Rebecca Jane “Becca” Schmucker is an Amish community member, who sought to explore life outside with few repercussions. Luckily, being cast in TLC’s TV show, “Breaking Amish,” allowed her to do so, and she could see that transitioning to “the English life” was a more fitting choice. We summarize how Rebecca and her husband Abe attracted the viewer’s interest, and what led them to distance themselves from the TLC TV show.
She left to focus on her family
Viewers loved seeing Rebecca and her then-boyfriend Abe Schmucker fall in love more and more in front of the camera. The couple married at the end of the first season, then staying for the next three seasons of “Breaking Amish.” When TLC gave the cast members a choice to leave the Amish community, she did, before returning for four seasons of “Return to Amish.”
However, instead of coming back for the fifth, Rebecca posted on Twitter in October 2018, ‘We made the decision to no longer participate in being in “Return to Amish.” We are just normal everyday people trying to live our best life. We wish the best to the rest of the cast!’ She concluded the statement by writing, ‘Ps. I got my GED!’ That suggested that she wanted to focus on her education, despite not looking for a job. We explain what marked her on-screen journey and how she transitioned to a life away from the spotlight.
Rebecca was controversial from the get-go
Amish lifestyle is known for being quiet, hard-working, community-oriented, and stuck in time. While fascinating at first, the lives of people in the Amish community in Pennsylvania wouldn’t get so many TV show seasons greenlit by TLC if it weren’t for the personalities of all participants. Rebecca was undoubtedly one, and viewers had a lot of time to adjust since she was a regular in the show for six years after making her debut in 2012. Additionally, many things about her only stood out or were revealed down the road.
For example, the show made it seem that Rebecca and Abe didn’t know that the other existed, and only bonded in front of the camera. While they were a beloved couple, and TLC made their journey from courtship to wedding to giving birth feel genuine, it was allegedly not entirely true. They were from the same Amish community in Pennsylvania, USA, and reportedly fell in love beforehand, based on pictures that showed them together. They also conceived a child roughly when the show aired scenes from their courtship.
Also, Abe proposed to Rebecca toward the end of the first season, and she accepted, but had to admit that she was married. Although she had no ties to her previous partner and divorced him, Abe was shocked and disappointed. That was because the Amish community shuns and forbids divorce, and he feared the consequences. Therefore, he considered not marrying for a while, because it meant that they had to leave the Amish community.
— Return to Amish (@ReturnToAmish) May 25, 2015
Her attitude entertained and annoyed viewers
Rebecca also had a feisty nature that irked many viewers who preferred peace, yet amused those who desired reality TV drama. For instance, she snapped at the show’s host, Michelle Beadle, who confronted her about having a relationship before she moved from Pennsylvania to New York City during the reunion episode, “Breaking Amish: The Shunning Truth.” She told fans they could believe whatever they wanted, and that their opinion of her and Abe’s life made her out to be someone whom she didn’t recognize.
However, the paternity test somewhat shut her down, since it proved that Abe was the father of her first daughter, who was the point of contention.
However, all viewers agreed that she subscribed to traditional values and ethics dictated by her Christian religion. She was close to her mother-in-law Mary, and sister-in-law Katie Ann, and people enjoyed seeing a family bond, despite minor skirmishes in their relationship.
Rebecca is a devoted mother
Mothership and housewife duties are at the forefront of women’s lives in the Amish and Mennonite communities. Although Rebecca decided to step down from her previous lifestyle at the end of the series, her commitment to her family never faltered. She has two daughters, Kayla and Malika, born three years apart, with her husband, and gets advice from his mother when needed. Motherhood was the part that viewers loved, and it outshone some of her character faults.
However, some viewers were unhappy to hear that Rebecca would never have more biological children. Her pregnancy with Malika caused a medical condition, forcing her to deliver through a C-section. Rebecca then ‘had her tubes tied, cut, and burned,’ meaning that adoption or surrogacy would be the primary option if she chose to expand her family.
However, that’s unrealistic; she stated that being a stay-at-home mother is a full-time job, and that she has enough work to keep her two daughters in line. On that note, she believes that Malika is ‘sassy and sweet’ and has her dad’s personality, but that Kayla is her lookalike.
Although many members leave and spend years away from their family, friends and relatives, a significant percentage eventually return or continue interacting. For example, Mary Schmucker drank, drove a car, and danced, all of which were activities the Amish community forbids for women. However, after her daughter Katie Ann married before having a baby daughter in May 2020, the community allowed her back in to attend her daughter’s wedding.
Yet, Rebecca has different goals and doesn’t want to return, or continue filming. After experiencing life on the outside and leaving the show, she also distanced herself from public life for the most part. Rebecca deleted her Twitter account, and her husband stopped posting around 2014. She is primarily active on Instagram, where she posts occasional updates for curious fans, and sometimes answers their questions.
She healed from her previous trauma
Although her childhood trauma wasn’t a predominant topic, Rebecca admitted that she ‘hated who she was and everything she stood for’, and was tired of the strict, religious community. However, today’s Rebecca claims that the journey was worth the pain. She also noted that, while forgiveness and healing were a long hard road, ‘they were necessary for a good quality of life.’
Shortly after leaving the show, Rebecca admitted that negativity has been getting out of control, and that she’s not into social media as much as she used to be. According to her, she finds more happiness in face-to-face interactions, and now refuses to be bullied by haters, online or in real life, and is OK with not having a clique to belong to.
Rebecca makes time for hobbies and extended family
Rebecca is unquestionably busy with her home life, while Abe, a truck driver and the breadwinner, has been on the road for several years. That was a problem; she was unhappy that he was gone for long periods. Consequently, the two went to professional counseling, and “Mama Mary” sometimes sat in on those sessions to offer her expertise.
However, those problems are seemingly gone since the two are now inseparable. Rebecca called him ‘her favorite person’ in February 2023, and continues to praise his dedication to the family. Moreover, Rebecca is now dedicated to her hobbies, and revealed an obsession with watching live streams of people playing arcade games. Despite not knowing the rules and understanding the gambling risks, she secretly wanted to go to the casino. Moreover, like her mother-in-law, she is still a cooking enthusiast and loves sharing family recipes with her social media followers. Rebecca said her grandmother gave her three cookbooks, and that her aunt wrote two.
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Posted by Breaking Amish on Friday, May 15, 2015
Mary even released a cookbook on her Facebook page, Mary Schmucker’s Tupperware and Rebecca has helped her promote the book since 2014. Furthermore, Rebecca was by Mary’s side since she was diagnosed with stage-three colon cancer after being rushed to the ICU with internal bleeding in November 2021. Similarly, she was in the waiting room and informed Mary’s fans about the operation’s success in removing cancer in April 2022.
Mary seems to live in Tennessee but makes trips to Pennsylvania, where Rebecca and Abe live, and the two women appeared in several Facebook Live videos. Rebecca even called Mary ‘the wild to her serious side,’ signifying their close bond. Additionally, Rebecca grew closer to Abe’s brother Andrew Schmucker and his wife, Chapel. Both had run-ins with the law, but turned their life around and are still married. She also shares a tight bond with Abe’s sister Esther.
Rebecca came a long way
Controversy followed her TV show debut, but Rebecca pulled through, remained in the show for six years, and now has the life that she always wanted. She is unapologetic, and manages to get over the accusations that she left the Amish community long before the show, because of her first marriage and subsequent divorce. Similarly, she neither admitted nor denied the rumors that she met and had her first child with Abe before the show, and the accusations eventually blew over. At the peak of her fame, Rebecca quit the show with her husband to commit to her life away from the TLC cameras.
She won’t reappear in “Return to Amish”
Based on her social media post, Rebecca is content with her life as a stay-at-home mom, while her husband drives trucks to earn a living. She had a chance to return to the show after almost five years at this point, yet shows no interest in regaining her TV prominence so far. Additionally, her posts about bullying and criticism suggest that she grew tired of the pressure of being a reality TV star.
Her black cat indirectly displays how final her decision to leave the community is. Her community usually keeps animals who can do meaningful work, such as horses or shepherd dogs, and companion pets are thus rare. Additionally, she’s curious about hair products, which are usually unnecessary since Amish women must wear bonnets.
Rebecca also left fans hanging when they expressed curiosity about her relationship with former co-stars such as Kate Stoltz, Sabrina Burkholder, and Jeremiah Raber, meaning she may have moved on completely, despite living near Punxsutawney.
Finally, she updated her social media followers about her passion for traveling. Rebecca stated that she particularly loved Niagara Falls, golf courses in Canada, and the Guntown Mountain Wild West town in Kentucky.