There has been plenty of speculation about Jana Duggar and exactly what her role is in the family. Some viewers see Jana as the “Cinderella Duggar” or “stay-at-home-daughter,” whose job is to remain unmarried and run her parents’ household until the younger kids are old enough to care for themselves. Others believe Jana is just waiting for the right man.
Whether or not Jana would be permitted to enter a courtship and marriage, or to leave home on her own for college or career, a recent interview reveals that she’s definitely not happy about all aspects of her role in the Duggar family.
Jana is the eldest daughter in the Duggar household, and the three oldest of her sisters — Jessa, Jill, and Jinger — have all married and left home. The fifth-oldest daughter, Joy-Anna, is now engaged and will likely soon be married. (Some viewers even think they’ve pinned down the date.)
The Duggar family’s belief system maintains strict gender roles. On top of that, Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar say they enacted additional rules about brothers and sisters interacting after Josh Duggar admitted to molesting several of his sisters, as well as another underage female.
Taken together, these rules and beliefs mean that Jana’s most likely companions in her home are dictated less by shared interest or common age than by gender. With her oldest siblings beginning to marry off at an increasing pace, this leaves her to spend time with the younger girls — and the oldest Duggar girl who is not currently in a relationship is 11-year-old Johannah.
Of course, sisters can be close despite differences in age, but an 11-year-old isn’t likely to be the closest confidante for a 27-year-old woman.
In fact, the Duggar Family Blog reports that Jana has admitted her role can be a lonely one and says it’s “not always easy.”
Jana spoke to Crown Of Beauty about the struggles of being the last adult female in the household who is single. Though some viewers have speculated that Jana isn’t interested in finding a husband, she told the interviewer that she is waiting for her “Prince Charming.”
However, she also revealed something about the dynamics of the Duggar family’s rules and beliefs that may startle some viewers — when the married siblings get together, Jana isn’t able to join in.
“Waiting is not always easy. Especially in those times when all the married siblings are getting together and you can’t go along because your not part of ‘that’ group.”
Of course, that the Duggar family requires an “accountability partner” for internet use and outings, and a chaperone for any interactions with a member of the opposite sex, is well-known. We also know that the Duggar kids — even the adult offspring — were limited in being allowed to visit their cousin Amy Duggar King, lest she have an influence on them.
Now, we’re hearing that Jana Duggar, because she isn’t married, is actually being limited in her visits with the siblings who do have spouses. This goes a bit farther than when she compared herself, last year, to her siblings who were becoming parents, suggesting she felt a divide because she wasn’t in that particular role.
Then, too, Jana assured viewers that there had been potential suitors, and that remaining single was her own choice. However, at that point she didn’t mention being left out when her married siblings get together. Declaring that she can’t be a part of those activities is new.
What does Jana say that she’s been encouraged to do to fill that gap?
…when I’m having a hard or discouraging day, I try to look for ways to bless or serve someone else.
She even describes placing a sign over the kitchen sink to remember that housework can be “ministry” and to stay encouraged about what she’s doing.
Is it time for 27-year-old Jana Duggar to be given more agency over her own life? Is it really so taboo for an unmarried woman to hang out with her married siblings?
[Featured Image by Duggar Family/Instagram]