Please Don’t Deny Our Agency


I wrote the first draft of this post last summer. I wasn't satisfied with it as it was, so I set it aside and promptly forgot about it. A conversation with one of my sisters reminded me of the post, so I've pulled it out and dusted it up.In writing, last summer, about Josh Duggar's Ashley Madison account, I noted that: Josh and Anna didn’t have sex until they married, so they had no way of knowing whether they are sexually compatible. Further, Josh doesn’t believe in birth control and he and … [Read more...]

A Case for Calling the Duggars ATI Rather Than Quiverfull


I wrote recently about some of the many definitional issues surrounding the term "quiverfull." If you have not already read that post, you can do so here. But in this post I want to go farther and argue that we need to be calling the Duggars ATI, not quiverfull, because their primary identification is with Bill Gothard's Advanced Training Institute and their quiverfull beliefs stem from that organization. More generally, I would argue that accuracy demands that we be clear about what leaders and … [Read more...]

Josh Duggar Sent to Long-Term Treatment Center


Earlier today, the Duggars released a statement. Duggar Family StatementWe are so thankful for the outpouring of love, care and prayers for our family during this most difficult situation with Josh. As parents we are so deeply grieved by our son’s decisions and actions. His wrong choices have deeply hurt his precious wife and children and have negatively affected so many others. He has also brought great insult to the values and faith we hold dear. Yesterday Josh checked himself into a l … [Read more...]

Not Every Courtship Looks Like the Duggars’


So, courtships. In a post I wrote recently on the Duggars, I mentioned that I "went through a controlling and manipulative courtship process and then lived in fear that my mother would find out I was having sex during my engagement." A reader objected, and this exchange followed:So, I think it's time for a public service announcement: Not all courtships look the same. It seems that the high-profile Duggar courtships have so shaped public perception of what a courtship within this … [Read more...]

Josh was “Just Curious about Girls” and the Rank Hypocrisy of the Duggar Excuse Machine


This past Friday, Jill and Jessa repeated their parents' minimization of their brother's actions, complete with their insistence that Josh was "just curious about girls." And what really hit me, hearing that, was the hypocrisy of all of this.First, they're treating what Josh did as something normal for boys his age when molesting prepubescent girls as a teen is not normal sexual behavior for adolescents. But more than that, this is the family that only allows "side hugs" before marriage, and … [Read more...]

Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar’s Interview with Megyn Kelly: Minimize, Deny, Obfuscate

The Kelly File

This evening I listened to Megyn Kelly's interview with Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar. I've written a number of posts about the Duggar situation over the past two weeks, including What You Need to Know about the Josh Duggar Police Report, What Did Josh's Counseling Look Like?, and Why Josh Duggar's "Teenage Mistakes" Matter. As longtime critic of the Duggars and as someone who had a similar upbringing, and this entire situation has weighed heavily on me. Today Jim Bob and Michelle spoke publicly ab … [Read more...]

Why Josh Duggar’s “Teenage Mistakes” Matter


Last week it was revealed that Josh Duggar sexually assaulted five girls in two families, some as young as five, when he was a teenager. This took place over the course of a year. Josh's father, Jim Bob, did not report the incidents to law enforcement until 16 months after the initial incident, and even then only did so to a family friend who then failed to file a report. The incidents came to the attention of the authorities in 2006, but by then the statute of limitations had passed. Any c … [Read more...]