Members of the Duggar family are continuing to speak out after their hit reality series Counting On was canceled. Just a week after TLC announced its decision not to move forward with a 12th season of the show amid Josh Duggar's legal case, Jill Duggar and her husband Derick Dillard broke their silence, briefly opening up about the "pressures and some unexpected challenges" the show presented them.
In a message shared to their Dillard Family blog on Monday, the couple revealed that they were only just addressing the cancellation "because we just learned the news with the rest of the world last Tuesday" and "this season of life is quite busy for us." According to the couple, who share sons Israel, 6, and Samuel, 3, they "first heard of the cancellation when both a friend & a cousin each texted us after seeing TLC's statement online." They said they do not know "how long the cancellation had been planned."
The couple went on to note that "it's been over 4 years now since we chose to step away from the show," and while they were "initially barred from sharing our decision to leave the show, we have opened up a little more recently on our social media." As fans of the Duggars know, the Dillards have not been part of the show for years now. They left the series in 2017 amid some controversy, with Duggar making a brief appearance in the Counting On special Josiah and Lauren's Baby in 2019, and in recent months, they have opened up about their strained relationship with Duggar's parents, Jim Bob and Michelle, whom they are no longer in contact with.
In the blog post, Duggar and Dillard opened up about their experiences on 19 Kids and Counting and Counting On, sharing that while they had "many great experiences with the network" and "several of the crew members have even become like family to us," there was also a negative side. They said they also faced "many pressures and some unexpected challenges which forced us to step away from the show in an effort to gain more control over our own lives and to do what was best for our family."
"The pursuit of freedom and authenticity has been a growing theme in our lives. Our story is still being written, and this event is just one more step forward toward that goal. Our family's departure from 19 Kids & Counting and Counting On has allowed us to make our own decisions, including the ability to have a choice in what we share," the post ended. "For now, we will move forward on our own terms, and we look forward to whatever opportunities the future holds."
On Tuesday, June 30, TLC confirmed that it "will not be producing additional seasons of Counting On." In a statement, the network said it "feels it is important to give the Duggar family the opportunity to address their situation privately." Counting On initially premiered in 2015 as a spinoff of 19 Kids and Counting, which was canceled amid Josh's molestation controversy. Counting On ran for a total of 11 seasons.