If you’re even passingly familiar with the Duggar family, then you probably know about the family’s infamous courtship rules.
Lots of evangelicals teach their kids to abstain from sex prior to marriage, but the Duggars take things several steps further:
In Jim Bob and Michelle’s world, unmarried young people are forbidden to kiss, “front hug,” hold hands for more than a few seconds, or even be alone together.
Did this weird, repressive, oddly sex-obsessed environment help to transform Josh Duggar into a predator?
It would take a psychologist with a very strong stomach to answer that question.
One thing we can say for sure, however, is that the Duggars’ bizarre set of rules has led to some seriously cringey television.
Some of the most awkward moments from 19 Kids and Counting have been resurfacing in recent weeks, including one in which cousin Amy Duggar advised Josh on his first kiss ahead of his wedding.
It seems that first kiss anxiety is a common condition among Duggar men, as this week’s most popular cringe moment features Josiah Duggar freaking out about planting one on his then-fiancee, Lauren Swanson.
The clip has been making the rounds on the always-amusing Duggar subreddit r/DuggarSnark and as usual, the commentary is pure gold.
“I was thinking, ‘You know what? I wonder what it feels like.’ So I practiced on my hand,” Josiah said in the segment, which was posted in the sub on Monday.
“I think practicing on my hand was just to see what it felt like from her side probably,” he explained.
“I mean, you can’t kiss a tree and expect to, you know, see what it’s gonna feel like for her.”
Sadly, Josiah continued to describe his preferred method of practice from there:
“And so, if you kiss on your hand, you can feel, ‘Okay, maybe I should make my lips more full,’ or whatever,” he continued.
“And kind of thinking from that perspective. You got to — you got to think about it.”
For obvious reasons, critics of the family had a field day with this seriously creepy clip.
“Oh, sweet Jesus, why did I listen to this?” one user asked, according to In Touch.
“I’m getting way too old to handle this amount of cringe. So gross … ”
“Me: Cringing from the dimwit. Also me: kissing the back of my hand, to see if he has a point,” a second added.
As if the image of Josiah making out with his hand wasn’t disturbing enough, the closest observer to Josiah and Lauren’s first kiss was Lauren’s father, Dwain Swanson, who officiated the ceremony.
These days, there are rumors that Josiah and Lauren have broken up.
This is likely just wishful thinking on behalf of the Duggars’ critics, however, as divorce is strictly forbidden in the family’s community.
Even if Josiah and Lauren are miserable in their marriage — which is entirely possible, especially since they courted a scant five months before tying the knot — they would almost certainly remain married for appearances’ sake.
We’re not sure where in the Bible it says that Jesus wants his followers to suffer for the entirety of their time on earth in order to make him happy.
But the passage must be in there somewhere, as the Duggars seem to have centered their entire lives around it!