Duggars’ Ex Friends Bobye & Jim Holt Say the Duggars Considered Josh Molesting His Sisters As Him “Cheating” On His Then-Girlfriend Kaeleigh Holt

Trigger Warning: The story below contains mentions of child sex abuse and assault.

Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar‘s former besties are spilling some (very disturbing) tea on the former reality TV stars.

In Part 1 of a recent YouTube interview with The SoJo FilesJim and Bobye Holt revealed some disturbing things about the 19 Kids & Counting stars, including how Jim Bob and Michelle viewed their son Josh‘s molestations of his four younger sisters and another young girl.

As The Ashley has previously reported, Bobye’s testimony was instrumental during Josh’s 2021 trial for possessing and receiving child sex abuse materials (CSAM). During her pre-trial testimony, Bobye talked about the day in March 2003 when Josh and his parents met with them and confessed that Josh had molested his sisters and another girl. The Holts— who were the Duggars’ closest friends— were also connected because Josh had been “betrothed” to their daughter Kaeleigh since the age of 14.

In their interview with The SoJo Files, the Holts revealed plenty of interesting tidbits, but perhaps the most-disturbing piece of info discussed was the reason the Duggars felt that they needed to tell the Holts about what Josh had done.

The Holts stated that Jim Bob and Michelle considered what Josh had done to his sisters to be him “cheating” on Kaeleigh.

“They actually said, ‘The reason we’re telling you guys this is that Josh is in a relationship with Kaeleigh,'” Jim— who had been childhood friends with Jim Bob— stated.

Bobye revealed that, because Josh and Kaeleigh were in a relationship at that point, the Duggars felt they had to confess.

“Because they had known that he had done it before and they had never told us before then,” Bobye said. “But because he had ‘cheated’ on Kaeleigh, that’s why we were involved.”

The Holts described Jim Bob and Michelle’s demeanor on that night as “panicked” and “distraught.”

“We were too,” Jim said. “I went out and just bawled. I just cried.”


Here are some of the other disturbing things the Holts revealed in their interview with The SoJo Files

Josh tried to stop himself on the night he “digitally penetrated” his five-year-old sister, but couldn’t.

Josh as a teenager…

The Holts stated during the interview that Josh had been molesting his sisters since he was 12. On that day in March 2003, though, Josh was 15, and his victim was only five. Jim and Bobye detailed how that day played out, stating that Josh had tried to prevent himself from committing another act of molestation.

“We were at a friend’s house, and Josh called my phone…Josh called my phone and all of our kids were there,” Bobye said, adding that Josh asked to speak to Jim. Bobye told Josh that Jim was busy, so Josh asked to speak to Kaeleigh. Bobye said she only allowed them to speak for a moment.

“Come to find out, he was tempted. He was tempted that night and he was trying to call and not follow through with it,” Bobye said. “And evidentially, after he got off the phone with Kaeleigh, he [molested Jane Doe No. 4] anyway.

“He started to do Bible time. That was what he was trying to do so he wouldn’t do it,” Bobye said, adding later, “He should have never been babysitting!”

(During her testimony, Bobye stated that Josh confessed to touching the five-year-old on her chest and genitals –both outside and inside her clothing– during Bible time as she sat on his lap.)

The incident happened after the Duggars became aware of what Josh had been doing to his sisters. He had already been sent away for “treatment” before and returned to the Duggar home. 

“He had been told that he was not allowed to babysit anymore, but I guess they thought he was doing better and they [let him babysit],” Jim said.

Their daughter Kaeleigh was not Josh’s fifth victim.

Josh and Kaeleigh (with Jim Bob), during one of the early Duggar Family specials…

While Josh’s sisters Jill Dillard and Jessa Seewald publicly came forward on television as two of Josh’s victims, and his other two sisters, Jinger Vuolo and Joy Forsyth later came forward in a lawsuit they filed, Josh’s fifth victim has never been publicly identified. (She was only revealed to be a “babysitter” and someone who was not related to Josh.) 

While the Holts admitted that they know who the girl is (and said they will never reveal her identity, as she does not want it to be known), they did make it clear that their daughter Kaeleigh was not Jane Doe No. 5, as many people think.

“People kept saying that Kaeleigh was the one [non-family member who Josh molested],” Jim said.

Bobye stated that Kaeleigh– who has only spoken publicly about her time dating Josh a few times— told her parents that she was OK with people thinking she was Jane Doe No. 5, if that meant the real victim’s identity was protected.

“Kaeleigh said, ‘It doesn’t affect me that people say that,’” Bobye said.

“We talked about it as a family and I said, ‘Kaeleigh, we can defend you and we can be very adamant that you weren’t the one [who was molested by Josh],’” Jim said.

The Holts felt tricked by the Duggars, who made it seem like they had reported Josh to the authorities.

Bobye and Josh’s mother, Michelle Duggar…

After Josh confessed to the molestations the first time, he was shipped off to get “treatment” for his actions. However, in the interview, the Holts revealed that Josh was actually just sent to do manual labor on an IBLP building. (The “IBLP” or “Institute in Basic Life Principles” is the religious organization the Duggars belong to.) 

Jim and Bobye said they were led to believe that Josh’s actions had been reported to the authorities, and that Josh was getting the treatment he needed. However, they eventually realized that the “treatment” Josh was getting was not what they believed it to be.

They stated that Jim Bob wanted to bring Josh home after only three months of “treatment,” so that Josh could be present on Jim Bob’s birthday in July. However, the Holts and other church members told the Duggars not to do that, as they felt Josh needed to continue to get out-of-home treatment. Jim Bob did it anyway, and the Holts said they began to realize that the “treatment” center may not have been what they were told it was.

“I need all my spawnlets to be there to celebrate me!”

“When [Jim Bob] was able to just check [Josh] out and bring him home, we were like, ‘Something is shady,’” Bobye said. “How can that just happen if he has went down there for a crime? And [Jim Bob] just checks him out and brings him home and keeps him home?”

Bobye confirmed that Jim Bob pushed for Josh to go to a certain place, which turned out to be an IBLP facility. (Bobye stated that the Holts were already out of the IBLP in 2003, so they didn’t know that the facility Josh went to was, indeed, an IBLP facility.

After Josh returned from “treatment,” Jim said he urged Jim Bob to encourage Josh to turn himself in to the authorities, or for Jim Bob to do it.

“Finally I told Bobye, ‘If [Josh] doesn’t turn himself in, I’m going to do it.’ And I kept praying and hoping that he would do it. And he did.”

The Holts state that the Duggars seriously downplayed the seriousness of Josh’s actions, though.

There is more to the story.

“These Holts need to learn to keep their traps shut, Michelley!”

The Holts claimed that there are more Duggar secrets that have yet to be exposed.

“Believe me, there’s a lot of stuff that was confessed that night [by the Duggars] that hasn’t even been out in public anywhere. Stuff that if we told you…” Jim said, trailing off. 

Later in the interview, the Holts reiterated that there’s more to the story.

“Oh my goodness, this is just the tip,” Jim added.


Part 2 of the Holts’ interview with The SoJo Files is due to be released soon. 

Watch their full interview below! 

RELATED STORY: Josh Duggar’s Only Ex-Girlfriend Kaeleigh Holt Gives Her Thoughts On Josh Going To Prison For Over 12 Years

(Photos: Instagram; TLC; YouTube)

34 Responses

  1. One thing that always bothered me was that JB and Michelle always made sure their daughters dressed very modestly. Not that they want their daughters to have respect for themselves, but so they don’t entice boys. Why don’t they teach their boys not to treat women like objects? They blame the victim.

  2. It’s the Holts and their daughter Kaileigh who took it as cheating! And so wrong of Duggars to even disclose such a personal information. Their son needed help, and they could get a therapist, but no talk about him to “friends” who were happy to betray them as soon as they could.
    They said Kayleigh Hold was so jealous, she hid a letter about the events in a book, and that’s how the whole thing got discovered. Shame on Holts and Kaileigh.

    1. Are we reading the same article?? What I read was clearly that it was the Duggers who were said to consider it cheating and the Holts who strongly encouraged M and JB to turn their son in and get him help. If I’m wrong, please direct me to your version.

    2. Betray them as soon as they could? They’d have gone to the cops in 2003 then. And they didn’t.

  3. At some point in his life, Josh was a deeply troubled teen asking for help. He wanted to stop and no one helped him. He needed therapy and his fundamentalist parents denied him that. Today more than ever, JB AND MICHELLE ARE JUST AS GUILTY (OR EVEN MORE GUILTY) AS HE IS for his crimes. They should be in jail. If they got him help, maybe all this could have been prevented. They are the most disgusting human beings alive

    1. He did need help, absolutely, but no amount of help would stop his current deviance. He is a deviant by nature, not just nurture. Yes, his parents did absolutely nothing to help him, but he would still have the same thoughts, desires and would be just as likely to act on them.

      This is the part people don’t understand about deviants and how they function. There is no “rehab” for a sexual deviant, there just isn’t. Punishment doesn’t stop what causes it, neither does any type of treatment they could (or do, in some cases) get. Some treatments better help them understand, but nothing actually stops the thought processes and very little stops them from acting on it. He knew it was wrong, he knew he could stop, even as an adult, the things he did he KNEW were wrong. He did them anyway, which is where the nature comes into play.

      His parents have a myriad of issues as well and shouldn’t even be allowed to have children in their presence either, as they are just as likely to have at least some of the same issues Josh does. Before anyone thinks I am now or would ever defend him ad his parents, I’m not. They are all monsters, all three deserve to be locked up for life-at the very least-and certainly shouldn’t be allowed children of ANY age. It’s just some kind of weird misconception that people with these kinds of issues, this type of sexual deviance can be “helped” with treatment. Although I understand the desire and despite it not being an actual cure, I too think people should get treatments, while also being locked up-because they are the types of criminals we can’t fix.

  4. jinger has an eating disorder. wonder why…Jinger still let him come visit her and her daughters but doesn’t allow Jill…It makes me wonder ..Jeremy and Jinger need to stop gas lighting Jill and Derrick and stand behind them and walk away from the rest of the family and seek help themselves…John David has known for years. . Interesting…and wrong…These boys should have stood up for their sisters .These girls had no one…No wonder Joys husband Austin was upset during the trial so many lies ..All of these girls and their husbands need to step away from this family for a while like Jill has..Nobody can heal till that happens

    1. All the boys were raised to believe females are 2nd class citizens here to serve the males. It’s not wonder they didn’t step up for their sisters. I’m sure the guys who married into the family have a LOT of mixed feelings after that trial and everything that came to light because of it. You need more than garlic, crosses, holy water and silver to live safely in their cult.

  5. Am I the only one who wonders if Josh was ever inappropriate with his own daughters?! I think Anna should be investigated as well

    1. I think many have wondered the same thing, even if only to themselves. It’s very obvious this p3do has absolutely NO boundaries.
      I also wonder what person in his life introduced him to this sick behavior. We learn the vast majority of our actions by mimicking others. P3dophilia is in NO way an innate behavior. Having no older male siblings, what male figure in his life could have exposed him to this, covering it up to avoid causing suspicion? Ponder that for a bit….

      1. Sorry for a double post, but, yes, sexual deviance, specifically being a predator IS often hereditary. Both nature and nurture can play a role. In fact genetics make up a bit over 40% of the risk, which is why it cannot be treated. There is no treatment that removes those genetic traits, it’s not possible. That doesn’t mean all children born to a predator or deviant will also be one, just that the risk factors of it will definitely be present.

        1. Thank you for your reply. I wasn’t aware of these facts. This is a sick situation all around, and sad that eventually he’ll be out and around his children and more than likely, his nieces??‍♀️

    2. They have been checked out (minimally is my guess) by authorities, and it has been stated quite a few times that they haven’t been harmed. That said, the likelihood of that being true is slim to none and slim just walked out the door.

      I am fairly certain that he has harmed them in some way, whether or not it can be physically proven. Sadly, I am also fairly certain that no one will find out about it until much further down the line, if ever at all. As painful as such a thing is to say, sexual deviants of his sort always find ways to act on it. They don’t simply stop, nor do they have boundaries. They might expand their deviance (such as his obsession with sex in general) and add on, but it will never just stop existing.

      Anna is absolutely failing those children, and I am 100% certain that she knows this, just doesn’t care at this point. At one point we could say “she was brainwashed”, and it would be pretty true in most areas. But now, with everything she knows, and everything she knows everyone else knows, she is no longer falling in that “doesn’t know better” column. She knows better, she’s making a choice not to DO better. She should be locked up too and those children taken away from her for life.

        1. They had no choice, they both said no, but authorities said “too bad, so sad, not up to you”, as they should. However, the type of examination was minimal, at best and certainly not done by those it should have been done by. It still could be done, but it’s even less likely now that it ever will. Anna will make certain no one gets to talk to those kids about any of this, she’s made that abundantly clear, which is scary, because it also likely indicates she knows they’ve been harmed.

  6. I genuinely want to know why Michelle and Jim Bob aren’t being charged with child endangerment by allowing their son to be around their other children after they knew he was molesting them. I’ve heard of mothers being charged with child neglect and endangerment if they don’t stand up to their spouse who is sexually assaulting their child. Why is this any different?

  7. It’s really sad to keep reading these articles and know what happened… and then what happened that never was brought up to authorities. It’s sad 🙁

  8. The fact that The Holt’s daughter was ” betrothed” to Josh pretty much proves that the Duggars do arrange a lot of the marriages of their children.
    Josh and Anna’s wedding was probably arranged. They probably figured he’d stop assaulting their daughters if they married him off.
    What’s really gross to me is that Anna and her parents knew that he molested his sisters, and were still cool with it. I’m starting to wonder if Anna had a choice in marrying him, or if she just did what she was told.

  9. This is truly shocking, and yet if we all think of all we have seen of this family, maybe it isnt.

    Jim bob and Michelle Duggar also owe all of his victims apologies, and should answer to charges themselves.

    So disgusting that they hide behind the wall of Religion.

    1. Good for the Holts for exposing these trash ass people. And for Bobeye being willing to testify against that monster. Jim Bob and Michelle should be prosecuted as well for aideing and abedding. I hope the Holts spill ever little secret and expose these weirdos to the world.

  10. IMO the Holts also had an obligation to contact authorities. If he is calling to “confess his feelings”-he has ZERO business being alone with those girls. They could have easily contact an officer to go to the house. Not blaming them, however, I do believe their friendship with the Duggars strongly played a role in them keeping quiet as well.

    1. And before anyone comes for me..consider how now they are telling every tabloid/news article, etc about the abuse. Sparing no dark or depraved detail—my question is why couldn’t they have just called the police then? If an investigation was already going on-great. But If not? Like we know there wasn’t? Could have made a huge difference-perhaps saved a few of the girls the same abuse, and anyone else he has assaulted.

        1. What they explained was that they found out that he wasn’t in treatment after he was allowed to be “checked out” for JB’s birthday. They continue to say that the Duggars downplayed the whole situation to the point they said “you turn him in or we do”. That shouldn’t have been an option. They knew their friends were incapable of doing the right thing. There should have been zero conversation at the point they learned JB and Michelle were not protecting the girls. I stand by what I said. Their friendship allowed their proper judgement to be altered.

      1. I’m not disagreeing, but besides their friendship, them both being in the same cult, Jim Bob had some power locally and in the government. So he *knew* people, like his solution having that cop/deputy (that was convicted of CSAM himself) dictate Josh’s treatment. Someone like JB would have gone to crazy lengths to keep this information as secretive as possible. I tend to believe that’s the major problem- Jim Bob and his bs religion.

  11. I’m really liking these Holts! Keep spilling, I’m actually dying to know the whole story!!! And I honestly shudder to think what else went on/goes on in that house. Probably some freaky shit like Jim Bob and Michelle filming their kids in the bathroom, or making the kids watch them hump so they do it just the way do. I’d buy the Holts’ book for sure!!!

    1. Didn’t they all live in a tiny house for a long time?
      19 kids? Makes me wonder ? if they were exposed to any noise or accidentally being caught.

    1. ? I don’t believe this is inherited behavior. I believe it’s learned. With no access at the time to TV, where (WHO) did he learn this from?? How far from the tree does the apple actually fall….?

  12. Un-holy guacamole! There’s GOT to be something Michelle and Jim Bob can be charged with. They are both beyond disgusting. To know he was molesting his sisters and to allow it to continue? To send him off to work on a building as treatment for SA against his sisters? The religious cult they’re in needs to be dismantled. They teach that females are not worthy, that males can do whatever they want and there should be no consequences. Hopefully Jill can convince her sisters to get out like she did. It seems Jinger is halfway there. It makes me wonder where Josh learned this sick behavior was ok. Perhaps his father???

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