The Duggar family has been criticized for a lot of things, mainly involving how controlling the parents, Michelle and Jim Bob, seem to be over their adult children. There have been rumors for quite a while that the parents arrange marriages for their children, ensuring that they marry someone Jim Bob especially approves of.
The rumors ramped up again recently after a Reddit user reviewed old footage of a 19 Kids and Counting episode in which Jill Duggar met her future husband for the first time.
Jill Duggar Dillard and Derick Dillard met through her father after Derick decided to be his “prayer partner.” This, however, looked like it was a sly way for him to find his way into the hearts of one of the Duggar daughters.
Fans commented on the fact that Jill and Derick only met in person after speaking online when Jill and her father made a trip half-way around the world to visit Derick on his missionary work in Nepal.
They also commented on the fact that Jill and Derick never really got a lot of time to get to know one another privately. Although they were allowed to Skype and FaceTime, all calls were monitored by her parents.
Similarly, the other Duggar children were not allowed to privately talk to any of their spouses at all. In order to hold kids accountable, Duggar family members make sure those who are not married and courting or engaged are with someone else at all times. This means they really can’t get to know one another before they make a huge commitment.
Although fans were enthralled with Jill Duggar’s courtship process, as she was the first Duggar outside of Josh to court and eventually get married, many questioned the process. Since then, Derick Dillard has fallen out of favor of many fans, especially due to his controversial social media presence.
The family has denied that they arrange marriages for their children, but Joy-Anna Duggar’s sobbing tears while picking out a wedding dress made some think she was not happy to be marrying her future husband, Austin Forsyth. The pair is expecting a baby in a couple of weeks.