All in the family. Sister Wives fans were first introduced to Janelle Brown, Meri Brown, Christine Brown, Robyn Brown and patriarch Kody Brown when the show first premiered on TLC in 2010. Though the show explores the family dynamic between the wives and their families, Meri and Janelle were actually related by marriage before wedding the Wyoming native in 1990 and 1993, respectively, as Janelle’s first husband is Meri’s brother. Keep reading to find out details. 

Who Is ‘Sister Wives’ Star Janelle Brown’s First Husband? 

The Plexus ambassador’s first husband is Adam Barber – Meri’s brother. Janelle and Adam wed in 1988 but split shortly after in 1990. It is unclear what he does for a living. 

How Did Sister Wives’ Janelle Brown Meet Her First Husband?

Janelle opened up about how she and Adam met in the 2013 memoir, Becoming Sister Wives: The Story of an Unconventional Marriage. “Toward the end of high school, I met a student named Adam, with whom I was quite taken,” Janelle wrote. “I knew he wasn’t Mormon, which meant we had no hope of being together — unless he converted.”

After she told her grandmother about Adam, her grandma told the TLC star that she lived next to his family once, and that they were polygamists

“Adam was not completely committed to his fundamentalist faith and I was happy to welcome him to the LDS church,” Janelle recalled. “Not long after he converted, we began courting. Soon we were married in the temple, but my husband wasn’t really interested in either his new faith or the branch of fundamentalism he had been raised in. In fact, he had very little spiritual conviction.”

She went on to reveal that they had problems from the get-go, and Adam moved out after six months of marriage. 

How Did Sister Wives’ Janelle Brown Meet Kody?

Janelle was connected to Kody in more ways than one before they started their relationship, as her mom,  Sheryl Brown, and Kody’s dad, William Winn Brown, were married until he died in 2013 at the age of 78, making Kody and Janelle step-siblings. According to his obituary, he was survived by two other wives at the time of his death. Sheryl later died in 2020.

In a 2013 episode of the TLC series, Janelle explained their complex family tree. “Before Kody and I were really courting, I was actually friends with his family,” Janelle recalled. “My mom was worried I was getting sucked into some polygamous cult. But she ended up meeting Kody’s dad, and they ended up falling in love and getting married before Kody and I started courting.”

Sister Wives
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Janelle revealed she had met Kody in 1989 – one year before splitting with ex-husband Adam – in her original Sister Wives bio on TLC, noting she “had known Meri’s family for several years before the night I met Kody.”

She continued: “I met Kody in the fall of 1989, even though he may not remember it. When he walked into the room I looked at him and had that feeling of remembering something I had forgotten. It was a singular experience.”

The pair later wed in a spiritual ceremony in 1993, making Janelle Kody’s second wife. He later wed Christine in 1994 and Robyn in 2010. 

When Did Sister Wives’ Janelle and Kody Split?

In Touch exclusively broke the news in December 2022 that Janelle had left Kody after nearly 30 years of marriage. “Janelle is a strong independent woman and realized she can do it on her own,” a source told In Touch, noting that she “outgrew him.”

The TLC star was the second wife to end her relationship with the businessman, as Christine announced their split via Instagram in November 2021. She has since moved on and is dating David Woolley as of March 2023. 

Additionally, Meri and Kody confirmed their split in a joint statement posted to Instagram in January 2023. Kody’s only remaining wife is Robyn, though fans have speculated that the father of 18 may be looking for a new sister wife to add to the brood. 

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