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  1. I’m sorry, I know this is unkind, but what in God’s name is wrong with his face?
  2. I think we underestimate Jill sometimes. I don’t see any signs that she’s particularly intelligent but she’s not a moron. She got her GED and passed the lay midwifery exam. She knows how to read and write and can presumably add, subtract, multiply and divide. In terms of subject matter knowledge, I think she could get the boys through at least the first few years of grade school, especially if she used a reputable curriculum to aid her teaching. Whether she’s temperamentally suited for homeschooling is an entirely different question, though.
  3. I think it’s telling that both J.D. and Abbie were raised Gothard but decided to attend a normal southern Baptish church. I have the feeling that Abbie tasted a normal life when she was working and was not interested in going back to a dreary life of long denim skirts and yearly home births. That may be why it took a bit longer for her to marry — she had to wait for a guy who was willing to let her live a more modern life.
  4. I’ve actually long suspected that Derick is far more mainstream than many people think. He didn’t grow up IBLP or really fundie at all. He grew up in an ordinary Southern Baptist church, attended public school, and went to college. I honestly don’t think he has a problem with women having jobs or wearing pants, using birth control, vaccinating his kids, or sending them to public school. I also suspect that he is less conservative in his private life than many people would assume. We’ve seen him dancing and listening to mainstream music, and he probably enjoys a beer occasionally and even streams guilty pleasure shows on Netflix. His beliefs about abortion, gay and transgender individuals, and probably any number of other social issues are not my beliefs and I find them abhorrant. However, I don’t think his position on these issues is any different than that of millions and millions of people who attend conservative churches and even many who do not. They aren’t “extremist“ in the sense that they’re in any way unusual. I think Derick was drawn to Jim Bob (and therefore Jill) at a relatively young age because he had lost his father and was searching for some sense of security. Beliefs like the Duggars’ appeal to people like Derick because the world seems too complicated and the hard and fast rules of IBLP make everything easier. But I think, and I will be frank, Derick was just too smart to stay IBLP for the rest of his life. Obviously something happened that put him on the outs with the Duggars, and while there’s been a lot of speculation I don’t think we know exactly what that was. But to a certain extent, I don’t think it matters, because I think Derick would’ve left that fold eventually anyway. I think their beliefs were just far too rigid and insular, and I think there was a point, probably after Izzy’s birth, when Derek woke up and thought “most of these rules don’t even make any sense — is this what I want for my kids?” Obviously it wasn’t, so they got out of there and have gone back to the beliefs that Derek grew up with and on some level probably never lost in the first place. And frankly, I think that that is a huge improvement over being raised in the Duggar compound. The boys might still grow up learning that being gay is a sin, for example, but they will also meet actual gay people and at some point get to make up their own minds. That never would’ve happened at the TTH. The one who I think is having a really hard time here is Jill. But I think humans have a tendency to eventually reject the things that have rejected us. I imagine Jill feels rejected by Jim Bob and Michelle, and maybe that, along with pressure from Derek, made her realize that IBLP and homeschooling were not the only way to go. Or it’s possible that she just realized that she wasn’t cut out to homeschool. Not every parent makes a good homeschool teacher. I personally would totally suck at it, not because I’m stupid but because I tend to be impatient and don’t enjoy teaching. I don’t get the sense Jill really likes it either, but just does it out of the feeling of obligation. It may have been freeing to her when Derek suggested putting the boys in public school. Anyway, it’s a huge step, and one that I’m glad that they took. I think the boys will be better off for it.
  5. I totally agree about Joy and Jill growing apart. Jill has gone full-on fundie light and Joy is still stuck in a denim skirt and flip flops.
  6. No one knows my kid like I do either, which is exactly why she’s starting public school kindergarten in September. My best friend: have you considered homeschooling Mini Mistake? Me: Would *you* want to have to teach her? (Pause.) My friend: Anyway, I hear the grade school in this neighborhood is great. Me: Exactly.
  7. Not a surprise. Jana doesn’t have kids, and it wouldn’t surprise me if neither Jinger nor Alyssa plan to homeschool (although I think they might choose Christian schools, not public schools). Jessa, Joy, and Anna? Jessa’s probably too busy seething with fury because Jill and Derick upstaged the show again, and Joy and Anna are both so conservative that they probably think Jill just bought Izzy a ticket on the bus to hell.
  8. The Clinton Foundation? As in Bill and Hillary? Wow. I was assuming he meant public policy as in working to ban abortion and gay marriage. I assume the Clinton Foundation doesn’t have either of those things as policy goals.
  9. It wouldn’t surprise me to learn this has been in the works for a while, and that’s why they chose to purchase a home in this area. I remember right after they bought their home some people were commenting that it was in kind of a weird location for them to pick. If they’d already decided on public school, they probably looked at school quality when choosing a community to move into. Well, he’s going to try. Those jobs aren’t as easy to get as people like Derick think.
  10. Wow, this is amazing. Kudos to Jill and Derick for making the best decision for their child.
  11. Mommy #M6? Is she a locker at Port Authority?
  12. Thank you for this. I had a crash C-section for fetal distress. Mini Mistake came out with an APGAR of 4 (for reference, they frequently intubate babies born at 3 or below). When I asked my doctor what would’ve happened if we had waited, he looked me straight in the eye and said “she probably would’ve died.“ Shame Jill for being a bad Christian, for having a douche of a husband, for being intellectually incurious, for being a terrible midwife, for never styling her hair, or for any number of other things. But C-section shaming? Fuck that shit. Fuck that shit all the way to hell. Because at the end of the day, C-sections are the reason I go home to a live preschooler instead of pictures of a dead baby, and anyone who has a problem with that can see me in the street. C-section shaming. Why the fuck are we so awful to women in this country? What’s wrong with us?
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