The TLC reality series Sister Wives is currently in its fifteenth season, and the marital woes continue to plague Kody Brown and his first wife (of four), Meri. US Weekly shared an exclusive clip from Feb. 28's episode, showing the couple struggling through a therapy session that occurred two months ago. "My relationship with Meri is — at best — just distant and amicable," Kody explains in the sneak peek. "The relationship between he and I, it’s gone," Meri says in the flashback. "It’s dead. It’s over."
In the clip, Kody explains that he could "be tough" about their relationship strife, he’s "not interested" in doing the emotional work. "For all my marriage with Meri, I felt like she unloads her emotions into a burden that I’m supposed to carry," he claims. "I’m not carrying this burden, because there’s no reason that I should. I haven’t put effort into that relationship specifically because I have three other relationships that are rewarding and wholesome with children that need me [and] need to see me."
Kody and Meri were legally married from 1990 until 2014 when they got officially divorced so that Kody could legally marry his fourth wife, Robyn, and adopt her children from a previous relationship. Meri and Kody are still in a "spiritual union," which he also has with wives Janelle and Christine.
Meri also expressed her reluctance to make a change, citing her need for Kody to take the lead. "I’m really careful about pushing Kody, because I don’t want him to feel like I’m being demanding or pushy or anything like that," she explains in the preview. "I feel like I’ve made it known to him enough where I want the relationship to go, as far as just moving forward. It’s best to leave the ball in his court."
From Kody's perspective, the relationship has clearly run its course. "Neither of us see real value in the relationship because if Meri and really wanted to be together, we would," he said. They share one child, 25-year-old Mariah.
Kody told US Weekly in an interview that the relationship had been in a bad place for a long time. "Meri and I have been in a very dark place for a very long time. It’s been more about trying to get ourselves out of this hole that we dug ourselves into," he explained. "I hope time heals things. I hope that some communication heals things. It’s been a long time and it’s been very difficult."
However, Kody revealed that he doesn't feel like he is the one who could make the call about the end of the relationship due to their polygamist status. "I have dominion over my own body and where I’m at but I’m not in a place where, like, I can say, 'Hey, I’m divorcing you,'" Kody claimed. "I can’t do that. However, any one of them, I feel like, can. I feel like they need to understand that — that they can leave. If it’s not working for them, they can leave. Nobody’s going to be a prisoner here. … On its face, plural marriage is a double standard in some senses. There’s other double standards that we have in the family that we sort of tolerate. And that other double standard is I don’t get to leave, but they can."