Jill Duggar Accuses Her Father, Jim Bob Duggar, of Favoring Her ‘Pedophile Brother,’ Josh Duggar

Jill Duggar and her husband, Derick Dillard, released their first book together – Counting the Cost – on Tuesday (September 12). It offers an inside look at the ‘secrets, manipulation, and intimidation’ behind the Duggar family, which rose to fame in 2008 with the release of 19 Kids and Counting – a series on TLC.

The show was canceled in 2015, but they returned with a new TLC series called Counting On later that year – though Jill ended up leaving the show and distancing herself from her family in 2017. The show was canceled in 2021 after Josh Duggar was arrested for receiving and possessing child pornography. 

Jill talks extensively about her brother’s arrest – as well as her strained relationship with her parents, Jim Bob Duggar and Michelle Duggar – in her new book. She doesn’t hold back as she recounts some of the major red flags they noticed in family members and how they’ve learned to heal through honesty. 

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In one excerpt from the book, which was originally published by PEOPLE magazine on September 9, Jill Duggar recounts a conversation she and her husband had with Jim Bob and Michelle – a conversation that included a mediator to help find common ground. Unfortunately, things didn’t quite go as planned. 

Jill told her father that she never meant to hurt him, but he had his own agenda of things he wanted to address and it ended up taking center stage. He brought up a text message she had sent him, where she accused him of verbally abusing her. He expressed how offended he was at it and asked her to apologize. 

She didn’t apologize for it – and she didn’t feel the need to. While she remembered sending the text message in question, she knew there was a reason why she sent it – “in hope that it might wake Pops up to how bad I felt things had gotten, to maybe make him give us a little space and let things calm down.” 

Jill went on to explain how shocked her father was when she didn’t apologize. She described his voice as ‘loud’ with an ‘edge to it.’ She also recalled him taking a step toward her to close the gap between them when he spoke – she described it as an ‘act of aggression,’ as opposed to a ‘gesture of reconciliation.’ 

Jill Duggar Says Her Father Favored Her ‘Pedophile Brother’

During that intense and heated conversation with her father, Jill Duggar started to cry as tears came running down her face. Jim Bob Duggar asked if she knew why she was crying (a rhetorical question that he tried to answer for her). “Your conscience is talking to you. That’s why,” he said – but he was wrong. 

“You want to know why I’m crying? It’s that you think I’m some kind of horrible person just because I wear pants and have a nose ring, and yet you see that girl outside and praise her,” she said – referring to a young fan who approached him earlier that day and asked him to take a video with her, which he did.

“That’s why I’m crying, Daddy. I’m evolving and changing, just like that girl out there, but you can’t see it. You treat me like I’m a prodigal who’s turned her back on you. You treat me worse than you treat my pedophile brother,” she continued in her response. A bold statement, but one that needed to be said. 

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Her brother, Josh Duggar, was arrested in 2021 on federal charges of receiving and possessing child pornography – he was also accused of molesting four girls (including Jill) when he was a teenager. Josh was found guilty of the federal charges and was sentenced to nearly 13 years in prison in May 2022.

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