Duggars fans were beyond excited when Jinger Duggar and her husband, Jeremy Vuolo, announced earlier this year that they were expecting their first child together, and in a recent post on their website, the couple shared that they were actually having a baby girl. Given that all of the Duggar grandbabies as of late have been boys (Jill and Jessa both have two sons each, Joy recently had a baby boy, and Joe is expecting a son with his wife, Kendra), Jinger and Jeremy's announcement seemed extra special. Almost as notable though was Jinger's outfit at her reveal party. Jinger Duggar wore a short dress and heels to her gender reveal party, according to In Touch Weekly, and while it's not the first time she's proven she's more than happy to break the Duggar dress code, this time she did it in front of her parents and siblings.
The Duggars have been open over the years about the ways in which their strict religious beliefs have influenced their approach to raising their children, including their views on female modesty. Girls growing up in the Duggar household are required to wear long skirts or dresses (no pants), and, as Duggar matriarch, Michelle, explained to TLC in 2013, they should also avoid wearing anything that might "[stir] up desires that cannot be righteously fulfilled," which they refer to as "defrauding."
Older siblings Jill and Jessa seemed to continue to adhere to Duggar modesty rules even after they got married and moved out of their parents house, but Jinger had a different idea. For one, she married a man who hadn't always lived a wholesome, Duggar-esque lifestyle (Jeremy might now be a preacher, but he was once into the college party scene, has a tattoo, and even reportedly paid a $250 fine in 2008 for harassing a police officer), but it also didn't take her long to throw her family's no-pants rule out the window. In March 2017, Jinger was spotted wearing shorts for the first time, and since then, she's posted numerous photos to Instagram that show her wearing pants and looking totally stylish and adorable.
Earlier this month, though, Jinger and Jeremy invited their families to their Laredo, Texas, home for a sex reveal party (complete with a family relay race, according to People), and while Jinger did opt to wear a dress, it was surprisingly short for a Duggar. While her sisters (and future sister-in-law, Lauren Swanson) all appeared to be wearing longer dresses or skirts in photos of the party shared by TLC, Jinger chose a light blue dress with a black sash that (gasp) left her knees uncovered. And though all the other ladies paired their outfits with flat shoes, mom-to-be Jinger actually chose to wear heels.
Jinger, of course, should be able to wear whatever she pleases to her own sex reveal party, but one photo, which showed Jinger and Jeremy with their parents, seemed pretty important. While Michelle and her own mother both opted for long skirts and flats (Michelle also covered her legs with sheer black tights), Jinger went with bare knees and calves — as did her mother-in-law. And while it's not known whether Jim Bob and Michelle expect their daughters to continue following their modesty rules after they are married, the fact that Jinger was willing to wear a shorter dress in front of them seemed to prove that she doesn't have any hesitation about doing things her own way now that she's married.
In fact, it seems that Jinger's independent-streak has rubbed off on some of her siblings. Recently, both Jill and Jessa have been seen wearing pants, and on Instagram, Jill even showed off both a nose piercing and a henna tattoo. Granted, that doesn't exactly seem like much of a rebellion for most people, but for the Duggar girls, who grew up with very strict religious rules? It's actually a pretty big deal.
Now that Jinger and Jeremy are expecting a daughter of their own, it seems safe to say her own upbringing will be a fair bit different than the one Jinger herself had. Though the couple's Christian faith still figures prominently in their marriage, it doesn't necessarily seem that they'll have the same expectations in terms of modesty, and Jeremy's decidedly un-Duggar-like teen years could mean they might think about other Duggar rules differently too (like homeschooling, or their decision to not let their kids watch TV).
What seems most important though is that Jim Bob and Michelle still seem incredibly happy for Jinger and Jeremy, and that they continue to be supportive, even if Jinger's choice differ from how she was raised. That's obviously really valuable for Jinger herself and for her marriage, but now that she's going to be a mom, it's also incredibly important for her little girl, too.
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.