Did the Duggars' Harsh Discipline Lead to Josh's Molestation Scandal?

It's no secret that the Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar run a tight ship with their kids, but with 19 of them running around, can you blame them? Unfortunately, their parenting is being called into question after news of Josh Duggar's sexual assault of five young girls came to light last week.


In 2002 and 2003, Josh confessed to inappropriately touching five young girls on their breasts and private parts, mostly while they were sleeping. Four of the five questioned by the police in 2006 identified Jim Bob and Michelle as their parents, which means Josh allegedly molested four of his own sisters. 

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Anyway, when you have a family as extreme as the Duggars, it's hard not to question anything and everything that may have lead to this type of deviant behavior. Not only do they have a ton of kids, the family identifies as Christian and very politically conservative.

And of course, there's one aspect of their Christian parenting that many are concerned about -- corporal punishment.

According to the 33-page police report filed in 2006, all five of Josh's victims were asked to point out on a drawing where it was OK for other people to touch them. The answers were pretty standard (hugs OK, kisses from mom or dad, holding hands, etc.), but one of the girls got confused when asked if it was OK for someone to touch your bottom.

Investigator Taylor was going through the body parts, asking where it was OK to be touched (nose, arm, back), and when the child was asked if it was OK to be touched on the bottom, the response was "sometimes." The minor explained that spanking occurs when the children get into trouble.

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Taylor asked if everyone got spanked (yes), what they used to spank (a rod), and if any bruising or marks were ever left (no). Of course because the Duggars have used a rod or stick to swat their misbehaving children's rear ends, it has to be abuse, right? That's why Josh did what he did! We finally figured it out you guys!

Or, you know, maybe they were just spanking their children, which I'm pretty sure is still legal. There is a huge difference between a quick swat or two and child abuse. Spanking is a punishment for one, while abusers abuse just because they're in the mood for it. Second, spanking shouldn't use enough force to leave marks, which it doesn't sounds like Jim Bob or Michelle ever did.

Not everyone agrees with spanking, and that's OK. But it's ludicrous to think that because Josh was likely spanked as a child that he developed the urge to physically assault young girls. By that logic, all the Duggar children would be abusers.

Do you think spanking had anything to do with Josh's alleged abusive actions?


Image via Duggarfam/Instagram

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