Breaking Amish’s Jeremiah Raber’s ex-wife Naomi Stutzman says “this show is fake”

Breaking Amish Jeremiah Raber photo

It’s beginning to look more and more like TLC needs to change the name of their new hit reality series Breaking Amish to Faking Amish as more information is revealed about the cast members and how they aren’t exactly as “fresh off the farm” as the network would have us believe. The latest blow to the reality of the “reality” show comes in the form of an interview with cast member Jeremiah Raber’s ex-wife, and mother of his three children, Naomi Stutzman.

Yes, you read that right. Not only is Jeremiah Raber (seen in the photo above) divorced, but he has three kids back in Ohio. But that’s nothing new. What is new is that central Pennsylvania news station WPHTV CBS 21 spoke with Stutzman and she had some rather harsh things to say about TLC and Breaking Amish. “This show is fake,” Stutzman bluntly stated.

Breaking Amish Jeremiah Raber's ex-wife Naomi Stutzman gives an interview

Here’s the video from WPHTV:

She points out that Jeremiah, who is now in his 30s, hasn’t been Amish since he was 18. Stutzman also explains that she and Jeremiah were married for six years and share three children, for which she says he owes $20,000 in child support — part of which has since been paid by TLC. (Perhaps she means that Jeremiah was able to pay some of his child support with money received from TLC for doing the show, otherwise it would be incredibly difficult for the network to deny knowing about his true past if they were sending money to his ex-wife for child support!)

So what about Jeremiah being shunned and never having driven a car, as claimed on Breaking Amish?

“It’s so untrue. Jeremiah’s mom and dad bought him two cars to help him out when he left the Amish. He was never shunned. He was spoiled rotten,” Stutzman explained to us over the phone.

Here’s a photo from Jeremiah’s since-deleted MySpace profile of a red Ford Ranger pickup, which he captioned “my lil red:”

Jeremiah Raber MySpace photo of a pickup truck he captioned my lil red

The photo is obviously fairly old because Jeremiah, like pretty much everyone else, hadn’t accessed his MySpace page in years. OK, back to Naomi’s comments…

“Whenever we needed money for rent he’d go crying to his mom and she would pay our rent. I was Amish and left. I was not shunned. It’s different in different communities. The Amish community is upset with him because the stuff is not true in real life.”

She continued, “My family is livid because they took him in and cared for him, now he is doing this? I’m not surprised at him. What surprised me was TLC. My kids and I watch TLC. They are supposed to be a family channel. For them to do this is appalling.”

“The kids and I suffered for years at the hands of this man,” Stutzman tells the station. “We went through multiple things.”

And here’s a photo reportedly of Jeremiah from 4-5 years ago shared on Facebook:

Photo reportedly of Breaking Amish star Jeremiah Raber taken 4-5 years ago

That is a pretty lax Amish environment right there!

Perhaps even more amazing than Naomi’s revelations about the inaccuracy of Breaking Amish is what she claims happened just prior to doing a recorded interview on camera for WPHTV. According to the station’s report, “when TLC found out CBS 21 was trying to set up an on-camera interview with her, she said TLC offered her ‘whatever she wanted’ to stay quiet. Now, she won’t return calls or emails.” Hush money?!? From TLC?!? Over a reality show?!? This is amazing!

WPHTV contacted TLC to get a statement about what Naomi had told them and they responded with, “This accusation is absurd. TLC has never and will never offer or provide any payment for something like this.”

TLC hasn’t addressed specific criticisms surrounding the characters (such as Rebecca and Abe apparently having a child together and Kate entering an online modeling contest in 2010) but they have said some of the issues surrounding one particular character are indeed true and that the fallacies will play a part in a future episode. Our guess is they are talking about Jeremiah because his “fakeness” seems the most obvious. Plus, TLC references a single cast member, which would seem to eliminate Rebecca and Abe.

What is most frightening about this whole ordeal is that the “fake” claims seem to be doing nothing but help promote the show, which might open the door for more patently fake documentary style reality shows in the future. (So from here on in there will be inevitable moon landing conspiracy type folks questioning whether anything we are watching is real or not. “Those aren’t real ships on Deadliest Catch! They are models in a tank in a studio in Los Angeles!”)

UPDATE – Perhaps it wasn’t TLC wh lured Naomi away from WPHTV but Star magazine because the tabloid has published an article with quotes and photos from Naomi with more juicy details of Jeremiah’s life pre-Breaking Amish including his driving skills, familiarity with cell phones, and admiration for… casinos and strip clubs?!?

UPDATE – It seems Naomi didn’t reveal everything about Jeremiah to Star! Check out Jeremiah Raber’s mug shot photo from a 2005 domestic violence arrest stemming from an altercation with her, as well as information on 17 other police reports involving Jeremiah — eight of which were for domestic violence!

  • TLCwatcher

    He has said on the show that he’s driven a car before, left the Amish before, and dressed in regular clothes before. He just hasn’t said he was married before. What “reality show” is 100% reality?

    • your right! The only thing that was left out was him being married.

      • T Phord

        ..and 3 children…..(tattoo names?)

      • sammy

        He actually says that he had been married before when he was talking to Abe…when Abe asked to borrow money for an engagement ring…

      • jess

        He does say he was married once and it just didn’t work out, but never anything about kids.

        • Moparman

          The kids were on the show he talked about being married and his kids

      • Amtrak4lovers

        He said he was married in the episode where Abe went to go buy a ring.

    • Lindsay

      thats what was about to say. She’s probably just mad that he didn’t mention her on the show.

  • priincess

    He said he has left and went back, tlc is not lieing , I like this show

    • Meelah

      Did you read the article?

  • Ohioan

    One very untrue statement.. the picture of the group of guys saying “this is a pretty lax Amish environment”.. I can assure you in Ohio it is not. Yes maybe TLC did go to extremes to sell a TV show by with holding information. but this girl is young and angry.. not sure I believe everything she says either.

  • red

    I watched the first episode. After I found out that they did not leave their communities recently and some have been out for years, this is such a sad sad show. Follow the REAL lives of AMish who left this year not 10 years ago! TLC I will not watch you anymore

  • Pooba

    Fake or not I love this show and will continue to watch it. People that get so upset over the validity of a show baffle me. If you are intrigued with the characters and storyline then just watch it as you would any other scripted show.

  • Me

    When he got the tattoo he said he put 3 names he had with the tattoo were important people, wonder if those were his children’s names.
    He said he was kicked out more than once.

    • Sammy

      He has had the tattoo for several years now…the only change to it was he had his ex wires name removed from the top…he blackened it in…the 3 names are of his children.

  • Kerry

    Aren’t all reality showes fake?

    • Meelah


    • Pelin Kaya


  • exactly I agree no reality show is 100% true and TLC has already admitted to not everything on the show being true but most of it will be played out on the show and explained…. as for the shunning part everyone doesnt seem to to understand what that means… shunned doesnt mean kicked out…. they explained it means they cant eat with the family or do some other things. I think the point to be made here is these people are all Amish and DID LEAVE AT SOME POINT!!! Maybe they didnt do it right now but they did leave at some point and every emotion theyre conveying on the show was probably something they felt at one time… so what the show isnt following it day by day right now… its a story line period. get over it and just watch the show. Its interesting and to be honest I wouldnt know anything about the diff communities if I wasnt watching…. as for the ex wife… her bringing this up is bullshit… she saw an opportunity to get her money and jumped on it… TLC is not a “family channel” lmfao its TV period… just like every other channel.

    • angle

      Why would you put your business on the internet sometimes you should keep stuff to you self because I the wrong person see this I feel sorry for you .and you are talking about child support go get a job you don’t need child support you need a job and stop use the kids against him because end the you will be hurt not him you so do us all a favor and go get a,job and you left out when y’all was together .

    • Linda Bittle

      I am sorry to break it to you, but this is life. Watching TV is all about entertainment. They have to mix the real and the fake to make it more exciting.I have met some of the cast and they are down-to-earth people. They are just normal like you and me…Just trying to make a living. Being in the entertainment business is doing what u are asked to do to excite the viewers.

  • It is fake Sabrina is in no way a mennonite no more either. Her husband and her have an open marriage cause they didnt wanna get a divorce.

  • tori

    I really like the show! Who cares when or if they left the Amish, it’s ENTERTAINMENT people, not a documentary! EVERYTHING on television is 95% false…including the news!

  • chell

    Jeremiah says on countless occasions that he left the Amish before so he knows how to wear English clothes. He also says that he has driven a car before just not on NYC roads…

  • T Phord

    TechnoTruth? “TLC did not offer money”—>‘whatever she wanted’

  • Its Great entertainment and if they are all fakes, it is really well acted. I am sure this show will win awards. Not in the documentary category

  • JoJO

    She doesn’t have teeth…that ain’t fake! If that was due to being Amish, god help that wacko world. The rest I’m sure is scripted as with all reality TV. No surprise there and at the end of most reality shows it says “Casting Director….”. That’s a dead giveaway its fake.

  • flamingogirl56

    I feel a bit duped by the that i know the truth I see the differences in what the show wanted us to believe (and there are many) you’ll see them now too I’m sure and it’ll be harder to watch the show the same way. So why the false pretenses, do what you set out to do and give us the real deal. These GOD fearing Amish are Liars and deceivers and bear a false witness to each others truth, biblically speaking. you all packed your bibles look it up.

  • outofbusinessinlondon

    So what else isn’t real? Operation Repo??

  • Whatever the young man is an IDIOT the way that he thnks and ffels about women in general. God help him.

  • Sammy

    To me she is just a bitter ex wife that now wants her attention.
    I love this show….and Im also very aware of the fakeness-even from the beginning it was very apparent. But, it’s a freaking “reality” show people! Just like the internet…you can not believe everything on TV…

    • Meelah

      Yes many reality shows are fake but TLC reality shows tend to be in more of a documentary format not the type of reality shows we’re used to seeing on VH1. I looked forward to seeing the show (I’m sure many others were as well) because I wanted to learn about the Amish not watch a show with a fake set up from people who are liars.

  • jbeth

    fake or not, i like to watch the show. I hate when people complain about a tv show being fake when they watch movies ALL THE TIME & at the end of the movie they go “Oh yeah, that was a great movie” if you watch movies that are obviously fake then why do you care about a tv show? Whatever it may be fake or real, it entertains me.

  • Turbokat

    I prefer to think of it as a loosely based re-enactment. Whether recently or in the past, I’m sure similar scenarios like these have happened with people leaving the Amish.

  • NYer

    It was obviously fake just watching the first episode. Who travels from Florida and arrives in Grand Central? Did they move Florida north of NY? Two of them FLY from Philly into NY? Really? That would take twice as long than the train into Penn. Then the guy from Ohio is the one who arrives in Penn Station. Via where?

    Or maybe it’s just that TLC has the worst travel agent ever.

  • Meelah

    TLC and or the production company has had their employees go on different message boards, twitter, and facebook making positive comments on the show in the face of the overwhelming evidence that the show is fake and that it was done purposefully.

  • Buckeyebabe123

    Correction, he did say he was married a couple time, just not to the other cast members. And he did not mention having children.

  • Jess

    Personally I like the show I find it fun, quirky, and different from others out there. Who cares if they are actually leaving as we speak I’m sure it is quite difficult to find amish people wanting to leave as they have no internet and VERY limited phone access. They can’t prance into a community and ask now can they? What they are trying to do is make a show about what it is like to leave the amish and see the world for the first time, and that is exactly what they have done here. The characters weather faked or true show us what it would be like and what king of “drama” they would have leaving the amish lifestyle behind. Before bashing the show maybe realize that yes it is probably fake to an extent but is it at least fun to watch and enjoy? If not then simply don’t watch it, it’s that easy.

  • Chrissy Reed

    He looks like a monkey. Fake or not, I didn’t like who he portrayed on the show, like when he kept telling Abe he thought he was more of “man” than that, because Abe wasn’t comfortable going to a strip club. Puh-lease, how much more of a loser could you possibly get? This dude seriously creeps me out and I wouldn’t let him within 10 feet of me.

  • Julia

    In the show I am watching currently, there was a moment where someone at a party said something rude about his kids and Jeremiah went livid.

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  • alwaysright

    So Jeremiah finally finds a way to pay the back child support and his ex wants to make sure she rains on that parade.. It’s pretty easy to see who is the fool in that relationship !
    If she cared about her kids she would shut that mouth and let him move on and take care of the kids.. Grow up is what she needs to do !