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The Duggars Are Expecting Baby Number 20 (VIDEO)

by Catherine Lawson, posted Nov 8th 2011 9:11AM
DuggarsNot even the threat of pre-eclampsia or premature birth can slow down Michelle and Jim Bob Duggar in their quest to expand their already huge family: They announced this morning on 'Today' (weekdays, 7AM ET on NBC) that they are expecting their 20th child together.

Telling Ann Curry that she's three and a half months pregnant, 45 year-old Michelle said "We're due in April and we're just thrilled!" Ever the joker, Jim Bob quipped "We don't know how it happened!" Michelle added, "We are so excited. I was not thinking that God would give us another one, and we are just so grateful." The couple had hinted last night on their blog that they'd be making a "special announcement" this morning, but many assumed it would be about another grandchild.

When Curry asked the question that most of us are thinking -- WHY?! -- Michelle said they live by the motto "There's always room for one more." Plus, as Jim Bob says, one kid just moved out to start his own family so there was space available in Casa Duggar.

Watch the happy couple's announcement after the jump.

Viewers of the Duggars' reality show '19 Kid and Counting' on TLC will remember that Michelle's last pregnancy was fraught with dangerous medical issues and baby Josie had to be delivered over three months early. However, Michelle told 'Today' that she's been given the greenlight by doctors, has gotten over her morning sickness and is feeling just great.

The couple told Today Moms that their older children -- who range in age from 23 months to 23 years -- were astonished when they heard the news. They lined the kids up on the staircase for a photo and Jim Bob said, "Smile -- Mom's going to have another baby!"

Michelle laughed that "Their mouths dropped. They all looked at me to see if he was joking."

Although this is a huge number of pregnancies for one woman to undergo healthily, Michelle says she's in better shape than she has been for years. She's taking care of what she eats and she's been working out on an elliptical trainer for an hour a day.

She's also under the care of a high-risk pregnancy doctor who will be monitoring her for a re-occurence of the pre-eclampsia that she suffered from during both her second pregnancy and her last one. The condition -- which causes blood pressure to raise to dangerously high levels -- is the most common pregnancy complication and can strike randomly, although women who have had it before are at higher risk.

One big change for Michelle is that because she had an emergency c-section with Josie, this pregnancy will end with a planned c-section.

The couple wouldn't be drawn on whether this baby will be the last. We're betting that they'll just keep going for as long as they're physically capable.

Tell us: Are the Duggars crazy to have baby number 20? What do you think they should name it?

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People like this are why we're overpopulated....

April 14 2012 at 5:01 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Everyone that convicts this family and judges them needs to step back and take a look at their own lives. How do you know the kids don't get one-on-one time? I think actually by homeschooling they probably spend more time then our kids that go to a public/private school. And they watch NO television! So that right there is awesome. What people need to take from the Duggars is positive not judgement. Jim Bob and Michelle feel like they have a calling to minister to the world and by inviting all of us in their home each week should not come judgement but enlightment. Yes we aren't all going to have 20! Kids but if you have 1 or 2 how do you spend that time with them? And what lessons are you teaching your child to be good people that can go out in the world and make it a better place?

November 14 2011 at 9:58 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Brigitte...you do come from a large family, but even with 6 siblings it is still in the realm of being somewhat normal. You yourself said that your parents didn't have as much individual time for you with only 6 siblings. Hun, try to imagine how it would have been if you added 13 more children to your household. I agree, siblings are great...I myself have a brother that I absolutely love, but all the benefits you spoke of can be achieved with just a few children. I just feel for the kids because there is no way in heck that they're getting the one-on-one attention from the parents that they DESERVE, and that's very sad. I also want to point out one thing...having many children does not guaranty closeness within the siblings. I know of several large families personally that are not close at all. So having a large family doesn't mean that it will be a happier one because of it's size. It's the people within the unit that makes the difference, not the size of the unit. I still say, It was THEIR choice to have 20 children, so they should be solely responsible for the care-taking, but we all know that's not the case. It wasn't the children's choice for their parents to have so many, so the responsibility shouldn't be on their shoulders, but it is, and that really sucks!

November 11 2011 at 3:30 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I think it's unfair to criticize the Duggars for thier decision. They teach thier children morals, empathy, strong family connections, and they have their own money which means that they do not rely on public assistance to raise these children. They aren't bothering anyone, instead they help people in every way they can. The only thing I wonder about is the parents being able to bond with each child. But I don't live with them, so that is between the parents and children in that house. I may not agree with having that many children, but I will not judge them. It's not my place to do so. We should all be so lucky to have even a tiny amount of the love that is in that home:)

November 09 2011 at 8:34 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I think Michelle Duggar and Jim Bob should start having protected sex.Its know longer funny.Its a health issue for her and her unborn child.Those kids went through hell with her when Josie was born.If anything happened to her it's a burden on there older children.They look like they are already parents of the younger kids.When do the get to be relaxed young women/men and enjoy those years with an easy heart.I wish them well, i just dont agree with there life choices.Its bordering on self indulgent.

November 09 2011 at 2:21 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

Disthowell, I think that you are absolutely wrong. As the second child of 8 kids I enjoy nothing more than helping my parents out with taking care of my siblings, I am able to do learn what needs to be done so that when I have a baby I will be prepared. I think that you either are not a good parent or dont have any kids or any siblings to take care of.

November 09 2011 at 8:08 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to trcylore's comment

Trcylore...On the contrary, I do have a daughter. I CHOSE to be a stay at home mom, so I could be there for her entire childhood. I was very involved in her life during school, sports, etc. and was ALWAYS there for her. I never missed a play, a recital, a game or any function that she was involved in for that matter. I also wanted to be able to give her the best private schooling (which she had) that we could afford considering I wasn't working outside the home. You see the difference is, WE chose to only have one child so we could do all these things for her. When you have multiple children, it makes it very hard for the parents to be able to be equally involved in the lives of the children. The point is, my daughter had a childhood and was able to be very involved in extra curricular activities...she wasn't home having to help take care of 18 other children. I'm glad you enjoy helping your parents with your siblings, but I'm quite sure you are the exception to the rule. Children should be able to be children...not part time parents because the real parents have too many kids. My daughter by the way, never wanted for anything, is very well adjusted and very well liked, is finishing up college and already has a job with the federal gov't, so geez, maybe I do know a little about the subject of raising children. Also, for the record, a condom is a contraceptive, not abortion. Contraceptive: A device that PREVENTS pregnancy. Maybe when you grow up, you'll understand.

November 09 2011 at 5:04 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to dtshowell's comment

@dtshowell. I think there are ups and downs of having a big family and a small family. I for one, have 6 brothers and sisters. sometimes i must admit that my parents didn't have as much individual time to devote to me, but i know they still love and care for me and it has taught me to be independent. even though i helped out when i was a child, it in no ways means i was robbed of a childhood! I spent my childhood constantly having someone around to play with and share all my secrets. and now I have 6 amazing brothers and sisters that are always there for me no matter what. my husband is an only child who had parents who could devote to him their undivided attention (a blessing and a curse haha), but i know he is sad he had to grow up without siblings to share his childhood and adulthood with. judging other peoples decisions won't get you anywhere, but hopefully you can see both perspectives one day.

November 09 2011 at 11:11 PM Report abuse rate up rate down

I just don't get it....but they seem like nice people who love and care for their children. I'm suspecting something isn't quite right with them...but they do appear to be managing well. Go figure.

November 09 2011 at 7:43 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Maybe if Michelle had to actually be the one taking care of all the children (i.e. laundry, feed, bathe, etc) like she's supposed to (it is her job after all), instead of passing all the responsibility on to the other kids, she'd stop getting pregnant. Jim Bob and Michelle, let me clue you in...God is not up in heaven saying, "I think the Duggars need another child, so I'm going to bless them with another one". A very long time ago, God put certain laws into effect...one being, when a man and women come together in a biblical way, pregnancy happens. You both need to grasp this concept and stop the insanity. Don't you think it's irresponsible of you both to continue having children that your other children have to take care of...IT'S NOT THEIR RESPONSIBILTY TO TAKE CARE OF YOUR BABIES!!!!! Apparently they get lots of donations, well someone needs to step up and donate a lifetime supply of condoms.

November 08 2011 at 10:52 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
2 replies to dtshowell's comment

Glad you support killing babies rather than having them because that is what a good person says rights?

November 09 2011 at 8:12 AM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to trcylore's comment
Pink Panther

What does this have to do with killing babies? Condoms dont kill babies, they prevent them

November 09 2011 at 1:53 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down

Her job to take care of them?? What a sexist pig you are!

November 10 2011 at 4:43 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I find them highly irresponsible. Did they forget that they almost lost their last baby? It seems like it is almost a game for Michelle. Let me see how many babies I can have. She doesn't seem happy unless she has a baby she can nurse and take care of. Once that baby is weened, it is onto the next one while the older girls get to take care of their parent's many "blessings". And it was kind of sad how she mentioned her grandchildren almost as an afterthought. The new baby's name should be Just Stop Already Duggar. It is a J name!

November 08 2011 at 8:46 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to linda's comment

How can you say that they are irresponsible when she is having another child. Some people think that 1 kid is enough but they have no idea how much joy it is to have so many kids and to give the older kids responsibility. I know as the second child of 8 that I enjoy so much helping my parents with my siblings. I feed them, help them with school, bathe them and much more stuff. And because of that I am prepare for when I have my own child. I pity you because either you are not prepared or you are not a good parent.

November 09 2011 at 8:14 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
2 replies to trcylore's comment
Pink Panther

It is fine for the older children to have responsibilities, but a child is no ones responsibility other than the the parent or guardian. You should not keep having children if you are not personally able to care for them all if and when needed. If one can have 20 kids and care for them all on there own, that is fine. If none of them would be cared for if the other children did not constantly help out, that is not. No one should be forced to care for a child that is not theirs. If you enjoy, that is fine, but you should realise that not everyone feels the same way as you. I find it rather disgusting that you would pity someone and bash on their parenting skills simply because they dont feel the same way as you do about forcing siblings to raise each other.

November 09 2011 at 2:03 PM Report abuse rate up rate down

I do agree that kids do need to learn responsibility. But I think the Duggars carry that too far. I believe that the older Duggar girls do far too much. They shouldn't have to bear the responsibility of doing all the cooking, cleaning, laundry and childcare in their home while Jim Bob and Michelle continue to pop out a baby every year. That IS irresponsible. It is the parent's role to raise their own kids and not rely on your older children to do it. There is a huge difference between helping out at home and being responsible for everything. I also find it sad that their grandchildren won't have that special grandparent/grandchild bond. I believe Michelle is addicted to being pregnant and she was probably devastated when Anna was pregnant and she wasn't. Her sense of self worth seems to be tied into how many kids she can have.
And by the way, I don't need your pity. I have raised three children and I believe I have done a good job. My oldest is in working on her Masters, my middle child has completed college and is working and my youngest is in high school, taking honors classes and is on the honor roll every marking period. I have prepared them for living in the real world. Can the same be said for any of the Duggar kids? The girls are being raised to believe that their role in life is to marry and have as many kids as humanly possible and the boys are being raised to believe that women are beneath them and that they are to marry and make sure their wives have as many kids as humanly possible.

November 11 2011 at 11:57 PM Report abuse rate up rate down
Enough is enough!

Of course they have zero debt. Wouldn't you if someone else kept giving you everything you needed? They get alot of donations. There's no way in hell they can afford 20 kids "working in real estate."

November 08 2011 at 5:33 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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