Josh Duggar Blames Porn Addiction for Cheating on Wife

Josh Duggar Blames Porn Addiction for Cheating on Wife

By Zachary Siegel 08/20/15

The ex-child molester, and now-confessed adulterer and porn addict, was the first celebrity to be outed in the Ashley Madison hack.

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Mr. Family Values Photo via

In a classic case of reaction formation, anti-LGBT reality television celebrity Josh Duggar admitted to having a porn addiction. In the same statement, he also said he has been “unfaithful” to his wife.

Duggar was the first celebrity to be outed in the data hack of Ashley Madison, the infamous dating service for extramarital affairs. He now joins the ranks of dozens of celebrities who, after being caught cheating, blame their behavior on an “addiction.”

Once a lobbyist for the Family Research Council, which touts conservative Christian values about family and politics, Duggar is now calling himself the “biggest hypocrite ever.” After gossip website Gawker leaked Duggar’s two Ashley Madison accounts, he admitted to his hypocrisy in the following statement:

I have been the biggest hypocrite ever. While espousing faith and family values, I have secretly over the last several years been viewing pornography on the internet and this became a secret addiction and I became unfaithful to my wife.

I am so ashamed of the double life that I have been living and am grieved for the hurt, pain and disgrace my sin has caused my wife and family, and most of all Jesus and all those who profess faith in Him.

I brought hurt and a reproach to my family, close friends and the fans of our show with my actions that happened when I was 14-15 years old, and now I have re-broken their trust.

The last few years, while publicly stating I was fighting against immorality in our country, I was hiding my own personal failings.

As I am learning the hard way, we have the freedom to choose to our actions, but we do not get to choose our consequences. I deeply regret all hurt I have caused so many by being such a bad example.

I humbly ask for your forgiveness. Please pray for my precious wife Anna and our family during this time.

According to the hacked data dumped by hacker group dubbed the “Impact Team,” Duggar was seeking the following services on his Ashley Madison accounts, for which he paid close to $1,000:

“Conventional Sex,” Experimenting with Sex Toys,” One-Night Stands,” “Open to Experimentation,” “Gentleness,” “Good With Your Hands,” Sensual Massage,” “Extended Foreplay/Teasing,” “Bubble Bath for 2,” “Likes to Give Oral Sex,” “Likes to Receive Oral Sex,” “Someone I Can Teach,” “Someone Who Can Teach Me,” “Kissing,” “Cuddling & Hugging,” “Sharing Fantasies,” “Sex Talk.”

Similar to other celebrities who get caught cheating on their spouse, Duggar blamed his nefarious dealings on his “addiction” to pornography. While “sex addiction,” or hypersexual disorder, is a much contested phenomenon, it's often used as ploy for sympathy points among those guilty of cheating.

Earlier this year, Duggar was at the epicenter of a damning scandal when he was forced to admit molesting five underage girls when he was a teenager, four of them being his sisters. The revelation tarnished the reputation of the popular 19 Kids and Counting family, until TLC saw no choice but to cancel the popular show. The latest admission by Duggar could derail an attempted comeback by the ultra-Christian family.

“I sought forgiveness from those I had wronged and asked Christ to forgive me and come into my life," he said in a statement. "In my life today, I am so very thankful for God’s grace, mercy and redemption.”

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Zachary Siegel is a freelance journalist specializing in science, health and drug policy. His reporting has also appeared in Slate, The Daily Beast, Salon, Huffington Post, among others. He writes often about addiction, sometimes drawing from his own experience. You can find out more about Zachary on Linkedin or follow him on Twitter.

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