‘Counting On’: An Eagle-Eyed Fan Lends Credence to the Idea That the Duggar Family Courtships Are Kind-Of, Sort-Of Arranged
Several weeks ago, a former member of the Duggar family church revealed some serious bombshells about the family exclusively to Radar. Amid talk of how the family handled Joshua Duggar’s molestation scandal, the insider slipped in another weird fact. They claimed that Josh’s marriage to Anna Duggar was sort of arranged, or, at the very least highly encouraged. Now, fans of the show have uncovered a photo that might prove that the Duggar courtships don’t exactly go the way the family claims.
Lauren Swanson is possibly spotted at Jill Duggar’s wedding years before she courted Josiah
An eagle-eyed fan on Reddit noticed something interesting in a re-watch of Jill Duggar’s wedding to Derick Dillard. The 2014 ceremony was uploaded by Jill Duggar herself. In the uncut footage, a girl who appears to be Lauren Swanson is spotted in the church. The eventual bride of Josiah Duggar is just hanging out in the crowd.
Sure, the fact that Lauren was a guest at Jill’s wedding doesn’t mean much. After all, the family is known for throwing massive wedding receptions. In fact, Jill and Derick hosted over 1,000 people at their 2014 nuptials. Lauren and Josiah also allege to have been friends for years before getting engaged after just six weeks of courting, according to Romper. Fans, however, think something strange is going on. It’s possible that the pair were highly encouraged to move into a romantic relationship after Josiah’s courtship to Marjorie Jackson failed miserably.
A family insider claims parents play a pivotal role in setting up couples
If Josiah and Lauren were encouraged to court by their parents, it wouldn’t be the first Duggar couple to have had a helping hand while getting together. A family insider once claimed that Jana Duggar had been promised to a boy when she was just a teenager. The courtship never happened, allegedly because the young man called it off, but the situation had reportedly been orchestrated by Jim Bob and the boy’s father. The boy has not been named.
Jim Bob also is believed to have been behind setting Jill up with Derick Dillard. The family patriarch once took great pride in the fact that he introduced Jill to her now husband. While Jim Bob’s feelings about Derick are rumored to have seriously shifted, it’s still clear he was the driving force behind them linking up.
Rumors have also swirled that Kendra Caldwell’s marriage to Joseph Duggar was highly encouraged, too. Allegedly, one of Joseph’s younger siblings had an interest in Caldwell, before Joseph swooped in. It’s possible that Jim Bob told the younger Duggar boy to back off, so his older brother could find a bride. The family has never confirmed the rumor.
Anna and Josh might have been encouraged to court to fix the family scandal
Josh Duggar was outed as a sexual predator as a teenager in front of his entire church. Forced to shave his head, then sent away to stay with a family friend, Josh returned to the family and church with some serious restrictions. The soon-to-be father of six wasn’t allowed near the young girls in the church and was kept separated from the kids, in general.
It seems, however, that Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar had another way of ensuring Duggar wouldn’t prey on his siblings; they decided to find him a wife. A church insider alleges that the courtship between Anna and Josh was set up by Jim Bob as a way of addressing his troubling behavior.