothers me that they think TV is evil but have no problem profiting from their own TV appearances. I think that’s called hypocrisy.

Okay, I’ll step off my soapbox now.

Cheap WoW Gold February 9, 2009, 3:44 PM

I salute the parents if they were able to keep their kids from getting jealous from one another. I also can’t believe that some of them are not into online/video games. Oh well, I still salute you guys.

Crazy May 20, 2009, 5:09 PM

They edit the show but some interesting things still get in.
“Music makes you do things” says Jim Bob when one of the little kids dances to music in the store. I got the impression that dancing was not allowed.
He is a young earth creationist as he tried to school a park ranger on the age of a rock in another episode.
They are a heartbeat from being crazy little cultest holding up signs saying you will burn for whatever they think you should not be doing.

Cindy June 13, 2009, 11:35 PM

I admit, I thought they were whacked out when I first heard of them but have since grown to really like their show and although do not follow their religious beliefs in any way, I find the way their family interacts to be very impressive. I don’t have a problem with the older kids helping to raise the younger. They’re a FAMILY and help take care of each other. They’re much more selfless than most kids and I don’t see that as a bad thing. And from what I see, the parents do a much better job at giving the kids time than I see some parents give to lesser amounts of kids. The only thing that I seriously disagree with is the “patriarchal” strictness but Michelle and her girls don’t strike me as wimpy women and for Michelle, it is a way of life she has chosen. The girls I think are intelligent enough to someday make that decision for themselves as well.

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