Honeymoon baby Dilly! Jill Duggar finally explained on Tuesday, Sept. 3, why she announced her pregnancy so early. The 19 Kids and Counting star revealed last month that she was expecting her first child with husband Derick Dillard just 60 days after their wedding.
"Understanding that the majority of miscarriages happen within the first trimester," Duggar, 23, told Page Six. "And believing that every life is precious no matter how young, we decided to share our joyful news as soon as we could."
The news, confirmed by Us Weekly on Aug. 20, was shocking to many Duggar family fans who followed Jill and Derick's courtship history. (According to the reality TV family's strict courtship guidelines, the Duggar children are not allowed to hold hands or kiss while dating. The couple shared their first kiss at the altar.)
Still, critics speculated whether Jill and Derick broke these rules prior to marriage. The pregnant star insisted to Page Six that she and her husband remained absolutely chaste throughout their courtship.
"We prayed a lot, prepared and really didn't see any reason to have a long courtship and engagement," Duggar explained. "Once we knew we wanted to get married, we didn't want to put off the wedding for a long time and provide a stumbling block for ourselves; We purposed to save ourselves physically for each other within marriage (even our first kiss for our wedding day!), so we had a short engagement period."
She also gave a word of advice to engaged couples about prolonging their wedding date. "You may not wanna push the wedding date out too far, as those natural God-given desires with too much time between engagement and marriage can make it harder to remain pure," Duggar explained. "If you are financially ready, and things are in place (which should be at the time the question is popped), we believe an engagement should only be long enough to plan a wedding!"
Duggar and dad-to-be Dillard, 25, got engaged this past April, and were married in Springdale, Ark., on June 21. Though the newlyweds have been happily sharing scenes from their brand-new marriage, they remained open to the possibility of expanding their brood.
"We knew that we weren’t going to prevent having children," Duggar, a midwife-in-training said. "So when we found out we were expecting within our first month of marriage we were thrilled!"
With the baby due in March, she added that her first child would hopefully not be her last — not even close. "I have loved having lots of brothers and sisters," Duggar said of having 18 other siblings. "Although Derick comes from a family with just one brother, both of us would love to have as many children as God will give us… We are also open to the possibility of adoption."
While speaking with ABC News in an earlier interview, Duggar said that her first-time pregnancy has not been an easy journey thus far. "I've been having a lot of morning sickness," the TLC star said. "They should call it 'pregnancy sickness because it's all day."