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Destinations, Dreams and Dogs - International adventure with a fast-track family (& dogs) of Old World values, adopting the Russian-Italian-American good life on the go…!

How Josh & Anna Duggar Can Get Help

thLife in the fishbowl. Unless you’ve lived it, you can only imagine. Looks like fun, the celebrity, the access, the perks.

Sometimes.

Other times, it’s the exhaustion. You’re always “on”. You might be shopping for toothpaste and people come up and want to talk. Someone might think you’re overdisciplining a child as they listen in on the second half of a situation. You make a dumb joke and it’s taken differently than intended. Every thought, word and deed is examined, replayed and rehashed by absolute strangers.

Or by “friends” who are only interested in you because of what you can do for them. They turn on you and then you decide it’s safest not to have close friends. So you become isolated rather than listen to input from people who really don’t know much about your life other than to bask in its limelight.

Draining. Exhausting. Demanding.

So you seek comfort from somewhere. If your family is less than ideal, or provides problems all ththeir own, which just heaps your plate with even more, you seek solace elsewhere.

And Anna, don’t let anyone tell you that his problems were caused by you. Even with a perfect mate, stress exists, and folks look for an escape.

Someone who’s willing to listen. Internet escapes. Drinking. Overeating. An affair. Painkillers. A hobby that becomes an obsession. Sedatives. Shopaholic. Anger issues.   Hoarding. Anything to ease the stress.

All of this makes a chocaholic look admirable.

I was “with” Josh Duggar when the press dug up the sins of his youth. That’s unfair to him and his victims.

Now? We have a whole new set of problems.

thBut also a whole new set of solutions. There’s hope. But he must take steps to right any wrongs. It need not haunt him the rest of his life, however, a break from public life would probably be best.

Public life is often part of the problem. Even Jesus had to get away from the crowds. Get up early and pray. Go to the other side of the Sea of Galilee and rest. Walk and talk on the road to Emmaus. Enjoy a meal with friends. Take a nap in the boat.

If quietness and contemplation are never built into a busy schedule, we set ourselves up for disaster. The lid on the pressure cooker will pop, one way or another. Build relaxation, real relaxation, into your calendar. Leave the kids with someone else for a few hours. Maybe leave the mate somewhere else, as well, if they only bring more stress.

Pause. Pray. Walk. Run. Write in a journal. Be outdoors for a few minutes of sunshine even if it’s inth a city park. Exercise. Play sports if you can. Read uplifting books that challenge you. Read your Bible.

But Bible verses alone will not change you when you have a recurring problem (and that’s not easy for me to say). You need accountability. Someone to report to, preferably not a family member or friend. A stranger. A professional. Someone who can be honest with you. Some with whom you can be honest.

Your life is not over, but you must do everything above-board. Nothing behind closed doors, nothing unsupervised on the internet, no private phone calls. Go overboard on submitting yourself to monitoring.

thAnna, go online. Get support from other women even if they’re a world away, but can relate to life in the fishbowl. Share what you cannot share with family. Make sure your confidantes are trustworthy. If your husband had a deadly sickness, you would get help. You can do this. This is his problem, but you need to take care of yourself. For now, take a breather from public life and from babies and from all else. You will need time and energy as never before and some of that time will need to be down-time. Clear your schedule while maybe taking on one new class or activity just for you. Yes, you deserve it.

Josh, get help. Be proactive. Deal with it now. Here’s a page full of resources:

http://pastorswives.org/resource_directory/pastors_pornography_resources

We’re pulling for you and praying for you.

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