Jinger Duggar Recalls Feeling ‘Sad’ When ‘Counting On’ Was Canceled: I ‘Cried Hard’
Looking back. Jinger Duggar opened up about how she felt when TLC canceled Counting On in June 2021 after Josh Duggar was arrested on child pornography charges.
In her memoir Becoming Free Indeed, which was released on Tuesday, January 31, Jinger, 29, recalled getting the call with her husband, Jeremy Vuolo, on June 26, 2021. “When the call ended, I wrapped my arms around Jeremy and cried. Hard,” she wrote. “So many emotions poured out of me that day. I felt sad.”
“Filming had been a constant in my life since I was around 10 years old. When the show was on break, and the crews didn’t come around for a few months, I missed the energy and excitement of interacting with all the creative people,” Jinger continued. “The producers worked with my family to come up with ideas for episodes. It was fun to think of creative ways to give audiences a glimpse into our day-to-day lives.”
Despite making her reality TV debut on 19 Kids and Counting in 2008 and continuing to appear on the network on Counting On, Jinger admitted she was “surprised” that her family remained on TV as long as they did.
“In the early years, my family assumed the show would last no more than a season or two. It didn’t seem possible that that many Americans would be interested in a family with our conservative values,” she wrote. “Yet each year, TLC renewed the show. For most of my life, that wasn’t a burden.”
While Jinger admitted she has fond memories from filming, she said she was “glad” to learn the show had been canceled and “felt immense relief on that day in June 2021.”
“For more than a year, Jeremy and I had felt it was time to step away — not only for ourselves but for our children, Felicity and Evangeline,” the TV personality shared. “We didn’t want our daughters to grow up on TV. We wanted to raise them out of the public spotlight. At their age, they don’t get to choose to be part of a television show. We didn’t think it was fair to make that choice for them.”
Jinger noted that the show offered her family “wonderful experiences,” though there were “difficult parts I couldn’t have imagined when I was 10 years old.” She went on to explain that they dealt with paparazzi when she and Jeremy, 35, moved to California in 2019.
After Josh, 34, was arrested in April 2021, the network announced the show’s cancellation on June 29 of the same year. “TLC will not be producing additional seasons of Counting On. TLC feels it is important to give the Duggar family the opportunity to address their situation privately,” the network told Us Weekly in a statement at the time.
Five days after the news broke, Jim Bob Duggar and Michelle Duggar issued a statement on the family’s website. “It is hard to believe that more than 17 years have passed since we were first contacted by a production company wanting to do a one-hour documentary about the logistics of raising 14 children,” the statement read. “Our family has grown (and grown up!) before our eyes and on national television, and the journey has been miraculous — following God is an exciting adventure!”
The former reality stars added that some of their “most treasured moments” were featured on the show. “We’ve had the amazing honor to share our lives, our faith, and our story with you—including some of the most difficult and painful moments our family has ever faced,” Jim Bob, 57, and Michelle, 56, added. “We are full of deep gratitude for the love shown to us and the prayers of so many who have sustained us both now and through the years.”
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