‘Sister Wives’ Season 18 Episode 11 Recap: A Cringey Anniversary Conversation & A Crappy Birthday Party

Don’t yuck our yum, Meri.

It’s time for another episode of Sister Wives, a show where the husband is perpetually spiraling, his main gal is forever playing the victim, timelines seemingly do not exist and the majority of the children have no contact with their father. 

…or as we like to call it, our comfort show.

This episode kicks off at Christine’s house in Utah with a pregnancy announcement from Mykelti and Tony, and another reminder of how much this timeline is seriously lagging. Mykelti tells her sister Ysabel that she and her Wish.com Aquaman husband have spawned again and the couple also spring the news on Christine that they’re expecting twins.

This is actually also what I say every time Kody and Robyn pop up on my TV this season.

Mykelti says she wasn’t surprised to find out she was expecting twins, and even tells her mom it makes sense, as she’s been eating everything during her pregnancy– not to be outdone by baby Avalon, who is unabashedly double-fisting bagels throughout this entire announcement. 

Christine, obviously thinking Mykelti’s gonna let her sing two songs at the baby shower now…

Next we head over to Meri’s B&B in Utah for a much more somber announcement, though one we all knew was coming.

Well, everyone except Meri, apparently. 

Meri tells viewers that it was recently her and Kody’s 32nd wedding anniversary and while she and Kody have gone out to “celebrate” the occasion in recent years, it’s “almost been more obligatory than anything else.”

Still, Meri has truly savored that crumb of human decency she received once a year from her “spouse,” so when this year’s anniversary rolled around, she was bummed when Kody didn’t even bother to shoot her a “???” text. 

Meri, being the Rice-Krispies-treat-making masochist that she is, says she decided to take matters into her own hands and call Kody herself. She even suggested the two of them go on a drive to celebrate the trash heap that is their marital union.

Bricks. Bricks for damn brains, this one. I’m tellin’ you…

“…planning to put on my tightest pair of Lularoe legging and woo the hell out of the Kodster!” 

Meri is sad (and we are cringing) when Kody tells her that has to check with Robyn, as he was watching her their kids at the time.

Just when we think our second-hand embarrassment for Meri has reached an all-time high, Kody reveals to viewers that he wasn’t actually busy with The Chosen 5 (Dayton, Princess Pierced Ears, Sobyn Jr., Sol and the One With the Pacifier), he just needed an excuse to get out of spending time with ol’ Mer. 

“In all fairness, the nanny did seem a little overwhelmed that day.”

Much to our–- and definitely to Meri’s–- surprise, Kody is granted permission from the Head of Household loyal wife and begrudgingly offers to take Meri out to dinner. Now, we WOULD bet the expired My Sisterwife’s Closet gift card we’ve been hanging onto all these years that Kody’s lame ass took Meri to Salsa Brava to mark their “special” occasion, but unfortunately we’ll never know, as the camera crew wasn’t invited along for this excursion. (Ten bucks he whipped the car through the McDonald’s drive-thru and devoured his Big Mac faster than any human ever has before.)

Luckily, Meri is contractually obligated to give viewers a rundown of her terrible, horrible, no good, very bad anniversary dinner, which she reveals included a major slip of the tongue, courtesy of Kody. 

“Spoiler alert: it wasn’t the sort of ‘slip of the tongue’ I was shooting for.”

“At one point he made some reference to faking relationships or something like that and I was like, ‘What do you mean, faking?’” Meri recalls. “And we were sitting across the table from each other and he kinda gestured, like, with his fingers, you know, like, between the two of us.” 

“It was almost like he’s insinuating that we don’t have a marriage! I KNOW! I was SHOCKED too!” 

Meri says she pressed Kody on his comment, insisting to him that she wasn’t “faking anything,” to which Kody told her he didn’t know why she even bothered calling him to say happy anniversary in the first place.

Ouch. (Normally I would feel bad for Meri, but, to be fair, Kody has made it extremely clear that he has no interest in Meri and that he hopes she will stay up in her bell-tower except for the rare occasion she brings him cereal-filled dessert treats. And— make no mistake— it really, really pains me to take Kody’s side on anything. But…bricks, I tell ya!)  

Meri says Kody also pointed out that they “aren’t a married couple,” before correcting himself to say they aren’t “living as a married couple.” Though Meri has had a front-row seat to the s**t show that has been her marriage to Kody for years, she claims she only realized in that moment how Kody really fills feels about their union. 

Listen Meri, if you’re not going to watch the show, do yourself a favor and at least start reading The Ashley‘s recaps.

Kody goes on to tell viewers that right before his and Meri’s 25th wedding anniversary, the two of them were in a really bad place and counseling just wasn’t fixing things. He also mentions that around this time, Meri asked him to stop staying over at her MLM-funded mini-mansion, but says he was convinced-– allegedly by his other wives–- that maybe “he” should keep trying. 

If the toy cars, children’s books and stuffed Pixar characters didn’t help those two, we’re convinced nothing could.

Despite all of “his” effort, Kody says he eventually realized there was just no salvaging his and Meri’s relationship, and even Meri admits that she asked Kody for a break around that time. Unbeknownst to her, however, that break ultimately turned into more of an amputation. 

Still, Meri insists she never kicked Kody out of her home, nor did she– despite what Kody claims– pack up his bedazzled Bret Michaels Collection jeans, visors and hoards of L.A. Looks hair gel and relegate them to the garage, à la Christine. 

“I didn’t tell him to never come back,” she says. “I didn’t tell him that I didn’t wanna see him again. I never kicked him out.” 

“I very happily showed myself the door, thank you very much!”

As Meri continues to regale viewers on her romance-free night with Kody, she reveals that Kody (finally) told her he has no desire to have a relationship with her. 

FINALLY? UM….he has literally been saying that for years. Even back in the “Wetbar Days,” he was making it clear he had no interest in sexing up sad sack Meri.

“He said, ‘Don’t you understand, Meri? This is never going to happen. Your life is not one that I wanna insert myself into,’” she recalls. 

“I would rather insert myself into the muddy puddle that is Coyote Pass Lake and drown myself.” 

Meri admits how painful it was to hear Kody say aloud what has been blatantly obvious to seemingly everyone but her for years, claiming Kody has never said anything along those lines to her, “like, ever.”


Meri adds that Kody promised to love her to infinity and beyond, and that she is heartbroken that his Buzz Lightyear-esque declaration of affection now means nothing to him.

“And NO ONE has even ASKED how I FILL about this!”

Next we head back to Christine’s, where she is still tweaking out over the twinnouncement. Mykelti tells her mom and sibs that because twin births are more high risk, she’s been advised to have the Kody GrandSpawns in a hospital, instead of on the floor of her cluttered office (or wherever the hell she was when she had her first kid.) 

Viewers are then subjected treated to a flashback of Mykelti’s home birth with Avalon, which, as you may recall, featured a boldly-positioned Christine, sibling spectators, a camera crew, mini-fridge and an alarming number of plastic water bottles. 

We need 3 sessions with Dr. Nancy to recover from just watching this clip…

Christine says Tony “was not down” with the home birth situation and upon Avalon’s arrival, he insisted to Mykelti that they never go that route again. Christine assures viewers that although Mykelti’s home birth was “fine,” she supports the couple no matter what they decide to do–- especially when she learns that they will be using the same doctor that delivered Truely in 2010. 

TLC really dropped the ball by not using this clip in the previews to completely screw with Kody.

While Christine had a hospital delivery for baby No. 6, she touts that she popped out her five oldest plyglets from the comfort of her home with no issues. And, because producers are seemingly leaving most of the good stuff on the cutting room floor this season and are instead, force-feeding us Kody’s Christmas crepes flashbacks, we get to relive Robyn’s home birth of Solomon, and hear Maddie scream in agony as Axel simultaneously enters the world…and Janelle’s bedroom. 

Christine tells viewers she “highly recommends” home births, as do many plural families, because they prevent things from getting complicated when it comes to filling out birth certificates and whatnot. 

“There’s a whole big fear mentality about hospitals in the polygamous culture,” she explains. “And so, I think because of that, my kids just always think there’s, like, a little bit of fear associated with the hospital, still.” 

We then cut to Janelle, who tells viewers that unlike Christine, she’s fearless AF when it comes to birthing babies and the medical system in general, noting that she didn’t grow up in polygamy, so she never had to worry about skirting the law, etc. She also says that Kody’s name is on all six of her children’s birth certificates, proving once and for all that anyone can be a father, but not everyone can be a dad.

“I just signed where she told me to.”

Christine acknowledges that there is “a big pressure” on Mykelti, being that she’s basically playing both sides of the fence the bridge between her/Jenelle and Kody/Robyn, but says “it’s awesome” that her daughter has love for, and is supported by, both parties. 

Speaking of parties, later on we head to Kody and Robyn’s home where we get a rare glimpse inside at all the Amazon boxes. Mr. & Mrs. Monogamy and The Chosen 5 have so graciously invited Ysabel and Truely over to celebrate Truely’s upcoming 12th birthday. 

Truely is the main character of this show for her fashion choices alone.

Robyn pretends to get emotional over the fact that little Truely will soon be a teenager (umm, in a year), only to then reveal the real reason this afterthought of a party means so much to her: she married Kody shortly after Truely’s birth, therefore Truely has no memories that don’t include Robyn, Robyn’s kids or Robyn’s historically tragic eyebrows. 

“She’s TRUELY blessed!”

Not Robyn somehow managing to make a kid’s birthday party all about her— I don’t believe it! 

While Truely is more-than-happy to collect some gifts from her part-time dad and his wife, Ysabel is less enthused to be along for the visit, and rightfully so. Christine reminds viewers that Ysabel lives in North Carolina with Maddie and Caleb and is fully content doing her own thing far, far away from The Kody Brown Family BS. 

Kody admits there is distance between him and nearly all of some of his kids, as well as some “distrust.” He says while “Truely seems perfectly fine, Ysabel seems to be uncomfortable a lot of the times.” 

If looks could kill. Or at the very least, make those two lone tendrils at the front of Kody’s head finally fall out…

Ysabel–- whose dad once suggested that she travel across the country alone in the middle of a pandemic to undergo major back surgery–- acknowledges that her relationship with Kody has never been great and says it’s only gotten more “rocky” since her parents divorced. Kody echoes this statement, while also completely minimizing the situation, claiming there “seems to be a mild strain” between him and some of his kids.

He then blames this so-called “mild strain” on the family shutting down the Polygamist Barbie Dreamhouse plan he proposed years ago. 

Kody, trying like hell to convince his wives that, together, they can turn this Mojo Dojo Casa House into a Mojo Dojo Casa Home.

Kody snidely remarks that he may have expected too much from his family and that maybe his kids would have been better off had they lived in separate homes (with their respective moms) and been raised as cousins.

Umm…considering that Robyn was formerly married to Christine’s first cousin who also happened to be Kody’s third cousin, this was an odd statement for him to make. Dare we say, even more odd than his decision to sport permed ringlets at the age of 50… 

Viewers are then reminded of the cringe-inducing “Kody Brown Family” mission statement Kody and the wives spent entirely too many hours drafting years ago, as well as the 2014 family commitment ceremony, where the wives memorably rocked dresses ugly enough to make a pair of Meri’s patterned MLM leggings actually look appealing. 

After Kody tells viewers he’s trying to “redefine” his life, the topic of religion comes up at Truely’s birthday, presumably after Robyn noticed Truely’s party T-shirt. Ysabel tells Robyn and Kody that she’s found a church she likes in North Carolina, to which Kody tells viewers he’d “almost be too embarrassed” to attend church in Utah due to the “struggles” his family has had.

Nope. TOO easy.

Kody says his family hasn’t established a religious connection in Flagstaff, nor did they have one in Las Vegas, save for the living room sermons he and the wives used to guilt the kids into sitting through once or twice a year. 

I’ve finally accepted that I will be 100 years old and STILL talking about the moment Robyn tossed her “purity” onto the floor of the Brown Family Home Church.

Makeshift/no place of worship aside, Kody tells viewers he’s always been a man of faith, but has struggled due to the whole #PlygLife sitch. 

At this point in the episode, a producer off-camera randomly asks Kody if he’s heard from his daughter Maddie recently, to which Kody admits that Maddie stopped reaching out to him a while ago. Kody is absolutely perplexed as to why his relationship with this particular spawn went to hell, but fortunately, Janelle is there to saw Kody the hell down clear things up. 

“Maddie doesn’t call him because of his behavior lately,” Janelle says. “She’s like, ‘I don’t know what to do with him. I don’t know who this guy is.’” 

Kody, on his relationship with Maddie and his hair.

Remember, Maddie and Kody once had a really great relationship. Not only was Kody completely enamored with Maddie’s husband Caleb, but he also performed the couple’s wedding ceremony.

After a few more minutes of Kody rambling about (and taking no responsibility for) his deteriorating family, Janelle tells viewers that her kids pretty much stopped reaching out to Kody once Kody admitted he only cared about his “minor children.”

We then cut to Kody, who says he only told his kids that his obligation as their parent shifts once they become adults.  

“Now kindly ‘shift’ yourself out of it and my life, thanks.”

Janelle says Kody is getting exactly what he puts into the relationships with his kids, which is a really nice way of saying that Kody is a trash excuse of a father who is getting exactly what he deserves. 

Janelle then starts discussing the relationships in her own life, specifically those with her sister wives, both past and present. Janelle says she and Robyn were always “great team players,” but they never connected on a friend level; and as for Meri, she admits the two of them always had personality differences. Janelle says she has no reason to “seek out” either of Kody’s remaining groupies and is perfectly content kicking it with Christine and their respective kids. Oh, and her garden.

“Kick rocks, Kleenex Kween and Leggings Lady!” 

Janelle says she’d like to one day build a greenhouse on Coyote Pass, assuming Kody and Robyn don’t drop the ball and ultimately lose the property. Kody says not only is he planning to pay off Coyote Pass, but he and Robyn “still intend to build there.” 

Sure, Jan..

Back in Utah, Christine–- with help from Ysabel, Aspyn, Mitch and Paedon–- tries to right her ex-husband’s wrongs by properly teaching Truely how to ride a bicycle. Christine reminds viewers that Kody completely botched what should have been a sweet father-daughter moment years ago, thus rendering 12-year-old Truely unable to whip it throughout the neighborhood on two wheels like the badass she is. 

“Ya know, just like mom did when she finally left that mop-headed man formerly known as our dad.”

While Truely isn’t able to master bike riding skills after Day 1, the experience certainly goes better than her attempt to learn from Kody seven years earlier, so Christine chalks the day up as a win. 

Because this show is incapable of ending an episode on a positive note, we close things out with a final check-in with a Meri as she continues to talk about the good old days–- aka the days when Kody would still answer her phone calls.

Meri says at the beginning of her marriage, she’d sometimes question if Kody would be able to love her forever as he promised, at which point Kody would reassure her that their love was “the rill dill.” Thirty years, three sister wives, 18 kids and one catfishing scandal later, Meri says Kody finally told her on their anniversary dinner date from hell that he never really loved her at all, he was only trying to convince himself that he did.

Geez, Kody….

“Sorry not sorry, Meri. Oh, and happy anniversary.”

Meri says Kody’s comments are even more ridiculous than his dance moves, and claims anyone who knew them as a couple back in the day would say the same. 

While kicking Kody to the curb where he belongs seems like the logical move, Meri reminds viewers that in the Mormon religion, their union is (or was supposed to be) an eternal covenant. 

“ … I feel like he’s like, ‘Well, I’m just not interested. You can stick if you want.’” Meri says. “But I’m like, why would I want to do that eternally? Be with someone who really just has changed his mind about me.”

Girl, we’re still trying to figure out why you ever wanted to be with him, period.

Meri says Kody, being the gracious man he is, extended an invite to her to visit him and Robyn and the kids whenever, (after first giving them 2-3 days notice, of course) which she plans to do, given that her circle is dwindling by the minute. 

Meri also reveals that Kody tried to put the kibosh on her opening up about their struggles, claiming he already receives too much criticism from the public. Meri, who must’ve stumbled across a sliver of backbone while clearing out that carriage house at the B&B, says she’s sick of hiding the truth and has a right to tell the world just how much Kody sucks. 

(We hate to break it to you, Meri, but just like the time you “revealed” the elevator to the family at your old Flagstaff rental, you’re not telling anyone anything they didn’t already know.)

Just when we think we might be entering the How Meri Got Her Groove Back era of this series, Meri says that parting ways with Kodilocks doesn’t sit well with her values. 

“I didn’t marry Kody and make this eternal covenant just to be like, ‘Hmm, it’s not working for us, I think I’ll peace out,’” she says. “And right now, I don’t know what to do about it.” 

THIS, Meri. THIS is what you should do about it.

That’s all for this episode of ‘Sister Wives!’ 

To catch up on more of The Ashley’s ‘Sister Wives’ recaps, click here! 

RELATED STORY: ‘Sister Wives’ Star Gwendlyn Brown Says Her Mom Christine Told Her, “I’m Sorry Your Dad Doesn’t Love You” During Christine’s Divorce From Kody

(Photos: TLC) 

15 Responses

  1. Kody is all about Kody. Always has been and I cannot believe some of the words that come out of his mouth. He takes no responsibility for anything. I wish Christine, Jenelle and Meri the best and hope they find a real man that will treat them like they should be treated. Everything that comes out of his mouth, is poor poor pitiful me. There is a special place for him in *ell. Robyn, you too will be put on the back burner sooner or later. You deserve what you get.

  2. Kody is all about Kody. Always has been and I cannot believe some of the words that come out of his mouth. He takes no responsibility for anything. I wish Christine, Jenelle and Meri the best and hope they find a real man that will treat them like they should be treated. Everything that comes out of his mouth, is poor poor pitiful me. There is a special place for him in *ell. Robyn, you too will be put on the back burner sooner or later. You deserve what you get.

  3. I am really hoping TLC kicks Kotex and Crybrows to the curb. Unfortunaltely, they are the reason a lot of viewers tune in.

  4. Why ruin a perfectly good frying pan trying to knock some sense into Meri’s thick skull? She has made the choice to stay and hope that Kody will crawl back into bed with her. Her pathetic begging is awful. I mean he has told her over and over again he doesn’t even like her much less love her. The thing is, he is no prize. He is a jackass. I find Meri the most pathetic of the 4 women. And if she thinks Robyn is her best friend, maybe ruining a frying pan on her head may wake her up. Robyn gets off on the pain that she and Kody inflict on Meri. Plain and simple.

  5. I love everything about Christine and her kids so much … but Tony, yuck. Seriously what on earth did Mykelti ever see in that one. The hair is worse than Kody’s. The way he inserts himself into every camera shot is so annoying. And does the guy have a job? How does he support his three kids other than the occasional appearance on this show.

  6. The Ashley, you are an absolute legend for coming up with: The Chosen 5 (Dayton, Princess Pierced Ears, Sobyn Jr., Sol and the One With the Pacifier).

    The way I hollered.

  7. What does Kody have to do to make it clear to Meri. Hit her in the head with a frying pan.

    I don’t like Kody. I think he’s a terrible person, what he’s done to his children is unforgivable. How he’s treated Jenelle and Christine is awful.

    But Meri kicked him out years ago, then cheated on him. She was leaving his a$$ before she found out it was a catfish. He’s allowed to move on. He’s never truly forgiven her. He’s pretended for his faith or the show, but not truly.

    And that’s okay.

    At one point they were in love. You can see it, he really loved her and she loved him. But she lost his trust, and cheated, and he’s allowed to move on. Marriages sometimes just run their course.

    I just wish Meri would move on with her life. Go find someone closer to her B&B, find someone who will actually care about her. Stop waiting around for him, he’s not coming.

    Kody doesn’t want her around, and Robyn says she does, but then her actions say otherwise, like everything with Robyn, fake and a liar. They don’t want you around.

    So move on. Look how much happier Christine is, how much happier Jenelle is.

  8. Kody definitely loved Meri at one time. I recall him calling her his soul mate & he meant it. You could see it in his eyes. Sobyn didn’t like that one bit & his and Meri’s relationship undoubtedly changed because of her.

    I also think that he was attracted to Christine but that made Sobyn insanely jealous so she trash talked Christine enough to get Kody to say otherwise.

    They weren’t perfect but they were far more functional & happy before Sobyn joined the family

    1. I laughed until I cried! Thank you for making this review of the show the most entertaining event of my day!

      Bricks! I tell ya! ?

    2. I agree! Christine is everything Sobyn is not-gorgeous, smart, excellent cook, all the kids love her, full of positive and uplifting energy, funny in a genuine way.

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