Trolling the message boards I see post after post asking about "How do I send little Josie the so-and-so I made for her?" and it really makes me wonder about people. You know that these women have kind and loving hearts, watch the Duggars every week, see Michelle do her interviews and probably think she is speaking directly to them. In fact, during some episodes you see her speak to perfect strangers as if they were her best friends. So it's easy to see how a person can get drawn in to feel that the Duggars really are your own next door neighbours and you know them---but what you forget is--they don't know you.
I'm sure the Duggars would love to know that their fans are out in the world praying for them and wishing them well. I'm also sure that if and when they do meet their fans on the street that greet them with a smile, and if they have time, even talk to them. They've said they don't have time to answer emails, which is the reason they wrote their book and began their website (which has long ago been rather abandoned--for good reason if you ask me--they do have a lot on their plate right now!) But until that day comes when you actually meet and greet the Duggars in person, they don't know you and this "relationship" we all have with them is terribly one-sided. They've let us into their lives, but we haven't let them into ours.
Now I have to admit I've had those weird moments where I've thought "I should send that to the Duggars." I really want them to have a copy of "The Tightwad Gazette." Which is a book of money saving tips that would help them save even more--a lot of which they use, but they aren't using to their full advantage--I think Jim Bob would devour it. I was also watching an Israeli movie called "Ushpuzin" and thought "Wow I should send them a copy" because they were always looking for family-friendly movies they could watch. This was after watching the episode when they went to the Christian film festival. Yes it was in Hebrew with subtitles, but it was a family-friendly movie with a good message that would have bridged a gap and taught their kids a good lesson. It was also religious and took place in Israel. But then, I'm not their friend, I don't know them, why would I send them things in the mail? Like I said, I've read many many posts on the Facebook message board asking how to send them gifts, and I even wrote on one "Springdale is so small I'm sure if you just wrote "The Duggar Family, Tonitown, AR" and the zip code, I'm sure it would get there." Afterall, I'm sure their local post office is used to getting plenty of fan mail for them with all kinds of unusual addresses for them.
Now this next part I'm stealing from a message board, but apparently one woman did send a gift to the Duggar for the baby, the box had been opened and a note inside said "Thank you for thinking of us, but no thank you". Please donate to your favorite charity, place of worship or children's hospital" It was signed, Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar Family. I have to tell you I cried and have stewed over this. I know they are celebrities and there are some sick and weird people out there, but we are offended. "
My opinion of this is that the Duggars did the right thing by sending it back. Could the note been a bit friendlier? Possibly. Frankly at this point I'm amazed they don't have some printed up by now en masse--you'd think they have tons of stuff rolling in from fans. But the point is, if you analyze it from a truly Duggar standpoint, they stayed true to their values. They don't need anything for Josie--so keeping things they don't need would be wrong--they have plenty in every sense of the word. It would be wrong of them to donate the item on the other person's behalf, because they don't know that person, in a way, that would be even more rude. The gift was acknowledged and they let the person know their wishes.
When you think about it, in the age after 9/11 and if they read the message boards at all, you wonder why they open any packages at all--they are aware they have NON-fans out there. In this day and age it wouldn't surprise me at all if all things were sent back unopened "returned to sender." So if you look at it from that point of view, the sender was lucky to have received an acknowledgment at all.
It would be great, if the Duggars had the time and thought, to put a message out there on their website and the TLC website to have fans stop sending gifts and/or to send them to a specific charity or charity of that person's choice. It would stop, or slow, the mail flow and stop the "hurt" feelings.