Jill Dillard (née Duggar) revealed that she was assigned her first “buddy” to help take care of when she was just 6 years-old.
“We had a buddy system. An older child would be paired with a younger sibling, or two or three,” Jill, 32, explained about her upbringing while appearing on “The Unplanned Podcast” on Wednesday, January 10. “That way nobody slipped through the cracks. There was always somebody making sure this one got lunch and this one got their diaper changed.”
After her husband, Derick Dillard, added that he didn’t change a diaper until he was 26, Jill guessed that she was “probably 6” when she changed a diaper for the first time. “I got my first buddy when I was about 6,” she added.
Jill explained that her responsibilities with her “buddies” changed as she got older. “There’s, you know, different levels,” she said.
After cohost Abby Howard asked if Jill had to help the babies in the middle of the night, Jill said that her mom, Michelle Duggar, would “keep the itty bitty babies with her in her room.”
“Even during the night, like if we woke up with a kid they would help,” she continued about Michelle, 57, and Jim Bob Duggar. After noting that the Duggar matriarch has a “nurturing personality,” Jill insisted that Michelle was “very involved like up through the night and everything with the kids.”
She added, “If somebody’s sick, it’s her dealing with them. It’s not us.”
Jill has been open about her complex relationship with her family, which she detailed in her September 2023 memoir, Counting the Cost. She revealed several bombshells in the book, as well as during her press tour promoting the project.
While appearing on an October 2023 episode of Christy Carlson Romano’s “Vulnerable” podcast, Jill revealed that things got so tense between her and her family that Derick, 34, threatened Jim Bob, 58, with a protective order.
“I think my dad got the picture when Derick was telling him, basically like, if you keep contacting her directly, then I will have to file a protective order,” the TLC alum said about the situation.
“As we paved our own path, it became very difficult for me because I realized I could not please my parents and do what I feel like we’re being called to do,” the Counting On alum said. “I think whenever it got really toxic is whenever I was almost forced to choose and I wouldn’t have chosen that. I wanted to please everyone.”
Despite their issues, Jill is seemingly trying to work through her drama with Jim Bob and Michelle. The couple even celebrated Christmas with the Duggars, which James Duggar confirmed by sharing photos from the family’s celebration. Jill and Derick appeared to be in good spirits as they were photographed in the kitchen on Christmas Day.
“Merry Christmas! It was great to see you bro,” Jill wrote in response to the photo after James, 22, posted it on Instagram.
Have a tip? Send it to us! Email In Touch at firstname.lastname@example.org.