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Duggar Family Interview About Molestation Scandal

Duggars Speak Out For the First Time Since Molestation Scandal Came to Light

For the first time since the molestation scandal rocked reality TV last month, the Duggar family is speaking out. During an hour-long interview on The Kelly File, parents Michelle and Jim Bob Duggar outlined what happened when their son Josh came forward about his actions – which included inappropriately touching four of his sisters – more than 10 years ago. The 19 Kids & Counting stars also revealed why they waited to get help and the reason they felt comfortable agreeing to a reality show, considering their family secret. Watch a portion of the interview above, and read on for the parents' more shocking revelations.

On the Moment They Found Out

"We were shocked. We were just devastated. I don't think any parent is prepared for a trauma like that, and I think we had one ray of hope in that Josh had a tender conscious and he was the one who came and shared on his own even though the others didn't really know anything of his wrongdoing."

On How They Responded to His Confession

"We talked to him, we put all kinds of punishments on him. We watched him, like, all the time. I took him to work with me. We poured our life into it . . . There was a couple more times where he came and told us what he had done, and we were just devastated. Again, this was not rape. This was touching somebody over the clothes. There were a couple instances where it was under the clothes, but it was a few seconds.

He came to us and was crying and told us what happened, and it was after the third time he came to us we really felt like, you know what, we've done everything we can as parents and we need help. We went to some outside folks. We asked some very close friends if they could come over. Some of my best friends came over, we talked about it, so at that point, we pulled Josh out of the home. We knew a man who mentored young men, and he really helped young men who made unwise choices in their lives to get straightened out."

On the Reason They Didn't Report Josh

"I talked to somebody who worked at those juvenile youth sex offender facilities, and he described how they take care of it down there. The success rate is not good... We're his parents. As parents, you're not mandatory reporters. The law allows for parents to do what they think is best for the child."

On Why They Went Ahead With a Reality Show

"We had nothing to hide. We had taken care of all that years before. When they asked us to do the reality TV show, all this had been taken care of five years before. We had a clean bill of health from the state — we had it said, you've gone through counseling, you told the police. We had no fear . . . It was a sealed juvenile record. This is stuff that, under law, there's no way this could ever be brought out."

On How They Feel About Their Secret Being Revealed

"To have their trust betrayed and for all their information, for everything they've shared to be turned over to a tabloid, for those things to be twisted and shared in a slanderous way, story after story, tabloid after tabloid… That breaks my heart for my girls. They've been victimized more by what has happened in these last couple weeks than they were 12 years ago because honestly, they didn't even understand or know what had happened until after the fact.

In our hearts before God, we haven't been keeping secrets, we have been protecting those that honestly should be protected. And now what's happen is they've bene victimized by people with an agenda, for whatever profit. One thing I know is God is going to use all of this for good."

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