Over the years, audiences across the world have been treated to a variety of different reality television shows. And TLC’s Little People, Big World is certainly one of the most unique, following the Roloff family’s everyday lives. In recent times, however, daughter Molly has slowly disappeared from the program.
During a time when reality TV seemed to have run out of fresh concepts, TLC came up with an intriguing idea. In March 2006 the network aired the very first episode of Little People, Big World, a show that documented the lives of a very distinctive family unit.
Parents Matt and Amy Roloff, who both have dwarfism, lead the show, while their four children Zach, Jeremy, Jacob and Molly also feature. The series gave audiences an in-depth look into how a little person goes about their daily business, but there is more to it than that.
After losing his job, Matt decided to open up Roloff Farms along with his wife. From there, the show follows the duo and their children as they try to run the family business, which stretches over close to 35 acres. No one could’ve predicted what happened next, however.
You see, Little People, Big World has proved to be a massive success for TLC, with the show reaching its 13th season in the spring of 2018. And the cameras have certainly captured a lot in those 12 years, as the Roloff family’s numbers have grown significantly during that time. For instance, both Zach and his twin brother, Jeremy, are now married with young children.
However, the Roloff family have also faced some major challenges over the course of the show – the hardest being Matt and Amy’s divorce in season ten. Despite that drama, though, viewers started to pick up on something else being amiss, namely the growing absence of Molly and Jacob from the program.
Molly seemed to slowly phase herself out of Little People, Big World, in fact, sparking plenty of speculation among the show’s fans. There’s an easy explanation for her absence, though. Back in September 2016 she got a job at Moss Adams LLP, an accounting firm based in Spokane, Washington.
Meanwhile, the Roloff family live in Hillsboro, Oregon, which is several hours away from Spokane. Despite the distance, though, Molly hasn’t severed ties with her loved ones. Indeed, their farm played host to her wedding in August 2017, as she married her fiancé, Joel Silvius, in a quiet ceremony.
Following the wedding, Amy then shared a heart-warming photo of herself and Molly at the farm on her Instagram page. “She not only radiates beauty within but outside as well!” the mom wrote in the accompanying message. “Beautiful bride. Molly girl, I love you so much.”
“My little girl grew up and is now beginning a wonderful life [with] her husband, Joel,” Amy continued. “I’m so so happy for you. I’m beyond words… so blessed to be your mom. Love forever and always. It was a beautiful day filled [with] love, hope, joy, faith.”
Nonetheless, Molly’s absence from the Roloff farm was certainly felt by her mother, especially when Joel dropped by for dinner in March 2018. After sharing a picture of her son-in-law sat around the family table, Amy wrote on Instagram, “Sunday brunch! Joel was in town [with] a good friend to attend a wedding. We missed Molly not being there.”
The circumstances behind Jacob’s disappearance from the show are very different, however. Back in July 2016 Matt and Amy’s youngest child took to Instagram to offer a detailed explanation for his absence. And according to him, the producers on Little People, Big World played a significant role in his decision to leave.
“I get comments on here all the time about how people ‘miss me on the show’ or telling me I should ‘do a few more episodes’ with the family,” Jacob wrote on Instagram. “I’m posting this to say that that will never happen.” At that point, he made a damning observation about the image that he’d included alongside the message.
“For the sake of ‘the episode’ and ratings, I’ve seen a lot of STORYLINES drawn up (loosely) about our lives, and when I was standing here, behind the scenes and watching it from an outside perspective, I just couldn’t stop laughing,” Jacob continued. “Laughing at how hard the producers have to try to get us to follow the talking points and at how ridiculous the talking points are.”
From there, Jacob expanded on his decision to depart from the show. “For me, noticing how the agenda of the crew doesn’t work well with the health [and] happiness of our family is what made me decide quite a while ago that I would not be a part of it as soon as I was able,” he added.
After that, he offered one final jab in the direction of reality television as a whole. “All in all I appreciate people wanting me to ‘be with the family’ for a few more episodes, but the family that is filmed is not my family,” Jacob concluded. “They are the Roloff Characters, and I have scarcely anything in common with them, nor do I want to be a character myself.”
Following Jacob’s diatribe against the Little People, Big World producers, Matt then made some heated comments of his own. Indeed, after reading a Facebook post about Amy’s behavior on the show, her ex-husband responded with an apparent explanation. Much like his son, he opened up on what went on behind the scenes.
“We’ve been pushing the new producers to stop making our show negative and keep the family love and togetherness in the forefront,” Matt wrote on Facebook. “For some reason, these new producers/editors that come into work don’t know the show and want to amplify the negative. I’m not sure we can take that kind of editing much longer.”
Despite all that negativity, though, Little People, Big World is still going strong on TLC, with the 14th season due to air in 2019. However, there will be one less Roloff sibling when the show returns, as Jeremy is joining Molly and Jacob on the sidelines. Much like his sister, he’s looking to move away from the spotlight with his young family.
“A year ago, I made the decision that this season would be our last,” Jeremy wrote on Instagram in July 2018. “It has been an amazing run, and I can’t say thank you enough to all of you who have watched and supported us along the ride.” And given everything that’s happened recently, fans will no doubt be very intrigued to see how the show fares when it returns.