‘Counting On’: Fans Noticed the Duggar Sisters Didn’t Seem Very Close All the Way Back in 2016

Jill Duggar is more vocal than ever about the rift between her and the rest of the Duggar family. Now, we’re looking at old clips of Counting On — and a clip from 2016 shows a few of the older Duggar sisters reuniting after months apart. While the sisters have always maintained how close they are, fans think the clip proves they weren’t nearly as united as they tried to appear.

A ‘Counting On’ clip shows the Duggar sisters getting together in 2016

The Duggar family is ultra-close, as Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar made sure their 19 children all helped each other when it came to household chores and school. And the older Duggar sisters seemed particularly close. While many of them no longer live in the same state, Jinger, Jessa, Jana, and Joy-Anna Duggar frequently post photos of each other to Instagram whenever they get together.

Back in 2016, Counting On showed a sweet meeting between Israel Dillard, Jill’s son, and Spurgeon Duggar, Jessa’s son. It seems the family flew out to Central America to meet up with Jill, as she and Derick were doing mission work at the time.

“I was definitely most excited to see Jill,” Jessa told the camera. “But, it was also super exciting to see Izzy and how much he’s grown. … It’s just kinda sad thinking we missed out on so much of his development here and how he’s growing. But, looking forward to catching up during this week.”

After Jill and Jessa greeted each other, the other Duggars in tow also said hello to Jill.

Fans think none of the sisters seemed very excited to see each other

(L-R) Jessa Duggar, Jinger Duggar, Jill Duggar, and Jana Duggar visit 'Extra'
(L-R) Jessa Duggar, Jinger Duggar, Jill Duggar, and Jana Duggar visit ‘Extra’ | D Dipasupil/Getty Images for Extra

Jill and Jessa seemed very happy to reconnect after several months of being apart, as they even had quite a few moments with each other’s babies. But once Jinger and Jana arrived, fans think the family moments seemed much more impersonal. Many of the Duggars gave side hugs to each other and didn’t seem to linger around for much conversation.

“I have never seen a family that acts so cold towards each other,” one fan commented on the YouTube clip. “They claim to be super close but haven’t seen your sister in months, they do this lame side hug.”

“They always seem so stiff and uncomfortable with each other and very closed off with affection,” another fan noticed. “And it’s really obvious with the oldest sisters. They talk about how much they’ve missed Jill, but when everyone arrives it’s just very brief side hugs. You guys are all family.”

“I’m confused how they can kiss the baby’s face but not even give their siblings front hugs?” yet another added.

Jill Duggar’s rift with her family shows the Duggar sisters may not be as close as they seem

RELATED: Jinger and Jessa Duggar Posted a Live Chat They Had Together After Jill Duggar Called Out Her Siblings in Her Video

Back in 2016, fans never had an inkling that something may have been brewing beneath the surface for Jill and her husband, Derick Dillard. Finally, in 2017, the two took a step back from Counting On. And the couple is just now talking about the rift between Jill and the rest of her family.

In a 2020 YouTube Q&A, Jill addressed a fan who asked how her siblings feel about her changing lifestyle. “Are they supportive? Not always,” Jill explained. “Everybody’s gonna have their opinion about different things. I feel like some of my siblings are probably more like, have something to say about it than others.”

Jill then reiterated that “not all of them are cool with it. But some of them are more cool with it than others. … You also don’t want to be controlled by what somebody else is gonna think or not think. You want to be genuine.”

We’re glad Jill is living the life she wants for herself. As for the other Duggar sisters, it seems they’re all still close. But perhaps we’ll never know the truth.

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