Anna Duggar’s life definitely hasn’t been easy since joining the 19 Kids and Counting clan. After all, not only does she have to deal with being in the media spotlight but, since Josh’s cheating allegations, she has also had to try to work out whether or not she should stay in her marriage. But even before that scandal she didn’t exactly have a typical existence, as these Duggar family secrets make plain. With everything from ostracizing siblings to a singularly unusual upbringing to consider, then, here are 19 things that make Anna’s life just a little bit odd…
19. She doesn’t believe in birth control
Like the majority of the Duggar clan, Anna doesn’t use birth control. And so while she may simply have married into the Duggar family, she appears to have now adopted their stance on contraception. Husband Josh has stated that “God has the control” over how many children they should have.
18. She and Josh apparently lied about paying off her taxes
None of us like paying taxes, but we all know it’s necessary. However, Josh and Anna were caught up in a scandal when it was discovered that they were in debt to the State of Arkansas to the tune of over $14,000. And instead of quietly paying the debt off, Anna’s husband stated that they had already handed over the money – which, according to a 2015 Radar Online report, was a lie.
17. It was love at first sight… almost
It was instant attraction for Anna when she saw Josh – even if he hadn’t seen her yet. That’s because she fell for her future husband when she saw him on his family’s 14 Children & Pregnant show. But the two only met face to face when they attended a Christian homecoming convention back in 2006.
16. She had scheduled meetings with her mom
While some kids run to their parents the minute they need to talk about something, Anna’s upbringing was quite different in that respect. In fact, in 2015 People claimed that, instead of talking openly, Anna was apparently scheduled a 15-minute meeting with her mom to discuss anything that was wrong. And outside of those 15 minutes, she had no other option but to keep check on her emotions.
15. She claims she knew what her husband had done before marrying him
Following the allegations that a younger Josh had molested his sisters, Anna went public to claim that the Duggars had previously hinted at his misdemeanors to her and that she had since found out the truth. Media sources have suggested, however, that she didn’t quite know the full story before she tied the knot – or, at the very least, she couldn’t comprehend the severity of Josh’s crimes.
14. Her sister has gone rogue
Anna spent much of her childhood in the company of her seven siblings. However, while she may have been close to her little sister Susanna when she was young, that couldn’t be further from the truth now. Indeed, somewhat of a rift has opened up between the women owing to Susanna’s more open-minded take on religious practice. And relations can’t have been healed when Susanna was publicly shamed by the Duggars for becoming an unwed mother.
13. As a kid, she visited prisons with her father
Anna’s father, Mike Keller, became a full-time prison minister in 1996. And when he visited the inmates in prison, he had some unusual company: his young daughter. Yes, little Anna tagged along with her father when he went to preach to female prisoners, and she helped him spread the word of Christianity as a result.
12. Marriage has changed her more than most
Marriage changes most of us in some way; for Anna, though, some believe that it’s transformed her entire personality. A source divulged that information to People in 2015, claiming that she was once “really fun.” But that all changed when she tied the knot with a Duggar. The source continued, “Ever since she met [the Duggars] she has acted more like Michelle. She talks like her, real soft.”
11. She’s made some pretty controversial social media posts
It likely comes as no surprise that Anna is fiercely pro-life when it comes to the subject of abortion. However, her outspoken social media posts on the subject have attracted controversy in the past. Some Instagram users, for example, have commented on her numerous posts – and not all the comments have been positive. Still, that’s perhaps to be expected when you use Black History Month as a way to promote your virulently anti-choice beliefs…
10. Anna’s dad asked for a month to decide on Josh
Interestingly, it wasn’t a simple yes or no decision when it came to Josh asking if he could have Anna’s hand in marriage. That’s because Anna’s dad said he would need a month “to pray about it” before he gave Josh an answer. Thankfully, Josh didn’t have to wait that long in the event and was given permission the following day.
9. She holds it all in
According to a 2015 People report, Anna has been taught that it is considered immoral to be angry – and, as a result, the reality star must have to hide her feelings. Whether or not this is true remains a mystery, but the thought of not being allowed to get mad is pretty difficult to come to terms with.
8. She’s not afraid to break the strict Duggar dress code
Being a Duggar comes with great responsibility – not least through making sure that you are always impeccably, yet modestly, dressed. But Anna broke this trend when her daughter, Meredith Duggar, was pictured wearing jeans. And while it might not be scandalous for most of us to don some denim, in the Duggar family jeans are considered to be inappropriate.
7. She stood by while her brother was ostracized
Anna’s sister Susanna isn’t the only Keller sibling to be pretty much persona non grata with the Duggars; one of her brothers has also proved to be pretty scandalous in their circles. Specifically, Daniel Keller and his wife Candice adopted a child after struggling to have a baby naturally – but adoption is frowned upon by the Duggars. And since they decided to adopt, Daniel and Candice have been disowned by Anna and the rest of the Kellers, too.
6. She’s been linked to another alleged sex offender
As already mentioned, Anna met Josh when she was attending a home-schooling event in 2006. And the minister who ran the event, Bill Gothard, was accused in 2014 of having sexually abused women. However, in what has naturally been a very controversial move, the Keller family have opted to stand by the disgraced founder of the Institute in Basic Life Principles.
5. She might be preparing for a divorce
After Josh’s Ashley Madison and sexual abuse scandals, no one would have blamed Anna for wanting to call time on her marriage. And it’s even been alleged that she’s quietly biding her time and getting ready to divorce her philandering husband despite the inevitable disapproval from the Duggar clan. For the time being, however, Anna seems to be standing by her man and is at least willing to appear alongside him in public.
4. Her family are pulling her in different directions
As already mentioned, Anna is remaining coy about the future of her relationship with Josh. Fortunately, though, it seems as if she can rely on the support of some of her family if she decides to go down the divorce route. Daniel Keller, for example, has already advised her to leave her husband – and so, too, has one of her sisters. However, her mother and father, along with her in-laws, are apparently urging her to stay in the marriage.
3. She could very well have baby number five
Despite the divorce rumours, a source revealed to In Touch magazine in May 2016 that the couple are still enjoying a normal sex life. Adding to the comment, the source even stated that they would not be shocked if they discovered that the couple were expecting a fifth child. That would certainly be a turn of events!
2. She may be shouldering some of the blame for her husband’s affair
While most wives would struggle to comprehend or forgive their husband for having an affair, Anna, it’s suggested, is more understanding. In fact, it’s said that she is even shouldering some of the responsibility herself. A source told People magazine in 2015 that it would come as no surprise if Anna tried to “absorb some of the blame.”
1. There could be a Josh and Anna spin-off on the horizon
If the divorce rumours turn out to be false, then could we be seeing a spin-off show for Josh and Anna? Well, according to a source from US Weekly in May 2016, the disgraced husband of Anna is desperate to get the limelight back even if that means starring in another reality show. But will his wife stick by him?