Michelle and Jim Bob Duggar Defend Son: ‘He Was Just Curious About Girls’
Michelle and Jim Bob Duggar sat down with Megyn Kelly on Fox News to talk about the sexual abuse their son, Josh, imposed on five young girls when he was a teenager.
Josh reportedly admitted to abusing five underage girls to his parents, but they failed to immediately reach out to the authorities. Jim Bob said they "had safeguards that protected them from that."
He went on to try and explain his son's actions, saying "He was just curious about girls and he had gone in and touched them over their clothes while they were sleeping. They didn't even know he had done it."
Both parents seemed in agreement that molesting young girls was part of Josh's "road to manhood," and that his age explained away the abuse he inflicted on them. It wasn't until Josh admitted for a third time that he had sexually abused them that his parents decided to seek out help by "pull[ing] him from the home" for counseling via a religious program.
They did not contact police at the time, despite the fact that at least two of Josh's victims were their own daughters, Jill and Jessa -- news that was suspected but not ultimately confirmed until the Duggar daughters revealed the information in Kelly's interview.
According to US Weekly, Jessa agreed that what Josh did was "very wrong," but she was still quick to defend her brother, saying, "I do want to speak up in his defense against people who are calling him a child molester or a pedophile or a rapist, some people are saying. I’m like, ‘That is so overboard and a lie really.’ I mean people get mad at me for saying that, but I can say this because I was one of the victims.”
TLC has yet to officially cancel 19 Kids and Counting.