She may look like a normal girl in her mid-twenties, but for those that have followed Jill Duggar's story for years, it is clear that she has not lived a normal life. Raised in a family of 19 kids, Jill was the first Duggar girl to get married and although her family doesn’t believe in watching television, she has had her own reality show for a lot of her life. Jill follows the traditional Duggar rules like not holding hands until you are engaged and not kissing until you are married.
Growing up, Jill also followed the rule of only wearing skirts and dresses instead of shorts and pans. Now that she is married with two kids of her own, she has actually gained a little independence and made the controversial decision to put on a pair of pants for the first time in her life. While the Duggar rules may seem extreme and their values are often seen as overly traditional, Jill and her family still have a huge fan-base.
Society clearly enjoys watching the lives of people who live a little differently than most. Many fans know a lot about Jill Duggar already, but just in case you didn’t know, here are 15 little-known facts about Jill Duggar.
15 She Is A Certified Midwife
According to Romper.com, Jill Duggar had to take an intense 7-hour comprehensive exam before she could become a certified professional midwife. Apparently, Jill passed with flying colors and gained her certification. Jill’s husband, Derek, even posted on the family blog and took the opportunity to brag a little bit. He said,
“I am so proud of her for her diligence, perseverance, and hard work to see this long road through to its end and reaching her goal of becoming a CPM.”
Jill’s desire to become a birthing specialist is really no surprise when you take into consideration the family that she grew up in. From the time Jill was little she was watching her mom give birth just about every nine months. And, home births and midwives have been a common thing in their family for a long time. All of the Duggar girls or females who married into the Duggar family have attempted to give birth at home. With this idea of not going to the hospital to have a baby being so common throughout Jill’s life, it makes sense that she would simply want to be apart of the birthing and labor process in her own way.
14 Jill Was The First Duggar Girl To Get Married
There have been so many Duggar weddings since Jill got married that it is so crazy to think back to her wedding. Jill was the first Duggar girl to get married and the entire celebration was featured on their show 19 Kids and Counting. Since that time, many of her sisters have gotten married, and one brother. Jill definitely paved the way for her sibling and set a lot of the standards for dating and engagement.
Jill and Derek talked to her mom and dad once they got engaged and decided that it was okay to hold hands at that stage in their relationship. However, nothing more than that.
Jill previously told People that she thinks, “it is safer and makes it more special to wait to kiss until your wedding day,” adding, “To save the physical side of your marriage for your wedding day and not going further than you should — we want to have no regrets."
Living a life without regrets is definitely a goal for most people and the Duggars really seem to know how to work that system. Luckily, Jill and Derek did not share their first kiss until their wedding day, so it sounds like they stuck to their guns and didn’t end up with any regrets.
13 Her Husband Is Very Controversial On Twitter
Jill’s husband, Derick Dillard, has recently made some huge waves on Twitter by spreading hate to a fellow TLC star Jazz Jennings. Jazz is a transgender teenager who, according to OK!, was diagnosed with gender identity disorder at the age of four. However, Derick still felt the need to spread his hateful “opinion” on his favorite social media outlet.
Back in August Derick tweeted about the premiere of "I Am Jazz",
“What an oxymoron... a 'reality' show which follows a non-reality. ‘Transgender’ is a myth. Gender is not fluid; it's ordained by God.”
He added, “I want to be clear. I have nothing against him. I only have issue with the words and definitions being propagated here.”
As his rant continued, many followers jumped to Jazz’s defense, pointing out the fact that he used the wrong pronoun and even accused him, a grown man, of bullying a teenage girl online. Jazz showed herself to be the bigger person, responding with the tweet, “Every day I experience cyber-bullying, but I keep sharing my story. Today was no different.”
This is not the only time Derick has rude and controversial comments on Twitter and it likely won’t be the last.
12 Derick Dillard Was Let Go From ‘Counting On’
In the wake of Derick’s Twitter storm, TLC, the network that airs his show ‘Counting On’, felt the need to come out with a statement of their own. The network tweeted, “We want to let our viewers know that Derick Dillard has not participated in Counting On for months and the network has no plans to feature him in the future. We want to reiterate that Derick's personal statements do not reflect the views of the network. TLC is proud to share the story of Jazz Jennings and her family and will continue to do so."
While many people are still convinced that Derick was fired from the show, the reality star still stands by the fact that he and his wife quit filming. According to InTouchWeekly, Derick is claiming that he was not fired and that TLC will never confirm that he was because it’s simply not true.
Apparently, Derick and Jill wanted to leave and the network didn’t want them to.
The funny part about it all is that even if Derick is telling the truth about deciding to leave the show with Jill, the network is probably extremely relieved now because of the controversy that he is bringing to light.
11 Derick Is Dragging Jill Down With Him
Jill Duggar has for the most part always been viewed as sweet and harmless. Although it has probably been assumed that her beliefs about social issues probably were conservative, it wasn’t really discussed that much. She always focused on love and kindness. That is until she married her outspoken husband. It is unclear why the couple decided to stop filming with TLC and if that decision was mainly because of Derick. However, poor Jill is now being dragged down with her husband because of their association.
According to People, Jill shared a statement on her Instagram account as a response to all of this controversy. She wrote, “To disagree doesn’t = hate or judgment. Love doesn’t always = approval. Just because I disagree with my child on something doesn’t mean I hate him, and just because I love and forgive him doesn’t mean I approve of everything he does. You can be friends with, love and care for people you don’t agree with 100%.”
It isn’t exactly clear if Jill is referring to the LGBTQI community with this statement or her own husband. It’s possible that she is trying to speak to both. Maybe she doesn’t approve of the way her husband is using his platform, but that doesn't mean she is not going to love him.
10 Jill Was One Of Josh Duggar’s Victims
A few years ago now, Josh Duggar confessed to performing multiple inappropriate acts on four of his sisters and a babysitter. The scandal that had been hidden and brushed under the rug for so many years caused so much backlash that the Duggar’s show was even canceled by TLC. Their show used to be called ‘19 Kids and Counting,’ but once this scandal broke the network did some quick maneuvers and came out with a spinoff show called ‘Counting On.’
During the show’s premiere, many of the older kids were seen sharing their feelings on what had just happened to their family. Back in 2015, Jill broke down in front of the cameras and revealed that she was a victim of her brother’s mistreatment.
According to InTouchWeekly, Jill stated,
“Everybody makes their own decisions and everybody makes their own choices, but they're not the only ones who suffer the consequences. Everyone around 'em does."
Jill definitely suffered from Josh’s choices and actions. Not only was she mistreated by him, but she also did an interview with Megyn Kelly defending her brother and his mistakes from all those years ago. Jill was unaware that he was currently cheating on his wife at the time. Apparently, she wasn’t too happy about doing the interview after discovering that.
9 She Was A Missionary In Central America
According to the Daily Mail, Jill and Derick have decided to end their time in Central America, claiming that it had been “a joy and a blessing” but that God was leading them back to their home country. The couple announced that they would be doing missionary work in Central America in July of 2015, and their struggles have been slightly documented on the reality show ‘Counting On.’ Jill and Derick traveled to Central America when their son Israel was still very little, and this was in the midst of the Zika virus. The couple was taking a risk by traveling there.
Jill and Derick were gone for roughly two years, but they would occasionally come back to the states for a visit. They were constantly talking about the dangers of living in Central America and how they would often fear for their lives. Jill even stayed in Central America while she was pregnant with her second child.
It looks like the couple is now back in the States for good. “Through a number of circumstances, and guided by much prayer and counsel, we are discerning the Lord leading our family’s full-time ministry back to the United States for the time being,” they wrote.
8 Jill Asked Her Fans For Money
According to TheAshleysrealityroundup.com, Jill and Derick created a way for fans to donate to their missionary work. The link appeared on the Duggar family website and was called “Dillard Family Ministries.” However, the organization that formed in 2015 has apparently been taken down. The couple wrote,
“Beginning this month, we are discontinuing Dillard Family Ministries and will no longer be accepting donations through this organization.”
It’s unclear if this site will be down forever or just temporarily while the couple gets back on their feet. Jill did just have her second son Samuel, which she delivered in the United States, and questions about Jill and Derick’s financial status has been swirling. The two have gotten a lot of hate for asking their fans for money in the past. This last round of begging was even worse as Derick created a GoFundMe, asking for $10,000.
Many fans were quick to point out that this came in the wake of cyberbullying a transgender teenager, which caused many to pass on donating. Other fans questioned where their donations were going and what they were being used for since Derick and Jill were flying back and forth from the states for weddings and other family events.
7 Jill And Derick Started Dating Right After Meeting
Jill was actually introduced to her husband by her father. Apparently Jim-Bob Duggar had worked with Derek in the past and thought he would be a good fit for Jill. He proceeded to put them in contact and the two would Facetime quit frequently. Derek was doing missionary work in Nepal at the time so it was not really possible for him to come to the states and meet Jill in person. After months of talking online, Jill was convinced that she was in love with someone that she had never even met. It was time to hop on a plane with her dad and go visit Derick halfway across the world.
Jill told People that, “I traveled over 36 hours to meet him and we had a film crew filming and jet lag so it is a different dynamic than most people have. But it was really special. We enjoyed the first several days getting to spend time together and getting to see things together.”
By the end of the trip, Jill couldn’t leave without making things official with Derick. He offered her a necklace and asked if she would consider entering into an official courtship with him. Fortunately for him, Jill said yes. However, it was a bit risky to ask a girl to enter into a serious relationship with someone they just met.
6 Jill Has Two Sons
Jill never said if she was hoping for a girl with her second pregnancy, but whatever she wanted, she ended up with another boy. And, Jill and Derick had two young boys under the age of three. Their first son together was born on April 6, 2015, and named Israel David Dillard. Jill’s second son was born about 2 ½ years later on July 8, 2017, and named Samuel Scott Dillard.
According to Daily Mail, Jill and Derick had revealed the name of their second child nearly a month before Jill’s due date. The couple was clearly excited to share the little one’s identity with the world. They even said, “Children really are a wonderful blessing from God.”
“Having Israel has been such a delight to us that we know a second sweet baby will only continue to add joy to our family. We are thankful to God for this sweet child and we cannot wait to see her or him face to face!” the couple continued. Being a mom of boys is a unique and special experience that not every couple gets to go through. The bond between brothers is usually pretty strong and unbreakable, so the Dillards have a lot to look forward to.
5 Both Her Babies Were Delivered Via C-Section
As an advocate for home births it is a little surprising that Jill had to undergo two c-sections, one with both of her pregnancies. The midwife was probably super bummed about the way her deliveries turned out. Once you go through hours and hours of labor, you just want that baby to come out.
Imagine going through all that pain only to find out that something isn’t right and you will need to have a c-section anyway. At that point, you would think that the hours and hours of torturous labor really were for nothing.
If a natural delivery was out of the question based on the baby’s size and positioning, it seems like Jill should have known before going through all that pain for nothing.
According to HollywoodLife, fans were pretty worried about Jill’s hospital picture and the fact that she was forced to have two c-sections with her first two pregnancies. This could cause some issues in the future if Jill does decide to have kids. There are only so many c-sections a doctor will let you have, and so it doesn’t look good so far if Jill was wanting a massive family like her parents.
4 Birth Control Is Controversial In Her Family
For those of us who have been fans of the Duggar family for years, we already know that birth control is an extremely touchy subject in their family. It’s safe to say that these children were raised with the idea that birth control could be sinful. When Jill’s parents were first married, they were on birth control and Michelle Duggar suffered a miscarriage. They blamed the pills and from that moment on decided that children were gifts from God and that they would never try to prevent having another child again.
This mindset clearly worked since they ended up with 19 kids, but there has been a lot of speculation regarding whether every single Duggar couple has followed in these footsteps. According to E! News, Jill was 93 days pregnant after only 90 days of marriage. While this calculation definitely doesn’t mean she got pregnant before marriage, I think it is safe to say that she was not using birth control in the beginning. However, once Jill and Derick had Israel, they went to Central America where it was extremely dangerous to have kids. And, Jill didn’t get pregnant for over a year and a half which sparked some birth control rumors.
3 Jill Does Not Always Agree With Her Husband
It is clear that Jill’s husband Derick is way more outspoken and far more controversial than Jill ever was. Jill was known as the sweet, soft, and caring sister. She was smart and compassionate and definitely wasn’t the one who would make you feel terrible for doing nothing at all. From the looks of Derick’s recent tweets and Jill’s Instagram response, I think it’s safe to say that Jill does not always agree with her husband or his decisions. However,
Jill still goes along with what he does and says and tries not to cause conflict because part of her religious belief is to submit to her husband.
The Hollywood Gossip sites Jill Duggar’s remarks as disagreeing with her husband since she stated that “you can be friends with, love and care for people you don’t agree with 100%.” This seemed to be relating to her husband and his homophobic and transphobic tweets. Unfortunately, Jill still agrees with her husband when it comes to the base of his argument. That much is clear. However, she may not agree with how he goes about spreading that message, but it doesn't seem like Jill will be able to stop him any time soon.
2 Jill Is An Author
It may seem to fans like Jill doesn’t really have a job and she doesn’t really work. However, besides her missionary work and her midwifery training, Jill is also an author. Jill and her sisters wrote a book a while back titled Growing Up Duggar.
TLC shared an excerpt from the book and in Jill’s section, she thinks back to when she was first dating Derick. She explained that she would ask Derick what his opinion was on certain topics and if he didn’t have an opinion he would admit it but then have a desire to learn more and be educated on the topic.
The book really revolves around the older girls’ dating life and how their father instilled in them what values to truly look for when they got to that age. They discuss a few non-negotiable traits that their man should have, like being a Christian, wanting children, and being good with money. After that, each girl was able to let their own needs and desires come out because they all wanted something a little different in a husband. For example, not every girl or guy is made to like the mission field. However, for Jill and Derick, they both loved the idea of traveling to dangerous places in order to do God’s work.
1 The Future Is Unclear
According to InTouchWeekly.com, Jill and Derick are back in Arkansas and are now working for Cross Church which focuses on college ministry. Derick has been seen wearing the church’s t-shirts and has appeared with Jill and his sons at many of the bbq cookouts that they have held so far. While college culture is probably fairly normal for Derick since he attended a University and actually has a degree in Accounting. However, Jill is most definitely not used to the short shorts and lifestyle of college.
Even private Christian colleges might scare some of the Duggar members since they have been so sheltered for their entire life.
Although it is not clear how long the couple will work at Cross Church, that is where they are currently. Derick even made waves again when Cross Church announced that they would be hosting an event on same-sex attraction. Comments came pouring in, questioning the speaker’s motive and asking if he was the “pray the gay away” guy.
Derick’s generic answer simply said, “Our church invites ALL to come. I’m open to all who would join our family.” This clearly didn’t sit well coming after all of Derick’s other tweets, but he never truly addressed the question.
References: Romper.com, TVGuide.com, OK!, InTouchWeekly, PeopleTVWatch, InTouchWeekly, DailyMail.co.uk, TheAshleysrealityroundup.com, People.com, DailyMail.co.uk, Hollywoodlife.com, E! News, TLC.com, InTouchWeekly