Josh Duggar
Josh Duggar, Executive Director of the Family Research Council Action, speaks at the Family Leadership Summit in Ames, Iowa, in this Aug. 9, 2014 photo. U.S. cable network TLC said on May 22, 2015 it has pulled all episodes of the long-running "19 Kids and Counting," a reality show featuring a large Christian family, after reports surfaced that the eldest son had molested underage girls as a teen. REUTERS/Brian Frank/Files

Three companies have decided to remove ads from U.S. cable network TLC's reality show "19 Kids and Counting," in a sign of waning support for the top-rated program about a large Christian family following reports that the eldest son had molested underage girls.

General Mills Inc (GIS.N) said it made its decision before TLC pulled episodes of the show on Friday.

Payless Shoesource Inc and Choice Hotels International Inc (CHH.N) told Twitter followers on Tuesday that they would no longer back the show.

"We share your concerns and we have decided to remove our advertising from the show," Choice Hotels said in a response to a consumer who questioned the sponsorship on Twitter.

Walgreen Co (WALG34.SA), another of the show's advertisers, said on Facebook "we will continue to monitor the situation."

TLC, which is owned by Discovery Communications (DISCA.O), said it had no comment on whether it would cancel the show after the advertisers decided to withdraw.

The network pulled all episodes after In Touch magazine last week published information that Josh Duggar, now 27, had molested several female minors when he was a teen.

Duggar issued an apology on Thursday acknowledging "wrongdoing," and quit his job at the Family Research Council, a Christian lobbying group. But he did not directly address the allegations.

The Duggar family has received support from several conservative voices, including U.S. presidential hopeful Mike Huckabee. At the same time, several petitions circulated asking TLC to cancel the program.

The program, which has been on the air since 2008, is not currently in production.