The Duggar family’s unusual dating (sorry, courting) rules were well documented long before they were embroiled in scandal.
Ever since Josh Duggar’s child molestation history – and brazen adultery – was exposed, they’ve all been under a microscope.
Yet, despite his hypocrisy, and the fact that their every move is under heavier scrutiny than ever, they weather every storm.
TLC axed 19 Kids & Counting, only to quickly come back with Counting On, featuring the same Duggars and their beliefs.
Well, sans the radioactive Josh. And now Derick.
Josh was a bridge too far for even the hard core believers to stomach seeing on TV any longer, but the fan base remains.
The Duggars themselves are similarly loyal to their beliefs. When it comes to the Arkansas family’s values, they stand firm.
Their belief system certainly requires conviction in order to practice, since the list of policies for love and life is not short.
Despite Joy bailing, Jinger’s new life in L.A., Derick’s sex on the brain and Jana’s girlfriend (supposedly), the rules remain.
Here are the most bizarre things they don’t allow …
1. Girl-on-Girl Romance
Needless to say, the Duggars believe in traditional “family values” a.k.a. that homophobia is a sin. Rumors of Jana Duggar’s sexuality have circulated for years, with an insider telling The Hollywood Gossip that she was in love with her best friend Laura DeMasie. There’s been no official confirmation of this, but Jim Bob was reportedly so upset by how close they were that he arranged for her to get a job and move to Atlanta, far from the compound where Jana remains single at age 30. In a family where 20 is the usual courting age, her lack of courtships stands out even more.
2. Dates Without Chaperones
The Duggar parents don’t just stand by their beliefs on relationships … they’ll stand literally next to their kids during their relationships. The parents will often accompany the kids on dates in order to maintain “accountability” and “keep things from going in the wrong direction,” per Jim Bob. The girls are fine with this, as being alone with men puts them in grave “moral danger.” When the parents aren’t available, their older siblings will often tag along, making every date a group date and a family affair.
3. Non-Group Texts
Even in the kids’ late teens and early 20s, mom and dad are creeping on their text messages. When Ben Seewald jokingly wrote to fiancee Jessa, “Give me a ring,” Jim Bob actually jumped in on the group text, writing “No ring yet.” With a smiley face emoticon. Seriously, he did that. Whatever you think of him, Jim Bob needs his own Instagram so he can start posting screen shots of this stuff.
4. Hugs on the Chest
This moment you see here between Jill Duggar and Derick Dillard would not have been permitted until the couple was married. Side hugs are the preferred method of PDA in order to prevent any further temptation or “hanky panky,” as has been well documented on 19 Kids and Counting. The Duggars love their side hugs so hard … though not too too hard, lest they lead to full-frontal hugging and the raging hormones that accompany such rampant chest-on-chest action. We’re getting riled up just thinking about it. And any touching beyond that? Save it for your wedding night.
5. Riding in Cars Together
It’s no secret that the Duggars have strict dating rules. We’ve talked about some already and there are plenty more to come on this list. But one of the most bizarre was revealed only recently in an episode in which Joseph and Kendra Caldwell officially started courting. They were seen in a car, driving together … with one of the younger Duggar sitting in between them in the front seat of a pickup truck. Shortly after the courtship “proposal,” she was allowed to slide almost all the way over to Joseph. Not close enough for any inappropriate touching, obviously, but without another dude in between, which is mandatory during the “just friends” phase. Wow.
6. Co-Ed Hide and Seek
In the wake of the Josh Duggar molestation scandal going public years later, Jim Bob and Michelle gave in interview in which they talked about all of the things they did in its aftermath. In between blaming Josh’s indiscretions on being a curious pubescent boy, they discussed family rules that resulted from this, such as the children no longer being allowed to play co-ed hide and seek. That’s right, no two children regardless of age are allowed to go off alone, even in the context of this childhood pastime. How much that really helps the situation they were responding to remains to be seen.