On Love and Family

Photo courtesy of TLC

“Love should be multiplied, not divided.”

I am more convinced than ever that the family unit–as it was meant to be–is what people actually want while they try to want something else. Let me explain.

The show “Sister Wives” just premiered on TLC. The newest reality show from the “reality network,” it follows Kody Brown and his three wives and their combined 12 children in their “everyday polygamist household.” Truly, it is stranger than fiction.

I decided to watch an episode so that I could write this blog having seen it for myself. Believing polygamy to be a gross violation of the institute of marriage, I expected to come away disgusted, revolted, or angry. Instead of feeling repulsed by this wanna-be family, however, I came away from the half-hour show feeling sad. My opinions of polygamy have not changed. Make no mistake.

But my sympathy for these women–particularly–who believe they are doing right, grew immeasurably.

Here were my initial thoughts:

1. Sister Wives does not portray a normal household. As much as they remind you throughout the episode that they are normal, they are not normal. If they were normal, they wouldn’t need to keep talking about it.

2. Sister Wives does not want its children to make choices for themselves. Repeatedly, the sisters spoke of “wanting their children to know they have a choice” when it comes to the type of marriage they eventually choose. Yet, they model and magnify only one choice. Every time they speak of one-man-and-one-woman unions, you half expect them to spit.

3. Sister Wives claims that freedom of religion should allow them to continue their lifestyle. Yet “worship” does not free us to live whatever (illegal) lifestyle we choose. What is the object of worship that makes this family religious? It isn’t the practice of prayer or study. It’s a group of adults living together and calling it religion. If polygamy is a type of worship (i.e. religion) then who is the God at the center of it all? It looks a lot like a Kody Brown.

4. Sister Wives claims to be confident in the choices they have made. Yet, I’ve never seen so much crying, doubting, self-loathing in any 30 minutes of anything I’ve experienced. And that’s saying a lot. (Keep in mind, I was in junior high once.)

5. Sister Wives claims to be “okay” because they are consenting adults. The problem is, there are a dozen children in the middle of it all who must observe the circus of four parents and half-siblings and dangerous interpretations of the point and practice of marriage.

The serial husband, Kody Brown, said in this particular episode, “I just fell in love, and then I feel in love again, and I fell in love again.”

Perhaps he is right. But methinks he fell in love with himself.


  1. My thoughts exactly!

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