Why This Christmas Will Be Especially Difficult For Josh Duggar's Wife Anna

Trigger warning: The following article contains references to the sexual abuse of children. 

'Tis the season to be jolly, and many members of the Duggar family are already getting into the Christmas spirit. Jessa Duggar Seewald had her tree up two weeks before Thanksgiving, and Jill Duggar Dillard also posted a photo of her sons by their tree, sharing her gratitude for having a rainbow baby after a tragic miscarriage. Another of their sisters is decking the halls as well, but Jinger Duggar Vuolo is catching heat for her sparse-looking "Charlie Brown" tree. But one family member is reportedly anticipating a blue Christmas this year.

Anna Duggar (née Keller) is about to spend her first holiday without her husband, Josh, the oldest of the "19 Kids & Counting" children. After 14 years (Anna was just 20 at the time, per Us Weekly), the couple's marriage is being put to the ultimate test. In May of 2022, Josh was sentenced to just over 12 years in prison after being convicted of receiving and possessing child sexual abuse material (via People). His legal team tried to argue that a co-worker had actually committed the crimes, but the U.S. government handed down a harsh response to Josh's appeal, saying there was "abundant evidence" against him.

Now, Anna not only has to make Christmas merry for their seven children on her own, but she is also reportedly losing the support of her famous in-laws.

Anna Duggar has been missing from family events

While Josh Duggar's parents, Jim Bob and Michelle, have stood by him, a number of his siblings have publicly condemned him. This uncomfortable situation has apparently made life difficult for Josh's wife, Anna. According to In Touch Weekly, Anna was nowhere to be seen at the senior Duggars' Thanksgiving Eve get-together. Josh's sister Joy-Anna Duggar Forsyth had a gender reveal party for her third baby days before that, and Anna was absent there, too.

A source told In Touch that this is an especially trying time for the mom of seven. "The holidays have been difficult," the unnamed insider claimed. "Josh has done terrible things — she's still dealing with that betrayal, but she misses him." The insider also pointed out that Anna married very young and has known no other life other than being Josh's wife. And while at least one family member — cousin Amy Duggar King — has been begging Anna to leave Josh, Anna may not be ready to do the unthinkable. Not only does her church oppose divorce, but she would also likely find it difficult to support herself and the children on her own. "It might be a cut-and-[dried] decision for others, but it's not that simple for Anna," the source added. So for this year, expect to see Anna try to have herself a merry little Christmas and hope that next year will be different.

If you or anyone you know has been a victim of sexual assault, help is available. Visit the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network website or contact RAINN's National Helpline at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673).