The Transformation Of Jinger Duggar From Baby To 27 Years Old

Jinger Duggar Vuolo is the sixth child of "19 Kids and Counting" stars Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar. She would eventually end up with 18 siblings, and you'd think that it would be tough to stand out in a family so large. However, she become one of the most popular members of her massive clan.

In her autobiography "The Hope We Hold," Jinger described an idyllic life growing up in Arkansas. She was never lacking in playmates and claimed that having little privacy didn't bother her. "I was happy in our home. It was noisy and bustling with activity from morning until late at night, and I loved it that way," she wrote. However, during a July 2021 appearance on the "Dinner Party with Jeremy Fall" podcast, she revealed that the Duggars "were not well off" when she was younger (timestamp: 21:50). Their financial circumstances changed when they were presented with an amazing opportunity. 

Jinger was 10 years old when she made her television debut on "14 Children and Pregnant Again!," her family's first documentary. It introduced viewers to the "buddy system" that called for Jinger and her older sisters to help raise their younger siblings. The Duggars' TV specials evolved into back-to-back TLC reality series, and Jinger spent much of her life with cameras around. However, this wasn't the only aspect of her upbringing that was unusual, and Duggar fans spent years being blissfully unaware of just how traumatic her childhood really was.

The family secret that could have ended Jinger Duggar's reality career before it started

The Duggars' reality fame was threatened in 2006 when Springdale, Arkansas police opened an investigation into Jinger Duggar's older brother Josh Duggar. In Touch Weekly obtained a police report detailing allegations that Josh had molested four of his younger sisters in 2002 and 2003. The investigation was dropped due to the statute of limitations expiring and was not brought to the public's attention until 2015. A year later, Jinger identified herself as one of Josh's victims in a lawsuit against the city of Springdale, per TMZ. In "The Hope We Hold," Jinger wrote (via Us Weekly), "We'd sought the Lord, took the necessary steps to move toward healing, and offered up our forgiveness."

Had the investigation been brought to light in 2006, it's highly likely that Jinger and her family members never would have become reality TV stars. But instead, she found herself dealing with the sometimes strange trappings of fame. This included having an internet forum named after her. According to the Free Jinger website, it bears her name because she is the only member of the family "who shows a spark of life," as one commenter put it. 

However, in her book, Jinger pushed back against the belief that she's the "rebel" of her family, writing that she "wanted nothing more than to please my parents." She proved that she was a dutiful daughter by doing the family's laundry.

Jinger Duggar's big city dreams were misunderstood

In "The Hope We Hold," Jinger Duggar recalled how her parents would allow fans to sleep at their house, meaning that she had to give up her bed to strangers on occasion. They also gave house tours to visitors, and her diary was stolen by a college student while the family was busy showing off their huge home. There was nothing salacious in it, but Jinger wrote that she was "mortified" when it turned up on eBay because a page featuring her "terrible handwriting" appeared in the listing. You might think any kid would want to escape from a place where her privacy was violated in such a manner, but Jinger swears that a famous comment about wanting to live in a big city was not a cry for help.

During a 2012 episode of "19 Kids and Counting," Jinger said that she wanted to marry a man who lived in the city. Michelle Duggar later told Radar Online that what her daughter really meant was that she "wanted to live 15 minutes from a Walmart." Michelle said it would be okay for Jinger to stay with Josh Duggar and his family in Washington, D.C. but was staunchly against the idea of her daughter living in New York City. 

Jinger told podcast host Jeremy Fall (around the 14:11 mark) that people made erroneous assumptions about her remarks and that they did not mean that she wanted to get away from her family.

Jinger Duggar got married and made a change

Jinger Duggar met former professional soccer player Jeremy Vuolo in 2015. She was introduced to him by her sister Jessa Duggar Seewald and her brother-in-law Ben Seewald, per TLC. Jeremy told Us Weekly that Jim Bob Duggar required him to fill out a 50-page questionnaire before he was allowed to court Jinger. His future father-in-law's extensive paperwork didn't faze him, and the couple was wed on November 5, 2016, after a three-month engagement. During her "Dinner Party with Jeremy Fall" interview, Jinger revealed that she found Jeremy Vuolo appealing because he had little knowledge of her family before he met her (timestamp: 57:51). "For me, it was awesome that he wasn't a fanboy," she said (57:43).

Not long after Jinger got married, photos of the "Counting On" star wearing pants began popping up on social media, and fans couldn't seem to believe their eyes. In a pic Jeremy posted to Instagram in August 2017, Jinger had on a pair of pink skinny jeans. "Look at you wearing pants girlllllll! Get on with your bad self," read one comment from a fan. 

The pants were a big deal because Jinger didn't wear them growing up. In her book, she explained that her mother interpreted a biblical passage to mean that women should only wear dresses and skirts. But Jinger discovered otherwise. "I never found a passage specifically forbidding women from wearing pants," she wrote (via E! News).

Jinger Duggar's big city dreams came true

Jinger Duggar and Jeremy Vuolo initially settled down in Laredo, Texas, where Jeremy worked as a preacher. However, they decided to move to Los Angeles in 2019 so that Jeremy could enroll in The Master's Seminary (via People). By then, the couple had a baby on board — their daughter Felicity was born on July 19, 2018. Shortly before the family's big move, Jinger made a drastic change to her appearance. In a 2019 episode of "Counting On," she showed off her new blonde balayage hair color. Jeremy told her that she looked "a Cali girl (timestamp: 1:22)," and Felicity showed that she also approved by giving her mommy a big smile when she saw her new look for the first time. "Perfect for LA summer," Jeremy said. "Nice change. Everything's changing. We're changing our house. We're changing our city, our hair."

Jinger fully embraced becoming a resident of The Golden State. She took her older sister Jana Duggar shopping on Rodeo Drive, walked the red carpet at a movie premiere in Beverly Hills, got photographed by the paparazzi, and secured her status as a true social media influencer by posing in front of Paul Smith's famous pink wall

Jinger and Jeremy's second child was born a California girl. Their rainbow baby, Evangeline Jo, made her big Hollywood debut on November 22, 2020 (via Us Weekly).

Jinger Duggar closed a chapter of her life

Jinger Duggar told Jeremy Fall that she's grateful for the opportunities her family's reality shows have provided her, even if life in the spotlight isn't always pleasant. "We were able to travel to many different countries as a family all together and explore different cultures and things like that," she said (around the 22:08 mark). It was quite the childhood for someone who didn't even watch TV when she was growing up.

Jinger has been on television so long that it might be hard for some fans to believe that those days could be ending for good. As reported by Deadline, TLC decided to pull the plug on the latest iteration of the Duggars' reality series after Josh Duggar was charged with possessing child sexual abuse material. Jinger and her husband responded to the news on Instagram. "We wholeheartedly agree with TLC's decision not to renew 'Counting On' and are excited for the next chapter in our lives. We'd like to thank our fans, friends and the amazing film crew who have shown us love and support," their statement read. 

But this doesn't mean that fans have heard the last of the Duggar daughter who has fascinated them for so many years. She's started taking on projects that her family members are not involved in, like a podcast and an autobiography, and there's always the possibility that her fans could be blessed with a spin-off series someday.