Little People, Big World, Huge Problems: The Tragic Reality Of The Roloff Family’s Story

Tricky Brick / February, 01, 2022

Who hasn't heard of the Roloff Family? Popularly known for sharing their whole lives through a TV show we all fell in love with the show has helped educate a lot of people about dwarf genes.

If you haven't heard of them yet the series airs on TLC and is called “Little People Big World” where they share their day-to-day lives with the whole world. The adventures never ceased for the Roloffs as revealed on the show but something kept them constantly in the special limelight. The family was expecting all this attention from the world but they weren’t expecting this big news to hit them. Read on to find out what was the news that turned their lives around.

1 Introducing The Roloff Family

If you haven't already watched their reality TV series “Little People Big World” is all about the Roloff family’s real-life experiences. The family consists of the parents a pair of twin sons and a daughter.

The interesting part here is some members have the dwarf gene whereas some don't. Amy and Matthew Roloff (the parents) and Zach (one of the twin boys) suffer from dwarfism. Whereas Jeremy (the other twin boy) and Molly (the daughter) are of average stature. This is where their uniquely intriguing story begins with strange turns.

2 Real Hard Work

The farm owned by the Roloffs is entirely taken care of by the united efforts of the members. Operating a farm can be quite tedious and demands tough manual labor. For this special family the tasks were no different. Turns out things were more difficult on the farm for Zach and his dad Matthew who suffered from a similar condition and went through multiple surgeries. However the family found their way around this complication too.

3 First Time On TV

It all started when the TLC channel took the offer of filming a reality series revolving around this special family to the Roloffs. The mom Amy was thrilled about this offer and agreed instantly. There was barely any show made that depicted the lives of short-statured people. So this was going to be the first of its kind. Amy grabbed the golden opportunity as she wanted to send an important message to the world through this show. The family approved and an unusual adventure commenced.

4 Mixed Reviews

This TV series has witnessed many highs and lows since it first aired but has managed to form a loyal audience. People are impressed with the way the show explains the struggles of the family and its members especially the ones suffering from dwarfism. The viewers feel that the love plots and family’s challenges are depicted engagingly. However the critics have a different view on this as they don’t find the portrayal of relationships impressive or even real and believe that the makers could convey more about dwarfism.

5 A Severe Accident

For Jacob the youngest son of the family things were smooth in the beginning but it all turned upside down with one awful incident. Jacob was in an accident that occurred in 2006 just three days before Halloween. They were preparing for the pumpkin season and used trebuchets to launch pumpkins as a part of their promotions.

Unfortunately that day the trebuchet triggered unexpectedly and Jacob and Mike (Jacob’s friend) were rushed to the hospital with serious injuries. But Jacob came under the spotlight yet again later.

6 Wrapped In Controversy

After this traumatizing accident Jacob was shaken to the core but he appeared in a few more episodes. However things were never the same for him. Jacob experienced a few more challenges during the filming of the series that led to a controversy. When Jacob turned 18 he decided to step out of this family. He didn’t live in that home anymore and never appeared on the show as a contract dispute arose.

7 A Lovely New Face

When Victoria Elizabeth "Tori" Patton joined the family as a farmhand in 2010 a love story began. Zach Roloff fell head over heels for Tori and after four months of contemplating he asked her out. Tori was elated and agreed to date him.Their sweet romance became the highlight of the show as the two were deeply in love with each other. They were captured in adorable moments during those magical days.

8 One Famous Family

Tori was living a simple life until her appearance on the TLC show “Little People Big World” which brought a tremendous amount of fame to her and Zach. Their chemistry was loved by almost the entire country. They became celebrities in no time!But this popularity didn’t come to their doorstep alone. It carried a bunch of troubles and Tori brought the reality to light a while later.

9 A Fresh Storyline

The show garnered unbelievable popularity in a matter of a few years. The producers of TLC noted the success and decided to create a spinoff series for Matthew and Amy. It was titled Little People Big World: Wedding Farm wherein the parents became wedding planners. Apart from documenting their routine lives the camera crew recorded the events of their new venture too. The spinoff was canceled after one season but the original series continues to engage the viewers with brilliant plot twists.

10 Exploring The Feelings

Zach popped the big question to Tori in April 2014 and it was a loud “yes”. The love birds took the plunge in July 2015 and they both credit the show for making their dreams come alive. Tori admitted that the show offered a refreshing aura where she could only focus on herself and her love for Zach setting aside the judgments from the outside world. Zach felt the same as he revealed that the show made him connect with his emotions leading him towards a new beginning.

11 A Dreamy Wedding

In July of 2015 Tori and Zach tied the knot in a stunning location as the cameras of the show captured the beautiful moments. There were almost 100 relatives and friends who witnessed them exchanging the vows at the ceremony. Jeremy’s wedding to Audrey was featured a while before Tori and Zach’s big day. So it was a phase of love on the show. Zach and Tori emanated radiance as they vowed to be together till the end. But where one love story was written another was being erased.

12 End Of One Tale

While the two sons Zach and Jeremy stepped into this marriage chapter their parents – Matt and Amy were moving out of this phase. In 2016 they announced their separation and shared that the divorce had already been filed. After 30 years of being married Matt and Amy decided to part ways amicably leaving their family shook. The viewers were taken aback. What did this mean for the show?

13 New Member Arriving

Although the news of their parents’ split was heartbreaking Tori and Zach decided to leave the past behind. That’s when they revealed their pregnancy – yes Tori was expecting in 2016. She felt a little anxious about her baby being “different” but Zach stood by her side and reassured her that their bundle of joy would bring happiness no matter what. She felt relieved knowing that Zach was right there and braced herself for the unexpected turn of events during her pregnancy.

14 The Bliss Of Seven

When Tori was pregnant the couple completed 7 years of their relationship and that called for a celebration. They went ahead and uploaded some magnificent photos together to declare their deep love and affection for one another. Their romance took the show to the next level. People were in awe of them but before they could celebrate any further a piece of news came out of the blue.

15 Chances of Inheritance

Zach suffered from achondroplasia which is a very common form of short-limbed dwarfism. According to medical research there is a certain chance that their baby won’t have this condition. Unfortunately fate didn’t favor them and the couple was informed that their kid would have dwarfism too. Zach and his wife didn’t let the news change anything. Since Zach had been through the same experience they knew how the little one would feel. They promised to shower their kid with all the love and looked forward to a new chapter.

16 Counting On The Experience

Since Tori had been working as a kindergarten teacher she knew quite a lot about dealing with kids. She was passionate about her career and so when it was time to take maternity leave she found herself in a pickle. She knew in her heart that she had to take this break but something kept bothering her. Eventually she left with a promise to return soon and meet her students with the baby. Little did she know this new journey had strings attached!

17 Welcome To The Big World

Zach and Tori were blessed with a baby boy who entered this world on May 12 2017. They named him Jackson and the Roloff family was delighted with this little new member. Jackson inherited his dad’s dwarf genes but that didn’t waver the excitement of the new parents. Zach vowed to support his son at every step of the way and be his guiding light forever. He wanted Jackson to grow into a confident young man. Well this little boy had love pouring in from all around.

18 Love Multiplied

Parenthood brought a glow on the faces of Tori and Zach as they were beaming with joy as they carried the little one in their arms. His dwarfism had no impact on his parents’ love for him. Tori was constantly updating her followers about Jackson. While the new parents may think that their fans would have a hard time accepting their baby due to his inherited condition the love that flooded in the comments was telling a different story.

19 Tiny Hiccups On The Path

Social media can be deceptive at times as it may hide the real pain of a person. This happened to be true in Tori’s case until she decided to open up about the challenge she was facing. She revealed that breastfeeding her baby was quite tough for her.The show was doing an incredible job in raising awareness around dwarfism and banishing the false details associated with it. So when Tori discussed her motherhood struggles many moms related to it and applauded her courage and strength. This topic received much-needed attention.

20 Giving Voice To Her Feelings

Tori didn’t hesitate for even a moment while sharing her breastfeeding struggles. She wanted to dismiss the taboos that have developed around this over time. The voices of all the mothers deserved to be heard and Tori took a powerful step towards this change. When celebrities use their fame to address such crucial topics it reaches a larger audience and has the potential to make a significant impact. That’s what Tori planned to do.

21 Still Frowned Upon

There are still certain stigmas surrounding breastfeeding and that’s not where a healthy future of this world lies. In the United States public breastfeeding is legal but the mothers are still attacked with disapproving stares when they do it. Mothers have to endure harsh behavior despite the law that favors them. So Tori made sure she used her huge and influential social media presence to dispel the stigmas. The way she implemented it is truly commendable!

22 Presenting Her Views

Tori admitted that the simple and magical act of nourishing the baby with mother’s milk should never make a mom feel embarrassed. It’s the purest thing ever! She had been on the receiving end of such rude comments and unpleasant stares and so she realized that she needed to change the narrative and shift the focus towards mothers and their choices. She took the matter into her own hands and made her way through the path of change.

23 The Most-Awaited Updates

While Tori took the steps towards breaking the stigma surrounding breastfeeding she also wanted to keep her followers updated about Jackson and the struggles that came with feeding her infant. She informed the people that things only became easier after some time. Jackson was now a toddler and her followers were glad to see him grow. Tori stayed active on social media and some of her posts resonated with the audience in unimaginable ways.

24 Accepting All Choices

Tori was not letting anything stop her from becoming the voice of all the mothers who are judged for the natural act. Her posts garnered thousands of likes and the followers were leaving positive comments on them. She emphasized that moms can solely make the choice of breastfeeding their kids or not. No one can have a say in this matter. Amid all these efforts to change the perspective there was something else going on in the Roloff family.

25 Another Concern

Tori’s inspiring posts revolving around this topic reached a larger audience and people were expressing their views openly. She offered a safe space to the ones who were silently enduring the tough challenges. A nurse came forward and discussed another hidden side of this story. She was a worker at the women’s health services and revealed that things have been quite benighted in the medical culture and the moms are forced to breastfeed even if they don’t want to. When the concern should be about postpartum depression such taboos are taking over.

26 Soon-To-Be Mom

Tori had inspired many people with her amazing posts about motherhood and the unspoken struggles of this phase. Many moms felt relieved after knowing that they are not alone. In addition to bringing light for her fans and followers Tori had even helped someone in the Roloff home. Her sister-in-law Audrey (Jeremy’s wife) also gave birth to a little girl and she opened up about being a new mom and a businesswoman. She asked her followers on Instagram to share their experiences of managing the business and raising a kid.

27 Balancing Business And Baby

Audrey sought the experienced views of the “mamapreneurs” and was eager to know how they maintained the balance. Being a mom and having a business to run can be overwhelming but the women who have accomplished it had secrets to spill.

This new mom Audrey runs her own fashion line. Jeremy and Audrey are also the owners of a marriage counseling website with the name “Beating 50 Percent”. They have taken their business to a great height.

28 Grateful For The Action

People who saw Audrey’s post left kind comments reassuring the mom-to-be that her feelings are justified and any mompreneur would have such emotions. She just needed to focus on herself and let things move at their pace. People also told her to cherish every moment of motherhood as her baby would grow just when she blinks. Audrey was grateful for Tori’s inspiring posts and believed that the show made a major contribution to her motherhood adventures. But this was merely the beginning – a lot was in store for the Roloffs.

29 Influencing The Right Way

Many celebrities have used their influential status to bring a change in the world. Tori and Audrey are two of those female stars who have voiced their opinions about a topic that demanded immediate focus and attention. Gisele Bundchen and Chrissy Teigen have also been vocal about the challenges of motherhood and shared some really brave photos on their social media that received a lot of appreciation from moms all around. The change may have begun but there’s still a long way to go.

30 New Adventures

The Roloff family was all set for new chapters that were being written for them by their fate. Tori shared a lot about her son Jackson and her loving husband Zach. Her followers loved her posts and left adorable comments.All the stars of this show Little People Big World had something different going on in their lives from romantic relationships to heartbreaks and it was all quite intriguing for the viewers. Their short stature was not the only thing that defined them anymore. It was time for new revelations.

31 Happiest News Part II

Tori had very special news to share with her Instagram family. She wrote “Zachary and I are so excited to announce that Jackson is going to be a big brother! We are expecting a sweet baby girl this November! Thank you so much for always supporting our family and loving us!”Her followers were elated to hear this but something beyond Tori’s expectations happened later. The response was unbelievable and she had another thing to reveal. This family was expanding but that wasn’t all written on those pages.

32 Glowing Mommy

Tori wanted to share all the highs and lows of her pregnancy with her Instagram followers. She posted a picture on July 16 2019 and expressed gratitude.“I also wanted to say thank you to everyone who commented and messaged me about my post on self image. You all are so fricking sweet. I wasn’t looking for affirmation but y’all seriously gave it to me. That’s honestly what gives me the confidence to post this. I’m trying to love the heck out of my body because dang it I’m proud to grow this baby girl” she further wrote.

33 One Devastating Chapter

The Roloff family had to go through certain terrible times too and all was not captured by the camera crew. One devastating incident occurred way before the family’s TV appearance. It was heartbreaking!Matt Roloff had a younger brother Josh who left his world at a very young age. “Two years after me came Joshua and again Mom and Dad faced more childbirth trauma because Josh was born with a severe heart and lung defect which would ultimately take his life” Matt wrote in his 2007 book Little People Big Values.

34 A Moment Of Disbelief

While viewers thought that everything was smooth in the Roloff home something upsetting was approaching. Matt Roloff and Amy shared a strained relationship and many shocking events came to light regarding their marriage. Amy expressed “Matt was spending more and more time at the tavern he often frequented in the evenings after filming and working on the farm and our farm manager seemed to be around more and more often as well. What if anything was going on?” Turns out a lot was happening.

35 Bad News In The Roloff Home

Amy revealed in her book “Then it dawned on me. Matt and our farm manager who had been working for us a number of years by then seemed to have more than just a working relationship or friendship. I saw messages pictures and other things that should not have been shared between people who just worked together and were still married to other people. I was devastated.”So Amy and Matt ended their marriage of 27 years and their divorce was finalized in April of 2016. Where was this family headed now?

36 Embracing The Change

Amy took her time to accept this situation and move on. “But you know life goes on and I will allow myself that time to embrace it but I am happy that if Matt is happy he’s happy. And if I’m happy I’m glad that I’ll be happy” she expressed. She wanted this split to be amicable and worked towards it. She just wanted her kids and grandkids to be happy. There was a ray of light and hope sneaking into her life too.

37 Love Re-Enters

Love had not escaped from Amy’s life as it was about to show up at her doorstep yet again. It was a blissful time in the Roloff family where Tori and Zach were expecting baby number 2 and then another happy news was on its way. Amy started dating Chris Marek and they were both deeply in love. In 2019 Amy announced that they were now an engaged couple. They united in wedlock in August of 2021. Guess the venue of the ceremony – yes it was the Roloff family farm.

38 Facing A Loss

On one hand Amy was turning the pages to open a new chapter of her life after suffering heartbreak and on the other hand she had to bear a huge loss that left her disheartened. She was struck with tragedy when she suddenly lost her adorable dog Felix. Losing the little furry friend was too much to absorb at once for Amy. She dedicated an Instagram post to Felix and wrote “My little fella Felix fell suddenly ill and passed away the Thursday Before our wedding in August.”

39 Baby Lilah’s Arrival

Tori and Zach were blessed with a baby girl in November 2019. “2019 changed our family forever for the better. Our sweet Lilah girl joined the family and we couldn’t be more in love. I am so thankful for the growth and changes that happened in 2019” Tori exclaimed cheerfully. “I am grateful for my little family. Especially my husband [Zach Roloff] who is leading us into 2020 to make it our best year yet!” Tori broke a piece of news that her fans were not expecting.

40 Born With A Condition

Lilah was also born with achondroplasia a form of dwarfism that her dad and brother also suffered from. Lilah also has a few other health conditions that made Tori and Zach a little fearful about her growth. This mom of two revealed Lilah’s strabismus diagnosis on her social media when her fans asked about the eye patch that the little girl was wearing. “Lilah’s vision is actually better than 20/20 (not sure how they can tell on an infant?!) but we’re trying glasses to hopefully fix her lazy eye and avoid surgery!!”

41 The Little Couple

Apart from the gripping TV series “Little People Big World” there’s another interesting TV show revolving around dwarfism that airs on TLC as well. This show is titled “The Little Couple” and the stars are Dr. Jennifer Arnold and her husband Bill Klein. Both of them suffer from skeletal dysplasia. The show was initially a one-hour special called “Little People: Just Married” and the storyline just turned too engaging as certain events unfolded in the couple’s life.

42 About The Female Star

Dr. Jennifer Arnold works as a neonatologist a doctor specializing in taking care of newborn babies especially the ill and premature infants. She did her pediatric residency at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center and after the completion she began her practice in Houston Texas. This female star of the show is 3'2" (96.5 cm) tall. Her story with her partner involves many intriguing events.

43 About The Male Star

Jennifer is married to Bill Klein who owns a pet store and is a businessman. In New York he was a businessman in the field of telemarketing and medical supplies. When the couple shifted to Houston he worked in the same field and opened a store selling pet supplies. Jennifer and Bill tied the knot in 2008 and this special show is all about their married life and their move to Houston Texas from New York City. Bill is 4 feet (122 cm) tall.

44 Tying The Knot

In 2008 Bill and Jennifer took their relationship to the next level and tied the knot. This show “The Little People” focuses on the married life of the couple and it began when they moved to Houston Texas from NYC. Changing the location might sound smooth but in reality it’s a big deal that carries unexpected obstacles. Finding an apartment and a decent job are just two of the many challenges that arise after moving. Apart from this the couple’s concern with having kids is also revealed on the show.

45 Becoming Parents

Since Jennifer and Bill suffer from dwarfism they had to face certain struggles while trying to get pregnant. There were complications involved due to their condition and after undergoing several tests they decided to consider international adoption. The couple chose to adopt kids with dwarfism who have a lower chance of being adopted as the stigma surrounding the condition takes over people’s minds. They adopted their son Will from China and their daughter Zoey from India.

46 Biological Children

Bill and Jen showered their adopted kids with all the love and were wonderful parents to them. But the couple still hoped to have biological children of their own someday. They had to undergo more tests and after professional medical advice they opted for surrogacy since Jen had a few health concerns. The path of surrogacy is not an easy one considering the expenses and risks involved. In the case of this couple it didn’t turn out well and wasn’t a success.

47 Inspiring Speakers

As Jen and Bill became famous and their show gained popularity around the country they were applauded for their decision to adopt. Soon they were sharing their experience openly and became advocates for adoption. They give inspirational talks revolving around this topic and create awareness about dwarfism with an aim to break the stigmas. The famous couple is also invited to various events to speak and share their thoughts.

48 Struck With Misfortune

Jen and Bill had many failed attempts at getting pregnant and their surrogacy decision didn’t work out as well. In 2013 Jen found out that she was pregnant but this amazing news faded away faster than its arrival. That wasn’t all - After the failed pregnancy Jen was diagnosed with a very rare cancer. She underwent chemotherapy and even a hysterectomy. After enduring all the pain she came out stronger and defeated cancer.

49 Fighting And Winning

It has been a tough journey for Jen and Bill considering their issues with conceiving and then Jen's battle with cancer. They didn’t think of their condition as a limitation instead it inspired them to be the change that this world needs. They were brilliant parents to their two beautiful kids and fought all the challenges that stood in their way. Their TV show brought light into the world of many people who could not find their way out of the dark times.