After a year of ups and downs, the Duggar family reportedly celebrated a quiet Christmas together this year.
A source close to the family tells ET that “no cameras were rolling” during the family’s holiday festivities and that embattled eldest son Josh Duggar “wasn’t mentioned once.”
“Jinger was playing piano, kids were running around with toys,” the source added. “It was a normal Christmas just without Josh there. It didn’t feel like an elephant was in the room, Josh has been away for so long, it’s just become normal to have him gone.”
Josh has been in a faith-based rehab since August, after his family was rocked by two major scandals. In May, the 27-year-old father of four admitted to molesting five minor girls, including four of his sisters, when he was a teenager. Then in August, Josh admitted to a pornography addiction -- a confession which has been removed in an edited statement -- and being “unfaithful” to his wife Anna after being implicated in the Ashley Madison cheating site hack.
There was speculation that Josh might join the family for the holidays, after a private plane carrying Jim Bob Duggar and another of his sons was spotted at an an airport in Rockford, Illinois -- close to Josh’s treatment center -- in November. However, another source from within the Duggar family tells ET, “Josh did not leave his rehab to spend the holidays with the family.”
“If some of the family went to see him, that is definitely not something everyone in the family knew,” the source added.
Josh’s cousin Amy Duggar opened up about the rollercoaster of a year for the reality-famous family in a blog post on Sunday, writing, “[In September] Life was just wonderful … drum roll please…. until one of my family members made some terrible confessions.”
“I knew nothing of the molestation charges, and I had no idea what the Ashley Madison site even was? I was completely shocked just like the rest of the world; the only difference was I was being fitted for my wedding dress with tears running down my face and a glass of wine in my hand as the news broke,” Amy continued. “I wondered what the heck was going on? A million questions flooded my mind.”
In the months since the scandals, even more questions have arisen, as Josh has been accused of battery by Danica Dillon, an adult film star who is suing the former reality star for $500,000, alleging that he caused her "physical and emotional injuries” after paying her for sex in March. On Monday, Josh’s lawyer filed to dismiss the claims.
“Rage came over me, sadness crept in, and reality sat in that the person I had known my entire life turned out to be a fraud, and a complete stranger,” Amy continued in her blog post. “I’ve always heard that there were people in this world that lived a double life, but I never thought that someone so close to home would be living a lie.”