Jill Duggar of TLC’s reality show 19 Kids and Counting is being courted by Derick Dillard.
“Courting” is the Duggar family’s version of dating. Instead of letting their children – who all have names that begin with the letter “J” – go on dates with many different people, the Duggar’s actually select one person with whom they think their child could get along well with. Once they get to know each other and feel they can marry that person, they begin courting and spending time together. Any interaction between the two is always chaperoned.
The family believes this prevents their children from giving pieces of their hearts to other people with whom they do not plan to spend the rest of their lives with. The chaperones also stop any physical affection from taking place. Although “side hugs” are permitted, the devoutly Christian family believes that every romantic act – even kissing – should be avoided until marriage.
Jill’s father Jim Bob met Dillard first while the 25-year-old was working as a missionary in Nepal. They became prayer partners and developed a friendly relationship.
"I was impressed with him as I got to know him over the years,” said Mr. Duggar in an interview. “He sounded like an amazing young man. I felt like from the beginning they had similar personalities and goals. I thought they would hit it off."
Jill and Derick began texting and Skyping – all while being supervised by the Duggar parents – for quite some time and finally met in person in November.
"We got to know each other in the first few months pretty quickly," Jill stated. "I was in love with someone I had never met in person, but we really knew each other well."
See what Twitter had to say about the news, here:
The mom on 19 kids and counting annoys me so much
— Mariah Paolino (@MariahPaolino) April 1, 2014
me "the girl on 19 kids and counting is only allowed to get side hugs from boys" mom "she's getting more action than you"
— erin (@erin_mcchurch) April 1, 2014
That family on 19 kids and counting are lucky to have the mom because the dad is a dumb as a post!!!
— Bellatrix Lestrange (@Cnd_Chivette) April 1, 2014
19 kids and counting is so annoying. It's not fair how each older kid is assigned a younger kid. They basically have their own children.
— Alexis Edmondson (@fearlesslexx) April 1, 2014
Jill is the second daughter of the Duggars to begin courting. Her younger sister Jessa began courting Ben Seewald last year. Josh Duggar, the oldest child of the bunch, married his wife Anna in 2008. The couple has three children together, all with names that start with the letter “M,” natch.
Image via TLC