Did any of the Sister Wives stars get COVID-19? The polygamous Brown family — patriarch Kody Brown and his wives Janelle Brown, Meri Brown, Christine Brown and Robyn Brown — have differing views about how to navigate the coronavirus pandemic amongst their large brood, which has led to a big divide.
“This summer has been especially hard between Kody and I, so we are fundamentally at odds about how you manage the risk of this virus transmission,” Janelle said in her confessional during the Sunday, November 28 episode of their TLC series. “So basically, unless we all observe his uber, uber, uber careful stance, forget holidays.”
During the episode, Janelle visited Kody at his at-home gym in his garage, where she brought up the idea of having an outdoor family barbecue on their Coyote Pass property as a going away party for their son, Hunter Brown, who is going back to school at his college campus. Kody, who was weary of big, indoor gatherings with their family of 23, he seemed open to the idea since it would be outside and the risk of transmitting the COVID-19 virus throughout their family would be lower.
At the time, it had been five months since the coronavirus pandemic reached a peak in the United States. Since the lockdowns, Kody has not allowed the sister wives and their children to mingle with each other besides their own immediate households. Kody is the one who travels between house to house, as a way to help avoid spreading the virus amongst each other.
Kody agreed that an outdoor gathering would be OK, but his idea was to create three fire pits, one for Janelle’s brood, one for Robyn’s brood and one for Christine’s brood while he and Meri could mingle among the three. That way, each household would be socially distanced from the others in order to ensure extra safety. Kody wanted to be extra cautious because each of his wives have different rules for their households, some wives allow their children to work or go out and not socially distance themselves from others, while others keep their children home and self-quarantine.
“I really want everybody to come so Hunter can see them all but I’m also extremely nervous,” Kody admitted. “I’ll spend the entire time stressing out about making sure that we’re not getting exposure to the virus from each other.”
Kody explained the reason why he’s particularly strict with his guidelines amid the coronavirus pandemic is because some of their children are higher risk for developing more serious complications if they were to contact COVID-19. Solomon, the son he shares with Robyn, was diagnosed with Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) when he was little which affects his lungs and COVID-19 also has a negative impact on the respiratory system. Truely, the daughter he shares with Christine, had kidney failure when she was younger and half of patients who contacted COVID1-19 have also experienced acute kidney injury, according to WebMD.
It seems Kody and Robyn are the ones in the family who prefer to self-quarantine and only leave their homes for essentials. Janelle and Christine, on the other hand, have set more relaxed guidelines in their households and have either traveled or invited guests into their homes. Meri has also traveled, but she is careful to quarantine for the minimum 14 days before she interacts with other members of their family.
In her confessional, Christine admitted that she and her kids have hung out at Janelle’s house with her kids without socially distancing several times before their family gathering.
Even though some of the younger children had difficulty understanding why they needed to stay six feet apart while playing, their family barbecue was a success — so much that Janelle suggested that they all agree to self-quarantine for two weeks so that they could celebrate the 2020 holidays together, and Kody enthusiastically agreed but he still felt weary that all of the adults and the older children could be on board.
“I am literally suffering from hurt feelings by my family’s refusal to abide by COVID quarantine protocols,” Kody admitted while getting emotional in his confessional. “I want to do the right thing, and it’s breaking my heart that I have been marginalized to the point where I am no longer the head of my household in a couple of home.”
Despite their differing views on how to navigate the pandemic as a family, it seems the Browns’ precautions have worked for them. As of November 2021, no one in the Brown family has contracted COVID-19.