Meet Leon Brown: ‘Sister Wives’ Star Comes Out As Transgender & Announces New Name: “I Knew I Wasn’t A Girl”

The Sister Wives star formerly known as Mariah Brown made a big announcement on Tuesday, letting friends, family and fans know that they are transgender, and that their preferred pronouns are now they/them.

The Sister Wives star— who also announced that, going forward, they would like to be known as either Leo or Leon— stated in the post that they have known from a young age that they weren’t a girl, but growing up in the “gendered and incredibly restrictive” polygamist culture that they did made them conform to being a female.

“So here’s me, definitely not having almost any of my s**t figured out, to let you know that I am trans. My name is Leon or Leo (I love both) and my pronouns are they/them,” they wrote. “I remember the first time that I knew I wasn’t a girl. I was pretty young & unfortunately I grew up in a context that was incredibly gendered & restrictive. so I continued to be socialized as a girl & later a woman.

“And here’s the thing, I’m finally ready to share my favorite self with the world. And that self is incredibly genderqueer, trans, and unapologetic.”


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Leon Brown (@mariahbrwn)

Leon went to say that they’re still figuring out parts of their transition.

“Being queer & trans are definitely some of my favorite parts of myself,” they wrote. “And yet, there are so many things that I am learning to love about myself through this process. Here’s to me getting to know myself, share myself, and continually evolve to be the person I am, to be my favorite self in all contexts.”

Leon’s announcement comes about six months after their fiancé, Audrey Kriss, announced that they are transgender as well. (Audrey chose not to chance their name after transitioning.)


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Audrey Kriss (@audreykriss)

“Love you so much and so proud of you,” Audrey wrote in the comment section of the post.

Leon’s parents— Kody Brown and his first wife Meri— have yet to comment publicly on the announcement. However, Leon made it clear that everyone in their life will need to respect their new name and pronouns. (While their Instagram account name is still “Mariah,” they have changed their bio name to “Leon Brown.”)

“I’m sharing this part of myself to let folks in, and also to set some boundaries,” they wrote in their Instagram post. “If you choose to not use my correct name or pronouns, then you do not need to speak to or about me. My name is Leo or Leon, and my pronouns are they/them. Please only refer to me in that way.”

“Is this the kid I had with Meri? I have no idea.”

Leon’s post was liked by their sister Gwendolyn Brown (who publicly came out as bisexual in 2020). Eldest Brown Family child Logan and his fiancé Michelle Petty offered their support in the comment section of the post.

“Love you so much Leon!” Michelle wrote.

“Love ya Leo!” Logan wrote.

As fans of ‘Sister Wives’ know, the Browns were part of the Apostolic United Brethren – a fundamentalist Mormon sect – and while the religion doesn’t believe in same-sex marriage and relationships, the Brown family does.

Back in 2017, Leon— who was then using the name Mariah— came out as gay during an episode of the show and in a later episode.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Audrey Kriss (@audreykriss)

“When Mariah came out, it was a bit of a shock to me,” Meri said on the show. “I’m really glad that I had experiences in my life that I was open to that, because I see so many families reject their kids or other family members when they come out as gay. I can’t imagine rejecting my daughter and not knowing who she is, like, who she truly is, and knowing her and Audrey together.”

“Coming from the background that we come from and the church that we come from, if we were just to follow… I don’t even want to finish the thought,” Kody’s now-ex-wife Christine Brown said. “I think it’s so horrible to think about rejecting your kids for who they are. I don’t even want to finish the thought. It just makes me nauseous.”

UPDATE! A few hours after Leon posted their announcement, Meri reposted the post to her Instagram Stories writing, “You are my sunshine,” seemingly to show her support.

RELATED STORY: ‘Sister Wives’ Star Mykelti Brown & Husband Tony Padron Announce They’re Expecting Twins

(Photos: TLC; Instagram)


  1. Love your best lives. What they choose to do doesn’t have an impact on my day to day life. I will say, because I’m just petty as hell, they are such an unattractive couple. But hey, beauty is in the eye of the beer holder or whatever 😂

  2. That picture of them with their shirts open, their boobs chopped off and their massive guts hanging out is disgusting.

  3. I hope these people got a good base line on their bench, squat, and dead lifts before starting the juice so they can monitor their dosages. More is not always better, remember abs are made in the kitchen and consistency is the key to making gains at the gym.

    stay lit

  4. If you can learn to live as a man you can also learn te live like a woman.Save you another surgery.

    1. Hmm..well, her mother, her partner, her brother, her sister, and her sister-in-law have all commented with their support of her, so they obviously “buy it”.

      But you, a random stranger on an internet gossip site, thinks they’re all wrong. Her actual family and partner.

      My money’s on you for sure. You are too smart to be fooled, unlike people who actually know her. They’re falling for it, but not you, you smart cookie.

  5. I wish we could go back to the day. When we didn’t know/care what a person’s sexual orientation. I don’t care what you identify. I just care if you’re a nice person. I don’t care who you sleep with. It’s your life. Just be HAPPY.

    1. We did know though. We knew our sister Jenny was in love with Mark, and our teacher Mrs. Hill was married to Mr. Hill, and our mom was pregnant by our Dad, and all the pretty girls in the movies were dating the handsome football quarterbacks, and every tv show had the big “will they kiss?” moments between a single girl and a single guy, and we spread rumors when a married man was having an affair with his young pretty secretary, and we went to weddings and baby showers for all the couples we knew, and everywhere we turned we saw men and women in love with each other and we only had an issue with it if we were single ourselves and wanted a boyfriend or girlfriend.

      We have always been surrounded by people in love, kissing, getting married, getting divorced, having babies, and talking about their sex lives. And no one called it “pushing their sexual orientation in our faces”.

      But suddenly, when (some) people who are LGBTQ+ are no longer in hiding or pretending to be straight……….whey THEY are living their lives like the rest of us have been since the beginning of time…..NOW everyone’s yelling about how it’s all in their face and we don’t want to see you being in love or kissing or getting married or getting divorced or having a family or talking about your sex lives anymore. Suddenly happy couples are “pushing their sexual orientation in our faces” and “we don’t care” about who you sleep with.


      P.S. If you’re about to reply with “But we don’t have parades celebrating being straight….”, 1. No one’s forcing you to go watch the parade. 2. Maybe they’re about due for a parade or whatever the hell they want since they have to deal with either living a fake life, a life in hiding, or dealing with people laughing at them, bullying them, gossiping about them, disowning them, beating them up, and being freaked out by them. 3. How do you think they felt growing up for decades watching all of us kissing and holding hands and dancing and hugging and making out in every movie, tv show, song, theater production they’ve ever seen, and in real life? You don’t want to see a pride parade, don’t go. If they didn’t want to be around heterosexual people doing heterosexual things, too bad for them, they didn’t get a choice, right? We’re all humans. Why do the heterosexual ones get to have all our lives out there for them to see, but the second they start to live theirs, everyone wants them to go back in the house. The hypocrisy is startling.

      1. I sure don’t need them to “go back in the house” but I also don’t need to be compelled to celebrate them. I’m allowed to simply not GAF, which I don’t.

    1. RECOVER?? From what? They don’t have the flu! I don’t know who you worship, but MY God is a loving God and cherishes all beings that He created. And He created ALL living things.

    2. Let’s see….
      She was unhappy before.
      Now she is happy.

      But you want her to go back to before.
      When she was UNhappy.

      That sounds like a great plan, Ellen.

      Religion is a hell of a drug.

    3. What exactly should they ‘recover” from Ellen? They haven’t caught a virus or some illness. They are doing just fine . Maybe God should make you recover from being a judgemental heifer. I swear, “Christians” like YOU are who turn people off from Christianity . God says to love everyone , yet the so called “christians” are the most self righteous and judgemental twats in the world. If you’re going to try to pray away the gay, please include a prayer for your ignorance to be healed as well.

  6. Delusional people. You either have two X chromosome or you have one X and on Y chromosome. That is science. Transgender dysphoria is real and destroys lives.

    1. So does ignorance and homophobia. You apparently cover both of those categories. Are either of them PERSONALLY harming you? Not just getting your panties in a bunch…actually harming you? Try venturing out of the dark ages and join the modern world.

    2. Physically, sure. But do you not believe that some people have always felt they were a boy according to their physical body, but a girl in their mind? Or vice versa?

      Ok let’s say you don’t believe that.
      Answer this, seriously: WHY on earth would someone put themselves through all that to become the opposite sex if they didn’t truly feel their soul was a different gender than their body? WHY?
      Do you think they really enjoy going through painful surgeries? Getting disowned from their families? Being at risk of getting bullied, beat up, even killed? Being laughed at in public? Being told they are evil or going to hell? Having to take meds/hormones that make you sick? Having to buy an entire new wardrobe? Reading really mean comments every single day on the internet? Losing friends? Having people at the grocery store telling them they are creeped out by them?

      Does that make ANY sense? Why would anyone put themselves through all that (and more), if they didn’t truly feel like their mind/soul/heart was a girl in a boy’s body, or vice versa?

      Because it’s trendy, or because they want to get heterosexual people riled up, or they want to wear a rainbow shirt? Come on. It’s an incredibly terrifying and painful road to take, and they’re not taking it for a ridiculous reason.

      Also, it’s none of our business.

  7. Forgive my ignorance, but I don’t understand how this works now. First Mariah came out as a lesbian. But then her fiancé came out as trans. So that would mean Audrey as a man is engaged to Mariah who is a lesbian, right? So then are they also bisexual? Mariah, now known as Leon is also trans, so now they are two gay men? So many life changes for them.

    I can’t even imagine what an adjustment this must be for the families, not to mention confusing for the little ones.

    1. Does it matter what it’s called?
      They love each other a lot, the end.

      But should you wish to pain your brain further, we don’t know who told the other they felt male first.
      Audrey felt ready to come out and have surgery, you don’t know when this process started for Leo.

    2. No, it means they are 2 humans in love with each other in a solid long-term relationship.

      That random strangers on the internet have a problem with, even though their own families are supportive of them and love them both.

      It’s not confusing for the little ones if you explain to them what it is, why it’s ok, and that their sibling is still the same person inside that they’ve always loved, just gradually changing on the outside.

      Children are remarkably more open and accepting than adults until they get older & learn from adults not to be. Luckily not all children learn from that type of adult.

    1. Looks like she always had a son.
      A son with the physical “features” of a girl so Meri raised her as a girl and sister wife to be. Because that’s what we did when we were uninformed.

    2. No.
      And you know that.
      But I’m sure writing mean comments on the internet makes you feel part of the cool kids club, right?

    1. Maybe she realized longer ago then Audrey did. You don’t know that.
      This isn’t something you just do for attention. Leo is going to receive a lot of hate DM etc over this from people that don’t want to understand this. It’s really simple actually, most of us are not 100% female or male and sometimes bodies don’t match with the largest percentage.

    2. Normally I would disagree with a statement like this and to a degree I do. The timing IS a little off with her fiancé having just come out as transgender not long ago. It makes you wonder but maybe watching how her fiancé feels so much more free to be themselves and have it be a positive experience which gave her to confidence to come out AGAIN to her family who I am sure for the most part will disagree with this because of their beliefs. I hope that they are happy and are accepted by those they are closest to as they start this journey and that they find themselves

    1. You go, Leon and Audrey!! Live your BEST lives! 🍾🏳️‍🌈🥰
      The people who matter will always accept and love you unconditionally…

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