When five become four. Christine Brown‘s announcement that she and her husband, Kody Brown, split for good came as a shock to viewers who have followed the family on Sister Wives since 2010.
The TLC personality announced the news via Instagram in November 2021, shortly before the TLC show’s season 16 premiere. “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. “We will continue to be a strong presence in each other’s lives as we parent our beautiful children and support our wonderful family.”
The duo, who tied the knot in March 1994, share six children: daughters Aspyn (born March 1995), Mykelti (born June 1996), Gwendlyn (born October 2001), Ysabel (born June 2003) and Truely (born April 2010) and son Paedon (born August 1998).
During the Sister Wives series premiere in September 2010, Christine, who was raised in a polygamous family, said she decided at age 19 that she wanted to be part of a plural marriage.
“I honestly wanted sister wives more than a husband for a good time of my life,” she said at the time. “I want the whole family. I didn’t just want Kody. No, I wanted everything.”
As soon as she realized that she wanted to be part of a polygamous family, she also knew that she wanted to be someone’s third wife — not their first or second.
“They actually say if you’re having problems, like, when you have two wives … marry a third because they’ll even it out,” she said during one confessional scene. “I never wanted to be a first at all because I didn’t want to be married to a guy by myself. And then I didn’t want to be a second because I felt like they were a little wedge in the relationship, and I didn’t want to be the wedge. I only ever wanted to be the third because it sounded the easiest.”
Though Christine was happy to be Kody’s third wife, she initially struggled with the addition of the fourth, Robyn Brown, who wed Kody in May 2010. He has also been married to Meri Brown since April 1990 and to Janelle Brown since January 1993.
“[Robyn] lives, like, five hours away,” Christine said during season 1 when Kody was still courting his future fourth wife. “There [were] a couple times where I’m like, ‘You really can’t go. You can’t leave me, and you can’t leave your family. You are replacing your family with Robyn and her kids.’ It was hard, and at the same point I realized that it needed to happen, but it didn’t necessarily make it easier.”
Keep scrolling for look back at Christine and Kody’s ups and downs over the years: