The show premiered in 2006 and was officially canceled in 2010 (yet revived again in 2013 through 2016), prior to the many spinoffs that it spawned. The world loved the positive vibe of the show, that portrayed the difficult yet unique situation of being an adult with dwarfism today in America. Not every member of the Roloff has dwarfism, so the dynamic is also an interesting one.
We are here to discuss Zach Roloff and his wife Tori. The two recently welcomed their first child together, a child that had inherited Zach’s dwarfism. Tori does not have the condition and knew that there was a very high chance that her child would inherit the gene. Nevertheless, Tori and Zach knew that they would face whatever hardships would come their way. However, Tori had no idea that her biggest issue would not be that her son has dwarfism but something much more common for new moms. Tori would later become an advocate for new moms and the struggles they face with learning how to juggle their own professional lives and their home lives as well.
Amy Roloff, Zach’s mother who also has dwarfism, said, “TLC came to us about five or six years ago, and so we suddenly realized we were given a great opportunity to educate people about dwarfism. When it was offered that we do a show about our lives, my husband and I were like, ‘Wow, nothing like this has even been on the air.'” The show, and the relationships between Zach and Tori and Amy and Matthew, are showcased and open for the world to see.
Just like all moms
Tori Roloff is married to Zach. The two appear on the TLC show ‘Little People, Big World’. Tori and Zach have recently become parents, and just like all new parents, were nervous to welcome their first child into the world. All new parents go through the initial bumps in the road that are related to a new baby, but Tori will walk a more unique path than others, whether she was prepared to or not.
Zach Roloff was born with achondroplasia. Achondroplasia “is a form of short-limbed dwarfism.” In such cases, where one parent has Achondroplasia, there is a high likelihood that the child born as a result will have Achondroplasia as well. Both Tori and Zach understood this fact and were not letting Achondroplasia stop them from having a family of their own. When the darling couple welcomed their son in May 2017, he was indeed diagnosed with Achondroplasia.
When she isn’t on the show, Tori is a kindergarten teacher. She loves her job more than anything and was sad to leave for the few months of maternity leave. She was, however, very excited to introduce her new son to her class! She said, “Can’t wait to take baby Roloff back to school to introduce him to the kids he’s listened to the last 9 months!”
Reality television stardom
As we said, when Tori isn’t teaching her kindergarten class, she is one of the stars on TLC’s ‘Little People, Big World’. The show is set around the Roloff family. The family is comprised of both dwarfs and those who do no have the condition. It was Zach’s mother who has dwarfism, which he inherited. Zach’s father, Matthew, also has dwarfism but a different form of it. Zach himself is a twin, yet his brother did not get the condition.
A positive look
Little People, Big World’ first aired on TLC in 2006. The show was not only received well by audiences, but their ratings were never better as a result of the show. Audiences really loved the fact that the show shed some much-needed positive light onto the condition of dwarfism. There are, however, those naysayers who criticized the show for its honest portrayal of the romantic side of their relationships. Fans of the show didn’t seem to care one way or another and were focused on how positive the show was.
Familial health disability
Due to the fact that Amy, Matthew and Zach all have some form of dwarfism or another, they each were met with health issues growing up. Amy has been the healthiest of the three, with minor issues over the years. Matthew and Zach were the ones to have to undergo several surgeries in their lifetime. Matthew’s surgeries in his youth left him using a motorized vehicle in order to move around today. Zach also underwent several surgeries when he was a child in order to prevent complications in the future.
When TLC approached the Roloff family about a possibility of a reality show, they agreed relatively fast. Amy said, “The Learning Channel came to us about five or six years ago, and so we suddenly realized we were given a great opportunity to educate people about dwarfism.” She continued “Nothing [else] had depicted dwarfism in an everyday way.” They wanted people to know and understand the lives they lead and the issues they face.
When there is a successful show on television, there is always an attempt to produce more of that success with a subsequent spinoff. Seeing as ‘Little People, Big World’ was such a hit for TLC, they released a spinoff series, titled ‘Little People, Big World: Wedding Farm’. The spinoff was about Amy and Matthew and their introduction to the world of wedding planning. The show was not as successful as the original and was cancelled after one season on the network.
The youngest Roloff
Jacob Roloff is the youngest of the Roloff siblings. During the earlier seasons, you would see Jacob on the show. However, after feeling as though he was more of a product of the show and less of a person being portrayed, he decided he didn’t want to be a part of it anymore. Jacob said, “The family that is filmed is not my family. They are the Roloff characters and I have scarcely anything in common with them, nor do I want to be a character myself.”
As the show began, we were introduced to a shy and sweet Zach. Zach won audience’s hearts and had them wondering if he was going to find love for himself. Then, in 2010, Tori began working part-time on the Roloff farm. Tori and Zach were two shy individuals, but after four months of working together, Zach asked Tori out on a date. Clearly, the date went very well!
The two got engaged in 2014, much to the delight of audiences. Zach had said, “Tori brought me out of my shell and made me more social, she gave me confidence.” While Tori said “We’re such a unique pairing, and we have a really cool story to share, but it was terrifying.” Tori continued, “But the show has helped me realize I shouldn’t worry about what other people think.”
First comes love, then comes marriage
Tori and Zach went on to have a beautiful wedding on July 27th, 2015. The couple wed in front of 100 guests and quite a few TLC cameras. The show documented the wedding from every angle and aired it in one of the reality show’s episodes. Zach’s twin brother Jeremy also got married on the show. Both wedding were held on the family’s farm.
That same year that Zach and Tori were married, the Roloff parents, Amy and Matthew, announced to the world that they had decided to divorce. A shock went through fans everywhere. They said that they would make sure to keep their own disagreements to themselves and be as cordial as possible. They wanted to keep their business going and remain positive. Their joint statement read, “Our kids and our ever-growing family, and the love and support we have for them, will be our priority. We will continue to work together side-by-side in the daily responsibilities for our many current ventures.”
And baby makes three!
In 2016, Tori and Zach announced to the world that they were expecting a baby. While they (and the world) were thrilled, they did have concerns as to if the baby would inherit Zach’s dwarfism or not. Tori said, “No parent wants to hear that their child is different, no matter what that is.” Zach replied, “But to me, that’s not different, he’s just like me.” Whether he did or didn’t, these two were going to love it to bits!
Prior to Tori’s due date with little baby Roloff, Tori and Zach celebrated their seventh anniversary together! The seven years is from the day they met and not when they were married, but it didn’t matter to them. Tori wrote, “Zachary, you make me smile every day and I love our conversations about life and our dreams together. You are definitely my better half and I pray every day that I can be a better wife to you.”
Tori and Zach welcomed little Jackson Roloff on May 12th, 2017. Jackson had indeed inherited his father’s dwarfism, but it didn’t seem to matter to either of them. Zach said, “You have to encourage a dwarf child a little more because it will take them five steps to do what others can do in two, but I knew, dwarf or not, I was going to parent my child with the mentality that not everyone gets a trophy. You have to earn it.”
Whether little Jackson had dwarfism or not, both Tori and Zach were thrilled with every little bit of progress he made in his development. Tori posted, “Jackson is one month old today! He is eating and growing like a champ. Loves watching soccer with daddy. Starting to find his voice. Sleeps 5-6 hour stretches at night.” The fact that he has the condition changes nothing for his loving parents.
While the fact that Jackson has dwarfism doesn’t change a thing, Tori was honest to her followers on social media with her breastfeeding struggles. She wrote, “Hands down the hardest thing about being a mom has been breastfeeding. It was something I did not expect,” She continued “I just figured it would come naturally because it’s what nature intended – I was so wrong.” Her candid words were something other new moms were happy to hear – she was relatable.
More candid words
Tori was candid about her breastfeeding woes, and continued by saying, “I get asked at all my appointments how BFing is going and I couldn’t imagine how that would make the women who physically can’t feel. I also HATE the stigma of breastfeeding.” Audiences were praising Tori for her real words and her relatable nature. New moms have a tendency to remain quiet about their issues, while Tori was not.
The issues with breastfeeding
The topic of breastfeeding is a very much talked about one these days. There are those who want to ban breastfeeding in public altogether as they say it is inappropriate, while others find those words to be offensive as breastfeeding is the most natural thing a women can do. There is also an expectation of a new mom to breastfeed as it is said to be healthier for the baby. However, there are some women who do not want to or cannot.
Legality of the issue
Continuing on the breastfeeding front, did you know that women are permitted to breastfeed in public in 49 out of the 50 US states? Idaho is the one state where it is now allowed. Sadly, even in the states where breastfeeding in public is legal, women are on the receiving end of comments that borderline harassment and abuse. It was due to this issue that Tori Roloff decided to make her own voice heard about the issue. Tori knew that because of the reality show there were more people out there who heard her.
Tori used her platform to talk about how absurd it was that breastfeeding was such an issue. She said, “I still feel awkward in public when I feed my baby. Why should I?” Women everywhere were clapping for Tori who made their own thoughts heard through the show. Tori was the voice for women who were not speaking up for themselves.
Making it work
In the beginning, breastfeeding Jackson was a difficult ordeal for Tori, who was honest about it to the audience of the show and her own social media following. However, little by little things have gotten better. Tori said, “I’m providing for my child. [Jackson] and I have come a long way and we work well together now and I’m proud of that.”
Tori’s honesty on her social media platform was praised by so many mothers who needed to hear that other women were also struggling and that the outer facade was just that, a coverup. One follower on Instagram wrote, “Great post!! No one should feel ashamed or guilty or degraded for not being able to breastfeed or for not wanting to breastfeed. It’s personal. You will bond with your baby either way.”
Not only did Tori’s words strike a cord with moms everywhere, but also with professionals who help these moms every day with the issues they face. A professional wrote Tori, “I work as a nurse in women’s services. Over the past 10 years that has been a huge push within hospitals to get everyone breast feeding. The concept is great but it is not reality. I have said this for awhile that we are setting up moms to have a lot more postpartum depression issues.”
Another Roloff baby
Jeremy and his wife, Audrey, are also expecting a baby. Audrey took to her own social media as well to talk about how hard she finds the balance, or attempt at a balance, between her own business and her pregnancy needs. She talked about her concerns over welcoming a child into the world while trying to make sure that all she has worked so hard to achieve remains afloat. Audrey was saying what was on her mind but was also in need of advice.
Audrey shared, “Attention momapreneurs… how do you do it?! I think the thing I am most nervous for post labor/delivery is learning to balance being a mom while running my businesses. I know that my priorities will need to take a shift, and I know that I won’t be able to give as much as I once could.” She ended her statement by admitting, “I feel a little lost…” and asked new moms how they do it.
Advice from followers
As a result of Audrey’s post, many moms out there sent their two cents as to what she needs to do and focus on. All of them agreed that she should enjoy being a new mom and be present with her new baby. There were those that told her that she needs to relax and just let things flow as they will. The one thing that they all agreed on was that a baby needs its mother, but a business can survive for a while without its head.
Supported by celebs
There are many women in Hollywood who have experienced their own issues with child rearing, work and personal life balance and breastfeeding. The fact that they are famous does not make them immune to the issues. Women like Chrissy Teigen, Alanis Morissette and Gisele Bünchen have all shared their own struggles with breastfeeding and their honest opinion on the matter of public breastfeeding.
Smiles all around
Despite being in the public eye and having a son who is sure to face some difficulties in the future, Tori and Zach are both smiling from ear to ear at their great luck at finding one another and having a healthy and beautiful family. The positivity that this show brings to the world is what makes it so attractive to audiences.