Tuesday, November 8, 2011


It's big news right now that the Duggar family is expecting their 20th child. It seems that while their family is overjoyed with the news, everyone else feels they need to criticize them. One particular comment that seems to be recurring is calling Michelle Duggar "selfish," for being "not happy with what she has," "making her other kids raise the little kids," comments about her health, and being "excessive."

How can we call a woman selfish who sees every child as a precious gift from God? How can we call a woman selfish for joyfully enduring months of exhaustion, sickness, fatigue, and the physical tolls of pregnancy? How can a selfish woman cope with labor, delivery, recovery, and then months upon months of breastfeeding, sleepless nights and diaper changes?

Most importantly, how can we call a woman selfish when she does these things because she believes it is her purpose, when it fulfills her because she is upholding her belief that all life is sacred, and she has been abundantly blessed for recognizing it?

This husband and wife have given everything of themselves not only in giving their children life, but to provide and educate them through the example of Christian service; putting others before themselves as Christ did.

Say what you will about the Duggar family, but selfish? No way.


Erin said...

How did I manage to miss this big news?!

I can't wait to pick up Claire so I can tell her, she's going to be so excited! Luke can name all the dinosaurs, Claire can name all the Duggars...

Anonymous said...

I agree with you for the most part. wondering a few things:

Do you think that the more children people have, the more pro-life they must be?

If that were you, Mallory, with your last boy being born that early...health issues almost taking your life and possibly leaving your husband alone with the children, would you be so eager to continue to try to have children? Or would you continue to use NFP to postpone it?

And in that same regard, what is NFP if not the appropriate spacing of children due to serious matter: financial, health concerns, needs of other family members, etc?

I think the Duggars are fantastic. I think their family is exceptional and they are certainly counter cultural (though clearly that is not their intent). It is inspiring to see, truly.

I guess I don't really have a finished thought on this. I completely understand the concern of health, numbers, age, excessiveness, etc. That's obvious. Selfish?...no. I also see them as example of christian family life and openness to life.

But at that age...after those numbers...after such health issues of the children and her, is it responsible to try so eagerly for more?

I suppose it isn't anyone's decision but theirs and clearly the decision has been made. In which case I say, Congratulations Duggars!

*long winded

Mallory said...

I absolutely do not believe that the size of a family has ANYTHING to do with being pro-life. A family with no children can be just as pro-life as a family with 20. Being pro-life is a state of living, regardless of the number of children you have (or don't have, for that matter).

Having said that, what I would do and what the Duggars would do isn't really relevant. They don't eat pork, I do. The girls don't wear pants, I do.

Still, I get really, really nervous when people start asking the question of what is "responsible" in regards to family size. It's all relative. Some people have more than one risky pregnancy, some people think that having three children is excessive, etc.

Are there concerns for the Duggars? Yes, and they have addressed them and are taking them seriously. Honestly, I find them so authentic it is easy for me not to judge and to see them living their convictions and reaping the rewards of a loving and close-knit family.

Sarah said...

I have a lot of random thoughts but I'd like to say that my first pregnancy was a nightmare - 5 months of bedrest, bleeding, pre-term labor, etc. etc. When it was all said and done a lot of people openly expressed that it would be irresponsible of my husband to "get me pregnant" again! As you know, Mallory, I have had two very healthy pregnancies since. I don't know a lot about the Duggars, but I do know that people are quick to judge and quick to voice an opinion on this issue when perhaps they ought to step back and keep their mouths shut. If I had listened to all the advice we would still have only one child . . .

Theresa said...

My opinion of the Duggars in general is similar to yours. It is refreshing to see two people clearly in love with each other. And to be open to life under whatever circumstances is heroic. I suppose I do have an opinion about the fact that #20! is on the way, but what difference does it make. Like Anonymous said, the decision has been made. Plus who am I to say anything about number of kids?!.....I've been pregnant 6 times in 7 years! ;-)

Cheers to the Duggars!