Jill Duggar has been open about her strained relationship from her family, including parents Jim Bob Duggar and Michelle Duggar. In light of her new memoir, Counting the Cost, fans are likely wondering where she stands with her mom, dad and siblings after opening up about their estrangement.
Is Jill Duggar Estranged From Her Family?
Fans noticed that Jill and her husband, Derick Dillard, seemingly distanced themselves from her family when they left Counting On in 2017. While they initially chose to keep the details private, the couple opened up about the topic during an October 2020 YouTube Q&A.
“There’s been some distancing there,” Jill said when asked about her relationship with her family. “We’re not on the best terms with some of my family. We’ve had some disagreements and stuff, but we’re working towards healing definitely and restoration. We’re having to kind of just take some time and heal and just doing what’s best for our family right now.”
The former TLC star continued, “We are praying and trusting God that like the timeline is his and what that looks like and everything. So we definitely appreciate your prayers, and we don’t want to go into detail too much.”
Jill later shared an update about her family dynamic in another video posted via YouTube in March 2021. At the time, she revealed that she hadn’t visited her parents’ home in “at least two years.”
“In this season of life, we have to prioritize our mental [and] emotional health and all that. Our threshold — as we like to call it — is just a little bit lower in this season of life for us,” she said. “We have a lot going on in our own life, plus COVID just makes it a lot harder right now with trying to keep our circle smaller and everything.”
Why Was Jill Duggar Estranged From Her Parents, Jim Bob and Michelle?
One of the reasons behind Jill’s estrangement from her parents came down to her and Derick wanting to leave Counting On. While the couple had been vocal about wanting to keep certain aspects of their lives off camera, they also claimed that they weren’t paid for their appearances on the show.
Jill Duggar Shares An Update on Where She Stands With Her Family in ‘Counting the Cost’
While Jill detailed several tough moments with her family in Counting the Cost, she concluded the memoir on a hopeful note.
In the Author’s Note section of the memoir, the 19 Kids and Counting alum said she didn’t write the book to “shame” her family or “get their attention.” She then added that she hopes they continue to work on rebuilding their relationships.
She also revealed that she’s gone to great lengths to improve her relationship with her parents, noting that they have tried going to therapy together and she’s gone to therapy with Derick to work through her issues.
Additionally, Jill explained that she “understands” her mother better now that she is an adult than when she did as a child. After noting that her relationship with her mom is not what it once was, Jill admitted she “misses” how easy it used to communicate with Michelle before their estrangement.
Meanwhile, the mother of three said she “never doubted” that her father loves his kids.
As for her 18 siblings, Jill’s relationship with each one varies. In a September 13, 2023, interview about Counting the Cost with Vanity Fair, she said, “I think for the long haul, that’s better for our relationships.”
“We have some who are very supportive. Jinger and Jeremy [Vuolo] have been very supportive during Derick and I’s journey,” Jill continued. “Other siblings have been privately supportive, and then some have not been quite as supportive — and that’s OK. I also see where they are at and I’m like, ‘I was there not very long ago.’ So I can extend grace.”
Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar Reacted to Jill’s Book
Jim Bob and Michelle broke their silence three days ahead of the book’s release.
“We love all of our children very much. As with any family, few things are more painful than conflicts or problems among those you love,” the couple said in a statement to People on September 9. “We do not believe the best way to resolve conflicts, facilitate forgiveness and reconciliation, or to communicate through difficulties is through the media or in a public forum so we will not comment.”
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