The Duggar Rules for Marriage and Dating Are Even More Extreme Than You Remember

josh duggarMany of us had to roll our eyes when Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar professed to be "shocked" over their son Josh's confession that he used Ashley Madison to cheat on his wife -- and after all their "strict limits," too! But does anybody remember exactly how strict those limits were?

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Because wow, they really were strict -- probably more so than most people even realize! Of course, anyone who's ever seen a single episode of 19 Kids and Counting -- probably anyone who's ever even heard of the Duggars, actually -- knows that the family has always held extremely rigid views regarding sexuality (even bathing suits were forbidden). And after the first Josh Duggar sex scandal broke (you know, the child molestation case involving his own sisters?), we found out even more crazy stuff about how the Duggar household was set up -- including how their house was actually designed to keep the boys' and girls' bedrooms as separated as possible.

More from The Stir: Duggars Reveal the Drastic 'Safeguards' Used to Keep Girls Safe After Molestation

But reviewing the specifics of the Duggar creed on dating and marriage in the wake of yet another fall from grace is undeniably eye-opening. I mean, the fact that Josh Duggar is a self-professed porn addict who used the Internet to cheat on his wife (and has a history of molesting his own sisters) is just so much more unsettling when you consider the fact that he was raised to believe that any physical contact beyond a "side-hug" during the "courting" phase is wrong. Oh yeah, no "dating" for these guys -- only courting, which is considered a "path to marriage," is approved. WITH a chaperone, of course. Not that things change much after the question is popped: Hand-holding is the only hanky-panky allowed until the actual wedding day -- not even kissing! After the wedding, on the other hand? Wives are expected to submit to their husbands at all times. Indeed, one of Michelle Duggar's creepiest quotes ever is on the subject of marital, er, bliss:

"There will be times you're going to be very exhausted. Your hubby comes home after a hard day's work, you get the baby to bed, and he is going to be looking forward to that time with you. Anyone can fix him lunch, but only one person can meet that physical need of love that he has, and you always need to be available when he calls." 

Excuse me while I vomit. So not only was Josh with a completely warped view of healthy human sexuality, he was also raised to believe that men are allowed to make women do whatever the hell they want because GOD SAID OKAY?! 

Look, I have no problem with the Duggars believing whatever they want to believe. But the fact that the family has consistently and publicly condemned people who don't believe what they believe makes me just a little bit less tolerant (um, anybody remember Michelle's robocalls campaigning against an anti-discrimination law promoting LGBT rights, to pick just one example?). A little less tolerant, and a LOT more disgusted.

I agree with one thing Josh Duggar says, though -- his wife and children need our prayers. Big-time. Especially because divorce is another big Duggar no-no. But then, who's playing by the "rules" here, anyway?

 

Image via Duggar Family Official/Facebook

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