The past year has brought major changes to the Sister Wives family, and with it, lots of questions from the fans. With the pandemic, loyalties within the family have been tested like never before, and while all the marriages suffered under the strain, one broke completely. With all the shuffling around of blame and living situations, it’s hard to know where everyone in the family currently stands.
Between Meri Brown’s catfishing scandal, Christine Brown’s divorce, Janelle Brown’s angry outbursts, and Robyn Brown’s nanny disclosure, the Sister Wives storyline has been more than a little confusing. And that’s not to mention the recent developments that were released around Kody Brown and Janelle’s relationship. So where do all the individual marriages within the Sister Wives family stand?
Well, we’ve broken down each marriage one by one to show its past, present, and projected future.
Let’s start at the beginning with Kody’s first wife, Meri Brown.
Kody and Meri
Kody and his wife Meri Brown have been married for 30 years and share one daughter together, Mariah. Meri is Kody’s first wife, and until somewhat recently, his only legal wife, but more on that a little later.
Kody and Meri seemed to have a solid relationship at the beginning of the show. However, by the time Kody’s fourth wife Robyn joined the family, cracks in the couple’s relationship were already beginning to show. In earlier episodes, Meri had felt that the couple’s waning intimacy might have been due to her inability to have more children, but in a recent Tell All, Meri revealed the couple hadn’t been physically intimate in almost 10 years. Meri went on to say it had stopped altogether right around the time Kody’s fourth wife Robyn entered the family unit.
Meri and Kody’s relationship also hit a serious snag around a catfishing scandal that Meri had become involved in. Meri had struck up an online relationship with a man named “Sam.” It turned out “Sam” was actually a woman named Jackie who had pulled a similar scam with other women. Meri ended things immediately, but in retaliation, Jackie released photos, letters, emails, and one sexy video of her and Meri’s online relationship.
Although Meri and Kody did go to couple’s therapy to try to resolve the wedge the online relationship had driven between them, the marriage never really got back on track, and while the two remain “friendly,” there is no intimacy between them. Many fans have wondered if Meri will be the next wife to leave, but according to the most recent Tell All, Meri has no intentions of leaving the family unit. But many fans question how much longer Meri will stay in a romanceless marriage.
So the status of Kody and Meri’s relationship is: Technically still together.
Kody and Christine
Kody and Christine were together for 26 years when they finally decided to call it quits this past year. Christine was Kody’s third wife, right behind Janelle. Kody and Christine share six children together, with their youngest daughter Truely Brown being 11. Kody and Christine’s marriage was initially on very good terms when the show began, with a slow decline over the years as Christine seemed to struggle under the strict rules of polygamy. It seemed more and more that Christine wanted her freedom and began making decisions independently of the family, saying no to Kody more and more.
It was a change from the submissive, bubbly, always first to agree Christine we had seen at the beginning of the show, a change Christine attributed in an interview to her father’s advice on learning to say “no” more often.
Christine and Kody’s relationship hit rock bottom with the onset of the pandemic as the two disagreed over COVID protocols and decisions around the children and social gatherings. Finally, Christine revealed a conversation between her and Kody where he informed her he no longer wanted to be intimate with her. Christine was understandably upset, and within the week, she had packed up Kody’s things and moved them to the garage. The couple’s divorce announcement followed shortly thereafter. Many fans rallied in support of Christine, feeling she had done the right thing in light of what they felt were Kody’s hypocritical and controlling ways. It seemed even Google agreed as on the day of the divorce they changed Kody’s Google description to “Christine Brown’s ex-husband.” Fans loved it.
As for Christine, she’s living her best life. She moved back to Utah, started her own cooking show, and has never looked better.
So the verdict for Christine and Kody: Divorced.
Kody and Janelle
Kody and Janelle have been married 27 years and share six children together.
The two have always had an interesting marriage, with Janelle being very independent. Even early in the marriage, Janelle would go to work while her sister wives helped out with the children. There was even a time when Janelle lived independently of the family when the family had to move and she had just started a new job. She lived separately for about six months before finally moving and following the rest of the family. While Janelle may come across as sweet and demure, she is not one to tangle with as we have seen. She is always willing to speak her mind and put her foot down if she doesn’t agree with something.
While Kody and Janelle had not had any major issues in their marriage, COVID did bring some underlying problems for the couple to light. Janelle felt Kody’s COVID rules were restrictive and hypocritical, especially concerning their two adult sons, Gabriel and Garrison. The two got into several arguments over the boys, and their relationship seemed to deteriorate rapidly. Kody was not spending time at Janelle’s home, claiming it was due to her not following his restrictions, but fans and Janelle thought it might have been something more.
It was also recently revealed in a sneak peek of the new season reported to People that Kody made statements such as he and Janelle “don’t partner well,” and that they aren’t “in sync” but are “good friends.” Yikes.
It also came out that Janelle has made secret plans to live away from Kody. So does this mean that Janelle and Kody are headed for a split? It certainly seems that way.
Kody and Janelle: Together but tenuous.
Kody and Robyn
Kody and Robyn have been married for 10 years and share two biological children together. Kody also adopted Robyn’s three children from a previous monogamous marriage.
The two are also legally married. In the polygamous community, it is customary for the husband to only legally marry the first wife and then “spiritually” marry the rest in order to avoid polygamy charges. But when Kody married Robyn, he broke tradition and legally divorced his first wife Meri in order to legally marry Robyn. Kody claimed that it was in order for him to be able to legally adopt Robyn’s children from a previous marriage, but many had been suspicious of if this was the real reason.
Fans and Kody’s other wives alike feel that Kody favors Robyn over his other wives. COVID brought the other wives’ feelings to the forefront as Kody moved in exclusively with Robyn. He had previously been splitting his time between the homes, but he claimed that since the other wives were not following his COVID regulations, he was going to be staying at Robyn’s house as she and her children were the only ones following them. But then it was revealed that Robyn had a secret nonrelated nanny coming to the home, and fans and the rest of the family were ready to call Kody’s bluff.
The tension just continued to rise within the family, with even the children feeling as though their father played favorites and picked sides. Although it would seem like Robyn had the best arrangement with having Kody in her home, she revealed to the cameras that Kody’s tension in his other marriages caused tension in their own and that she had chosen polygamy over monogamy specifically to not have a husband in the home full time.
But some tension aside, Kody and Robyn’s is the only marriage in the family that is actually going well, and it seems they are the only two involved in a physically intimate relationship.
Kody and Robyn: Together.
So there we have it. All four Sister Wives’ marriages broken down into who’s together, who’s not, and who’s in between.
With the new season right around the corner, it is anyone’s guess what it will look like, but regardless, we are willing to bet it will look very different than the Sister Wives‘ first season.