SILOAM SPRINGS, Ark. (Christian Examiner) - Still recovering from scandal earlier this summer, the Duggar family was dealt another emotional blow on Thursday when their eldest son, Josh Duggar, admitted the rumors stating he'd had an online account with Ashley Madison, the website which helps people have affairs for a fee, were true.
"I have been the biggest hypocrite ever," Duggar said, in a statement released on the Duggar family website. "While espousing faith and family values, I have been unfaithful to my wife.
"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 those who profess faith in Him."
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 those who profess faith in Him.
Duggar's latest admission comes only months after the family lost their reality show and Duggar lost his lobbying job in Washington, when a tabloid magazine reported that as a teenager he fondled several young girls, including a couple of his sisters. At the time, Duggar's wife, parents, and other family members were supportive of Duggar, who apologized for "acting inexcusably."
Jill (Duggar) Dillard and Jessa (Duggar) Seewald, Josh Duggar's sisters who are now adults, in June identified themselves as two of the girls their brother molested.
On Thursday, Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar also released a brief statement with their son's, saying when they were told, their "hearts were broken," and they asked for prayers for Josh, his wife, their grandchildren, and the entire Duggar family.
The website Gawker was the first to report Josh Duggar had accounts for the infidelity subscription site whose subscription data was recently hacked and released to the public. A credit card belonging to a "Joshua J. Duggar" - with one account matching the billing address matching the home where Duggar's wife Anna gave birth to their first child and another matching his home in Maryland where he lived while working for the Family Research Council. Duggar reportedly paid a total of $986.76 for the two monthly subscriptions which began in February of 2013 and ended in May of 2015.
Though Ashley Madison executives still haven't confirmed if the released information is legitimate or not, Duggar did, and in the first version of his statement, he also admitted to a secret addiction with pornography. However, the Washington Post and other publications noted Duggar's original statement has been revised several times, and there is no mention of pornography in the current version.
Jessa and Jill Duggar, and Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar are set to participate in an upcoming TLC documentary "Breaking the Silence," on child sexual abuse, Aug. 30 at 9 p.m. CST. The show is being produced in partnership with RAINN, the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network.
Read both statements by Josh Duggar and Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar on their family website.