Jeremy and Audrey Roloff are holding nothing back in their new book . Inside, the former Little People, Big World stars open up about everything from their first date to their most challenging moments as a couple — and it's impossible to put down.
Yes, , — much like the Roloffs' relationship itself — is steeped in Christian beliefs, but the couple believes they've managed to create something that everyone, regardless of background, wants: a beautiful love story. "I don't care who you are, we all want to a creative love story," Jeremy tells GoodHousekeeping.com. "So while our story is based in our Christian faith, there's a lot of meat there that is universal." Audrey seconds her husband's thoughts. "You might not agree with every single thing in in the book, and that's okay, but there's something you can take away from it."
And people seem to agree. Since its release on April 2, it's landed in the #14 spot (as of April 10) on . Of the hundreds of reviews that have been left since the book's launch, 95% of them boast a 5-star rating. But they aren't all from people who share Jeremy and Audrey's specific outlook on love and marriage.
"From a quick look, the Roloffs could not be more different than me and my husband. Our values are at complete opposite ends of the spectrum," one Amazon reviewer wrote. "I think the core principles of this book are things that anyone could agree on, regardless of their faith and beliefs: Communication is key, marriage is hard work, you should get to know someone before you actually marry them, and complacency is very dangerous to a marriage."
"I was initially hesitant on ordering it but I am so glad I did. It is proof that true love stories still exist and its message needs to spread. Love is not a fleeting feeling but instead a daily choice to selflessly pursue someone," wrote another.
Hundreds of readers have claimed they've read all 227 pages of in less than a week, although many say it only took them a few hours. "I finished A Love Letter Life in ONE day, as a mom of 4 kids thats sayin' something," one person wrote on Instagram. "Finished A Love Letter Life in less than 12 hours and I’m kinda happy because it was incredible but kinda sad because I already finished it," said another.
starts in January 2010, when Audrey and Jeremy first met, and ends in the present day. But it's what happens in between that has fans talking. The couple, who have been married for nearly five years, dive into every high and low point of their love story, something they said needed to be done in order to encourage other people to have healthy and happy relationships themselves.
"We wanted to expose our relationship in ways that most people don't," Jeremy says. "You're not going to do any real work if you're hiding things that actually need to be talked about."
With that being said, here are the five of biggest shockers from .
Jeremy tried to bail on their first date.
Although Jeremy and Audrey lived just miles from one another in Helvetia, Oregon, the two never crossed paths. In fact, they were set up on a blind date by mutual friends, but Jeremy was still recovering from a three-year failed relationship and had no interest in dating. "Reluctantly, I agreed to a blind date with some girl named Audrey. What made me say yes? I still don’t know. I spent the rest of the week looking for reasons to bail, even up to the last minute. Before I could cancel, Mitch texted me the address of Audrey’s parents’ house. It was just a couple hours before we were supposed to meet up, so I was too far in to back out now," he wrote.
After almost two years of being together, Audrey broke up with Jeremy.
In 2012, the two were both in college, doing a long-distance relationship. Apart from being super-busy with school, Audrey was also battling severe gastroenterology problems. One day, while she was on a run, she collapsed and passed out. While at the time she blamed her stomach problems, she admits in the book that she thinks she had an anxiety attack caused by the pressure of school, her health, and her relationship. She decided something had to give, and that something would be Jeremy.
"I was so stressed from being sick that I began to wonder if stress was what was actually making me sick. If my illness continued, I was scared that Jeremy’s emotional walls might prevent him from loving me through it. In an effort to prevent future heartache, I had to break up with him before it reached that point," Audrey wrote.
Jeremy developed a close relationship with another woman.
Although Jeremy and Audrey eventually got back together, Jeremy admits that during their break up he did explore new connections with people. Someone he became very close to was his friend Kate, who he had a "unique friendship" with. He says their relationship was strictly platonic, but once he and Audrey got back together, Kate became a huge issue in their relationship.
Audrey had asked Jeremy to stop hanging out with Kate alone, which he agreed to do, but because they had mutual friends in common, it wasn't so cut and dry. Plus, he never told Kate how Audrey felt about their friendship. Eventually, Jeremy ended his relationship with Kate. "I promised Audrey that the wedding would mark the end of my friendship with Kate. It had come to that point. It wasn’t a friendship I could healthily maintain. I had been wrong to try."
Their engagement was extremely stressful.
Jeremy popped the question on March 15, 2014, when they were both still in college and still doing long distance. So they actually planned their wedding while they were in different states, which as you can imagine, was challenging. Plus, Little People, Big World was filming, and the crew was adamant about getting their wedding day on camera for the show.
All of this, plus figuring out where they were going to live after they actually got married, became almost too much for the couple to handle.
"The process was so stressful and demanding that one day Jeremy and I just broke down crying. We still didn’t have jobs or a place to live; we were fighting about Kate; Jeremy’s parents were going through a separation; my parents were very frustrated by the filming process; and we were emotionally overwhelmed by everything we were processing in premarital counseling. Jeremy was also having a heck of a time trying to keep the TV crew from encroaching on the parts of our wedding day I wanted to keep private. I felt incapacitated by stress, and Jeremy was starting to feel like everything was his fault," Audrey wrote.
Jeremy's porn habit was something they needed to overcome.
"When I first met Audrey, I was failing behind the computer screen. I had wandering eyes when it came to risqué images and social media profiles I had no business looking at," he wrote. But once they developed a deeper bond, he vowed to stop looking at pornography and the like, but eventually fell back into the habit, which he says made him feel "gross and disappointed in myself."
He came up with new ways to distract himself when he felt an urge to look at provocative images, but two years into their marriage, Jeremy began to fall "back into my old habit loop," and eventually felt the need to tell Audrey. "Audrey was devastated. My behavior had fractured our trust, scarred our intimacy, and broken our unity. I remember thinking, I love her so much. Why do I keep doing this? Yes, I loved her, but to what extent? We show our love for others by how we treat them. So if I said I loved her but chose to do something that hurt her, there’s a discrepancy there that I needed to reckon with."
Jeremy sought help and advice from mentors to help him overcome him habit.
See? We told you they went there. While they don't claim to be marriage experts, Audrey and Jeremy hope that telling their story will help other couples. "There are a lot of marriage books out there written by older generations and they are amazing books, but at the same time, there aren't a lot of people speaking to our generation on the topic of marriage, and we hope to be a voice," Audrey says. "We want to me like, 'Hey, we're struggling with the same things you are. We're probably way more relatable than you think, and we're in it with you.'"