Jessa and Jill Duggar recalled their childhood sexual molestation by brother Josh Duggar on the TLC documentary, “Breaking the Silence.” Jessa and Jill spoke out to raise awareness of sexual abuse after their show, “19 Kids and Counting,” was canceled due to Josh’s child molestation scandal.
“I feel like this should be a discussion that people are having, even regularly,” Jessa said on Breaking the Silence Aug. 30. “It shouldn’t be a taboo subject and we should be bringing awareness to child sexual abuse and talking about it.” Jill, 24, added: “It was amazing to understand that there are so many people that deal with the exact same thing in their own families, so just being educated is very good.”
Family matriarch Michelle Duggar is pleased her daughters participated in “Breaking the Silence,” which aired commercial-free on TLC. “I was so glad that my girls and I were able to do this together and that we could be a support and encouragement to each other to be able to gain more information about this important topic,” said Michelle.
In June 2015, Jessa and Jill outed themselves as two victims of brother Josh Duggar’s child molestation, which he committed when he was 14 years old. Interestingly, Jessa and Jill slammed the media for outing and exaggerating their sexual abuse, saying Josh merely fondled them over their clothes and is not a rapist.
“I do want to speak up in his defense against people who are calling him a child molester or a pedophile or a rapist,” said Jessa. “That is so overboard and a lie really. People get mad at me for saying that, but I can say this because I was one of the victims.”
The Duggars are shocked that people have been unable to “move on” from Josh’s scandal. The Duggars reportedly earned $25,000 to $45,000 per episode of “19 Kids and Counting.” The show aired 227 episodes spanning 10 seasons from 2008 to 2015. The Duggars have reportedly lost income totaling $25 million a year as a result of lost book deals, endorsement and speaking engagements stemming from their TV show’s cancellation.
Josh Is In Christian Rehab For Sex Addiction
Josh has admitted sexually fondling six underage girls (including sisters Jessa and Jill) when he was 14. According to the police report, Josh fondled the girls’ breasts and genitals, in some cases when they were asleep.
Jim Bob Duggar told authorities Josh had apologized to his victims and they had “forgiven” him. Jim Bob has come under fire for waiting more than a year after Josh confessed to being a child molester before contacting the police, who had received criminal complaints about Josh’s molestation from his other victims in 2006.
On Aug. 20, Josh admitted being addicted to porn and cheating on his wife after his two Ashley Madison sex accounts were leaked online. Josh called himself a hypocrite for having affairs using Ashley Madison, an online dating service that helps married people cheat on their spouses.
Duggar has since entered a six-month faith-based rehab center to treat his sex addiction. “Josh checked himself into a long-term treatment center,” the family announced in a statement. “For him it will be a long journey toward wholeness and recovery. We pray that in this he comes to complete repentance and sincere change.”