Two More Wives Dump Kody Brown, Plus He Admits Plural Marriage Sucks

‘Sister Wives’ Season 17 Tell-All Recap: Two More Wives Dump Kody Brown, Plus He Admits Plural Marriage Sucks

In the first of three one-on-one sessions with the Brown Family, host Sukanya Krishnan, holds Kody Brown accountable for the demise of his family in Season 17. Will Kody Brown take ownership of his role in three of his wives leaving him? The gloves are off. Christine Brown and Kody sit down to rehash their hostile break up and Meri gets real about the status of her spiritual marriage.

Sister Wives: Kody Accuses Christine of Manipulation

In separate interviews with host, Sukanya Krishnan, Kody is first in the hot seat. Right out the gate, the host brings up his explosive split from ex-wife, Christine Brown.

According to Kody, Christine had completely made up her mind to leave him during a heated sit down after she moved his belongings into the garage. A clip is shown from the Season 17 premiere of the couple arguing about their marriage troubles and ultimately agreeing to separate. Kody confessed to his then-wife that he “wasn’t attracted” to her when they got married. He wanted Christine to accept a sex-less marriage, which she refused and choice to end their union instead. 

“This is so 4 years of context. Not that moment of context. Initially, my issue was, I thought Christine was playing a game. I was ambivalent. I was stoic.” Kody tells the host in reaction to the footage.

“Why do you think she was playing a game?” Krishnan asks. To which Kody quickly replies, “Cause she’s a game player.”

Sister Wives

“From the time we were married, [there was] manipulation. Pouting. Temper tantrums. Just behavior things,” he said.

Kody elaborated by recalling a period when he considered reconciling with his estranged first wife, Meri Brown, and Christine had a complete meltdown and “loss her sh-t.”

“Some of the games that were happening, were things like when we moved to Flagstaff, Arizona, I was trying to reconcile with Meri,” Kody reveals.

Meri gave me this really cool birthday present and I’m in this place, telling Janelle, Christine and Robyn that I might reconcile with Meri.” He explains.

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The host then cuts to a separate interview with Christine to get her side of Kody’s accusations that she foiled a reunion between him and Meri.

The host asks why was she offended Kody compared their relationship to the marriage he has with Meri. Christine responded, “Why would I be offended to a marriage that’s broken like that?” Christine adds, “Why not compare me to your relationship with Robyn.”

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Christine explains that they’ve been fighting for a long time about comparisons of the other sister wives marriages and Kody would be completely “Ok,” with a platonic marriage and she wasn’t onboard with that.

Then the host speaks to Meri about Kody comparing their (loveless) relationship to Christine’s and she calls out Kody for doing comparisons. Meri says Christine “played along” for as long as she could in the broken marriage until her soul could no longer take it. The hosts asks Meri if the situation doesn’t “hurt her soul,” to which, Meri agrees it does.

The interview cuts back to Kody and he goes off about wives comparing relationships and the merits each wife brought to the relationship contributes to status of each marriage.

Sister Wives: Janelle Knew Christine Wasn’t Happy

The tell-all host then gets Janelle Brown’s take on Kody and Christine’s split. Janelle, who is the closest to Christine says she knew Christine was not happy for a long time and for Christine’s own self-preservation she needed to make a change. Janelle explains that during Covid the wedge grew wider and Christine just reached her breaking point and decided to end her marriage.

Sister Wives: Robyn’s In The Hot Seat

The host then talks to Robyn Brown, and poses the question, “If you loss the intimacy in your own relationship … would you be ok?” Robyn says she would run to a therapist and would not allow him not to talk to her, and told the host (with a smirk on her face), you can’t force someone to be attracted to you. She clarifies that Kody’s attracted to a wife’s behavior, not looks. That Kody “melts,” when a wife does things he likes.

Sister Wives: Christine Reacts To Kody Not Being Attracted To Her

Back to Christine, she addresses Kody admitting he wasn’t attracted to her, “To hear he wasn’t attracted to me was terrible to hear and it’s super embarrassing.” She adds, “I just got to thinking …it really goes both ways. After he said that, I was like well then, I’m done … it’s o-v-e-r. It was almost a relief.” She adds, “Well then I’m not gonna keep fighting for this, and I’m not gonna keep doing this, if you’re not attracted to me.”

Sukanya asks, “Do you believe the lack of attraction is an excuse for your bad behavior or was it the bad behavior that led to the lack of attraction?” 

“I don’t know, but that statement just made me mad.” Christine responds. “I’m NOT a child. I’m your wife! You don’t talk to me like that. My bad behavior. That’s just insulting. Please … I’m an adult. That’s just rude and belittling. How dare you?” 

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Christine explains that she felt a huge sense of relief after Kody finally accepted her resignation from their marriage, “Stop fighting for something that your ego is attached to,” she says of her former husband. 

Back to Kody, the host wants to know was lack of intimacy in the marriage Christine’s justification to end the relationship and he blames COVID.

“The whole COVID experience justified a lot of things, for a lot of people or really brought people to a reality. I think that COVID definitely was a catalyst. But, I think the intimacy issue was her justification.” Kody says. “A bad marriage is a bad marriage. Everybody expects you to just go and figure it out and fix the marriage. What if a marriage just isn’t fixable?”

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He explains that Christine decided to check out and labeled him a coward for not having the guts to do the same. Kody swears he’s not a coward, and says, “Nothing scares me but poverty.”

The host presses the Brown family patriarch about why he held onto something that was broken for so long. Kody explains that it wasn’t just their marriage ending —  it was the destruction of a whole family bond.

Sister Wives: Christine Cuts Robyn and Meri Off

The hosts then dives into the broken relationship between Christine, Robyn and Meri and where they stand after Christine’s departure from the family. The explosive sit down that took place in Season 17 where Christine announced her departure from family is rehashed.

The host tells Robyn she looked shocked and very upset during that family meeting and wonders if she knew Christine was divorcing Kody. “I have these hopes and dreams, and they’re not always realistic. [Robyn clears her throat before continuing] … I knew that she had moved his stuff out. I knew that he hadn’t been staying there. But I still had this hope that they were still gonna work it through. And so, I was living in that hope. I was living in that idea.”

A clip is shown of the heated backyard showdown where Christine tells the family that she’s leaving. In the clip, Christine talks about not being close to Robyn and Meri.

Robyn says (as she smirks) that she still considers Christine to be her sister wife, although Christine has made it clear that she does not want a relationship with Robyn or Meri.

Robyn Brown

Robyn then goes into a whole diatribe about imagining a time when she and Christine could have grown old and reflected on their lives in the bond of sisterhood, like the elders in their church. Robyn starts to sob and hold her head while she tells the host.

A heartbroken Robyn tells the host, “I always thought that eventually Christine would open herself up to me. Cause when she said she was leaving, she took away a really big dream from me. I always imagined us, when we were older, sitting there with our grandkids, and just getting that sisterhood, we saw some of these older women in our church have.” 

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Robyn tears up and describes how she feels robbed by the situation and explains that maybe if Kody is out of the picture, she and Christine can establish their own bond. The host asks Robyn straight up if Christine feels this way because, “You sabotaged her relationship [with Kody]?” Robyn denies wrecking Christine and Kody’s relationship and if she could speak to Christine right now, she would say, “I wish that she would let me in because we could have had a lot of fun together.”

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Back in Christine’s interview, she explains that the relationship between she, Robyn and Meri has been strained for years.

Sister Wives: The Door Is Closed

Sukanya Krishnan, asks Meri if she feels like Christine also left her when she divorced Kody.

Meri starts off by saying she and Meri once shared a fun relationship, while not deep, they had a good time together, and she misses that. Meri shares that she and Christine were close at one time. 

“At the time that she first was telling us, that’s really how I felt. I felt very betrayed by her and that she was leaving me too,” Meri explains during the reunion special. “Cause she has always said, ‘I didn’t just want the man. I want the sister wives.’”

“I know what kind of relationship she and I have had in the past. It’s been fun. It’s not been super super deep, but it’s been a lot of fun and I miss that. I missed that for a lot of years with her,” Meri tells the host.

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The reunion host questions what exactly drove a wedge in their relationship and why they weren’t able to repair it.

“I don’t know exactly what the deal is,” Meri, 51, replies.

“You know what you did,” Sukanya Krishnan pushes back.

“Well, I mean, I have not always been the perfect person or the perfect wife or the perfect sister wife. It just kind of comes down to we’re just not safe with each other and I don’t think there was one thing. It was over time,” Meri confesses.

“Safe with each other cause you don’t trust each other?” the host asks.

“Probably, yeah,” Meri responds.

Sukanya Krishnan then gets Christine’s side of the fallout — she questions why Christine thinks Meri feels betrayed.

“Cause I ended the friendship. I ended the relationship, I did. I ended it. It wasn’t safe for me anymore and I ended it and I just told her straight up, ‘No, we’re not going to be friends cause I don’t trust you and I’m not gonna do that to myself anymore,’” Christine explains.

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Sukanya Krishnan wants to know if the friendship with Meri is repairable or is the door closed.

“For me, yeah (it was closed). We tried a little bit here and there in Vegas but her treatment of me wasn’t nice. She wouldn’t be nice to me. She was just putting me down a lot in public situations. Especially if her family was there she would just put me down,” Christine shares.

Christine describes that she was fed up with Meri, “When I hit my wall, I’m done,” Christine says.

Sukanya asks Christine if a friendship with Meri was worth fighting for. “No, because then sure she would be nice for a while but then she would just come out again and I just never knew who to expect. And it was just too stressful,” Christine says.

Sister Wives: Run Their Will To Mine

Kody feels Christine would have never left if he was the head of his household, especially during COVID. He reiterates that all his wives made the commitment to “run their will” to his.

He explains that all his wives agreed to “run their will to mine,” before they joined the family because he was going to be the head of each household, and they were all very desperate (Kody impersonates an eager puppy) to be chosen by him.

Kody states that they were all compliant with his rules from the start, and based on that, he felt they could make the plural family dynamic work. But in the end, it wasn’t like that. Meri agrees that she subscribes to patriarchy.

Janelle on the other hand, disagrees. And reveals that Kody said plural marriage is an obstacle to his personal progress. She feels he’s changed his tune, and wants to live a monogamous lifestyle with Robyn

Then they touch on whether Christine and Kody’s spiritual divorce is valid. According to Robyn, Christine needs to finalize her divorce by sleeping with another man to break the covenant. 

Sister Wives

Robyn explains that in their religion, they have to go through certain channels to divorce but Christine no longer subscribes to Kody’s fundamentalist Mormonism faith. Therefore, Janelle believes Christine is not bided by rules she no longer believes in.

Sister Wives: Kody’s Done With Meri

Meri Brown is shown footage of Kody saying he doesn’t consider himself married to her anymore. “If she wanted to move on and marry another, she wouldn’t get an argument with me,” Kody said in the scene. 

“It just doesn’t make sense to me that he would be so frustrated with Christine and be like, ‘She just made this decision. We didn’t consult, we didn’t talk, she just made the decision.’ And then he says, ‘No, I don’t consider myself married to Meri,’” Meri tells Sukanya Krishnan. “Like, he just made the decision. I’ve never heard him say that to me.”

Meri explains that despite their rocky relationship, things appeared hopeful following the family’s 2018 move to Arizona, but then Kody lost interest again.

“Even since being in Flagstaff, he has led me to believe that he was trying,” she recalled. “You know, our first anniversary that we had here in Flagstaff, it was, ‘Cheers to a new beginning!’ As opposed to this last anniversary, he’s like, ‘I don’t even know why you called me Meri. … We’re not married. We’re not acting as married.’” Meri shares.

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Meri shares that she wanted to address their separation “publicly,” but Kody shut that down. “He said, ‘No I don’t want to address it. I don’t want that to be out there publicly because I don’t want that judgment.’”

Despite Kody’s humiliation, Meri noted that she “definitely would” be open to reconciling with him, although she doesn’t “think that he’s interested.”

Sister Wives Tell-All will air in three parts – December 18, January 1, 2023, and January 8, 2023, at 10:00 pm ET, on TLC.


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