There is more drama building for the Duggars. A source revealed that the entire family is in turmoil over the scheduled TLC special Jill and Jessa: Counting On, featuring married Duggar daughters Jill Dillard and Jessa Seewald.
As Jill and Jessa return to TLC for their upcoming three-part special, it seems as though not all the Duggars are committed to any of the family returning to television in light of the seriousness of the problems their family has undergone. A source within the family opened up to Entertainment Tonight and said that the special is “turning into a circus” and that “family members are disagreeing with a lot of what they are doing.”
The biggest source of contention within the Duggar family, the source claims, is the decision to put Anna Duggar in front of the camera when she is undergoing a very difficult time in her life.
Anna is the wife of the eldest Duggar, Josh. Josh has made headlines again and again as more scandals erupt. In May, the 27-year-old conservative Christian, who worked as a lobbyist for the Family Research Council, admitted that he had molested five minor girls as a teenager. Four of the girls were his own sisters. In the wake of the scandal, Josh resigned his position at the non-profit conservative FRC, and TLC cancelled the Duggar family’s show 19 Kids and Counting, which had been airing since 2008.
Then, in July, Josh Duggar made headlines yet again when he was implicated in the Ashley Madison data hack, when a hacktivist group released account data from the website that promoted affairs. In fact, Josh Duggar had two accounts through the website, and he admitted to not only being unfaithful to his wife but said that he had an addiction to pornography, as well. The admission was later deleted from the family’s statement.
And through it all, Anna Duggar, mother of four, has stuck by her husband. And previews of the TLC special featuring the married Duggar daughters show all three open up about the scandals.
“It was heartbreaking to hear what had happened,” an emotional Anna says in the preview of the special, marking the first time she has spoken publicly about the scandals involving her husband Josh.
Jessa and Jill both open up about their older brother Josh, as well.
“I cried a lot of tears,” Jill says. “My first thoughts were for Anna.”
But it seems as though many people — including some Duggars themselves — are not certain that very many thoughts are with Anna Duggar at all. In fact, the source told ET that there seems to be very little concern for Anna.”
“Certain members of the family are more focused on ratings and a paycheck than actually focusing on the issues at hand.”
The source then added that some of the members within the Duggar family have “chosen not to participate in the special out of respect to the serious ordeal the family has been going through in the last months.”
Jill and Jessa: Counting On premieres December 13 at 8/7 central on TLC. The special purports to focus on the lives of Jessa and Jill as wives and mothers — both Duggar daughters have welcomed sons into their families. Jill’s son, Israel David Dillard, was born in April, and Jessa and husband Ben welcomed Spurgeon Elliot in November.
But there is no doubt that many of the public — including former Duggar fans — feel as if the show is exploiting the pain of Anna Duggar for profit, as well as exploiting the serious nature of the abuse committed by Josh against four of his sisters.
What do you make of the Duggar family special — and do you think it will lead to TLC reinstating the Duggar family’s regular show, 19 Kids and Counting?
[Image via The Official Duggar Family Facebook Page]