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Among the “fun facts” listed on Discovery Health’s Web page devoted to the Duggars: A baby has been born in every month except June; the Duggars have gone through an estimated 90,000 diapers, and Michelle, 40, has been pregnant for 126 months — or 10.5 years — of her life.

I don’t know this family, but I’m curious to know more.  I first saw them on a TLC show – they were filming the family building their own home.  Here’s a few more tidbits I uncovered:

The Duggar Family – 17 Children

Meet the Duggars

Hats off to Michelle Duggar – she’s been pregnant for 126 months of her life!  She mentioned on the TLC show that she’s not always been very organized, but after 4 kids she had to learn to be….can you imagine how organized she is now managing 17 kids!  I think about the triple experiences I’ve had with my kids, I can’t imagine 17!

  • Think about bathroom time x 17!
  • Cooking dinners for 17
  • Loads of laundry x 17
  • Pairs of socks needed x 17
  • Storage places for toys/games x 17
  • Learning to ride a bike x 17
  • Going through adolescence x 17
  • Dating for the first time x 17
  • Learning to drive x 17
  • Driving/Insurance x 17 (obviously not all at one time since some will be adults on their own while others are learning and driving)
  • If I’m doing my math correctly, it’s 2,040 months of schooling just from elementary through high school! (Here’s my cheesy math formula – 17 kids x 10 months/yr school = 170 months for 1 year of schooling x 12 years of schooling = 2040 months! Note:  I know I seriously lack in mathematical skills, so for all you mathematicians out there, have mercy.

But there’s the joys, too:

  • First smiles x 17
  • First words x 17
  • First teeth x 17
  • First hugs x 17
  • First snuggles x 17
  • First coos x 17
  • First laugher x 17
  • First …..you get the picture

I’m curious, what are your thoughts as you absorb this larger than standard (by whose?) family?

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About cakboliv

Born in Cochabamba, Bolivia to wonderful missionary parents, Howard and Maxine Morarie. Grew up in Bolivia, both in a remote jungle village

27 responses »

  1. Scott says:

    They probably win all the time at the family reunion tug-o-war.

    If you ever need a kidney your chances are pretty good.

    Dinner at Outback ain’t happenin’.

    If they have a 15 passenger van at least two of them are riding on top.

    Mom probably shops by “Hand-me-down endurance”.

    I wonder what the hand-me-down record for article of clothing is . . . 3,4 . . . 5 siblings maybe.

    There’s a decent chance you have a doctor, lawyer, and poultry scientist in the bunch.

  2. Alexenjie says:

    As someone who was the middle child in a family of 7 children, I don’t think two parents can possibly give 17 children the time and attention they deserve or require. As one of 7, I often felt lost in the crowd.

    From what I have read, the parents basically hand off each newborn as soon as it is weaned to another child to raise. That is sad, in my opinion.

    Also to raise these children without much access to the outside world does not sound like a good way to prepare them for the “real” world.

    I wish this family nothing but the best. I will be curious to see how these kids turn out as adults ….

  3. Freedom says:

    TLC and Discovery have an abundance of show with large families or multiple birth. I like to sit and watch them. It makes me appreciate my small family.

  4. stephanie says:

    i certainly couldn’t do it. but kudos to them for being so brave (or maybe just crazy)

    my friend, mary, just had #5 and i think THAT is overwhelming. i could not even fathom 17.

  5. Dan says:

    Don’t tell Mariana, but I think it would be a blast!! 🙂

  6. Donna says:

    I can imagine all the judgments slinging their way about how selfish they are, or even how abusive it is to deprive the kids if you can’t give each one ALL your attention. Personally, I think it makes the kids grow up being able to have more compassion, share, see other perspectives – and loves mulitplies not divides! 17 X’s!
    Love Scott’s comment, and Dan, you are in big trouble!

  7. My hubby’s parents each came from big families (10 and 12). Hubby had three kids in his family and I was an only. I can’t picture 17, but we’re certainly having a blast with 5. I can’t say that was my plan for me all along, but it seems to have been God’s plan for me all along. Isn’t that how it usually goes? 🙂

    From what I’ve heard about this family, they seem to be very grounded and solid. As long as their kids grow up marinating in God’s love and the love of their parents, I imagine they’ll all be just fine… whether there are 17, 7 or 1.

  8. Jeanie says:

    OK – I am finished rolling on the floor from Scott’s comment.

    I LOVE watching the Discovery shows on this family and I have actually visited their web site with great curiosity. Here is what they have going for them that really interests me and what they have that I wish I had: the central wet/dry vac system running through their house. Yes, that’s right, it is built in to all the rooms and they can vacuum dry or wet in any room from one central system.

    Is this only available, I wonder, to families with 17 kids???

    I want it!

  9. Teresa says:

    I want to know how Jim Bob and Michelle find the adequete “alone” time to even conceive. Are they just making love to create another life or do they truly enjoy “one another” and that “time” spent?

  10. Jen says:

    I’ve met the Duggars and they are an amazing family. Joy and Christ’s love absolutely radiates from Michelle when she speaks. Jim Bob spent over an hour talking with my husband about finances after a session he spoke at at a convention. When they talk with you you feel like you have their complete attention and love. I am sure their children feel the same way, not just 1 of 17 but special. They model truly living their faith and God’s words are on their lips at all times. I was completely blown away and impressed with the family and we spoke to many of the children who were each amazingly well behaved and full of joy just like their parents. They had a blast all playing together whether it was on the escalators or making music together. Take it from me, their patience is not just a good show for tv… they live it even when the cameras aren’t running.

    Jen

  11. Sylvia says:

    I watching the show last night: Sky Diving and Paint Ball.
    I enjoyed seeing the Duggars interacting with another large family – but I did not like that Amy Duggar is feartured so much.
    PLEASE PLEASE keep this show about Michelle and Jim Bob and their 17 (soon to be 18) children. It is why I watch the show. PLEASE PLEASE
    do not turn this into the Amy Duggar show, although she seems like a lovely person, that is NOT why I watch.
    THANKS
    All the best to Josh and Anna
    All the best with the new addition
    Thank you for hearing my opinion

  12. Ashley says:

    I love Amy Duggar. I think it’s nice to see that someone in their family actually has opinions. She’s the highlight of the show for me, and I’d really love her to try and get some of the older girls out there in the world without their parents.

    These kids have no personalities, have never gone to school, and probably have no friends outside of each other. Amy provides a balance and an outside perspective that isn’t “God is great, lets all hold hands and have 20 kids”

  13. Betty Branich says:

    There is such a thing as birth control. How can each of these children get the individual love and attention that every child so deserves?

  14. kim says:

    I am the middle child of 22 and and wouldnt wish it on anyone.

  15. DEB says:

    MICHELLE AND JIM BOB YOU REALLY NEED TO GET A GRIP ON IT AND STOP HAVING MORE KIDS.BE HAPPY WITH THE ONES YOU HAVE.AND MACHELLE YOU REALLY NEED TO RAISE THOSE BABIES YOURSELF AND STOP PAWNING THEM ONTO THE OTHER CHILDREN.JIM-BOB YOU NEED TO GET INVOLVED INTO YOUR CHILDRENS LIFE.WHAT THE HECK YOU SAY AS LONG AS GOD GIVES YOU THE KIDS BUT YOU NEED TO BE GOOD PARENTS TO THEM AND DO AND RAISE THOSE BABIES LIKE PARENTS ARE SUPPOSE TO.STOP PAWNING THEM ONTO THE OTHER KIDS FOR HEAVEN SAKE.

  16. DEB says:

    dont you believe in birth control.? have you ever heard of it?

  17. Paula says:

    OK to begin with everyone putting them down needs to be put down themselves because they are probably on medicaid or get food stamps to take care of there own kids. Jim bob and michelle pay for their own kids, not the state so that entitles them to have as many children as the want. I admire michelle for everything she does and trys to give her kids so people need to stop telling them to stop having kids……

  18. Josh says:

    No one wants to watch TLC promote christian families who believe in creationism.

    TLC needs some different families
    other than white christian wack jobs

    there are other families out there pagan , single parent , older
    couples , LGBT , african american , atheist

    who cares if some christian family is raising 17 kids so they can
    get a better chance at promoting there beliefs to the world through
    there kids.

    hope they end up with a rebelious child but how can they
    theyve brain washed all of them.

    • Dee says:

      I agree with this comment. For the most part. I agree with TLC needing to feature more family settings other then the traditional white christian family. There are loads of other people out there who deserve their spotlight for being amazing parents. I wouldn’t call the duggar’s “wack jobs” though. I understand their perspective. it’s not a life I would choose to live but it’s one that bares it’s existence. Now imagine this people. having 17 kids and having your spouse leave or die. or better yet imagine a divorce and splitting up your children one spouse to another. Maybe they Duggar children will lead different lives from what their parents have instilled.

  19. Katie Cartee says:

    OK I THINK MICHELLE NEEDS TO FREAKIN STOP SHE IS TO OLD TO BE HAVING KIDS AND THAT IS JUST FREAKIN GROSS HAVING 18 CHILDREN..LIKE IT REALLY SEEMS LIKE UR DOIN IT FOR ATTENTION…AND THE MONEY…UR NASTY…AND THE PEOPLE SAING WE NEED TO STOP PUTTIN THEM DOWN UR FUCKIN STUPID CAUSE THEY ONLY HAVE THAT MONEY CAUSE THERE ON TV..DUH..

  20. Amber says:

    I love this show. I love to watch how the parent’s interact with their children, and Michelle’s ideas to organize her home. I think they are a wonderful family and the children all look very happy. I came from a small family, and my husband came from a large family, and having a large family is definatly alot more fun.

  21. Kathy Kluthe says:

    While it sounds like this family is a good family and God-fearing (though I’ve never personally seen the show), I can’t imagine having a family that big. Not only would I be concerned that the kids wouldn’t feel like they got enough attention from me as their mom, I don’t think I would ever really get to really KNOW my kids. I am not against having multiple kids (I want to have 4-5 kids myself) but this just seems to be overboard.

    It’s even more crazy when you compare families like this to families in China living with the One Child Policy.

  22. Glenna Lynch says:

    I admire the family, its seems that they really care for each other, however, it is very difficult for Michelle and Jim Bob to give each child their love and full attention.
    If TLC are willing to promote and give money to the family good luck to them, on the other hand, there are so many deserving families out there, maybe TLC would consider selecting a poor family instead, this might promote real christianity. But, I guess TLC show is very selective. I agree with other comments, TLC do need to promote and encourage christianity within other ethnic and social groups for fairness.

  23. heather09 says:

    i love meet the duggars, i like to see how they live, and the way the interact with each other. what i dont like is that amy is on like every show. its about a mom and dad and their children. she has different beliefs, way diferent than the others. she may be a bad rol model. i just think their needs to be less of her. i also think she’s doing it just to be on tv, pay attention the next time you watch the show, she constantly watches the camera, and tries to be in it. i just dont care for her very much.

  24. Jenny says:

    I am DISGUSTED that they had this many kids. The world is overpopulated and they cannot possibly give each and every one of those children the attention and time that they need. It is so appalling to me that they would even consider having that many kids and that there is a show and people watch it. Why don’t they have any consideration for the rest of the world and stop having children! Take care of the ones you already have!

  25. Mag55 says:

    Everything may be hunky-dory in Dugger World now, but as she gets older, Michele should realize the risks get greater for birth defects and downs syndrome. I think she should be done because having kids at this stage of life, who knows what health problems await her and her husband.

    Who’s going to take care of the kids? You can’t make the eldest children work to support everybody else – will any of these kids ever have a life of their own or do they have to cowtow to mom and dad?? I wonder how they are doing in this economy. I suppose 17 tax deductions will get you a terrific refund check.

  26. Jenni says:

    This is sad and terrible to me. The world is overpopulated as it is. It is socially and environmentally irresponsible to have that many children. What an terrible and incredible tax on our natural resources.

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