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Jill Duggar Dillard Reveals Reality TV Almost Destroyed Marriage



Jill Duggar Dillard - Derickl Dillard

Jill Duggar Dillard is talking openly about how filming for her family’s reality series, 19 Kids and Counting, and its spinoff, Counting On, affected her marriage to Derick Dillard.

In this week’s issue of PEOPLE, Jill, 32, exclusively shared that it all caused a lot of frustration in her marriage. She continued on saying that in the beginning, Derick had specific feelings about filming. She would tell him that she understood but they had to continue to do what they were being asked.

Jill Duggar shared lots of shocking information

The pair spills all kinds of shocking information about their time appearing on the well-liked TLC shows. They talked about the large, fervently Christian Duggar family in their new book, Counting the Cost. One of the primary conclusions is that they no longer really wanted to be a part of it at all after getting married in 2014. Instead of feeling compelled to be available for 20 hours a week in front of the camera, they preferred to begin their own lives, land their own employment, and start families.

The book, which will be available for purchase on September 12, begins with the line, “It began to feel like a burden.”

Jim Bob Duggar Tried To Create Distance Between Derick & Jill

She tells PEOPLE that growing up with the Institute in Basic Life Principles (IBLP), the family’s adopted religion, instilled in her the value of always respecting and obeying your parents. Jill therefore found it difficult to refuse her father Jim Bob Duggar and the show’s stringent filming requirements, even if she just really wanted to leave.

She shared that it did come between them because even as adults they were still expected to obey everything. They were also even expected to consult their parents in big life decisions such as buying a house.

Derick concurs with Jill’s assessment that her father started attempting to create distance between them.

Derick agreed that Jim Bob was trying to drive a wedge between them. He said, “Whenever we were at odds with what her dad thought we should be doing with filming, he would say things that would be very damaging.” He continued, “He would weaponize the relationship and say, ‘Is this you Jill, or is this you, Derek? Are you leading your wife astray and doing things that are not supportive of marriage?’ And I think that was a red flag.”

Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar shared a statement

In a statement to PEOPLE, Jim Bob and wife Michelle Duggar say: “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… 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.”

Jill Duggar Dillard Talks The Chaos TLC Show Started

Jill says relations got so strained that she felt she had to pick sides.

“I saw how deeply we were in an argument one time, and I was like, ‘Whoa, this is not okay,'” she recalls of her and Derick arguing over the TLC  show, and the subsequent arguments they had with Jim Bob about eventually being paid for their years of work on it.

“When I saw how it was affecting our marriage, I think that was another wake-up call for me,” she adds. “It was like, okay, we need to either fight this battle together, or it’s going to rip us apart. So yeah, we had to join forces at that point.”

The couple, who are raising their own three sons and currently reside on the border of Arkansas and Oklahoma. They have discovered their happy place away from the spotlight and cameras. Plus, now, they thought it was time to share their story. They acknowledge they are both anxious about how the book will be received.

They know some will not agree with them

Jill says of authoring the book, “I know there will be naysayers, but I feel called to do this.” We really wanted to share our tale with my siblings since, if they haven’t already, some of them would encounter difficulties similar to those I have.

Although Jill and Derick left the IBLP in 2020 and are now acting independently and “trusting in God,” they both acknowledge that it was a struggle.

“Therapy was the gift we didn’t know we needed,” Jill says. “We initially went into it with the goal of re-establishing a relationship with my parents, but once we go there, the therapist was like, ‘I think we maybe need to do a little more processing, a little more sorting out here. You guys need to figure out who you are.’ Which was so wise. It helped us so much.

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