Reality television has given us some very problematic and controversial families over the years. Let's face it, you either love the Kardashians or you loathe them. Reality television has also given us famous families like the Gosselins, Sister Wives, Honey Boo Boo, the bearded men of Duck Dynasty and even the Chrisleys.
People have strong opinions of all these families, but perhaps not as strong as they do about The Duggars. Even before Josh's cheating scandals were made public, people either loved watching the Duggar and their giant family on TV or they despised them.
It's not just that the Duggars have an unusually large amount of children, it's the rules those children are forced to adhere to. While this is uber religious lifestyle obviously works for The Duggars, many have taken issue with how the children are treated.
Older Duggar children were often made to watch younger siblings, things like dancing and swimming and what most of us would consider fun, in general, are forbidden. Any physical contact with the opposite gender is strictly monitored during courtship, and of course there's not just the whole 'no sex before marriage' rule, but they can't even kiss until they're married! It seems so patriarchal and outdated to so many people.
But while Jim Bob and Michelle may have strict rules for their kids to follow, those kids do break the rules sometimes!
Check out these 15 times that the Duggar kids broke the rules and let us know who you think is going to break them next!
15 Jill Shows Her Knees!
Let's face it, Jill Duggar Dillard is the last of the Duggar kids we would expect to see rebelling against her parent's wishes. Jill was the first of the Duggar daughters to be married to husband Derick Dillard. But, it seems that mother of 2 Jill has a bit of rebel in her, like her husband. Perhaps he's had some rebelling influence over her
The Duggar kids have all been brought up under the 'modest dress' rule of thumb. While this applies to both the boys and girls in the family, it really applies to the girls. Let's face it, the boys mostly wear long pants and golf shirts or t-shirts while living at home all Duggar girls have only worn over the knee skirts or dresses as part of the modest dress they all wear. 'Dressing modestly' means keeping their shoulders, cleavage and thighs covered at all times in the Duggar household.
Now that Jill is a married mother of two, she seems to slowly but surely becoming more daring in how she dresses.
Jill recently posted this picture of herself and Derick on Instagram wearing a dress that was well above the knee. While most of us would still consider this a modest dress, we have to admit we're very curious what Jim Bob thinks!
14 Jessa And Ben's Love Connection
Jessa Duggar Seewald is the Duggar that never met a selfie she didn't like! Like her big sister Jill, Jessa is also a mother of two now. She and husband Ben Seewald are parents to two young sons, and Jessa has admitted in the past to break the family's strict courtship rules when she and Ben were courting.
The Duggars take their courting pretty seriously. Jim Bob and Michelle have a very strict set of rules for their kids when courting and that includes a lot of supervision. The courting couple is never to be left unsupervised because hormones are unpredictable! A parent or sibling must be present on all dates and copied on all text messages.
Needless to say, Jessa surprised a lot of people when she revealed that she and Ben were talking on the phone — unsupervised — almost nightly! Jessa wrote in the book Growing Up Duggar exactly what she and Ben would talk about.
"The day Ben and I started courting, we began our tradition of calling each other on the phone every night! These were such special times. We would talk about everything from how our day went, to what we had been learning from our Bible reading, and then just anything else that we wanted to talk about. These calls were not 'chaperoned.' They were private -- just between the two of us."
Sounds like Jim Bob and Michelle didn't have much to worry about.
13 Josiah Gets Social
Looks like Jessa Duggar Seewald isn't the only Duggar who likes a good selfie! Did you know that the Duggar family has strict rules about social media in their family? Basically, their children are not permitted to have their own Twitter, Instagram or Facebook accounts until they're engaged to be married. And your kids thought you were strict for making them wait until they were 12 for Snapchat!
Eagle-eyed fans, however, will notice that Josiah Duggar broke these rules because he had his own Instagram account well before he was engaged to now fiancee Lauren Swanson. It seems that Josiah is the family rule breaker, having been involved in more than one courtship. While that makes sense to most of us, it isn't really accepted in the Duggar family.
Josiah apparently had set up his social media accounts when he was first courting Marjorie Jackson back in 2015 and never shut them down even when the relationship soured. He began courting Swanson back in January before getting engaged in March. If I were Jana I would totally be using this as a reason to get her own social media account! Looks like Josiah is one Duggar child who likes to break the rules.
Josiah and Lauren are rumored to be getting married on June 30th.
Let's face it - no one was surprised when we heard Joy-Anna Duggar Forsyth was pregnant a hot minute after she married Austin Forsyth. The Duggars are very openly against using birth control and 'trust in the Lord' to give them as many children as he sees fit. What people were shocked about was just how far Joy-Anna appeared to be pregnant when she announced her happy news.
As many critics and fans of the famous family noted in their pregnancy announcement, Joy-Anna looked further along than the three months pregnant she claimed to be
Combine that with the fact that the couple had moved up their wedding date by a few months and you have the recipe for the perfect conspiracy theory.
People were convinced that Joy-Anna and Austin broke the ultimate Duggar family rule and had actually had sex and gotten pregnant before their wedding. This is why the family had to move the wedding date up and why Joy-Anna looked more than 3 months pregnant in their announcement photos.
Of course, every woman gains weight differently when they're pregnant, so how you look really has no bearing on how pregnant a woman actually is. The couple welcomed their son Gideon on February 23rd, 2018,. almost 9 months exactly after their May 26th 2017 wedding.
11 Jinger's Year Of Freedom
Jinger Duggar Vuolo is quickly becoming our favourite Duggar. Jinger and former bad boy soccer player Jeremy Vuolo tied the knot in November, 2016. Given that Jinger is a Duggar, most of us waiting with anticipation for her pregnancy announcement every month after the couple married. Heck, even her sisters were seen on their reality show 'Counting On' asking the newlywed if she was pregnant yet.
It seems that Jinger and Jeremy had other plans than to add to their family right away. Plans like maybe getting to know each other better and enjoying some time as newlyweds before adding a child in to the mix?!
While we have no idea for sure, fans have speculated that the couple broke a Duggar family rule and used birth control during their first year of marriage. Big sisters Jessa and Jill both announced pregnancies within the first few months of marriage, as did little sister Joy-Anna. Brother Joseph Duggar, who was just married to Kendra Caldwell in September of 2017 is also expecting his first child in June of this year.
Of course Jinger is now expecting the couple's first child together and is due in July, convincing people even more that she used birth control. We don't know if she did or if she didn't but we do love that she and Jeremy were able to be newlyweds for over a year before having to worry about being parents too!
10 Jinger Wears The Pants!
We already know that the Duggar family are big proponents of modest dressing, and that includes the female members of the family only wearing skirts or dresses. Michelle Duggar once explained the reasoning for the strict way of dress for the Duggar women and girls.
“My daughters are the second generation of modest dressing in this family,” Michelle Duggar has said in speaking about her decision to not wear pants. “They’ve grown up being dressed modestly, and in clothes that are definitely more feminine apparel. I’ve told my daughters this has been a joyful journey for me to learn what my Lord has called me to. I really feel like the Lord is impressing upon me that I should be modest in what I wear. And also, that I really should be defining who I am as a woman by choosing to wear dresses and skirts.”
Which is why Jinger literally made headlines around the world when she began stepping out wearing pants! First Jinger didn't get pregnant right away and then she began wearing pants! Jinger is quite the rule breaker! However, according to the Duggar family, once a daughter is married she no longer has to abide by her father's rules, just her husband's. Jeremy Vuolo actually addressed pants-gate in a sermon last December.
“It is your liberty as to whether you dress modestly with a modest pair of pants, or with a skirt, or with a T-shirt, or with a blouse,” Jeremy said during his sermon at Grace Community Church in Laredo, Texas. “It is not your liberty, women, to wear sensual, seductive clothing that is designed to draw the attention of your brothers.”
9 Jill's Body Piercing
While Jinger Duggar may be getting a lot of credit for being one of the most rebellious Duggar sisters, big sis Jill has definitely been doing her fair share lately. I definitely feel like the older Jill gets, and the more she gets to know herself outside of her parents home, the more she has tended to rebel.
Jill recently got fans talking after she debuted a new look for herself on Instagram. The mother of two happily posted a photo of herself sporting a new nose ring! Fans of the uber religious family at first didn't believe what they saw, with many implying it was simply a blemish, or not permanent. But as Jill continued to post pictures of her piece of body art, there's no doubt that her nose ring is definitely permanent.
Between Jill's shorter skirts, pants and now her nose piercing, people can't help but comment on how many Duggar rules Jill seems to be breaking.
Others feel that maybe Jill is drawing more attention to herself after husband Derick was fired from TLC for making disparaging remarks about fellow TLC star Jazz Jennings.
Either way, it's so nice to see Jill expressing herself through her clothes and various body art. She even sported a traditional henna tattoo on her hand at one point as well as the nose piercing. While we think that neither Michelle nor Jim Bob wouldn't approve, we love that Jill keeps breaking the rules!
8 Austin And Joy-Anna Get Close
Joy-Anna and Austin Forsyth were a totally cute couple when they were courting, and apparently the couple was so smitten with each other they broke multiple courtship rules!
In an episode of Counting On, the couple came clean about how they broke more than one of Jim Bob Duggar's strict rules before they got married.
Austin confirmed the couple engaged in a full-on front hug before they were married, which is a big no-no for Jim Bob. Courting couples are only allowed a side hug — and for only 3 seconds maximum — before marriage!
“We’re humans and sometimes we don’t always abide perfectly by our rules," Austin said during the episode, adding, "We try. That was a real hard try.”
And that wasn't the only rule the couple broke. He also said that he and Joy had broken curfew by staying up late talking.
“The only time that I can think of when I overstepped my bounds with my future father-in-law was probably staying up talking past curfew," the new father said.
"Just letting time slip past you and being in a good conversation," Forsyth added, "it’s really easy to do. That and probably going over the three-second hug," Forsyth said, adding to his list of rule breaking. "That’s easy to do.”
We totally agree, Austin.
7 Jinger and Jeremy Too!
We all know by now that Jim Bob Duggar has some pretty specific rules for his kids when they finally begin the courting phase. Side hugs, no more than 3 seconds are allowed. There must ALWAYS be a chaperone on dates to make sure no hanky-panky happens. And there is no kissing, at all, until marriage. Heck, they even frown on hand-holding until marriage!
However, Jinger and Jeremy seemed that they threw a lot of those rules out the window when they started courting. We all know that Jinger and Jeremy seem like two of the more progressive members of the Duggar family, so it comes as no surprise that there was a lot of touching when these two were courting.
During episodes of their hit reality show, Jeremy can be seen with his arm around Jinger even when they were courting, causing a bit of grief for old Jim Bob. There was a lot of front hugging happening too! Despite the couple being described by Michelle as 'two magnets', Jinger did vow to keep their first kiss for their wedding day.
“I think we’re still going to save our first kiss for the wedding day,” Jinger said on the show. “Jeremy and I have learned just the communication factor of a relationship, making that the priority right now and just being wise with physical affection and boundaries there. Just saving that for marriage.”
6 Dancing Derick
In addition to dressing modestly, only being able to side hug before marriage and not even being allowed social media until you're engaged, the Duggars also don't allow dancing in their family. Yes, this does sound like the family that fun forgot.
While Jim Bob and Michelle can control what their kids do while under their roof, they have basically no control when those kids get married. We're clearly seeing that as the Duggar daughters grow up and get married.
Jill Duggar's husband Derick Dillard has caused a lot of controversy over the years, mostly for his problematic Twitter posts.
But the young father of two also caused some concern when he posted two videos of people dancing at a party he had been attending.
With dancing being frowned upon by the Duggars, with Michelle stating it causes 'sensual' feelings, many were critical of Derick. Things got worse when there were actually two different videos posted. While the one that still remains on Dillard's Instagram doesn't show the father of two dancing himself, a since deleted video apparently does. Despacito was the song of the summer, and apparently, even Dillard couldn't resist!
5 Jeremy's Tattoo!
Needless to say, tattoos are a big no-no in the Duggar household. We all know that Jill Dillard got herself a traditional henna tattoo on her hand, but that will come off eventually. Perpetual bad girl of the Duggar clan, cousin Amy, also has more than one tattoo. But Amy is just a cousin, not a child of Jim Bob.
Naturally, fans were surprised to spot Jinger's husband Jeremy Vuolo sporting a tattoo on the inside of his right bicep. The former bad boy, who was also once arrested in his pre-Duggar days, has never revealed what his bicep says.
Fans have tried unsuccessfully to get a better look, but there has been no close-up pictures of the tat. Many speculate it is a bible verse of some sort. Most fans love that Jeremy has a tattoo and have spoken up in hopes that one day Jinger will get her own hidden ink one day.
I think Jinger would look awesome with a tattoo! But, although Jinger has proven to be a bit of a rebel in the past, I have a hard time believing she'd do something as scandalous as get a tattoo! Who knows though, these two seem so in love I wouldn't be surprised if they got matching tats one day just for fun!
4 Jill and Derick Go Full Frontal!
Every time I watch an episode of Counting On or 19 Kids and Counting Iand one of the Duggar kids is courting, it just makes me sad for them! These kids are just wanting to show some affection to the person they're going to marry and have babies with, and their parents won't even let them hug!
Needless to say, Jill and Derick definitely broke the 'no full frontal' hug rule when they were courting, and it was all caught on TLC's cameras.
When Derick and Jill first began courting, Derick was on a mission trip to Nepal. It had been two months since the love birds had seen each other and Jill and a large group of family had gathered at the airport to welcome Derick home. When Jill and Derick saw each other, they couldn't help but fully embrace!
"Bless their hearts, they just gave a big hug but I think intentions were to do a side hug," Michelle Duggar told the camera. "Needless to say, I'm sure they won't let that happen again."
Sure they wouldn't, Michelle. Jill's sisters Jessa and Jinger found the hug a bit amusing, and couldn't help but remark about how long it had been since the couple had seen each other. As they say, absence makes the heart grow fonder!
3 Poor Jana
Jana Duggar, eldest daughter of the Duggar family and twin of John David has so many fans confused. At 28 Jana is still childless and single. While many followers of the family have basically branded her a spinster, we can't help but love that she hasn't been forced to settle down.
Five of Jana's younger siblings, as well as older brother Josh, are now married with kids (or in Jinger's case, expecting.) Rumors have been rampant as to why Jana is still single at the age of 28, there have been rumors that the Duggar daughter has been in a few courtships, including one with NFL player Tim Tebow, none of them have ever been confirmed.
Jana seems content to stay home, tend to her impressive garden and look after her younger siblings and nieces and nephews.
Despite clearly being happy being by herself, Jana did admit that sometimes it's hard. “I know how it feels to wait for ‘Prince Charming’ to come along. I’m still waiting. Waiting is not always easy, especially in those times when all the married siblings are getting together and you can’t go along because you’re not part of ‘that’ group.”
Jana's twin John David is also still single, but people don't worry about him as much because he's a male. He has been rumoured to have a girlfriend in Texas, but the family has made no official announcements. We hope that Jana continues to do what is right for her and not rush in to courting or marriage.
2 Jinger's Short Shorts
Married Jinger is sure different than single Jinger! Looks like Jinger Duggar has done a whole lot of changing since she married Jeremy Vuolo, and a lot of it started in her closet!
Not only has Jinger taken to wearing pants and shorter dresses, but she's living her best life and wearing shorts too! This goes against Michelle and Jim Bob's rules about living modestly. When asked by TLC why Michelle insisted on dressing modestly and that her kids do as well, her answer was so she wasn't 'defrauding' anyone.
"Our interpretation was that from the neck down to the knee should be covered. By keeping those private areas covered, there's not any "defrauding" going on. My kids are taught the definition of defrauding as stirring up desires that cannot be righteously fulfilled. We don't believe in defrauding others by the way we dress. And different people may be defrauded by different things. We can't control their thoughts, but we're responsible before God for our part. And so years ago, I just felt between me and my Lord that I really needed to dress modestly."
1 Jinger's Big Apple Love
Most of us seem to credit Jeremy with bringing out Jinger's rebellious side, and it seems like he just might be deserving of that credit. Jinger has always had a bit of a rebellious streak in her, but old episodes of 19 Kids and Counting show us that the girl from Arkansas wanted to become a big city girl!
In one episode of the show the now expectant mother revealed that she was eager to leave her home state of Arkansas once she was married.
“She doesn’t want to live three hours out from civilization,” Jessa told the 19 Kids cameras.
“No! City please city please,” Jinger said, reaffirming exactly what her sister said.
Mom Michelle Duggar spoke to RadarOnline to clear up exactly what her daughter meant with that statement.
“Jinger didn’t mean she wanted to move to New York City,” her mom Michelle said. “She meant that she wants to live closer to a city. We’re talking right near a city, but not New York City," she said.
“Jinger meant she wanted to live 15 minutes from a Wal-mart. We live so far out of town on 20 acres, but Jinger wants to live closer to town, so she doesn’t have to drive so far to go shopping.”
Fans of the show probably weren't surprised to learn that Jinger moved from Arkansas to Laredo, Texas where Jeremy lived after they got married. It's not New York, but it's also not Arkansas!