"We talked a lot and started texting and emailing," Jill told People on Tuesday. "And we Skyped a lot. I got to know some of his friends and family. And then, we met in person months later. I was in love with someone I had never met in person."
19 Kids and Counting cameras traveled to Nepal to document the couple's first meeting, which aired Tuesday on TLC.
"I've never missed someone so much who I haven't met before," Dillard says in the the episode (clip below), after greeting Jill with an enthusiastic "side-hug" favored by courting Duggar children.
"I'm like, 'Oh my goodness, this could very well be my future husband," Jill says. "This could be the one!"
Jill traveled to Nepal with her father, Jim Bob, who first introduced the couple via email. Dillard, an Arkansas native and devout Christian like the Duggars, initially emailed Jim Bob to discuss prayer and his missionary work.
"My father built a friendship with Derick before I did and that added a whole level of security," Jill said.
Like the rest of the Duggar children, who follow strict courtship rules, Jill and Derick agreed not to hold hands until their engagement and not to kiss until their wedding day.