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Jana Duggar Half Smiling.

Secret dates and whispered romances might not be the things you’d normally associate with the Duggar Family from Counting On, but the rumor mill has been swirling this week about a potential relationship involving Jana Duggar. The reality star has long been considered a bit of an outlier from her siblings given she’s thirty and hasn’t started a family. No judgment here on our end, but when your family is best known for marrying early and producing a lot of babies, people will talk.

Enter: Lawson Bates. He’s best known for his appearances on Bringing Up Bates, as well as being approachably handsome, and there have been some whispers in the past about Lawson and Jana getting along particularly well. The two have long left comments on each other’s Instagram posts and have a shared history since their families get along very well. Now, thanks to a video shared to Lawson’s younger sister Carlin’s Instagram Story, fans know Jana and Lawson recently hung out and played cards together.

Now, here’s where this all gets complicated and adds some more smoke to the fire. The group who played cards together reportedly included Lawson, Jana, Carlin, Carlin’s husband and Johannah Duggar, Jana’s younger sister. This is important because when one of the members of the Duggar Family engages in a courtship with someone, one of the other siblings is typically present.

If Reddit threads are to be believed, the two are definitely courting, but taking a step back, the real answer here is we clearly don’t know what’s going on. There have been enough rumors about Jana’s personal life to fill a college yearbook. Of the first 9 children born in the Duggar Family, she’s the only one who is not married. Everyone over the age of 22 has walked down the aisle. As such, it’s easy to read into her choices as some kind of rebellion or personal statement.

The facts, however, are that people are getting married later and later these days. Many people are even choosing not to get married at all. Jana has spent most of her life in a family with numerous children. One would imagine there isn’t a lot of peace and quiet to be found, and if she wants to step on another path, she deserves that chance. Life is too short to make really important decisions simply because of tradition. I say good for her for finding her own path. She needs to have fun and live her own life on her own terms.

That being said, if she is dating Lawson, that is an amazing match. They would be really fun on a reality show together, and I’d love to see more from them. I’m sure producers would love that, but I imagine we won’t know for sure until we officially hear from parents Jim Bob and Michelle, as the show is typically good about honestly addressing real life developments, even if they're sad. Counting On has probably already started filming its new season and should return within the next few months. Bringing Up Bates is already back for new episodes that began airing March 5th.

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