RECAP Michelle Duggar appears alongside daughters in TLC’s Breaking the Silence

Jessa Duggar - Jill Duggar - Duggar Courtships

Former 19 Kids and Counting stars Jill Dillard, Jessa Seewald and (unexpectedly) Michelle Duggar returned to TLC for Sunday night’s Breaking the Silence documentary.

In the 60-minute, uninterrupted show on childhood sexual abuse and prevention, the Duggars were briefly shown attending a Darkness to Light seminar in New York City. During the session, they learned about “The Five Steps to Protecting Our Children,” which consist of learning the facts; minimizing opportunity; talking about it; recognizing the signs; and reacting responsibly.

As an expectant mother, Jessa said it helped her to learn more about the “boundaries and safeguards” she can establish in her household to protect her children. She added, “I feel like this should be a discussion people are having, even regularly. I think that it shouldn’t be a taboo subject, that we should be bringing awareness to child sexual abuse and talking about this.”

Sister Jill Dillard, who, along with Jessa, identified herself as a childhood abuse victim, said she also appreciated the seminar.

“It’s amazing to understand that there are so many people that deal with this exact same thing in their own families,” Jill said. “Just being educated is very good.”

Although TLC publicized Jill and Jessa’s appearance in the documentary ahead of time, Michelle’s participation was a surprise.

“I was so glad that my girls and I were able to do this together,” Michelle said. “And that we could just be a support and encouragement to each other to be able to gain more information about this important topic.”

That was really the extent of the Duggars’ participation. The rest of the documentary consisted of more thoughtful testimonies from childhood sexual abuse survivors, including celebrities Teri Hatcher and Cheryl Burke. Erin Merryn, the creator of Erin’s Law, also spoke about her experience, and about the importance of educating young people.

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