The show 19 Kids and Counting aired in 2005 and ran for seven years, although it was rightfully named 17 Kids and Counting when it aired. It followed the Duggar family who are devout Baptists. The show soon became popular because it was so different from other shows on television. The family talks about interesting topics such as purity, courtship rather than dating, homeschooling, and monitored television and movie choices.
The most obvious difference is their choice to have as many children as God will bless them with, hence their 19 children. While having different priorities and beliefs can be refreshing at times, it doesn’t come without criticism. Theories and rumors have surfaced from all over, with no evidence to back up a lot of it.
Here are 20 false things about the Duggar family everyone still believes.
20 The Duggars Are Mormon
With their large family and conservative fashion, many people believe the Duggars are Mormon. While Mormon families would look similar to outsiders, the Duggars are actually devout independent Baptists. Some rules they follow are no pants for the women, wholesome tv shows and movies only, as well as filters on their internet.
19 Jim Bob Makes All The Decisions
While they Duggars believe that Jim Bob is the head of the household, it doesn’t mean that he makes all the decisions. As seen on the show, Michelle is in charge of a lot. She handles all the kid’s homeschooling as well as the day to day tasks. She has also left to talk about her book, putting Jim Bob in charge of the children.
18 They Don't Believe In Birth Control
There is a little truth in this rumor. Michelle and Jim Bob have talked about how they don’t use contraceptives since they blame their first miscarriage on birth control pills. However, there are other birth control methods. Also, the married children have made remarks on how they never said they didn’t believe in birth control.
17 The Kids Don't Receive Any Education
Even though homeschool is a popular option for many parents, many people think that the Duggar children couldn’t possibly be getting a good education since they are homeschooled. This is also due to the fact that Michelle has so many children, and viewers don’t believe that she can provide for all of their individual educational needs. However, the children actually are extremely well educated!
16 They Are Part Of A Cult
As soon as people hear that the Duggars are religious and that they have 19 children, the word cult is automatically thrown out there. While they do things differently from a lot of other families in the world, it’s not because they’re part of a cult. All of their decisions are based on their religious beliefs.
15 The Show Is Scripted
One myth that has been thrown out about 19 Kids and Counting is that the show is scripted. Some people expect the children to misbehave more while others just expect there to be more juicy drama. With their upbringing, the children are raised to be respectful which would explain why they aren’t always running all over the place.
14 Michelle Has Always Been Strict
After watching the show, many assume that Michelle has always been strict and also abided by the same rules her children have. However, Michelle wasn’t always as religious as she is today. She was even a cheerleader in high school and wore skirts that she would not allow her children to wear today!
13 They Can't Have Social Media Until They Get Married
Many fans have speculated that the children are not allowed to have social media accounts until they are married, and there was good evidence to support this theory -- none of the single Duggars had a social media account in the past. However, Jana is now active on Instagram, which kills this theory entirely.
12 The Girls Only Care About Finding Husbands
When you compare the kids’ relationships to the rest of the world, they’re definitely the odd ball out. People are getting married older and older, so fans find it weird that the Duggar girls get married at such young ages. Contrary to popular beliefs, the girls aren’t just out there hunting for men.
11 The Kid's Marriages Are Arranged
With the kids getting married so young, another theory is that some of the kids actually have arranged marriages. Jim Bob and Michelle are involved in all the courtships including monitoring the couple’s communication to accompanying them on dates. However, it’s completely up to the children who they decide to marry.
10 The Girls Aren't Allowed To Have Lives Until They're Married
The Duggar girls have all gone straight from their parents house to a home with their spouse which has caused fans to believe that they’re not allowed to have their own life. If you watch the show, you’ll see that the girls have many hobbies and have even pursued higher education.
9 The Siblings Don't Actually Get Along
Many believe that the excellent relationship between siblings is nothing but a facade. With 19 kids in a household, how can they all get along so well? Since they were homeschool, their siblings were also their friends which allowed them to become close. They even have their own spin-off show, Counting On.
8 The Kids Are Starving For Attention
With so many children, many people have wondered how they all get the individual attention all children crave. Jim Bob and Michelle have addressed this question on the show and have said they pay special attention to the children and their feelings. They are also homeschooled, which means they are with Michelle all day long.
7 Michelle Uses The Kids As Slaves
The Duggars are often put on blast for having the kids do so much around the house saying they just use them as slaves. While the children do their fair share around the house, it’s nothing more than most children with a set of chores to accomplish. Learning how to clean up after yourself is an important skill to learn.
6 It Was Too Dangerous For Michelle To Birth 19 Children
Along with people questioning the logistics of having 19 children such as giving them attention or proper education, some also think that Michelle put herself and her children at risk by giving birth so many times. However, Michelle has followed medical advice with all pregnancies, even opting for a c-section when the doctor deemed it necessary.
5 TLC Built The Duggar House
Since TLC documented the building of the Duggar house, many have speculated that TLC actually paid for the house. However, the Duggars actually owned the land and a lot of the materials before beginning the build. Although there were some supplies donated, so the Duggars did receive a little help.
4 They Would Be Extremely Poor If It Wasn't For Their Show
One theory floating around is that the Duggars need their show to make a living, and that they would be extremely poor without it. While I’m sure the TLC checks are a great source of income, the Duggars actually have several sources of income including rental properties, and both Jim Bob and Michelle were real estate agents.
3 They Don't Live As Frugally As They Claim
The show often documents Michelle using coupons or going to thrift stores for clothes, but some believe that’s just a ploy for the show. With the money they make off the show, shouldn’t they be able to buy whatever they want? Michelle actually does shop frugally, choosing to show her children how to budget and be responsible with their money.
2 The Kids Rush Into Marriage To Escape Their Family
There are a lot of theories as to why the Duggar girls rush into marriage. One of those is that the girls are actually trying to escape their family since they had so many rules while living at home. However, even after getting married all the children continue to remain close with all family members which leads us to believe that’s not true.
1 Michelle Won't Let Jana Date
As the oldest child still unmarried, there are a lot of rumors about Jana Duggar. One rumor is that Michelle and Jim Bob keep her at home to take care of the other children. So apparently they can’t get married young and they can’t stay single! The Duggar children can’t catch a break!