The Real Reason Joy-Anna Duggar Left Counting On

Although "19 Kids and Counting" was so successful it made the Duggars household names, the hit reality show — which spawned the spinoff "Counting On" following Josh Duggar's sex abuse scandal — also brought unwanted attention to the central family. 

As Distractify notes, their ultra-strict Christian lifestyle was heavily criticized by fans, leading to several family members bowing out of filming the show over the years, beginning with Josh, of course, and followed by sister Jill Duggar and her husband, Derick Dillard. 

Soon after, Joy-Anna Duggar and her husband, Austin Forsyth, were left out of the trailer for Season 11, leading fans to wonder whether their family would be featured going forward. 

The U.S. Sun confirmed that the couple had indeed bowed out, citing YouTuber Without a Crystal Ball, who reported that Joy-Anna and Austin would only be involved in group settings, typically while celebrating important family occasions. The move came after Derick suggested on social media that the adult Duggar children hadn't been paid what they were owed for appearing on the hit show — thanks to patriarch Jim Bob Duggar.

Derick promised to reveal everything in a tell-all memoir, subsequently claiming that he and Jill left "Counting On" in order to "avoid toxic relationships" and "regain control" of their lives. At the time, the couple had been pulling back from the rest of the Duggars for a while, but Joy-Anna and Austin's exit came as more of a shock to the system.

The former reality star grew increasingly busy elsewhere

"Counting On" has endured multiple controversies over the years, but the show's loss of several family members continues to draw headlines. Fans weren't terribly shocked when Jill Duggar and her husband, Derick Dillard, left in 2017, but, when Joy-Anna Duggar and Austin Forsyth followed suit, it left plenty of viewers flummoxed. 

The couple had only recently suffered a devastating miscarriage, and, per Showbiz CheatSheet, they didn't comment on the particulars of their departure. Joy-Anna and Austin did increase their social media presence exponentially, however, providing fans with regular insights into their new life together on Instagram as well as via their dedicated YouTube channel. 

After leaving "Counting On," the couple turned their attention to flipping houses, which many believe was the main reason for their exit since it seems to be going well for them. Newsweek confirmed that Austin had actually been flipping houses for years long before marrying Joy-Anna, and, once they got together, she began working with him.

The couple is notably financially independent of her parents, too. Elsewhere, Joy-Anna and Austin moved into a new home, which they also renovated extensively, in December 2019, per an Instagram post. They welcomed their second child, a girl, in August 2020, so, clearly, the couple's hands are full enough without the demands of a reality show.

Joy-Anna Duggar and Austin Forsyth commented on Josh Duggar's sentencing

According to Page Six, in the wake of her brother, Josh Duggar, being found guilty of receipt and possession of child sexual abuse material (CSAM), Joy-Anna Duggar and husband Austin Forsyth took to their Instagram Stories to let fans know that they fully agreed with the verdict. 

"Over this last year, as you can imagine, there have been a lot of unanswered questions in our minds regarding Josh," their joint statement began. "We were able to sit through the trial to hear the evidence for ourselves." 

The couple continued: "We agree with the judicial system's verdict and we are thankful for the men and women who work tirelessly to protect children and help prevent child sexual abuse material. Our hearts break for all CSAM victims."

The former reality stars also shared their support for Josh's wife, Anna Duggar, and their seven kids at such a difficult time. The disgraced former "19 Kids and Counting" star was ultimately sentenced to 12.5 years in prison out of a possible 20, per In Touch Weekly. Although several of his siblings decried Josh publicly, USA Today notes that his parents, Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar, and his wife remained by Josh's side throughout the trial.

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).