12:37 PM EDT 06/17/2015

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Michelle Duggar

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Why Jill and Jessa Came Forward as Brother Josh Duggar's Victims

Why Jill and Jessa Came Forward as Brother Josh Duggar's Victims

Originally posted 06/10/2015 12:00PM

When Jill Dillard and Jessa Seewald came forward as victims of their brother's molestation in a tell-all interview on Fox News last week, critics accused parents Michelle and Jim Bob of persuading their daughters to defend eldest son Josh Duggar.

However, a source close to the family tells PEOPLE that the focus was always going to be on Michelle, 48, and Jim Bob, 49, until Jill stepped forward. "She, too, wanted to give an interview. Her parents were concerned because they felt she had been through enough, but she was clear – she never wanted this information public."

Indeed, the girls were more upset during their interview by what they felt was a violation of privacy than by Josh's actions, which they insisted had been forgiven years earlier, before cameras even started rolling on 19 Kids and Counting (then 17 Kids and Counting) in 2008. As a family, "we've already moved on," said both Jessa and Jill on The Kelly File.

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Credit: Peter Kramer/NBC/NBC NewsWire; Inset:D Dipasupil/Getty
Duggar Family Friends Speak Out About Molestation Scandal: 'It's a Real Tragedy for the Family'

Duggar Family Friends Speak Out About Molestation Scandal: 'It's a Real Tragedy for the Family'

Originally posted 06/09/2015 09:15PM

Once news broke that Josh Duggar had been investigated as a teen for molesting five underage girls – four of whom were his sisters – the residents of Tontitown, Arkansas – and its neighboring towns in Washington County – found themselves under an unprecedented level of media scrutiny.

The attention – and Josh's actions – were initially met with a general sense of anger, indignation and embarrassment on part of the county's residents, though others were sympathetic to Duggar heads of household Michelle, 48, and Jim Bob, 49.

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Jessa (Duggar) Seewald: As a Family, We 'Had Moved On' from Josh Duggar Molestation

Originally posted 06/05/2015 10:10PM



When an unearthed felony investigation from 2006 revealed that Josh Duggar had molested five underage girls as a teen, the family felt that they had already "moved on" from the scandal that was making headlines across the country.

This, according to two of the victims – Jill (Duggar) Dillard and Jessa (Duggar) Seewald – when they appeared on The Kelly File Friday to discuss what had happened to them when they were 12 and "9 or 10," respectively.

Host Megyn Kelly asked whether the family had felt any hesitation entering into a reality show given what was hidden in their past, but Jessa, now 22, said that the family "had moved on" by the time cameras started rolling on 19 Kids and Counting (then 17 Kids and Counting in 2008.

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No Laws Were Broken When Josh Duggar's Police Report Was Released to the Public, Says City Attorney

No Laws Were Broken When Josh Duggar's Police Report Was Released to the Public, Says City Attorney

Originally posted 06/05/2015 11:40AM

Despite outcry from the Duggars, police records detailing how Josh Duggar molested five underage girls as a teen – including four of his sisters and the family babysitter – were not illegally released, the Springdale, Arkansas, city attorney said in a statement Thursday.

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Credit: Peter Kramer/NBC/NBC NewsWire; Inset:D Dipasupil/Getty
All About the Duggars' 'Safeguards' Against Future Molestation: An Expert Weighs In

All About the Duggars' 'Safeguards' Against Future Molestation: An Expert Weighs In

Originally posted 06/04/2015 07:55PM

During their interview with Fox News' Megyn Kelly, even Jim Bob Duggar admitted that the "safeguards" he had put in place to protect his daughters following eldest son Josh's inappropriate touching were not entirely effective.

"Nothing ever happened in the girls' bedrooms after that," he said. "So we had safeguards that protected them from that. But there was another incident, two different instances where girls were laying on the couch."

Jessa Seewald, 22, and Jill Dillard, 24, admitted Wednesday to being two of Josh's victims.

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Sheryl Underwood Is Overcome by Emotion After Seeing the Duggars' Interview

Originally posted 06/04/2015 06:10PM

The Talk co-host Sheryl Underwood dissolved in tears on Thursday's show after watching Jessa Seewald and Jill Dillard identify themselves as two of the five girls their brother Josh allegedly molested more than a decade ago.

Underwood said during the show's taping that she too was a victim of molestation as a young girl: "I'm probably the only person at this table that went through that," she began. "I went through that [at] 3, 4, 5 years old – you know something is wrong."

She continued, "And if nobody listens to you and nobody is going to stop it ... whether I'm asleep or not – I didn't sleep. I learned how to stay up as long as I could. I may sleep at school because nobody is going to protect me, so I have to protect myself."

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Credit: Steve Sands/GC; Andrew Harrer/Getty
Sarah Palin Brands Lena Dunham a 'Pedophile' as She Drags Her into the Duggar Scandal

Sarah Palin Brands Lena Dunham a 'Pedophile' as She Drags Her into the Duggar Scandal

Originally posted 06/04/2015 05:30PM

Sarah Palin isn't too happy with what she calls "obvious double standards" between the Duggar family and actress Lena Dunham.

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Michelle Duggar: We 'Haven't Been Keeping Secrets' But Were 'Protecting Those That Should Be Protected'

Michelle Duggar: We 'Haven't Been Keeping Secrets' But Were 'Protecting Those That Should Be Protected'

Originally posted 06/03/2015 11:45PM

Michelle Duggar says she can't believe that the world learned from a tabloid that her eldest son molested four of her daughters as a teen, telling Fox News' Megyn Kelly Wednesday night, that "as a mom, that breaks my heart for my girls."

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Jill Dillard Speaks Out: Jessa and I 'Are Victims' of Molestation

Jill Dillard Speaks Out: Jessa and I 'Are Victims' of Molestation

Originally posted 06/03/2015 10:45PM

For a brief but emotional moment, Jessa Seewald and Jill Dillard spoke out on Wednesday night about the allegations that their brother, Josh, had molested five underage girls as a teen.

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Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar: As Parents, We Felt 'We're Failures'

Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar: As Parents, We Felt 'We're Failures'

Originally posted 06/03/2015 09:25PM

Speaking publicly for the first time since their son's molestation scandal rocked their family, Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar said "we did the best we could under the circumstances" in an exclusive interview with Fox News journalist Megyn Kelly.

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