Joy-Anna and Austin Forsyth Embrace Freedom and Independence in Empowering YouTube Revelation, Distancing Themselves From IBLP


Joy-Anna and Austin Forsyth: Breaking Free from the IBLP and Finding Their Own Path

The Duggar family’s affiliation with the Institute of Basic Life Principles (IBLP) has been widely known, but some members of the family are starting to distance themselves from the ultra-conservative Christian ministry. One such couple is Joy-Anna and Austin Forsyth, who recently revealed that they have never been members of the IBLP. This surprising admission has left many fans of the Duggar family wondering about their religious beliefs and how it has impacted their lives.

Choosing Their Own Path

In a recent YouTube video, Austin shared that he and Joy-Anna had decided not to use IBLP literature in their marriage even before they tied the knot. They made a conscious effort to distance themselves from events hosted by the IBLP as soon as they got married. This decision was a reflection of their desire to have their own unique relationship with God, outside of the boundaries set by the IBLP. This revelation has sparked curiosity among fans, as Austin is the first Duggar son-in-law to be raised in the ultra-conservative ministry.

Joy-Anna and Austin Forsyth married during a TLC special

Jill Dillard, Derick Dillard, Jeremy Vuolo, and Ben Seewald, who are married to Duggar daughters, are also not directly affiliated with the IBLP. However, it is unclear whether Jessa and Ben now subscribe to the ministry. This departure from the ultra-conservative Christian movement marks a significant shift within the Duggar family, as they have been closely tied to the IBLP for decades.

The Controversial IBLP

The Institute of Basic Life Principles is an ultra-conservative Christian ministry known for its adherence to a patriarchal family structure. The ministry promotes traditional gender roles, with women serving as “helpmeets” to their husbands. It also encourages large families and enforces modest dress requirements. For years, the Duggar family has been associated with the IBLP, but details about the ministry’s internal workings only came to light recently.

In June 2023, Amazon released a docuseries called “Shiny Happy People: Duggar Family Secrets,” which exposed the IBLP as a “cult-like” movement and revealed allegations against its founder, Bill Gothard. Following the controversy, the IBLP removed Gothard from its leadership. The docuseries featured interviews with Jill Dillard, Derick Dillard, Amy Duggar King, and Deanna Duggar, shedding light on the inner workings of the ministry.

The Bates Family Connection

Although the Duggar family is often seen as the face of the IBLP, they are not the only reality TV family with ties to the controversial ministry. The Bates family, known for their own reality TV show “Bringing Up Bates,” is heavily involved in the IBLP. Gil Bates, the patriarch of the Bates family, serves on the board of directors for the ministry.

Joy-Anna and Austin Forsyth marry during a TLC special
Joy-Anna and Austin Forsyth married during a TLC special

The Bates family first gained fame through their appearances on the Duggar family’s show, “19 Kids and Counting.” They eventually had their own reality TV series, “Bringing Up Bates,” which aired for 10 seasons. While the show was canceled after the 10th season, footage for the 11th season was filmed but never aired.

As more Duggar family members break away from the IBLP, it raises questions about the future of their religious beliefs and how it will impact their lives. For Joy-Anna and Austin Forsyth, their decision to distance themselves from the ultra-conservative Christian ministry has allowed them to forge their own path and establish their unique relationship with God. Only time will tell how this departure will continue to shape their lives and influence their involvement in the Duggar family’s public persona.


Micheal Kurt

I earned a bachelor's degree in exercise and sport science from Oregon State University. He is an avid sports lover who enjoys tennis, football, and a variety of other activities. He is from Tucson, Arizona, and is a huge Cardinals supporter.

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