8 Facts About Joy-Anna Duggar, The "Rebellious" Daughter

The Duggars are arguably the most popular reality TV family around, except maybe for the Gosselins. But with 19 kids in their brood, there's bound to be a couple rebellious ones. Of course, there's the obvious choice of Josh Duggar, who molested his sisters. That's definitely not something the family condones. But when you're thinking of the most rebellious daughter, there are two who jump to mind.

First, there's Jinger Duggar, who fans always rooted for to break away from her family. From a young age, you could tell that Jinger wanted to do her own thing. She decided to take up photography, which no one else in the family did. Not a big deal when you think about it, but the Duggars are all very similar when it comes to extracurricular activities, so when someone strays from the "norm," people take notice.

Jinger Duggar wearing pants

Jinger was also the first Duggar sister to be documented wearing pants, a big no-no in the Duggar world. After marrying her husband, Jeremy Vuolo, Jinger adopted pants as part of her everyday wardrobe.  

She even waited over a year to have a baby after getting married, which is the longest any Duggar child has gone.

Jinger and Jeremy's pregnancy announcement
US Weekly

But perhaps the only sister who "out-rebels" Jinger is Joy-Anna, who made headlines when it started to look like she had conceived her first child outside of wedlock. Joy-Anna was set to marry Austin Forsyth in October of 2017, but it was suddenly changed to May 2017, just four months after their engagement. There was no real reason given, but three months after her wedding, Joy-Anna posted a picture of a baby bump which seemed too far along to be three months.

Joy-Anna's Baby Bump

The general consensus was that the couple had engaged in pre-marital sex, which wouldn't be the first Duggar rule they had broken. The couple admitted to breaking some courtship rules set out by Jim Bob Duggar, which if you're unfamiliar, as as follows:

  • It's not "casual," the Duggars call courting "dating with a purpose.
  • Group dates only, no one on one time until marriage
  • There always has to be a chaperone, and it's usually one of the brothers
  • Group texts only, and they have to involve mom and dad
  • No kissing or hand holding in order to avoid "regrets" should the relationship fall apart

Austin admitted to breaking courtship rules in a super scandalous way. Okay, so not really. But in the Duggar world, it's a big deal.

"The only time that I can think of when I overstepped my bounds with my future father-in-law was probably staying up talking past curfew," he lamented in an interview. "Just letting time slip past you and being in a good conversation...it's really easy to do. That and probably going over the three-second hug. That's easy to do."

All of that is speculation, of course. Joy-Anna announced the birth of her son Gideon on February 26th, lines up with her wedding.


But what do we actually know about Joy-Anna Duggar that isn't a rumor? Well, let's find out.

1. She's always been a tomboy

Joy-Anna on a dirt bike

Growing up in a household of 19 children, there's always going to be a division between the boys and the girls. But while most of the Duggar sisters liked to spend their time cooking and helping mom Michelle with household duties, Joy-Anna could often be found hanging out with the boys.

She loved getting dirty, rough-housing, camping, racing bikes, or anything else the Duggar brothers were up to. Jim-Bob and Michelle always mentioned that Joy-Anna was "different," meaning she didn't list her favorite pastime as "clothes shopping" like the rest of her sisters.

2. She's got an attitude


Don't get me wrong, this isn't a bad thing. When you have as many siblings as Joy-Anna does, you need to make your voice heard. On 19 Kids and Counting, you could always tell when Joy-Anna was unhappy, because she let everyone know it! Being vocal is important for the older kids, too, as they're often responsible for babysitting or are named as a "buddy" for the younger kids, so they need to make sure they know how to assert themselves.

3. She's closer with her brothers

Joy-Anna and her brothers

We've already covered that Joy-Anna was a tomboy, but that's because she's closer in age to her brothers than her sisters. Jinger is the closest girl in age to Joy-Anna, and even then they're four years apart. Jinger, Jessa, and Jill are all within two years of each other, so they formed a tight bond. The next girl after Joy-Anna didn't come until eight years later, after six more brothers.

Because she was closer in age to the boys, she found it more fun to play with them than her older sisters. Now, did she become a tomboy because she was close with her brothers, or was she close with her brothers because she was a tomboy? That's a question we don't know the answer to.

4. She didn't become close with her sisters until later

Joy-Anna and her sisters

As with any sibling relationship, it always changes as you age. Because of the large age gap, Joy-Anne really only started forming a steady relationship with her older sisters in her late teens. When Joy-Anna began courting Austin, she was able to "girl talk" with her sisters and form a meaningful bond with them that she otherwise didn't have.

5. She was a victim of Josh's assault

Joy-Anna crying

It's been well-documented that Josh Duggar is an all-around gross human being, molesting his sisters and cheating on his pregnant wife, but I think people forget that Joy-Anna was one of his victims...and she was just four years old.

Josh admitted that when he was 14 years old, he fondled the genitalia of five girls, four of whom were his sisters. At the time, each sister was underage and hadn't hit puberty yet. Jill was 10, Jessa was 9, Jinger was 8, and Joy was 4. Though Joy has not spoken out individually about the assault, she joined a lawsuit with the three other Duggar sisters against police and In Touch magazine, claiming their privacy was breached when their names were released.

6. She broke tradition on her wedding day

Joy-Anna and Austin wedding day

Of course she did. It wouldn't be Joy-Anna if she wasn't going to break the rules, right? Duggar children all live by their parents rules until they get married, which is when they can choose whether or not they want to follow them all.

I guess Joy-Anna wanted to make her own rules early, so on her wedding day she broke a pretty big tradition that most people follow. The middle Duggar decided to see her husband-to-be on her wedding day, which is generally unheard of and considered bad luck.

7. She lived in a trailer

Joy-Anna and Austin sawing

Joy-Anna's husband Austin is in the business of flipping houses, so it makes sense that he'd want to do that for their first house. The couple purchased a fixer upper and started doing the renovations themselves. But while that was happening, they needed some place to live...and that place was a trailer.

The original plan was to fix up the house during their engagement so that on their wedding night it would be ready. But because the wedding was pushed up, their three-month engagement wasn't enough time to get the house ready. They ended up living in a trailer, and ultimately it's where they spent their wedding night. How romantic.

8. Josh was at her wedding

Josh and Anna Duggar

For most people, having the man who molested you as a child at your wedding seems like a major no-no, but things get a little trickier when it's your brother. Although he wasn't featured in the TLC special which showcased Joy-Anna's wedding, Josh was in attendance and sat with the family.

There's a couple reasons why this actually makes sense, the first being that the family is adamant Josh is not the same person he was when this all went down. The second is that the Duggar sisters have stayed very close with Josh's wife, Anna, who was in Joy-Anna's wedding party.

Frankly, all that matters is that Joy-Anna is happy, healthy, and living her best life. With her new baby, new husband, and new house, it's hard to believe that she's not!

Discover More about the Duggar Sisters

Meagan has an intense love for Netflix, napping, and carbs.