Jana Duggar has been dubbed “Cinderella Duggar” by concerned fans who think that her family members are using their religious beliefs as an excuse to exploit her. The 25-year-old still lives at home with Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar, and she’s often tasked with babysitting her younger brothers and sisters, as well as the offspring of her older siblings. According to one recent report, she’s been helping Anna Duggar take care of her four kids while Josh Duggar completes his stint in a faith-based treatment center.
Josh decided to spend some time at a “school of discipleship” after he confessed to being addicted to pornography and cheating on his wife, but he didn’t leave Anna Duggar home alone with their four children. Instead, it looks like he enlisted his family members to help take care of 4-month-old Meredith, 2-year-old Marcus, 4-year-old Michael, and 6-year-old Mackynzie.
Jana Duggar is the oldest Duggar daughter, which means that she has the most experience raising babies. This might be why she was tasked with taking care of Meredith while the Duggar family practiced Christmas carols. According to RadarOnline, Jana Duggar can be seen playing the “reluctant” role of Meredith’s babysitter in a video that Jessa Duggar Seewald recently shared on Instagram. In the video, Jana tries to sing while she cradles Josh and Anna Duggar’s sleeping child.
Not one of the four adult Duggar daughters have moved away from home before getting married, so it’s likely that Jana Duggar will continuing living with her parents until her father, Jim Bob Duggar, finds a husband for her. During an interview with People, Jim Bob claimed that he doesn’t pick his daughter’s husbands. However, he does have a lot of control over their love lives. Jim Bob said that he asks his daughters if they’re interested in men that he already knows and approves of. He also screens potential suitors who come to him expressing an interest in courting his daughters. If Jim Bob finds a suitor that he approves of for one of his daughters, he tells that daughter about the guy. She can then decide if he’s husband material. During the 17 Kids and Counting episode “Duggar Dating Rules,” Jessa said that the guys that get in contact with her dad are usually “weirdos.”
It seems as though Jim Bob Duggar hasn’t been doing a very good job playing matchmaker for Jana — he’s not presenting her with any options that she’s interested in.
“Jana is one of the prettiest girls in the world and one of the sweetest girls,” Jim Bob told People. “There have been a lot of guys who have been interested in her, I have gone to hear about each one, and so far she hasn’t felt that is the way the Lord is leading.”
According to the Daily Beast, the Duggars were “friends and acolytes” of one of the most influential leaders of the Christian patriarchy movement, former Vision Forum president Doug Phillips. Phillips once awarded Michelle Duggar with a “Mother of the Year” award.
Doug Phillips was a promoter of the “stay-at-home-daughters” movement. According to Alternet, he told his followers that it was “selfish” for women to have ambitions outside of being homemakers and helpmeets for their fathers and husbands. Girls like Jana Duggar are expected to stay at home and learn “advanced homemaking” skills until they get married — if they get married. Below is a quote from Phillips.
“Daughters aren’t to be independent. They’re not to act outside the scope of their father. As long as they’re under the authority of their fathers, fathers have the ability to nullify or not the oaths and the vows. Daughters can’t just go out independently and say, ‘I’m going to marry whoever I want.’ No. The father has the ability to say, ‘No, I’m sorry, that has to be approved by me.’ “
The Duggars haven’t revealed whether they’re still fans of Doug Phillips, but the Vision Forum creator’s glory days as a leader of the Christian patriarchy movement are over. In 2013, he resigned from his position as the president of his ministry after confessing to cheating on his wife. Vision Forum Ministries shut down shortly thereafter, and the woman that Phillips confessed to cheating with, Lourdes Torres-Manteufel, filed a lawsuit against Phillips. She accused him of sexual abuse, saying that he “repeatedly groped and masturbated on her while she protested.”
What do you think of Jana Duggar’s situation? Will she be a stay-at-home daughter forever?
[Image via Duggar Family Official/Facebook]