Former Counting On star Jill (Duggar) Dillard does not strictly follow some of her family's conservative rules, but she has not changed her views on the LGBTQ community. In her new interview with PEOPLE, Dillard was asked how she would react if one of her children came out as gay or transgender. She said that "lifestyle" is "not condoned" by her faith but insisted she and husband Derick Dillard have friends in the LGBTQ community.
"As far as our views on the LGBTQ+ community, we do hold to our faith that that lifestyle is not condoned, and we believe it to be a sinful thing," she told the magazine, via The Ashely's Reality Roundup. "Just because we don't agree with someone or their lifestyle doesn't mean that we can't be friends." She went on to say that if one of their children did come out as gay, they would still love them but "couldn't condone their lifestyle," adding, "But if they are an adult and not under our roof, then they could make their own decisions."
The magazine later asked Dillard what her response would be to her children coming out while still living at home. Dillard did not directly answer that. "We realize that change is usually hard, and we wouldn't expect a changing relationship with our children to be any easier, but we hope that we'd both be able to acknowledge that too and still love each other," she said instead.
Back in September, Dillard and Derick made similar comments in a Q&A video they shared on YouTube. He insisted they do have "friends in the LGBTQ+ community," adding that it is a "misconception" that you cannot be friends with someone you disagree with. "As Christians, we believe that there are certain things that are sinful, like adultery … or sex before marriage, homosexuality, like, those are things that we believe are sinful," Dillard added, notes CheatSheet. "But … doesn't mean that we might not be friends with people, because ultimately we're all sinners."
In 2017, TLC fired Derick after he made transphobic rants about I Am Jazz star Jazz Jennings. In one tweet, he called being transgender a "myth" and said gender is "not fluid; it's ordained by God." Derick later apologized, but even the apology was criticized because he used male pronouns when Jennings uses female pronouns. He then repeatedly claimed TLC did not fire him, instead, saying he left the show by choice to go to law school and do missionary work. Dillard also left Counting On the same year.
In Dillard's PEOPLE interview, she said she and Derick began distancing herself from the Duggar family to have more control over their own lives. Dillard said she was open to reconciling with her family in the future. "I never expected this to happen or for it to get to this point," she said. "But I'm realizing I can't put a timeline on healing. I love my family and they love me. I really just have to follow God's lead and take it one day at a time."