‘Counting On’: Kendra Caldwell Admits Duggar Family Expectations Have Left Her Feeling Like a ‘Horrible Wife’

Kendra Caldwell dished on her experience joining the Duggar family in the season 10 premiere of Counting On. Caldwell, who tied the knot with Joseph Duggar in 2017, revealed that she was unable to meet her initial goals going into the marriage. While Caldwell is determined to improve moving forward, her past failure basically made her feel like a “horrible” wife. 

Counting On Kendra Caldwell and Joseph Duggar
‘Counting On’ stars Kendra Caldwell and Joseph Duggar | TLC via YouTube

Caldwell dishes on her Duggar marriage

The premiere of Counting On kicked off with Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar hosting a date night competition with the married members of the family. The competition included each pair answering questions about how their married life differs from their initial expectations. Cue Caldwell’s interesting response:

“I think I had expectations that I would be able to make all the meals the first year of our marriage and that I would be able to clean the house [and] go with you to work…”

To be honest, Kendra Caldwell’s comments aren’t that surprising. The Duggars are known for pushing conservative beliefs on their children, including outdated ideas about what women should do in marriage (i.e. cook, clean, and have babies).

But it’s still disturbing to hear Caldwell confess to Counting On fans that all she wanted to do was clean the house and cook meals for her husband. Not exactly #RelationshipGoals.

It’s even sadder that Caldwell felt disappointment because she wasn’t able to fulfill these goals in their first year of marriage.

Duggar, of course, didn’t miss a beat and agreed that he expected Caldwell to help out more around the house. Her pregnancy, however, prevented her from cooking all of his meals and keeping the place spotless. Right.

Caldwell and Duggar began courting in the spring of 2017 and tied the knot in September of that year. They had their first child, Garret Duggar, in December of last year.

What are Kendra Caldwell’s new marriage goals?

Caldwell got pregnant a few months after exchanging vows with Duggar. Although the couple was happy about starting a family, the Counting On star didn’t anticipate how the baby would change their relationship.

In fact, she admitted that having the baby was difficult and not being able to fulfill her wifely duties made her feel like a terrible wife.

“I think I had expectations that I would be able to make all the meals the first year of our marriage and that I would be able to clean the house [and] go with you to work…”

Yet again, it’s pretty sad to hear Kendra Caldwell say she was disappointed in herself for not cooking or cleaning enough, despite the fact that she was carrying around a baby and has been raising that child for the past year.

After admitting her failures, Caldwell promised to be a better wife in the future, which means cooking more meals and cleaning the house on a regular basis. This probably made the Duggars happy, but it didn’t sit well with some Counting On fans.

That said, the couple announced a few months back that they are expecting their second child, which might get in the way of Caldwell’s plans.

Their new baby, which they recently revealed is a girl, is due to be born in November.

What about Caldwell’s family?

With Caldwell so focused on pleasing the Duggars, Counting On fans are left to wonder what her family thinks about her marriage.

Not surprisingly, Caldwell’s family has a similar makeup as the Duggars. Her parents, for example, are very religious and even pastor a church, which is where Caldwell and Duggar met.

They are, however, much younger than Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar and only have eight children as opposed to 19.

Given the age differences, Caldwell’s youngest sibling is actually around the same age as her son. Caldwell opened up about her mom’s pregnancy in 2018, revealing that she learned a lot of tips and tricks from her mother.

Caldwell’s family, unfortunately, has not commented on the reports surrounding the Duggars. Considering how they share similar religious beliefs, it’s probably safe to assume that the Counting On star’s parents didn’t see anything wrong with her recent comments.

In the meantime, Caldwell’s sister, Lauren Caldwell, is rumored to be courting her husband’s younger brother, Jason Duggar.

Kendra Caldwell’s sister has been popping up on her Instagram account as of late, sparking some speculation that she is seeing a member of the Duggar clan. Nothing official has been confirmed, however, so we’ll have to wait and see how this one shakes out.

New episodes of Counting On air Tuesday nights on TLC.