Jeremiah Raber Reveals Information About Return To Amish Storylines

TLC launched reality series "Return to Amish" in 2014 — which, as the The Futon Critic reported at the time — was a spinoff of the channel's mega-hit "Breaking Amish." According to the outlet, "Return to Amish" follows a group who has decided to go back to Pennsylvania rather than remain in New York, where the original series left off. Unsurprisingly, the show proved to be a major hit with viewers. That said, fans have wondered for years whether these "reality" shows are actually real, so much so that TLC and its production company Hot Snakes Media released a statement in 2012 to clarify the situation. 

"There is a lot of information floating around about the group featured on 'Breaking Amish,'" the statement read, per HuffPost. "Much of it is not true, but some of it is — and is addressed in upcoming episodes." In particular, viewers took issue with whether certain scenes had been manufactured to generate more drama, and therefore increase ratings. Some fans even believed that the featured participants had already decided to move on from the Amish community before the original show began. Hot Snakes and TLC acknowledged as much to HuffPost, saying, "Our Amish and Mennonite producers that we hired introduced us to Amish and Mennonite men and women who were already determined to leave. They had already made the decision to go out and see the world, with or without us." Later, "Return to Amish" star Jeremiah Raber appeared to confirm once and for all whether the featured stories were genuine.

Jeremiah Raber admitted that 'Return to Amish' isn't entirely real

As InTouch Weekly notes, Jeremiah Raber supposedly left the Amish community at the age of 18, but in 2012 (when he was 30) the reality star was filmed using a cell phone "for the first time." In a 2015 chat with Blast Zone Online, Raber clarified that people don't fully understand the Amish lifestyle in the first place, which causes confusion. "Where I'm from there are 13 kinds of Amish. The strictest ones are just like the movie 'Witness.' The more modern ones have electricity, cell phones, computers, etc. so, they have to realize not all Amish are the same," Raber stated. However, he also admitted the show isn't "100% real," because certain scenes must be planned out in advance in order to obtain releases to film, for instance. 

Similarly, Raber revealed, that "there are parts that are scripted. Every reality show is that way to make things juicy and interesting for the viewers."  For example, eagle-eyed fans noticed a dodgy moment in an episode of "Return to Amish" involving a sinkhole, via TV Shows Ace. Raber confirmed it was all a setup with a paid actor involved — which he only learned after the fact. Raber also has a pretty active Instagram account, which shows him driving, using a smartphone, and plenty more modern conveniences.