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Customer Review

143 of 187 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good for Teen Girls, March 4, 2014
This review is from: Growing Up Duggar (Hardcover)
I've never seen a Duggar TV show, read another Duggar book, nor anything else by the Duggars. So when I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review, I dived into reading with no previous opinions of the family.

The first thing I noticed was that even though the book is supposedly by four girls, it reads as if it was written by a single person. There is no difference in voice, expression, personality, or opinion. They even use the same odd clichés, such as "share our heart" (meaning to speak candidly). When I flipped to the Acknowledgments page, I discovered why. A writer named Charlie Richards is the actual author who penned the book after interviewing the young women.

This is not an insider's look at a family of 19 and counting. Rather, it is a collection of events that happened while growing up, peppered with a whole lot of advice on how to be a good child and how to be a good parent. (Another indication that the book actually written by an older adult.)

The best audience for this book is teenage girls. They can glean wisdom from the Duggars, such as how to handle an annoying sibling, how to respectfully disagree with your parents, dealing with anger, managing peer pressure, forming opinions on opposite sex relationships, dressing modestly, and more.

A secondary audience is parents who can also pick up some good ideas. For example, on page 36-37 is a list of questions to ask your children in order to get them to open up and discuss life's important issues. That alone could be worth the price of the book. Additionally, it might be helpful to read excerpts aloud to the family and then discuss your own responses to these situations. There are plenty of stories with which to agree and disagree in order to get the conversation rolling and then segue into forming your own family's guidelines and policies.

My favorite element of this book is that all the girls participate in ministry and/or charity work. In so doing, they provide an example and inspiration for other young people.

God bless you, Duggar girls. And next time, I'd like to read a book that was actually written by one of you--preferably after the age of 35 when you've had time to acquire an independent perspective.
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Showing 1-10 of 18 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Mar 7, 2014 5:13:31 AM PST
SisiL78 says:
They won't ever reach the age of independence. They will either be forever Stay at Home Daughters or married off to some man and forced to breed until their bodies fail. Widowhood might be the first taste of independence they get. Or if their parents die early.

How would the world be a better place if more women were uneducated and so brainwashed that they couldn't leave the house without an escort? I think women these days are better off being the exact opposite of the Duggar "girls".

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 8, 2014 10:26:05 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Mar 8, 2014 10:31:37 PM PST
Seekthetruth says:
I've grown weary of people stating that the Duggar girls have no independence and are "forced" or "brainwashed" or "limited" by their upbringing. Nonsense. These are twenty something young ladies who are living the way they want to live. They have many options and choices available to them. If one or any of them wanted to move out, they would. If they wanted to leave for college, they would. If they wanted to leave their parents faith, wear pants and drink alcohol, they would. There are many children raised like the Duggars are, who do just that. It just happens that these particular girls so far embrace their parents' values and are happy with their lives.

Ive raised enough teens to know that young people do what they want, regardless of their parents teachings and efforts to steer them in any particular direction. And yes, the world would absolutely be a better place if more young adults gave some thought to a bit of ministry work rather than leading the self absorbed, meaningless, and entertainment centered lives that is the norm. I find the Duggar girls more mature, responsible, and unselfish than most adults, of any age. I was inspired by many parts of the book. You keep going Duggar girls, and keep setting the example like you are. What a breath of fresh air.

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 11, 2014 3:18:48 PM PDT
Kathy says:
Actually, these girls have been brought up with the stay at home daughter (SAHD) teachings of Bill Gothard and Vision Forum. Google the stay at home daughter movement. With Vision Forum and Gothard's teachings, daughters should not receive higher education and should stay at home helping their families until their father stands up at their wedding and announces that he is transferring his authority over his adult (adult!) daughter to her husband. Read up about the Gothard, Vision Forum, SAHD movement that the Duggars are a part of. It's emotionally unhealthy and not representative of true Christianity.

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 11, 2014 7:21:31 PM PDT
Thank You for this. I have 10 children - 4 daughters - and they WANT to live somewhat similar in lifestyle to say the Duggars - not identical, obviously, we are all individuals and our families are all unique. I too am weary of people being so vitriolic towards the Duggars simply because they have chosen to live differently than the messed up world around us.

Why do people not consider other children/young adults "brainwashed" who are enslaved to their peers to tell them how to dress, how to treat their parents with total disrespect, how to party, how to drink, how to flaunt their bodies, how to gossip and cut each other to pieces with their hurtful words and unkind actions, how to lose their virginity, how to pursue casual sex afterward, in short, how to live a life they will one day regret.

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 12, 2014 2:15:50 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Mar 12, 2014 2:31:48 PM PDT
Seekthetruth says:
I'm familiar with the teachings of Vision Forum and Gothard. I know these girls were taught in their youth to live the life they are now. What I'm saying is that they are as free as anyone else to reject or embrace these teachings, and live the life they choose. A girl who is told she "shouldn't" receive higher education will go ahead and get some anyway if she wants to. No one is a prisoner, thanks to the land of liberty we are blessed enough to live in. People are responsible for their own choices as adults and cannot use parents or upbringing as excuses to not live the lives they want to live. As an example, Michelle rejected the way she was raised and chose something different for herself and raised her children differently than she was. Many people do this, according to their convictions. Every person is "brainwashed" as child, in what their family and school and culture teaches. It's not possible to teach "nothing" or complete "open-mindedness". The Duggars proactively teach the values and skills they want their children to have, rather than relying on friends, schools, and modern culture to do it. That is how I used to raise my older children, and the fruits of that have been disappointing. If one wants their child to turn out like your average American young person, then I suppose one would be satisfied with using that method. I am changing the way I raise my younger children and am studying good examples of strong, healthy families with mature, responsible children who are unselfish and focused on being useful to the world and strong in Christian values, and actually live those values. I find the Duggars to be an excellent example of this. I'm not looking to make us identical to them, we have some differing beliefs and practices, but they have much to be admired for.

As a side note, some of the Duggar girls are pursuing higher education, in a non-traditional way. CollegePlus, which is indeed a viable, accredited college option, and midwifery have all been mentioned in their books and shows as being studied. In any case, college away-from-home isn't all its cracked up to be anymore. Exceedingly expensive with degrees that provide increasingly dubious employability. In addition, the professors and curriculum are increasingly liberal and humanist in nature, along with the party and promiscuous atmosphere of most colleges. Which again, if that is your own personal beliefs and what you want your children schooled in, then that would be acceptable to you. Not so great, if you don't. There are Christian colleges, sure, but I see nothing wrong with, and quite a bit to like, about a young lady preferring to live with her family while she pursues constructive and honorable occupations and education, which is what the Duggar girls are doing. I'd consider my family blessed if my younger daughters grow up and do the same.

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 18, 2014 7:26:28 AM PDT
Jasmine says:
How are they uneducated?? Some of the older girls are midwives, volunteer firefighters, first responders...Michelle Duggar is still a real estate agent. They just don't put work in front of their family. There is nothing wrong with that.

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 22, 2014 10:41:42 PM PDT
SisiL78 says:
College Plus is NOT higher education. College Plus is an overpriced CLEP review course. Period. Very few accredited Universities allow more than a few credits to be skipped with CLEP testing. By stating that "college a viable, accredited college option" you are flat out lying. Last time I checked lying was a big time sin.

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 26, 2014 8:46:43 AM PDT
Your opinion,America could stand more children like them.

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 26, 2014 5:58:24 PM PDT
A. Roddy says:
Why are there no gray areas between partying drug addicts and a Puritan society? I have seen kids raised under similar beleifs and done the opposite-getting pregnant out of wedlock and doing drugs et. What the Duggars pormote is far worse than what secular society teaches and more damaging. It uses a gang like mentality to keep members in check. And the Duggars are full of disrespect an judgment. It's one thing to be different than the world and another to put yourself on a pedastal looking down on others who are just flawed. That is worse than partying or flaunting your body. The Bible speaks against haughtiness.
.Seek the Truth@ They do not have a choice. I fail to believe 19 kids would think the same. Take their sister in law Anna. She only has 8 siblings and three of them have ventureed far away from Fundmentalism and got shunned. Her sister even has a child out of wedlock so what good were the teachings on purity? The Duggars want yo to htink the kids have choice but they do not. Jim Bob told John David he couldn't move in a house he aquired until marriage. Come on. The guy is a legal adult and can't move in a house alone, a house he earned? Jill wanted to be a nruse, but college is forbidden so she settled for a quack profession like homebirth midwifery. Brainwashing in a cultish legalistic way is far differentt than a normal upbringing where you faced challenges and made your own decisions.

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 26, 2014 7:49:38 PM PDT
I am a physician, My wife is a physician my daughter is in her junior year of college. We are an ATI family (that is the homeschool program of IBLP the ministry of Dr. Gothard). The TRUTH is I have NEVER heard Dr. Gothard talk about SAHD movement. In fact I have heard him teach just the opposite. Don't believe everything you read on the internet and don't malign people if you don't know the facts. Vision forum is in no way associated with IBLP.
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