Since Josh Duggar’s decade-old crimes came to light, things have changed dramatically for the Duggar family. People who formerly supported them have stepped back. People who already disapproved of the Duggar family (either due to their religion, their anti-gay politics, or simply their large family in a world with population problems) have spoken out more loudly. People who were not aware that Michelle Duggar had worked to prevent an ordinance protecting transgender rights from passing soon found out. The more people found out, the more the Duggar family lost –until at last, on July 16th, 19 Kids and Counting was officially canceled.
Though Jim Bob Duggar said in his interview with Megyn Kelly that he didn’t care if the show was canceled, the family certainly showed some disappointment when the hammer came down.
The primary question on everyone’s mind, though, was this: how would the Duggars continue to support such a large family with no television show, and rather few jobs? The Duggar finances are, of course, private. There are rumors regarding how much they were paid per episode of 19 Kids and Counting, and rumors about just how much TLC covered in the way of housing, trips, and other things, but there’s not really a lot of actual financial information that’s public.
What we do know, though, is that the Duggar family has been doing an unprecedented amount of asking for donations since Josh’s police report was released. Jill (nee Duggar) Dillard and husband Derrick have set up their own tax-exempt non-profit for taking donations for their missions trips. The main Duggar Family site also invites visitors to donate.
The four Duggar sons who run a YouTube channel called Duggar Studios were reportedly asking for donations on their channel — those requests no longer seem to exist. Instead, the requests have been moved to a new site: DuggarStudios.com. Apparently, the four Duggar boys behind the YouTube channel and website (John David, Jeremiah, Jason, and Josiah) have gotten the idea that they can’t ask for money for nothing — so they’ve developed a product.
That is to say, they’re offering a t-shirt. It’s a simple gray t-shirt that reads “Duggar Studios,” but judging from the “merch” page of the Duggar Studios site, they likely intend it to be the first in a line — there’s likely more Duggar merchandise to come.
While there are still rumors of a spin-off, for the moment, the Duggar work situation must look a bit desperate. The family has strict religious beliefs about females working outside the home, and the Duggar boys who have been officially employed so far have mostly worked for their father. (Josh Duggar, of course, stands as the exception, for his time at FRC — as far as the public knows, he too remains unemployed, with a fourth child recently born.)
Though Jim Bob Duggar owns certain rental properties, and some of his sons have residential or business properties in their names, and of course, the family has published a few books, income from work appears to be sparse in the Duggar family these days. Whether the Duggar boys seek to supplement the family income with $20 t-shirt sales, or if they’re just hoping to fund their own film projects, it’s clear the Duggar family is seeking new sources of income with the loss of their reality show.
[Photo via: Duggar Family Instagram]