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Duggar Family Still Expanding

By John Cave Osborne |

Josh and Anna Dugger, 22, are already pregnant with number 2.

The Duggars are at it again. Their ever-expanding brood continues to do just that. Jim Bob and Michelle’s oldest son, Josh, and his wife, Anna, are welcoming their second child. Their first child turned one on October 8—the same day that day that Anna showed her husband the positive pregnancy test.

The story of a young couple expecting their second child would hardly be considered newsworthy. That is if it weren’t for the fact that the soon-to-be father of two hails from a family the size of some small towns. After all, the guy’s got 18 brothers and sisters. So how many children do he and his wife want to have?

“We’ll be having 25,” Josh jokingly told People magazine. Before setting the record straight, that is. Like his parents, Josh and his wife plan to leave the number “up to God.”

As I read the account, I couldn’t help but wonder if Josh and Anna are 100% comfortable with the attention they receive. After all, a simple pregnancy results in People Magazine knocking on their door. With the good times, comes the bad. And I would think it’d be hard to share your life’s tragedies with the general public just because your parents had 19 children. (Their youngest of which isn’t even a year old yet!)

That’s exactly what Josh and Anna did when they told the magazine that they had suffered a miscarriage this past summer. But it’s not just sharing negative news that I think would be difficult. It would also be the constant questions of how many children they’ll have. We’ve asked a similar question over at Famecrawler. Josh’s answer, while a good one, is the same one that yielded 19 for his parents.

The fact that Josh and Anna will already have two children under their belt by the ripe old age of 23 seems to indicate that a big family could be in their future. But only time will tell. And no matter what, it would seem unlikely that they could ever match the pace set by Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar. During the past 22 calendar years, Michelle has given birth in 17 of them. Two of those 17 pregnancies resulted in twins.

So not only would Josh and Anna have to keep up with a preposterous pace to follow suit, but they’d also need a set of multiples thrown in here and there. And believe it or not, the multiple rate has been leveling off a bit. According to the National Vital Statistics Report, the rate of twin births rose 70% from 1980 through 2004, then stayed flat for two years, before dipping down 1% this past year. The rate of birth for triplets, quads and multiples of even higher order ballooned during the 80′s and 90′s (over 400%) before plateauing in 1998. Since then, such births have declined by 21%.

I doubt that any of those numbers mean much to Josh and Anna, though. They just seem like a nice young couple starting a family. But for better or for worse, they come from a family that has made the growth of theirs of public interest, if not public speculation. Here’s to hoping it evolves the exact way they want it to.

That said, if the over/under is 10? Put me down for the under. What about you?

Photo: People


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About John Cave Osborne


John Cave Osborne

John Cave Osborne is a writer whose work has appeared on such sites as Babble, TLC, YahooShine, and the Huffington Post. John went from carefree bachelor to father of four in just 13 months after marrying a single mom, then quickly conceived triplets. Since then, they have added one more to the mix, a little boy they named Grand Finale. Read bio and latest posts → Read John's latest posts →

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12 thoughts on “Duggar Family Still Expanding

  1. Clark Kent's Lunchbox says:

    My sister & her husband live near them. They shared the same babysitter for a while. And they almost bought a car from the oldest Duggar.

  2. Sarah says:

    Don’t you mean less than 2 years after child number one? Hasn’t the first child already turned one? This isn’t out of the norm of child spacing (they aren’t 9 or 10 months apart). I wish they would have the oportunity to live their life in peace w/out people bothering them. 2 children spaced 19 or 20 months apart is hardly newsworthy.

    1. John Cave Osborne says:

      @Sarah—I did mean 2 years. Thanks for the correction. Off to change. And though I’m part of the problem, I hear you on wishing people would just leave them alone. That said, they could have always said “no” to People. Thanks for the comment.
      @CKL—They would have had to come up w. a cool name for such a car. Like the Duggarmobile. Or DuggWagen. Or something.

  3. the muskrat says:

    This reminds me of that time I…yeah, nothing.

  4. Otter says:

    That’s how we do it in Arkansas. We are lovers. Of course some of us believe in birth control.

  5. Nicky's mom says:

    As long as they provide for their children and give them a loving, supportive home, I don’t think it’s a problem. Will I be having 19 children? No thank you. But the Duggar clan seems warm and encouraging, and extremely resourceful.

  6. Em says:

    I’m not sure about the relevance of the multiple birth statistics here. I am fairly certain that the rise in multiple births was seen as fertility treatments rose and has began decreasing as those treatments have gotten more controlled. Based on the Duggars’ beliefs, I really doubt that either family would undergo fertility treatments, so the younger Duggars’ odds are likely very similar to the older Duggars’.

    1. John Cave Osborne says:

      @Em—You know what? I agree with you. I think the twin stats might have a place, but now that you mention it, probably not the multiples of higher orders. Appreciate your comment.

  7. Lalalala says:

    Chances for multiples increase as women get older. Releasing 2 or more eggs during ovulation (resulting in fraternal twins/trips/etc) is more possible as a woman ages – it’s not always related to fertility drugs. ;)

  8. jrmiss86 says:

    Many people who believe the way the Duggars do, don’t end up with any more kids than anybody else. The Duggars just happen to be extremly fertile!! Despite how it looks sometimes, it can actually be pretty hard to get pregnant. So many things have to line up just right. They are not trying to have a gaggle of children, they are just not preventing any pregnancy. For some people that is enough to get pregnant every year, for many, many others, that would result in them never getting pregnant.

  9. Sara says:

    @jrmiss, actually is some ways, the older Duggars *have* tried to have a gaggle of children.. for instance, Michelle has openly admitted to purposely weaning her children at 6 months old age so that she can get her cycles back quicker and therefore get pregnant quicker. I don’t call that leaving it up to God, personally. God made it so that women’s cycles were delayed during breastfeeding, and while some women don’t experience that, to purposely wean a child who still needs breastmilk for AT LEAST another 6 months in order to get pregnant again is messing with God’s plan.

  10. Lucky says:

    @Sara- When did she say that? I heard her say that most of her kids had formula *because* she got pregnant and her milk dried up, but I’ve also heard from second hand sources that they do in fact belong to the quiverful movement that strives to have extremely large families. I’ve never been able to confirm it though.

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