There are so many Duggars that, at times, it can be hard to keep up with who is courting, who is getting married, and who is getting ready to welcome a new baby. But on Monday, it was Josiah's turn to make headlines. Counting On's Josiah Duggar is engaged to Lauren Swanson after a brief courtship, and the two young lovers seem thrilled.
After years of friendship, Duggar, age 21, and Swanson, age 18, announced that they were courting back on Jan. 23. Courting is the Duggar version of dating, involving lots of rules like no kissing until marriage, chaperoned dates, and parental supervision of text messages, according to TODAY. This particular courtship seems to have gone well, because the couple didn't wait long to take the next step.
Duggar told Us Weekly all about asking Swanson to marry him, and how much it meant to both of them, saying, "This is an exciting, big step in our lives, and the whole thing was very meaningful." And he put a lot of thought into how he'd pop the question, telling Us Weekly, “The place where I proposed to Lauren is the exact spot where her parents were engaged. There’s a lot of family history on this property, making it a special place for Lauren."
The reality star shared a picture of himself with his new fiancée on Instagram, announcing the latest Duggar engagement, writing in the caption:
I feel like the most blessed guy on earth 🌎... Lauren said YES! God definitely opened our eyes in his perfect timing to show us how we complete each other. The more time I spend with Lauren the more I realize how I can't live without her. There's no one else I'd rather spend my days and grow old with!
Swanson, for her part, told Us Weekly:
I’m really excited to be getting married to Josiah. Everything about the engagement was such a special moment for me. I’m especially looking forward to spending the rest of my life with him!
The Duggar family follows extremely strict rules when it comes to relationships and is both conservative and religious. (Just one example? The women in the family are not supposed to wear pants, except maybe until they've gotten married.) The parents, Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar, have labeled themselves Independent Fundamentalist Baptists, and they and all their children make sure to regularly highlight how important God is in their lives.
In that way, Swanson seems to be a great fit for the family. In a video from TLC where Swanson and Duggar announced their courtship back in January, they talked about what drew them together and made them start courting, with Duggar saying:
You know, they really are very similar, our families, and have all the same goals... for us, courtship means a good time for us to get focused on different things and just learning more about each other with the goal of marriage in mind and learning, hey, is this really the one that is the one?
Swanson then chimed in, saying that to her, it was about "putting God first and ourselves second."
This actually isn't Duggar's first courtship rodeo. Back when he was 19, he courted family friend Marjorie Jackson, but they broke up after four months, with Duggar telling People, "Marjorie and I had a good time together. We were just trying to follow God’s lead on everything. She didn’t feel that it was the right timing then, so we called it quits for a bit."
With Swanson, though, the timing seems to be perfect. Congratulations to the happy couple, and here's hoping they share plenty of fun details about their engagement on Counting On.
Check out Romper's new video series, Bearing The Motherload, where disagreeing parents from different sides of an issue sit down with a mediator and talk about how to support (and not judge) each other’s parenting perspectives. New episodes air Mondays on Facebook.