‘He made the decision!’ Sister Wives star Meri Brown confirms split from Kody after 32-year ‘spiritual marriage’ – as TV lothario’s pool of lovers dwindles to just ONE spouse
Sister Wives star Meri Brown has confirmed her split from Kody after a 32-year ‘spiritual’ marriage.
Meri, 51, who starred alongside Kody, 53, on hit TLC show Sister Wives alongside his three other spouses, revealed the TV lothario had made the decision to end their romance.
Meri responds in the special, which airs Sunday: ‘It just doesn’t make sense to me that he would get so frustrated with Christine (his third wife) and be like, she just made this decision, she didn’t consult, she didn’t talk, she just made this decision
Over: Sister Wives star Meri Brown has confirmed her split from Kody after a 32-year ‘spiritual’ marriage
‘And then he says, “I don’t consider myself married to Meri.” He just made that decision, I’ve never heard him say that to me.
‘Even since being in Flagstaff, he has led me to believe that he was trying. Our first anniversary here in Flagstaff, “cheers to a new beginning” as opposed to this.
‘Last anniversary, he was like, “I don’t even know why you called me Meri, we’re not married, we’re not acting as married.”
‘And I said to him then, “If that’s where we are, don’t you think we should address that publicly?
‘And he said, “No, I don’t want to address that, because I don’t want that out there publicly because I don’t want that judgment.”‘
Meri was then asked: ‘Are you still married to Kody?” by host Sukanya Krishnan, with the star responding: ‘He’s already made the decision, you just saw him say that.
‘I would think about reconciliation, I definitely would, but I don’t think he’s interested.’
Krishnan then says: ‘Do you know there’s a moment in the past where he spoke about reconciling, do you know that?’ and Meri responded: ‘I have no idea,’ before the clip ends.
Tough times: ‘And then he says, “I don’t consider myself married to Meri.” He just made that decision, I’ve never heard him say that to me’
Kody met his first wife, Meri, through his sister, who was a mutual friend and introduced them when she was only 19 and he was 22. The pair later described their romance as a ‘very short courtship,’ as they were married just six months after they met
The split from Meri means that Kody is down to one wife – his only legal bride – Robyn, who he married in 2010.
While only one of his four marriages is technically official – having more than one spouse is not legal in the US – Kody, who has said it’s ‘God’s testimony’ for him to have numerous spouses, calls his other partners his ‘spiritual wives.’
Kody first rose to fame in 2010, on the show which documented life with his four wives, Meri, Christine, Robyn and Janelle (who was also his stepsister). It also showcased some of the many struggles that come with being married to multiple women at the same time.
For over a decade, the five-some seemed to make their bizarre relationship work, living in four separate homes on the same cul-de-sac in Las Vegas, Nevada, with their joint 18 children.
However, along the way, the Mormon reality star and his four wives faced a series of problems – stemming from jealousy over who Kody liked most, and leading to bitter rivalries between the women over his attention – all of which, was put on display for the world to see throughout the 17 seasons of their show.
Turbulent: Meri said: ‘Even since being in Flagstaff, he has led me to believe that he was trying. Our first anniversary here in Flagstaff, “cheers to a new beginning” as opposed to this’
In late 2021, Christine, shocked the world by announcing that she was moving away from the family and officially splitting from Kody, after growing tension over the way he treated his fourth wife, Robyn, came to a head.
Christine previously said that she was unhappy that Kody was ‘catering’ to Robyn’s needs more than the other wives, and that she ‘didn’t feel special anymore.’
Janelle has also opted to leave, after she started to feel like her relationship with Kody had become a ‘patriarchy.’
Kody met first wife, Meri, through his sister, who was a mutual friend and introduced them when she was only 19 and he was 22. The pair later described their romance as a ‘very short courtship,’ as they were married just six months after they met.
She said: ‘I would think about reconciliation, I definitely would… I don’t think he’s interested.
Kody Brown rose to fame in 2010, thanks to his hit TLC show Sister Wives – which documented life with his four wives, while also showcasing some of the many struggles that come with being married to multiple women at the same time
‘I was just young and in love,’ Meri previously recalled on the show of their quick decision to tie the knot.
Kody later reflected on falling for Meri in the family’s 2012 memoir, Becoming Sister Wives: The Story of an Unconventional Marriage, and he called her his ‘soulmate.’
‘Meri was so cute and sweet when I met her that I had a hard time suppressing my hopelessly romantic nature,’ he wrote.
In September 2014, the couple (seen at their wedding) divorced so that Kody could ‘legally restructure’ their family. At the time, he and Meri said they were going to stay ‘spiritually married’ but afterwards Meri said she felt their romance was ‘dead’ and ‘over’
Meri was no stranger to the world of plural marriages before she met Kody, telling the Las Vegas Sun that she was exposed to it from a young age.
‘My family was in the LDS faith but converted [to the Fundamentalist Mormon faith] when I was about six or seven years old, so I grew up in a plural family with five mothers and 25 brothers and sisters,’ she explained, adding: ‘My parents never pushed me into this lifestyle though.’
Janelle entered the picture three years into their marriage, in 1993, while Christine joined the family one year after that.
Kody then married his third ‘spiritual wife’ Robyn in 2010 – and all three of Kody’s other partners have admitted in the series that if it hadn’t been for Meri’s willingness to enter into a polygamous marriage, none of them would have gotten with Kody.
The pair welcomed their first and only child together, a daughter named Mariah, in July 1995. Mariah later came out as nonbinary, and changed their name to Leon.
Meri and Kody quickly started trying for baby number two – but Meri struggled to conceive.
After 12 years of fertility problems, she became pregnant again in 2007 – but she unfortunately suffered from a tragic miscarriage at 10 weeks.
‘I completely assumed that after I had Mariah, it would be very easy for me to conceive again. And that just didn’t happen,’ she said in a 2012 episode of their show, while reflecting on the heartbreaking loss.
‘I was so frustrated and so angry. I didn’t understand why. After another 12 years of trying, [I got pregnant] but then, it was just taken away from us. I didn’t understand that. It was really hard.’
In September 2014, the couple announced that they were getting a divorce so that Kody could ‘legally restructure’ their family. He then married Robyn, and adopted her children from her previous marriage.
At the time, he and Meri said they were going to stay ‘spiritually married,’ but after the divorce, Meri admitted in an episode of the show that she felt their romance was ‘dead’ and ‘over.’
Kody also hinted that there was trouble in paradise when he claimed he had been ‘deceived’ by Meri at the start of their romance, adding that their marriage ended up being ‘very different than what he expected.’
Things got worse in 2015, when news broke that Meri had been involved in a catfishing scandal that saw her forming a strong relationship with someone she had met over Twitter named Sam.
She revealed that she had fallen hard for the man, only to find out that it was actually a woman named Jackie Overton, who had tricked her.
Kody also hinted that there was trouble in paradise when he claimed he had been ‘deceived’ by Meri at the start of their romance, adding that their marriage ended up being ‘very different than what he expected.’ They are seen at their wedding
She later admitted in the show that the incident prompted her and Kody to grow apart.
‘This catfish was planting things in my head and telling me how horrible my family was, and specifically how horrible Kody was,’ she said.
‘That was one of the reasons why I didn’t want him around. I was just angry. I’m just angry at him. I just pushed Kody away. I did. He’s not the one I should’ve pushed away.’
However, by December 2020, it seemed like she and Kody were still going strong.
‘Let’s just clarify something here. I love this man,’ Meri wrote on Instagram at the time, shutting down any rumors that they were ending their relationship.
‘I don’t owe anyone an explanation but I’ll do it anyway… My relationship with him is MY relationship with him. Sure we’ve had ups and downs through the years (I mean, isn’t that somewhat normal?) High highs and low lows.
‘But here’s my truth. I love him. I love my family. I’m committed. I have 30 years in this. We struggle. We communicate… I’m not going anywhere.’
During an interview with Us Weekly in February 2021, Kody admitted that he and Meri had been in a ‘dark place’ for a ‘long time,’ but said they were trying to get themselves ‘out of the hole’ they’d dug themselves into.
One month later, Kody revealed in an episode of the show that, while he felt close to Meri like a ‘friend,’ he hadn’t felt any ‘romantic inclinations’ within their marriage in a long time.
And in January 2022, he told viewers that he didn’t see himself and Meri getting ‘intimate’ again any time soon, while calling their pairing a ‘bad match.’
‘I’m not ever going to be in a conjugal relationship with her because I’m not going to go through that emotional torture ever again… I’m not trying to make Meri sound bad, it’s just a bad match,’ he said.
‘There’s a point where intimacy is just damage. It’s misleading to have intimacy in a relationship where there’s no real safety. I’m not going there.’
Meri told Oprah Winfrey on her show that jealousy also played a big part in her problems with Kody. She said: ‘I’m not going to lie – there are jealousy issues. Those are natural. Hopefully that’s something that I can overcome. I have to work through [the feelings].’
In October 2022, Kody suggested that Meri move away from the family – who live in Arizona – to Utah, to run an inn that she had opened, but Meri was hurt by his proposal.
‘I was here at the very beginning. I helped start this family. It was me and him and we had plans. He loved me,’ she said during the show, holding back tears. ‘For him to just be like, “Um, just go up there now.” It didn’t make sense.’
He added: ‘The reason I’m suggesting this to Meri is, honestly, as a family [it] doesn’t feel like we interact that much. I’m not even trying to push her away.’
Despite all of their problems, Meri made it clear, in an episode that premiered earlier this month, that she doesn’t want to give up on Kody.
She said: ‘I am still here because I’m still trying. Six years later, I’m still here, 10 years, 15, 20 years later I’m still here. It’s what I want.’
However, Kody said to the camera during a confessional: ‘I don’t want to be in a relationship with her anymore.’
Janelle and Kody first met in 1989. Their parents were friends, and right away Janelle said she knew it was something special.
She wrote on her website: ‘When he walked into the room I looked at him and had that feeling of remembering something I had forgotten. It was a singular experience.’
In March 2021, Janelle admitted to Us Weekly that, like Meri, she would often get ‘jealous’ when Kody spent time with his other wives. Janelle, Meri, and Kody are seen together early in their relationship
And in January 2022, after nearly three decades together, Janelle started to hint that she and Kody’s relationship had fractured. ‘Our relationship is pretty strained,’ she said in an episode of the show
Before the pair opted to become husband and wife, they became stepsiblings – when Janelle’s mother and Kody’s father married in 1990.
‘Before Kody and I were really courting, I was actually friends with his family. My mom was worried I was getting sucked into some polygamous cult. But she ended up meeting Kody’s dad, and they ended up falling in love and getting married before Kody and I started courting,’ she revealed in an episode of the show.
Even so, the two became spiritually married in 1993, and have welcomed six children together over the years – two daughters, named Maddie, born in 1995, and Savanah, born in 2004, and four sons, named Logan, born in 1994, Hunter, born in 1997, Robert, born in 1998, and Gabriel, born in 2001.
In March 2021, Janelle admitted to Us Weekly that, like Meri, she would often get ‘jealous’ when Kody spent time with his other wives.
‘Of course, I still get jealous. But I learned a long time ago [that] you really just have to figure out how to be OK with yourself,’ she told the outlet.
‘You have strengths, and you have blessings and you have opportunities that you’re given… you can’t compare. I just think comparison is, like, the death of plural marriage.’
Most recently, in a teaser for the upcoming season 17 special, which will premiere on December 18, Janelle confirmed that she and Kody have been ‘separated for several months.’ They are seen at their wedding
And in January 2022, after nearly three decades together, Janelle started to hint that she and Kody’s relationship had fractured.
‘With Kody and I right now, our relationship is pretty strained,’ she said. ‘And, you know, it’s easy to walk away.
‘I’ve caught myself in the last few weeks really reflecting and being like, “OK, look – do I still choose plural marriage?” Yeah, I still choose it, but I’ve had to have that conscious decision with myself.
‘I’ve had to really think. My children are almost grown and there’s not a huge necessity anymore to stay. It was a wonderful way to raise children.’
Things became more strained in February, when Kody got into a major argument with two of his and Janelle’s sons, Gabriel and Garrison. Kody got upset that Janelle didn’t take his side – and all of it was showcased in an episode of their show.
The fight came after he told the boys that they were not taking his Covid-19 precaution rules seriously enough. And he claimed that he felt Janelle and he weren’t on the same side throughout the disagreement.
‘We’re not communicating,’ he said. ‘We’re not in sync. We don’t partner really well.’
Then, in an October 2022 episode, Kody announced that he wanted to become the ‘head of the household’ and wanted his wives to ‘conform to patriarchy’ – something that rubbed Janelle up the wrong way.
‘Yes, we’re separated… Janelle has made it pretty clear to me that she’s enjoying her life without me,’ Kody (seen with his four wives) said in the preview
‘I didn’t know I signed up for patriarchy. That’s not what we all agreed on in the beginning,’ she told the camera.
In addition, Kody stated that he felt Janelle was ‘struggling to show him respect,’ and slammed her for ‘living like a single woman’ and making decisions that better herself rather than the entire family.
‘I always felt like I had to make my own decisions for me. I thought that was what plural marriage was about – being independent,’ she said in response.
Most recently, in a teaser for the upcoming season 17 special, Janelle confirmed that she and Kody have been ‘separated for several months.’
‘Yes, we’re separated… Janelle has made it pretty clear to me that she’s enjoying her life without me,’ he added in the preview.
In 1995, Kody wed his third wife, Christine. However, it was clear that Christine and Kody were having some problems in their marriage from early on, as she expressed jealousy over his relationship with his other partners as early as season one
In 1995, Kody wed his third wife, Christine. They went on to welcome five daughters together – Aspyn, born in 1995, Mykelti, born in 1996, Gwendlyn, born in 2001, Ysabel, born in 2003, and Truely, born in 2010 – and one son – Paedon, born in 1998.
Originally, Christine explained that she was drawn in by the idea of having sister wives. She said: ‘I honestly wanted sister wives more than a husband for a good time of my life. I want the whole family. I didn’t just want Kody. No, I wanted everything.’
However, from the start of the show, it was clear that Christine and Kody were having some problems in their marriage, as she expressed jealousy over his relationship with his other partners, specifically Robyn, as early as season one.
And when he and Robyn decided to get married in 2014, Christine admitted that she wasn’t a fan of them taking their relationship to the next level.
‘I’m a little hesitant to accept another wife. But if it happens, then she just has to be absolutely amazing. Otherwise, it might be a little difficult,’ she said, adding: ‘I don’t wanna be a boat rocker, and I don’t like my boat rocked.’
In season three, Christine continued to voice her feelings, slamming Kody for not being ‘equal with his time’ between all his wives, and claiming he was ‘catering’ to Robyn the most.
‘Our relationship really isn’t that great,’ she admitted at the time. ‘I don’t feel special anymore.’
Kody and Christine welcomed five daughters together – Aspyn, Mykelti, Gwendlyn, Ysabel, and Truely – and one son – Paedon
In season three, Christine slammed Kody for not being ‘equal with his time’ between all his wives, claiming he was ‘catering’ to Robyn the most. The sister wives are seen in 2010
In 2015, the couple started therapy together in an attempt to fix their relationship. At the time, Christine said: ‘I’ve reached a point where almost every day is hard. I’m miserable, jealous, and angry.’
But things didn’t get better, and six years later – in October 2021 – Christine announced that she was moving away from the family, who all live in Arizona, after buying a home in Utah.
Before making the decision to move, she said on the show that she couldn’t take feeling like she ‘didn’t matter’ any longer.
‘I’m tired of feeling like I don’t matter, I’m tired of not having his support when I really need it. I’m just tired. I need a partnership. I need something different than this,’ she said.
One month later, she confirmed in an Instagram post that she and Kody had decided to end their marriage.
‘After more than 25 years together, Kody and I have grown apart and I have made the difficult decision to leave,’ she wrote at the time.
Christine is pictured with Kody and Janelle in 2013
In November 2021, Christine revealed in on Instagram that she and Kody had decided to end their marriage after 25 years together
‘We will continue to be a strong presence in each other’s lives as we parent our beautiful children and support our wonderful family.’
Kody added in a post of his own: ‘Christine’s decision to leave comes with a great deal of sadness. We enjoyed many years together and I have a large amount of respect and admiration for her. Although we are moving forward on different paths, we will always remain committed parents.’
In February 2022, she spoke further about her decision to leave Kody in a Sister Wives special, explaining: ‘I just realized I had to make a decision for my heart, and my heart was done being broken. And it felt, well, freeing.’
While she added that she hoped to eventually become ‘friends’ with Kody, she said they were living ‘completely separate’ lives.
Then, in October, Kody admitted that he wanted Christine back during an episode of the show, stating: ‘I’m living in a delusional world where I’m wishing Christine didn’t leave. I’m struggling with sort of a state of regret and frustration.’
Kody met his fourth and final wife, Robyn, in 2010 and they married in 2014
Sources told Us Weekly in late 2021 that Kody was closest to Robyn in his plural marriage, and that his ‘complete devotion’ to her led to his split from Christine. Robyn is seen with her sister wives during her wedding
Kody married his fourth and final wife, Robyn, in 2010, though he had previously admitted that he wasn’t sure adding her to his already-enormous family would be a good idea.
‘She looked like a soccer mom. She had a van, three kids and was divorced. I thought, “I didn’t need a van, a divorced woman, and three kids in my life – that’s just trouble,”‘ he recalled in the show.
Robyn was previously married to a man named David Jessop, and together they had three children, David, Aurora, and Breanna, whom Kody later adopted when he and Robyn legally married in 2014. They also had two biological children of their own – son Solomon in 2011 and daughter Ariella in 2016.
In 2018, the family opted to move from one big house together in Las Vegas to separate residences in Arizona, where Kody would split his time equally.
But in March 2020, when the pandemic hit, Kody decided to hunker down with Robyn and their kids, claiming his other wives weren’t following his strict rules regarding the virus – something Robyn later said didn’t feel right.
‘This is not fair. I mean, I chose this [plural marriage] lifestyle for a reason and when things are out of whack, it bothers me,’ she told Us Weekly at the time.
‘I’ve lost a lot of sleep because of it. And I don’t understand the choices that are being made as far as our family is concerned, but I have to respect them. But I do definitely feel bad and it’s made the whole family experience really hard.’
Sources told the outlet in late 2021 that, of all his wives, Kody was closest to Robyn, and that his ‘complete devotion’ to her led to his split from Christine.
‘She has him wrapped around her finger. They act like they’re still newlyweds. They’re still very much in love,’ one insider said. Another added, ‘Robyn secretly knows that she’s the one to blame for the separation, so obviously there’s some guilt there’
‘She has him wrapped around her finger. They act like they’re still newlyweds. They’re still very much in love,’ one insider said, while calling them a ‘dream couple.’
Another added: ‘Robyn secretly knows that she’s the one to blame for the separation, so obviously there’s some guilt there.’
After he and Christine went their separate ways, Robyn admitted their breakup was hard for her.
‘I cannot express enough how hard it is to be in a plural family where my husband and his other wife is having a problem and it completely affects my life, but I’m really supposed to stay out of it and I have no say,’ she explained.
‘The lines are hard between our different marriages because it’s like, “OK, you’ve got to respect that she’s got her own relationship with Kody.” But at the same time, their relationship affects yours.’
She spoke about it again in February 2022, stating that being in the middle of Kody and Christine’s drama was ‘really tough’ on her and ‘really painful.’
She added: ‘I want people to see that I love this family. That I’m committed to them. That I’d do anything for them. That I love them. And that I want the relationship.’
Robyn had three children, David, Aurora, and Breanna, from a previous relationship, whom Kody adopted. They also welcomed two biological children of their own – son Solomon in 2011 and daughter Ariella in 2016
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