Jill Duggar Sees Mom Michelle Duggar "More Clearly" Now in 'Counting the Cost' Memoir

Jill Duggar and her mom, Michelle Duggar, have had a complicated relationship and she explains some of it in her memoir, 'Counting the Cost.'

Chrissy Bobic - Author

Sep. 12 2023, Published 12:50 p.m. ET

Those who have followed the Duggar family since 19 Kids and Counting and then Counting On know a lot about Jill Duggar's relationship with dad Jim Bob Duggar. But what about her mom, Michelle Duggar? In many ways, Michelle seems to have remained loyal to her husband's ideals and opinions over the years. But Jill's memoir, Counting the Cost, sheds more light onto what her relationship with her mother is like now.

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According to the book, Jill and her husband, Derick Dillard, made the decision to leave reality TV behind when they were denied financial help after a costly and traumatic birth. What followed was a series of back and forth negotiations about signing another contract, being paid a fair amount for their time on the show, and gaining access to previous contracts from TLC. When Jim Bob pushed back on this, so did Michelle. And Jill is pretty candid about it in her book.

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What is Jill Duggar's relationship like with Michelle Duggar?

Before Jill released her book, detailing her revelations regarding the Institute in Basic Life Principles (IBLP) which her family has followed for years, the public had the idea that Jill barely spoke to both of her parents. And as of right now that may still be partly true. But Counting the Cost also shows how Jill has tried in different ways to maintain some kind of relationship with her parents over the years, if still making her boundaries clear. And she still wants her mom and dad in her life.

"I see the myriad [of] ways she cared for us when we were growing up, the sacrifices she made, and the depth of her love for people," Jill writes in Counting the Cost. "I love her, respect her, and look up to her. She is the first person I call whenever I have a question about our baby's health, and I love that we can still connect that way no matter what family drama is occurring."

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Jill also explains in her memoir how she and Michelle were able to connect in ways they hadn't "for years" after the birth of Jill's third child. Michelle even helped with the baby while Jill recovered, following her C-section.

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Jill Duggar is still working on things with her family.

The majority of Counting the Cost explains the circumstances under which Jill and Derick opted to no longer be part of the family's TLC show or Jim Bob's company, Mad Family Inc. Much of it, according to Jill, stemmed from a lack of transparency and even trust in regards to what it meant for her and Derick to sign literal years of their life away to filming for little to no money in return.

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Jill's decisions to ask for answers and to be given choices came from her newfound understanding of the IBLP. They were also a result of her new opinions regarding the way she was brought up, with high modesty standards for girls and women and plenty of rules in place to keep children in line. She began to question things and eventually, Jill removed herself from the IBLP teachings altogether.

But even so, she tries to maintain a relationship with her parents and even her siblings. Counting the Cost makes it clear that Jill didn't write the book in order to further distance herself from her family or to attack them.

She explains in her book that her point in writing it wasn't to "shame" her family in any way or to even mend fences with the memoir. Jill says in her "Author's Note" that she knows not all families are perfect, but she expects to continue to work on her relationships.

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For Jill, it seems, writing Counting the Cost, which is also the first real Duggar tell-all book, was about being as open as possible. And as she continues to mend relationships with Michelle and Jim Bob, she appears to be continuing her journey to healing.

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