‘Counting On’: Did John David Force Abbie Burnett to Quit Her Nursing Job?

Most Duggar fans understand one simple truth about the family. In a Duggar household, the men make the money, and the women stay home and raise the children. This tradition began with Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar and has continued with all their married offspring so far. While a few Duggar wives have part-time professions or side gigs, their central focus is always at home.

That’s what made it so surprising when John-David Duggar, the second eldest Duggar (along with his twin sister, Jana), married a woman who had a legitimate career. Unlike the other Duggar ladies, who decided to skip out on college, Burnett was a registered nurse when she met John-David.

She WAS a nurse, anyway. These days, Abbie Burnett followed the Duggar tradition of not having a career when she chose to leave nursing after marriage, even though she liked her job. Did her new husband force her to quit?

Are Duggar wives forbidden from working?

There’s a definite difference between a typical custom and a hard and fast rule. While it’s unclear if Duggar women are expressly banned from having careers other than homemaking and mothering, obviously the peer pressure may have something to do with it.

John-David probably didn’t demand that Abbie quit her job. But since he is accustomed to women being home and sees it play out with his sisters and sisters-in-law, there is a good chance he was relieved when Abbie told him she’d be leaving nursing.

Does Abbie Duggar miss her old career?

Abbie Burnett explained that nursing wasn’t a lifelong dream, but more like an accidental detour. She fell into the profession after her grandparents became terminally ill and she witnessed nursing staff and hospice workers caring for them. Their compassion during a difficult time was a source of inspiration for Burnett.

During a recent episode of Counting On, Abbie Burnett admitted to leaving her job a bit reluctantly, but also leaving the door open to go back. “I just love taking care of people. But I left my job a couple of months ago so that I could plan for the wedding,” Burnett says in the show, “I do hope to go back to nursing one day, especially so I can keep up my license and my skills.”

Are John-David and Abbie Duggar planning to have children soon?

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Like all married Duggar couples, it’s likely that John-David and Abbie are using any sort of birth control. Fans are expecting a pregnancy announcement any day now.

Abbie Burnett wasn’t pregnant yet when she made the tough decision to walk away from her hard-earned career. But surely she plans to expand her family soon and wanted to prepare for it. Luckily, her medical training is guaranteed to come in handy once she does have little ones in the house.

And as she said on the Counting On episode, it’s not like she has to give up nursing forever. Just for the next couple decades until all the kids are out of the house. It’ll go quickly for sure!