Jill Duggar recently announced that she was engaged to her beau Derick Dillard. Their wedding date has been set for this summer, and Jill explains that they will share their first kiss then.
The Duggar family has been very open about their standards for courting on their television show 19 Kids and Counting. They do not believe in holding hands or kissing before marriage. All dates are chaperoned, and the only physical contact made is an occasional side hug.
So, why the strict rules? Jill explained to ABC News that they want to keep their relationships more about getting to know each other, rather than the physical attraction. "We're just really trying to keep our relationship focused not on the physical but really just more on communication and continuing to learn more about each other," Jill said. "We're saving our first kiss and things beyond that for our wedding."
Michelle Duggar, the mother of the family, admitted that she and her husband Jim Bob did not wait until marriage for their first kiss, and now she wishes that they had. "Michelle and I are really grateful that they have chosen to set high standards," Jim Bob said.
Jim Bob also revealed that he and Michelle let their daughters set their own standards for courting. They were fortunate enough that their daughters share the same beliefs as their parents.
"What's so neat is Jessa and Ben and Jill and Derick have set their own courtship standards and now engagement standards, and they've said they want to bring them out in the open and be accountable," Michelle explained. "I think it's good for couples out there, young, old, whatever, you can set those standards and really focus on getting to know each other and wait for the physical aspect."
Michelle and Jim Bob confirmed that they did give Jill permission to hold Derick's hand after they became engaged.
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