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Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Duggar Family: Crazy Courtship Ritual

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The Duggar family is on a show called 17 Kids and Counting. I was watching it the other day and I found one of their practices very interesting. The oldest son in the family was in the process of "courting" a young women. This meant that no dating was permitted. He asked the girl's father for permission to get to know his daughter better. After what I think was a couple of years he then asked the father's permission for his daughter's hand in marriage. He proposed to her but the most affection he felt comfortable with was putting his arm on her shoulder. Later that evening he asked the father's permission to hold his fiancee's hand. The first kiss and intimate relations were to be experienced with marriage. Also, even after they were engaged, they could not go anywhere alone; they had to have a chaparone.

While I respect these families' choice to ensue courtship I cannot help but have strong negative feelings about this. To save the first kiss for marriage sounds fantasic and respectful but I could not imagine what it would be like for grown adults to not be allowed to express their love to each other. And they do not have any privacy . . . and they are adults! I do not believe that sex and kissing should be held off until after marriage. People should have the freedom to do as the please with their bodies. It is a beautiful way to express a person's love to another and no one should be ashamed of that for any reason.

I also find it unfortunate that this process of courtships seems to only value the men's decisions. He was asking the father for permission and not her mother. I think that people should do what makes themselves and others happy. If the Duggar women want to be courted I think that is fine. But I cannot imagine the parents being okay with their daughters rejecting this practice and choosing to date. When I have children I want them to have respect for their partners but I would put enough trust in them that they will do this on their own without being pressured into it.

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  1. That does sound odd. I must admit between my own religious beliefs, my personal views, and my general upbringing I don't think you should have sex before marriage, but I don't think you should have to hold off on kissing the one you love. I find sex to be a sacred and special thing to share with the one you plan to have forever, not something you give away before making that one life long commitment, and not a simple commitment of boyfriend/girlfriend. I grew up in a family that expressed their love, and expect nothing less. The Duggar family may be showing respect to each other threw their actions, but how much more respectful would it be to express your feelings and emotions even through a kiss, showing all that you belong together?!

  2. 17 and counting is now 18 and counting. AND baby number 19 is on the way.


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