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Saturday, October 15, 2011

'Sister Wives': Polygamy Hurts Christine but Not the Way You Think


On "Sister Wives" third wife Christine has consistently been the cheerleader for polygamy. When we met her in the first season, she introduced herself with the tidbit that she'd always wanted to be a third wife, not a first, not a second.And here she is, struggling the hardest in the family's new life in Las Vegas. The reason isn't difficult to see, at least for an outsider.She's not living the life she signed up for.
Judgments aside about the rightness or wrongness of the Browns' lifestyle, it is one that works for them - or, at least, has in the past - and it is a completely consensual arrangement made among adults. But now, with the family all living in separate houses in their smaller units, they are no longer the interwoven fabric they once were, leaving the thread whose biggest job was pulling them all together hanging loose in a house by herself.
What Christine seemed to be saying with her determination to be a third wife was more about the structure of the institution than about her own ordinate desires. A third wife is not a testing of the idea of polygamy, but a commitment to it, and Christine threw herself into the realm of the plural family, staying at home, taking care of the children of all of the wives.
Now, as she worries about her relationship with Kody, and seems like she's missing something she once had, it's not really stemming from her marriage; it's the disintegration of her family. Just like monogamous couples who get fulfillment outside of their marriage from friends and family members and hobbies, it seems as though, for Christine, the huge pluses of polygamy were the dynamic of the family unit, the relationships with the other wives, and her strong bonds with all of the children.
Tucked away in her own house with only her kids, she no longer has the structure of the family she envisioned back when she dreamed of being wife number three, and like many people unfulfilled by the rest of their lives, she's looking to Kody to fix a void he never addressed before. With four wives now, instead of three, the time he can devote to her is even more fragmented, and he's less able to give her what he was ill-suited to give her in the first place.
In a way, it's like watching a plant that sprung from seed somewhere toasty and warm, where it grew and was nurtured. Suddenly it's transplanted across the country and it doesn't like the climate and it doesn't have the same nutrients. It's not going to flourish.
Polygamy practiced in one home made Christine happy, as much as she talks about how she enjoys her own home. She doesn't have that anymore, and of course it will affect her relationship with Kody, because suddenly all of her needs must be met by ¼ of a husband, when she had these other relationships as an original part of her bargain. Now she sees her husband one day out of four, instead of three out of four. When they were all under the same roof, it was a matter of saying goodnight; now it's goodbye.
The ironic aspect of the Browns' situation in general and Kody and Christine specifically is that they left their single-home living because someone else's definition of family is law. Now that law seems to be succeeding in driving apart what was once a smoothly functioning family, even if it looked different to the rest of us. 


(Source:http://tv.yahoo.com/news/sister-wives-polygamy-hurts-christine-not-way-think-204400759.html)

22 comments:

  1. I personally think Christine is also hurt by the fact basically her work is done with Kody that was "special" - that work being the church meetings, meeting with the politicians about polygamy. As in her videos - back in June, July section.
    Kody does not see or need her to lead him through the church process, he's met them all and a big wig himself now.

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  2. Sad Christine seems to have had her"role"taken over by robyn..she was the last to be having babies and the Sahm caretaker role,janelle was the working mom,Meri the older one who was done having babies and more"free" also a working mom too,Christine's role was homemaker/primary caregiver.she thrived off of the comfort of her sister wives .now they are all apart and she is lonely without not only Cody but Meri and janelle.Id hate Robyn too if I were her.

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  3. She, of all the women, knows exactly what to say in any political venue. She also knows how to play the Happy Face of polygamy. She seems so fake on those TV shows. She says it's all real, obviously it's not.

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  4. I used to really like Christine. then I saw how I felt she was doing this as a political motivation for laws to be changed, and be a face of polygamy, and sadly, it makes me think she is less than honest.

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  5. I just have a difference with the last sentence in this post. The law did NOTHING to "drive them apart". How many times has the city of Lehi and the state of Utah said - that AS LONG AS THERE IS NO UNDERAGE MARRIAGE OR WELFARE FRAUD GOING ON, they DON'T CARE and WON'T prosecute. Just like the first ep in S2 of Big Love - Bill's attorney and the AG sit down with him and tell him EXACTLY that. they DON'T care. but yet Bill gets annoyed - it's as if he WANTS to be a rebel, he WANTS to be considered doing something illegal or whatever. It's the same with Kody. Only his TLC paycheck depends on the perception - as demonstrated with the fake police sirens while they frantically packed up their belongings and left town on bald tires with no place to go - that Utah was slavering to toss Kody in prison. And again Utah says over and over...we DON'T CARE. WE DON'T CARE, we WON'T PROSECUTE. The Browns take the State to court but since it's the state who needs to initiate the action - nothing happens.

    Like in Big Love - the federal and state courts could give a rip - its the court of public opinion that matters. mostly the LDS church that has blackballed the lifestyle. If Kody really wanted a lawsuit - why not sue LDS for not allowing him to be a member because of his lifestyle? But no that's not what he's really looking for. I don't even consider them to be religious really. I saw the preview for tonight's show and heard one of the old friends say "Kody likes being the center of attention". and THAT, in a nutshell, is the REAL reason. Religious choice be damned. it's because it's all about Kody. that's all it is really.

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  6. The law hasn't driven anything apart. Kody went to Paul Murphy of the AG's office before taking this on, to check that he wouldn't be at risk legally. There is ample video evidence that the "flight" to Las Vegas was already planned, which makes the way they hurt their children with the three day warning of the move, truly despicable.

    As for Christine. As last in, she had everything to gain and nothing to lose - after all she was getting access to the man she wanted, no matter the cost to anyone else. Now she is experiencing what it is like to have time and resources cut by the addition of a new woman. Christine says "I don't feel special any more." That's because you are not - you are just one of a string of women in Kody Brown's life. It is generally worse for first wives who may have experienced what a normal relationship with a husband is like (at least for a while) that is why so many first wives don't last the course, They have something with which to compare polygamy. I would love to see Meri leave. As an interesting side note, Anne Wilde, pro polygamy Safety Net spokesperson and founder of Principle Voices, is furious with the Brown's. She told them that they are "giving polygamy a bad name" and wants them to hide their problems. Sorry Anne, the facade has slipped for a while, but don't worry, Christine will pull herself together and paste on the "happy face" of polygamy again. After all, the salvation of her soul depends on it!

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    Replies
    1. I find it interesting that Anne Wilde, pro-polygamy spokesperson and founder of Principle Voices, did not have any children when in a polygamous relationship, Her 3 children were born in her monogamous first marriage, from which she got a divorce. None of her children practice polygamy.

      I got this information from her you tube interview. I do not think she is a valid spokeswoman for polygamy. She doesn't even know what it's like to live with sisterwives. I do think she is an intelligent person, and a decent (but misguided) author.

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  7. That's really interesting Free And Clear (i.e. "so many first wives don't last the course"). I have wondered for a while what the "divorce" rate was in plural marriages. Do you know where a person might find information on that sort of thing?

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  8. Divorced or re-assigned? I would add- so many aren't "really" married, that one would have to count reassignments, too! It's crazy, isn't it?

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  9. Terrasola, I know LaMoine Jenson, head of AUB is on record somewhere giving actual statistics on divorce in the group, and I remember the figures were high. I will try to find the quote. Of course, many divorced women just "marry" into another polygamous family, but some do leave altogether, and first wives are the most likely to do that. They have lost the most through polygamy.

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  10. I would not have this type of lifestyle for myself but I don't see anything wrong with it. I think that each wife deals with it very well and it is a choice they made, so why judge. I love the tv series. I feel that the show has brought a good light to something that society has deemed so wrong. I feel kody is a good father and husband to his wives. I think each wife is an amazing special person. I'm 29 and I have been with my husband for 13 years and plan on growing old with him, we have a 2 year old. Children are the greatest thing ever and it's wonderful how much love is shown to the browns children from kody and his wives. It's just my opinion, but I'm proud of them. :)

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  11. wasn't it Christine herself last season that said, "we're all happy about Robyn! Kody deserves a trophy wife!"

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  12. "wasn't it Christine herself last season that said, "we're all happy about Robyn! Kody deserves a trophy wife!"

    Yes it was. But you know, that was when life was all gum drops & lollipops.

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  13. lol...true RSG...now it's all vinegar and piss. "when Momma ain't happy, ain't nobody happy." and Christine's the mom of the family.

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  14. REALLY, if I hear one more time 'the law drove them to leave UTAH', the law is driving this family apart... I.AM.GOING.TO.SCREAM!!!!!! The Attorney General's office has said over and over again that a case HAD TO BE OPEN because OF THE BROWNS! Because of Kody seeking FAME! Christine actually was very political in her family but polygamy is NEVER GOING TO BECOME LEGAL! But Utah does not prosecute unless there are other PROBLEMS. The teens are going back when they turn 18! They are not shaking in their boots! The Moms have gone back for stuff left at the house, for all WE KNOW,Kody has gone back without the cameras. Let's face it, Kody and Robyn both wanted to move to Vegas... who came up with the 'story', don't know. Kody probably sat down with TLC and they came back with story-Mid January, after the police stopped investigation in Dec. as announced on the news. And Please, writer, do not call it a smooth functioning family-everything revolves around the delusional one-Kody-and it was mentioned that Meri had bad times. what other things have they not mentioned?

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  15. Anonymous (last post) you are correct about all the "we have to run from the law and look how devastated our children are by this" hype and nonsense. I happen to know that Kody consulted the AGs office via their Safety Net link to make sure that if they did the show they wouldn't be prosecuted. He reassured Kody about that but warned him it might be destructive to his family to put them on display like that. In addition Christine is shown on video at a Safety Net Meeting (pre the show) re-stating AG Mark Shurtleff's stance on polygamy, which is he won't prosecute for polygamy, just what he calls "other abuses." Lastly, Janelle is on video laughing about the move and saying that they had planned to move to Vegas, months before. This is a very dishonest family, and the public buys their lies.

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  16. Christine is just being a waterhead. She is not the 'baby' and her baby is not the 'baby' anymore. There is someone cuter around. She is painfully infantile. It is a stupid spoiled brat mentality. So pathetic.

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  17. LaMoine Jensen has told author Janet Bennion that 40% of polygamous marriages in the AUB fall apart in the first year. 33% of the marriages which make it past the first year later dissolve.

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  18. I have a problem with any of them complaining about not getting enough attention and Christine is the biggest whiner and kind of like the spoiled youngest child. I mean, OK, we’re all human and I’m not judging their lifestyle (as long as they aren’t harming children, hey, go for it). However, she needs to understand that from the outside looking in, as anyone who watches SISTER WIVES is privy to do, she seems like a whiny, well, third wife! Come on, Christine. Stay or go but if you stay recognize that you have to share one man with three other women and 17 children. DEAL! She’s also been a housewife since Day 1 and really has no clue about having to work to support her family — so she may as well stay and get Kody when she can.

    And furthermore, there is a reason this really isn’t a common way to cohabit. Jealousy rears its ugly head any where you go but God bless these women for trying. I like most of the wives, and Kody’s heart seems to be in the right place, but I have to wonder: WHO is paying for four rentals, four cars (or is it 5?) and their cost of living? It can’t be entirely TLC.

    Janelle is my favorite: she clearly HAS a clue and is a bread-winner, too. She takes a lot of the responsibility for the families, more so than Kody it would seem. He is like the cheerleader and she is the pragmatic voice of reason. I’m surprised she hasn’t had a nervous breakdown already.

    Robyn seems to be looking for a meal ticket. That’s got to be so hard on HER natural born children to come into such a large family and all of that.

    And someone else pointed out how few of them are thinking of the children in the first place. Why move everyone to NV away from their familiar? Why not, if you believe in your faith and lifestyle, stay where you are and fight? I don’t understand the legality, anyway, or why the govt would be involved, esp. as there is only one legal wife (Robyn). I can see them wanting to protect the children, however, but these are not your creepy polygamists. They are more the suburban polys next door.

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  19. I have a problem with any of them complaining about not getting enough attention and Christine is the biggest whiner and kind of like the spoiled youngest child. I mean, OK, we’re all human and I’m not judging their lifestyle (as long as they aren’t harming children, hey, go for it). However, she needs to understand that from the outside looking in, as anyone who watches SISTER WIVES is privy to do, she seems like a whiny, well, third wife! Come on, Christine. Stay or go but if you stay recognize that you have to share one man with three other women and 17 children. DEAL! She’s also been a housewife since Day 1 and really has no clue about having to work to support her family — so she may as well stay and get Kody when she can.

    And furthermore, there is a reason this really isn’t a common way to cohabit. Jealousy rears its ugly head any where you go but God bless these women for trying. I like most of the wives, and Kody’s heart seems to be in the right place, but I have to wonder: WHO is paying for four rentals, four cars (or is it 5?) and their cost of living? It can’t be entirely TLC.

    Janelle is my favorite: she clearly HAS a clue and is a bread-winner, too. She takes a lot of the responsibility for the families, more so than Kody it would seem. He is like the cheerleader and she is the pragmatic voice of reason. I’m surprised she hasn’t had a nervous breakdown already.

    Robyn seems to be looking for a meal ticket. That’s got to be so hard on HER natural born children to come into such a large family and all of that.

    And someone else pointed out how few of them are thinking of the children in the first place. Why move everyone to NV away from their familiar? Why not, if you believe in your faith and lifestyle, stay where you are and fight? I don’t understand the legality, anyway, or why the govt would be involved, esp. as there is only one legal wife (Robyn). I can see them wanting to protect the children, however, but these are not your creepy polygamists. They are more the suburban polys next door.

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  20. Meri is just a selfish brat with no consideration for Kody's children by the others. How she can sit there with one kid and demand the same resources as one with six is really something that she shouldn't get away with.

    Janelle you sweetheart. . .I wish you would just pick up and leave this idiot and his short-bus companions. Let them fend for themselves for once. You deserve a break, credit, and generally to escape from this group of needy whiners.

    Get out before you sign anything. On the salary of a Manhattan constitutional lawyer the lights would barely stay on in those monstrosities, and this hair brained "sister wives' closet" is even more of a drain. Set up a fund that we can verify, and I'll send in my ten bucks for your exit strategy.

    Don't think about the math too hard, because then you think that there is some serious tax fraud and/or illegal activity afoot. Matching ugly gold watches, dedicated to a life of being in debt and under constant stress. . .I am so glad we got to meet another family who actually care about each other.

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