‘Counting On’: Critics Have Mixed Feelings About Joy Duggar and Austin Forsyth’s Marriage: ‘There Is Nothing to Love’

Joy Duggar and Austin Forsyth tied the knot back in 2017. The two had a bit of an unusual courtship — they pushed their wedding up by a full five months with hardly any notice. In the beginning of their courtship, some fans were convinced their marriage was arranged.

Over time, though, Duggar and Forsyth started to grow on fans. Now, many have mixed feelings about the couple — torn between believing they’re right for each other and remaining convinced they’re not.

Joy-Anna and Austin Forsyth
Joy Duggar and Austin Forsyth | Austin and Joy Forsyth via Instagram

Joy Duggar and Austin Forsyth met through church

Duggar and Forsyth grew up with each other. Forsyth’s family moved to Arkansas when he was young and began attending the same church as the Duggars. The two remained friends for years, but Duggar was four years younger than Forsyth, so for most of their youth, they were not on the same page.

When Duggar turned 18, though, Forsyth started to see her differently. Duggar claims she had always had a thing for him, but since Forsyth was older, he didn’t see it. Once the two started courting, though, things moved quickly. They were engaged within a few months and even pushed their wedding up from October 2017 to May 2017 because they couldn’t wait to marry.

Fans were once convinced their marriage was arranged

For a while, fans weren’t believing the Duggar and Forsyth just miraculously fell for each other. Though it’s plausible that Duggar had had a crush on Forsyth from a young age, some didn’t think it made sense that Forsyth woke up one morning and fell in love with her. With that, many people began to think their marriage was arranged.

For a while, fans have suspected that not all of the Duggar marriages happen naturally. Mostly because Jim Bob always seems to be the one who introduces the kids to their future spouses. The exception is Jinger Duggar, who met Jeremy Vuolo through her sister and brother-in-law, Jessa and Ben Seewald. (And, unsurprisingly, Jinger was the first Duggar to branch out from the rest of her family.)

These days, people have mixed feelings about the couple

As time has gone on, some people have warmed up to Duggar and Forsyth. They feel their roles are fairly equal; Duggar helps Forsyth flip homes, and Forsyth seems to be hands-on with the couple’s son. Still though, others think the two are nothing more than followers of Jim Bob and Michelle. They were married young, had kids young, and follow their religion just as closely. Some critics of the show debated the couple in a Reddit thread, and there were mixed reviews.

“I know it’s an unpopular opinion around here but on the marriage retreat episode it seems like Joy and Austin had the best communication and relationship,” one user wrote. “I think Jill and Joy hit the Duggar spouse lotto,” someone else added. “Austin and Joy are so… In defiance of all of their parents’ bullsh*t and I will always love them for it,” another user commented.

But not everyone agreed. “Austin and Joy are defying absolutely nothing… If anything they’re just upholding the shi*ty belief system,” someone wrote. “Austin is a problem both politically and religiously… There is nothing to love about that couple,” another user added. “I think he and Joy were actually attracted to each other, but he seems like kind of a jerk,” someone else wrote, seeing both sides.

People will likely always have mixed reviews of the Duggars, but some like certain marriages more than others. Duggar and Forysth’s marriage has always been one that critics can’t seem to figure out.