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Chris Knight

The Seewalds: Benessa and The Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Name... & Henry

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Well, Ya' know...now that her primary occupation of broodmare seems finished, it's possibly, finally time to like, say, change her occupation to "mother".  I truly don't think Michelle thinks of parenting beyond a Today Show announcement and breast feeding.  

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Isn't it interesting that Jill gets a 2 week trip halfway across the world to Nepal, and a courtship request in an exotic location.... while Jessa gets an awkward 'do you want to ''court'' me' in a dusty home office?   then Jessa gets awkward 'love language' hints from her Mom over coffee.  

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Wow, how forced was that one-on-one time with Michelle and Jessa? I almost puked when Michelle was telling Jessa to say, "Oh, Ben, that is sooooooo sweeeeeeeeeeeeeeeet!"

Don't forget to bat your eyes, Jessa.

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Michelle's great advice to Jessa on how to talk to Ben sounded like it was coming from a 17 year old...which is, what Mama still is. Does she actually think that's the way a woman should react to a sweet gesture from your almost fiance'? This isn't Gone With The Wind. Michelle isn't the person to give dating or relationship advice especially to her daughters...Despite Jessa saying that her Mom was one of her closest friends, I don't believe it for one minute.. Jessa isn't really close to anyone. It's her personality to be distant..TLC can't manufacture family warmth.

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I think I'm more like Jessa than I would have thought. Ben's message about how he wanted to buy her all the flowers in the world, blah blah blah made me roll my eyes into the back of my head!

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I have the impression that Jessa has been walking on eggshells almost all her life with her parents. She has learned to be very self-contained and probably keeps her thoughts buried deep down. I don't know if she was trained by the Pearl's rules but I am afraid that she probably was. She has learned how to keep sweet on the surface but it is at the expense of her emotions. I think that Jessa's attitude shows the harm that Boob and Mullet have done to their children.

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Jessa is a product of her environment.  Look at the family line up. She's #5.  When she was born, mom had 5 kids under 4 1/2 years old. This was when Michelle was completely overwhelmed and had her little breakdown.   I am guessing that Jessa wasn't the most cuddled kid.  Michelle was raising five kids in a two bedroom home that doubled as the office for a car lot.  She was working the sales lot, too.  When she cries, Michelle is dealing with: a 4 year old Josh, 2 year old twins, and an 18 month old Jill.  Which fire do you put out first?  When Jessa is 4 months old, Michelle gets pregnant with Jinger and, by her own admission, was sick as a dog with morning sickness.  Jessa was the original Jordyn.  

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Introversion isn't "abnormal" or an indication of a traumatic upbringing (not to say Jessa didn't have one, but)...  It's simply a personality style...  She may even be an INTJ on the Meyer's Briggs scale, which makes her intellectual (I know, right?), judgmental, and reserved...  Personally, I like her more each week!  Ben's in for a long life, however...

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The more and more it goes on, the less they seem compatible and just too immature, the both of them.  Based on what we are being shown.

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Introversion isn't "abnormal" or an indication of a traumatic upbringing (not to say Jessa didn't have one, but)...  It's simply a personality style...  She may even be an INTJ on the Meyer's Briggs scale, which makes her intellectual (I know, right?), judgmental, and reserved...  Personally, I like her more each week!  Ben's in for a long life, however...

The "cut and dry" part of Jessa's personality doesn't necessarily mean she's introverted, either. I am very similar to Jessa in the cut and dry department, but am an ENTJ (the E is for extroversion). I just have learned over the years that not everyone is like/appreciates that and you either need to adjust somewhat or move on. Continuing to force it like they have been just doesn't seem like it would work long-term since I don't think she has any desire to EVER say "Ohhhhhh Biiiiiinnnnnnnnn, that is sooooooo sweeeeeeeeet!", even just to make him feel acknowledged. A long life for Ben, indeed!

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That's just it... if Jessa were in a normal, non-fundy family, she could have conversations and experiences with many different boys over the course of her life.  She could have had that 2nd grade, check yes or no, I think I like you recess conversation.  She'd have met guys who are jerks, guys that are awesome, expressive guys, and guys that tell it like it is, too.  The courtship model of only having discussions, monitored discussions especially, about faith and goals means you might be spiritually compatible, but emotionally and sexually (gasp!) incompatible.  Problem is, none of the emotional or physical stuff is explored until after a courtship is agreed upon.  It's fine if Jessa is cut and dry, but it's bull to ask her to change into a simpering, eye batting bubblehead for Ben's benefit.  There ARE guys who would dig her sarcasm and fierce wit, it's not Ben though.  Ben seems very emotionally immature and almost afraid of physicality.  

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The "cut and dry" part of Jessa's personality doesn't necessarily mean she's introverted, either. I am very similar to Jessa in the cut and dry department, but am an ENTJ (the E is for extroversion). I just have learned over the years that not everyone is like/appreciates that and you either need to adjust somewhat or move on. Continuing to force it like they have been just doesn't seem like it would work long-term since I don't think she has any desire to EVER say "Ohhhhhh Biiiiiinnnnnnnnn, that is sooooooo sweeeeeeeeet!", even just to make him feel acknowledged. A long life for Ben, indeed!

I suspect cut and dried could be attributed to most J's. I'm an INFJ and I certainly am pretty cut and dried. 

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They just are not right for each other - she's not that into him. I'm pretty "cut-and-dried" and have been known to roll my eyes at a lot of mushy things my girlfriends are just dying over. There have been guys in my life who have tried to pursue me with typical romantic gestures and I just don't feel it and was kind of turned OFF. However, when I met my current boyfriend and he did the flowers thing, it melted my icy heart and turned me into the kind of girl who I used to hate. Why? Because I am really, really into him.

 

Bottom line, these two need to cut ties and move on or they are in for a miserable life together.

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I too am very like Jessa.  I never had an interest in getting flowers (where do I put them, and they stink while they die).  Yet I had a very long marriage until my Mr. passed away.  Laughing, I might add.  We had a lot of good times but would much rather do things and go places, than talk all lovingly.   That's just the way I am and would be so uncomfortable with a Ben type.  Yes, I know I'd have to give a little but so would he, and Michelle should spread her pearls of wisdom to Ben as well.

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Given the recent twitter exchanges (You are the peanut butter to my bread, etc), it looks like Jessa is trying the "goopy" shit. I'm an ENTJ (and just BARELY extrovert at that), so I agree that it's the Judging - hey, we're all here doing just that - that is the common denominator here. I'm another one who pretty much gags at the romantic crap. I would never simper with a baby voice like Mullet modeled. There are other ways to show "Bin" that she loves him...IF she does in fact love him.

 

Compared to Jill/Derick, they really seem like 12 year olds.

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And WHY don't they just text these insipid comments to one another? In private. You can also send private tweets. No need for anyone else to read about PB and bread, lol. Especially if Jessa claims to value her privacy.

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Is it just me or did Jessa look panicked when little Mackenzie asked her if she and Ben were getting married?  Her eyes bulged out and her comment, "That's the plan." She looked horrified. I just don't think they make a good couple. The whole relationship seems forced. Maybe TLC is forcing them to get Jessa into a relationship to increase ratings.  

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Something about her is so odd; I can't quite put my finger on it...  And poor Bin is as dumb as a box of rocks...

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Isn't the future father-in-law somewhat highly placed politically (in their circles) somehow?  Perhaps it's mutual fame-whoring on the part of the four parents.  There's more to this than meets the eye... 

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Ben's father? I don't think he's involved politically anywhere. The Seewalds live a bit out of town from Hot Springs, AR. I think he co-owns or something like that a pre-fab housing business.

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I think Pop Seewald wants in on the high profile political stuff, hence the long trek to attend church at the compound. I also don't think the DC trip was to let Josh check him out but to try to get him a job with Josh's organization.

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It's been reported that Ben has moved out of his parents house and is now living closer to the Duggars.  How much closer I don't know.  He's also reportedly working for someone called Mr. Jim.  Doing what, I don't know.  And Jessa now has Twitter and Instagram, so it's quite possible that she and Bin are actually engaged now.  I really hope it's a long engagement.

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It's been reported that Ben has moved out of his parents house and is now living closer to the Duggars.  How much closer I don't know.  He's also reportedly working for someone called Mr. Jim.  Doing what, I don't know.  And Jessa now has Twitter and Instagram, so it's quite possible that she and Bin are actually engaged now.  I really hope it's a long engagement.

Isn't Mr. JIM the sound guy on the show?

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They refer to a lot of people by Mr/Mrs/Miss [first name]. Jim is a common name in the generations prior to Bin's. It could be anyone. As far as we know, he doesn't have any experience that would make him employable by TLC, and what would Mr. Jim the soundman have for the kid to do?

 

That said, I DO think Benessa got engaged over the long weekend. Jill set up her social media accounts on the very day she got engaged (March 29). I wouldn't be surprised at all if Bin popped the question once they got back to AR after attending Alyssa Bates' wedding on Saturday. I don't think they could risk her flashing a rock in front of all of those prying eyes at the Bates' shindig; pics flew fast and furious on social media from that event. However, with the season finale next week, they could easily contact People and plant an engagement announcement just in time to wrap up the season.

 

No way they can hide the engagement until the next season drops sometime this fall (and if Anna's as knocked up as pictures suggest, they won't be able to keep that under wraps either).

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Oh Lord, please let the Princess get a bus proposal! 

Ben is so awkward.  There's no way, at his age, that he is prepared for a marriage.  

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Oh my goodness, I hope they're not engaged. Ben is way too young. I just can't see this working out. In my opinion, no 18 year old boy is ready for marriage.

I married my husband when both of us were nineteen,  twenty six years ago so, sometimes it works.

Edited by psychnurse
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Oh my goodness, I hope they're not engaged. Ben is way too young. I just can't see this working out. In my opinion, no 18 year old boy is ready for marriage.

 

 

I married my husband when both of us were nineteen,  twenty six years ago so, sometimes it works.

Yeah, I know we're talking about a specific person here, and I'm not saying Ben necessarily seems ready for marriage...but as long as we're talking about legal adults, I chafe a bit when people make blanket generalizations about people being "not ready" for marriage because they haven't reached some magic age. I've known plenty of people in their late teens and early 20s who demonstrated, over time, that they were indeed "ready" for marriage. And I've known people in their 30s and 40s who were clearly too irresponsible, selfish, or just plain stupid for marriage and/or parenthood.

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I don't think it's the age.  It's Jessa and Ben together.  I'm not feeling the love.

I think Jess is "in love with being in love" and could fall "in love" with any decent guy who could get her out of her house. 

 

I don't see them as being very compatable.  i thought Josh and Anna were OK together.  I think Jill and Dill are OK also.

Ben and Jessa seem poorly matched.  Square peg in a round hole. 

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Jessa and Ben have been tweeting  I love you, and such to each other. Some remarks have been, awww how sweet. Others say straight out, "What are you, 12?". That may seem mean but I think that's where age does matter, mental age, that is. Imo most, if not all of the Duggar children are stunted.  

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I married my husband when both of us were nineteen,  twenty six years ago so, sometimes it works.

We're you raised in a Taliban-esque family who forbid you to even look at the opposite sex in an interested way before marriage? I'm betting you and your husband had a chance to know one another on a level that's impossible to reach if you; always have chaperones, can't have private conversations, are denied physicality, and the stakes were all or nothing.  

Sure.  It works occasionally. And, if both parties are mature and have the emotional, financial, and academic chops to make it work, then more power to them!  Ben has made multiple overtures about his expectations for Jessa and they've all revolved around the idea that she'll be the cook, the brood mare, and under his headship.  I look at Jessa and see someone so much more than that.

I don't think it's the age.  It's Jessa and Ben together.  I'm not feeling the love.

I think Jess is "in love with being in love" and could fall "in love" with any decent guy who could get her out of her house. 

 

I don't see them as being very compatable.  i thought Josh and Anna were OK together.  I think Jill and Dill are OK also.

Ben and Jessa seem poorly matched.  Square peg in a round hole. 

Totally!  My thoughts exactly.  Those two seem to be doing what's expected instead of what's in their deepest hearts.

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I think they are cute together. You can feel the sexual tension between them. It will be quite a wedding night. I'm a little jealous.

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I just started watching this show (I have NO idea why...) and realize I do not know that much about the family except they do seem to be a loving family with views I do not agree with.

That said, I think Jess and Ben do seem happy together.

I wonder what the parents will do if one of their daughters/sons decide not to marry or end up being gay.

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I think it's too early to tell for sure, but, for now, I have to agree with wanderwoman here.  Yes, it is true that young marriages can work, but they tend to be exceptions to the rule, not the rule itself.  Ben & Jessa's marriage may be long and happy (and I hope it is), but it's also possible they may stay together unhappily since divorce isn't an option in their worldview.  

 

I kind of liken it to war marriages.  For every person who has a story about how their grandparents met while grandpa was on shore leave in 1944 and were married for 60 years, there are tons of other stories about shore leave marriages that lasted only until the guy returned from war and they actually had to live together.  Even sadder are the unhappy marriages like that which did last 60 years since divorce was frowned upon (especially for women) for two to three decades after WWII.  So, while there can be quickie wartime marriages that work and work well, the general rule is that it's not a good idea to jump into marriage with someone you just met.  

 

For the same reason, it's not a good idea to marry someone who is only 18 years old.  Since Jessa is a few years older, there is also an issue of maturity.  Girls tend to mature earlier than boys anyway, so you have the added difference of Jessa spending much of her life working hard at home while it appears that Ben was somewhat of a indulged son/brother.  On the other hand, Jessa's restrictive upbringing could make up the difference in maturity.

 

Then again, it's possible that, at least, the financial struggles that young marrieds often face may not be an issue for them.  With little to no higher education, we would expect Jessa & Ben to live a lifestyle far below what they are accustomed to.  The patriarchal families are notorious for having low standards of living.  The Duggars are a very notable exception.

 

If Ben begins working with the Duggars, finances may not be a problem. I have no personal knowledge of what contracts have been signed or what the compensation is for anyone appearing on the show, but Ben (and Jessa, too, since she's an adult) may have contracts allowing for payment directly to them.  Whether that's enough remains to be seen.  But that doesn't eliminate other problems, such as whether or not they are compatible.

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I was married at 18.  Lasted 13 years.  Another story for another day :-p

 

However, it's their maturity that matters.  If Ben could be 19, working construction (decent money where I live), and putting a lot into savings...fantastic.  If Jessa was planning saving methods, great.  These are literally two immature children who need to satiate their hormones.  I actually admire Jim Bob and Michelle before most of the kids came down the pike. She worked WITH him, helped create and tend the businesses.  If Jessa even proposes getting a job, it'll be shot down on multiple fronts.  Her role is with child, in the kitchen, sans footwear

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I actually wonder what the compensation for the adult children is right now?  It's possible that Jessa and Jill are going into this with a substantial dowry.  If, and it is a bit IF, TLC was paying them for their participation directly, then they should have money stashed away.  Unfortunately, I suspect they turned their finances over to Jim Bob.  

 

I think Jill and Derek will be fine.  Derek has a real education and looks like a hard worker.  Jill has a career of her own and I don't think Derek would make her quit. I truly believe they will be happy and financially stable.   JESSA, however, has always been a bit prima donna-ish.  I think all of the Duggar girls have an unreal expectation of what a QF, fundy life looks like.  It's been a long time since they've lived in the cramped, crowded, cash poor position that Jim Bob and the Magic Uterus had prior to TLC.  They've also seen their dad pitch in to get TLC to build a house for the Bates and film the Bates.  They've seen Josh get a job he would have never gotten without the celebrity perk.  I think Ben, in particular, sees Jessa as an "in" to that world.   Derek, on the other hand, has been out there o n his own, living in a third world country and walking the walk.  

 

The danger with Bennesa lies in the fact that, at 18, fundy of not, marriage WILL be complicated.  There's a tremendous amount of growth between 18 and 23.  In five years, Ben could have entirely different desires and designs than he does now.  What then?  I ask myself this question: in this day and age, would I want any of the 18 year olds I know to get married?  The answer is a resounding "no".  

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The issue with Benessa, like the other "couples" is that they aren't allowed to be alone with each other, even in public view, during the day! My mother, from the "old country" met my father for marriage purposes, and always had a family chaperone with them. She had 21 days to "make up her mind". Needless to say, at 20 yrs old, not allowed to "date" like other American post WWII girls, she married because he was tall and handsome. Well, it wasn't a happy union. She always told "us girls" that it was not a good thing that she and my father were never allowed to be alone. He personal experience was that no matter how hard you try, you aren't yourself totally when someone else is along. You have to know how each other "is" when one on one. She thought dating and spending a lot of time together, alone, yet no sex, was the way to go. Getting back to the Duggars, these girls are in almost the exact situation....how in the world can you "hurry up and decide", and marry a person you hardly know and have never been alone with? You suddenly find yourself alone, in a hotel room with someone who will be a perfect stranger in that situation and you to him, too. Also, given the lack of maturity and life experience these boys and girls have, it is almost like child-marriage..their emotions are about 10 years behind their chronological ages, which is something Michelle and Jim Bob are responsible for and should be ashamed of themselves. These marriages are for one purpose only.......adolescent minded "kids" giving in to raging hormones the only way they possibly can. When the "magic' wears off, a few years down the line, they might be in for a very rude awakening... Heaven help these couples when one of them actually wakes up or grows up..JMO

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There is always a first time you are alone with someone the only difference is, these kids will be married. I think it will be ok, it is differently than most of us live but, it works for some people.

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There is always a first time you are alone with someone the only difference is, these kids will be married. I think it will be ok, it is differently than most of us live but, it works for some people.

Here's my problem, though...and I completely admit it's MY problem and your mileage may vary.

The first time I was alone with a guy I liked was sitting under the stars, on a blanket, on a beach watching fireworks.  We snuggled.  We held hands.  We even had a wonderful first kiss.

 

The first time Jill or Jessa spend any time alone,...they WILL HAVE SEX!  I am not advocating premarital sex for those who believe it's immoral or not for them.  But, can you imagine the pressure and fear that could accompany a girl who has never so much as held hands with a boy or kissed him in private before that very afternoon and now you have to deal with sex?  There has to be a happy medium.  

The first time you are alone with someone shouldn't have to be the first time you have sex.

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My older daughter was talking about the courtship model and she said not allowing kissing was the biggest disservice she saw. As she said she ditched quite a few guys along the way because there was no spark when kissing them. It's much better to know before you're stuck for life.

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There is always a first time you are alone with someone the only difference is, these kids will be married. I think it will be ok, it is differently than most of us live but, it works for some people.

 

You really think Jessa and Ben will be perfectly fine the first time their ever alone is on their wedding night? Having never been alone before that's not going to cause any problems? 

 

I'm curious who have these courtship rules actually worked for? I mean Michelle and JimBob obviously didn't have this type of relationship dating and then marrying. Gil and Kelly also didn't have this type of courtship either. Yet both groups completely believe this is the correct way for their children to meet, marry and have wonderful marriages? Well why when neither of them had to do that when dating the person they married and their marriages have been successful. The Bates tried this originally with Zach and his first courtship, that blew up in their faces and their son was left hurt. They were force to rethink the rules because obviously it didn't work. Zach was actually able to find a girl all on his own. Oddly enough Jill managed to do the same. Why again couldn't their kids follow their own parents' dating example? Has it worked for anyone?

Edited by andromeda331

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I used to know the pastor's wife of a "Bible Baptist" church(very conservative, KJV-only, though the did have Sunday school)whose oldest daughter(of 9)got pregnant at 17, and was about six months along before she could tell her parents.  She married the father, who was a year or two older, when their son was about six months old.  I remember asking her mother, before the wedding, "Are you sure they're ready for a lifetime commitment?" and she said yes, while mentioning something about "so they don't fall into sin again."  So at least to me, it sounded like they were marrying to have "legal" sex.

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You really think Jessa and Ben will be perfectly fine the first time their ever alone is on their wedding night? Having never been alone before that's not going to cause any problems? 

 

I'm curious who have these courtship rules actually worked for? I mean Michelle and JimBob obviously didn't have this type of relationship dating and then marrying. Gil and Kelly also didn't have this type of courtship either. Yet both groups completely believe this is the correct way for their children to meet, marry and have wonderful marriages? Well why when neither of them had to do that when dating the person they married and their marriages have been successful. The Bates tried this originally with Zach and his first courtship, that blew up in their faces and their son was left hurt. They were force to rethink the rules because obviously it didn't work. Zach was actually able to find a girl all on his own. Oddly enough Jill managed to do the same. Why again couldn't their kids follow their own parents' dating example? Has it worked for anyone?

Yes, I think it will be fine. It's not what I would do or require my children to follow but, I don't think it is that big of a deal.

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But, can you imagine the pressure and fear that could accompany a girl who has never so much as held hands with a boy or kissed him in private before that very afternoon and now you have to deal with sex?

 

 

I mean, yes, this is not ideal IMO.  But consider that for generations in certain cultures this has always been done, especially in conjunction with arranged marriages.  At least in this case the couple gets to choose (sort of) the one they want to be with.  Not defending it at all, although I do think waiting until marriage isn't the worst idea in the world, but it doesn't necessarily spell disaster, especially if they are both patient and kind with one another.

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