Michelle and Jim Bob Duggar would like to have a 20th baby and, in the upcoming episode of their TLC show "19 Kids & Counting," the couple consults with a fertility doctor to make sure the family matriarch is healthy enough to carry a child at age 47.
Michelle Duggar had her last baby in 2010 and then suffered a miscarriage a year later, according to Us Weekly.
"We are just going to check and see that I'm physically in good condition," Michelle Duggar said in a preview clip for the show. "We would love more children if God saw fit to give us more — I just want to make sure that I'm ready to catch a baby if that would happen. My real goal in visiting with Dr. [Paul] Wendel and finding out from blood work and different tests is to really find out where I am in my life right now, hormonally speaking as well as the ability to carry a baby and give birth if that’s possible at this point."
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Wendel, a specialist in high-risk pregnancies who runs a practice in Little Rock, Arkansas, told the Duggars in the clip that pregnancies among women in their late 40s are "very unusual."
The idea that the couple would see a fertility specialist riled up some people online, as the religious family has said in the past they would leave family planning in God's hands.
"If they are leaving it up to God then they wouldn't need a specialist. She needs to realize that her time is over and enjoy the ones still at home," one person commented on a "Today" show article.
Others jumped to the Duggars’ defense, especially against many commenters who implied the couple might seek fertility treatments.
"If you truly read the article without hatred and disdain, then you would have read that she stated she wanted to check with the doctor to see if she was doing something wrong or needed to change something and if God sees fit that she is past having children then she is OK with that," one person commented.
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