Call it a ripple effect. Josh Duggar’s bombshell molestation scandal this past May has caused his family plenty of pain — both personally and publicly — and on Thursday, January 7, a TLC executive noted that his actions have had even farther-reaching repercussions.
“We have had our challenges,” TLC’s executive vice president and general manager Nancy Daniels said during the opening remarks at the network’s Television Critics Association panel. “As soon as we found out about [Josh Duggar], we did work with the family.”
Daniels further noted that the network was sympathetic toward the Duggar family, who were hit with several scandals last year.
“These are people who had something happening in their lives a long time ago,” she continued. “We took the show off the air and immediately connected with two well-respected agencies to figure out the appropriate response. And one of those responses was the documentary to put the word out about a situation that doesn't really get talked about."
The network aired a one-hour special in August, entitled Breaking the Silence, about sexual abuse.
In May, rumors surfaced that Josh had molested five girls back in 2002, when he was 14 years old. It was later revealed that two of his sisters — Jill and Jessa — were among the victims. The disgraced reality star apologized and then resigned from his position within the Family Research Council, a conservative Christian organization.
TLC canceled the family’s hit TLC show, 19 Kids and Counting, in July, stating that it had decided, “after thoughtful consideration,” “not to move forward with 19 Kids and Counting.” The show was on the air for 10 seasons.
When hackers revealed stolen subscriber data from cheating website Ashley Madison in August, Josh’s personal information was included. The reality star then admitted that he had cheated on his wife, Anna, and that he was addicted to porn.
“I am so ashamed of the double life that I have been living and am grieved for the hurt, pain and disgrace my sin has caused my wife and family, and most of all Jesus and all those who profess faith in Him,” he said in a statement, asking fans to “please pray” for their family.
Josh is currently seeking treatment at a faith-based rehab center in Illinois.
His sisters Jill and Jessa have since taken part in a three-part special entitled Jill & Jessa: Counting On.
Any future specials are pending for the time being, Daniels said.
“We are still considering doing more but haven't made a decision yet,” she noted.
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