On Sunday night's season 10 finale of Sister Wives, Christine, 48, expressed her desire to move back to Utah, where many of her family members still lived. But her sister wives Janelle, Meri and Robyn weren't on board — and Christine was left feeling exasperated about her nearly 30-year marriage to Kody.
Christine's hope to say goodbye to Flagstaff, Arizona was reignited after polygamy was decriminalized in Utah in early 2020.
"Five years ago we sued the state of Utah, and then we won for a bit and it was decriminalized. And then a year later it wasn't," she told cameras. "Then two years ago, Kody wanted to move back to Utah and we were like, 'Oh, it's not safe.' The governor of Utah just signed the bill that makes polygamy decriminalized."
"When I heard about the law, immediately my first thought was, 'Well, if the law passes, why wouldn't we move back to Utah?' So I want to talk to Kody about it, too," she said.
Christine Brown/Instagram Brown family
While Kody, 52, had previously pitched the idea of moving back to Utah, it was shot down by all four wives when they were still living in Las Vegas. But with the law change, Christine told Kody while sitting down one-on-one that she felt they "could finally move back home."
She also brought up what her sister wives had said when they all went back to Utah to look at wedding venues for Meri and Kody's daughter, Mariah. On the trip, all of the women expressed how they missed the state.
For Christine, family was a primary reason for wanting to move back. "Family's there — everybody has family in Utah. My dad's there. I don't know how long my dad's going to be around. My mom's there, sister's there, Aspen's there, Mykelti's there, Peyton's there. Mariah and Audrey are moving there. It's about living with the community again, living with like-minded people again," she told her husband.
She added in a confessional, "My dad's super sick. And I would love to be there the last few years of my dad's life. My kids need to get to know him better. My dad being there is a really big pull."
Kody was intrigued, though he wasn't convinced the other sister wives would budge.
"You're talking about something that I want that I just refuse to even entertain now," he told Christine. "It's an exciting thought, just 'cause all my friends are in St. George."
To cameras, he added, "I don't think Christine will be able to convince any of us, but it's a roller coaster that I am more than willing to join."
"I hate the idea of moving, but I love the idea of living in St. George," he continued. "And I'm just not shutting her down because I'm not going to sit here and say, 'Your idea is dumb.' Especially when I like it. I just know that it's not possible."
Christine Brown/INSTAGRAM Kody Brown and Christine Brown
He also personally loved living in Flagstaff. "I think Christine was mistaking my nostalgia for a desire to move back. But I don't necessarily think that means that my other wives want to move back to Utah. Man, I don't want to move again, and I don't want to leave Flagstaff. I mean, this is the neatest place I've ever lived."
After speaking with Kody, Christine's plan was to talk to the other wives in person. "I'm hoping that when we talk about it, [Kody] like, talks about how he's got family there, he has friends there, he would love to retire there," she told audiences.
"It went great, I thought," she added about her conversation with Kody, saying she felt "really hopeful. I'm looking forward to going into this conversation with everybody knowing that I've got some support from Kody. It means a lot when you go into it to have some support like that."
But not all went as Christine had envisioned. Later, Kody and all of the wives gathered outside at their Coyote Pass property, where Christine recalled their visit to see the Darger family in Utah, saying it "was so good to see them."
"When Kody proposed moving back in Vegas, I at first really wanted to go to Utah, too. But then I thought, 'You know, I really don't want that life. I really don't want to be fighting all the time and feel like I've got some sword hanging over my head.' And so I was just too afraid. I was too afraid to move back to Utah," she said to the group. "And then S.B. 102 happened and polygamy got decriminalized. And I wonder why we're still here."
"Oh my gosh, we can move back home. We can be by family again, we can be back home," she continued. "I want to move back. I think we have a beautiful property here, I'm not saying we don't. But we haven't done anything. We've been here for two years and we haven't really done anything."
She went on to propose her idea of leaving the property undeveloped. "I am proposing that we not develop this land — even though it's wonderful and magical, and you guys have been dreaming on this land for a long time. I haven't. I immediately stopped, because I started dreaming about Utah and going back. And I'm going to be honest — I would've already been gone had it just been me alone."
Christine Brown/Instagram Christine Brown
But the rest of the women weren't feeling the same way.
"As much as I would love to live in Utah, I have to think about the long-term effects on Saul and Ari," said Robyn, 42, referencing her two youngest children. "You know, 'cause Breanna's just got a couple years left before she's out of high school, and so I would really be worried about like, the issues that they would run into knowing that their parents are these public polygamists. I'd be very, very concerned the whole entire time."
Said Janelle, 51: "There's nothing for me in Utah. Nothing. My children aren't there — you have a lot of children there. There's nothing for me there. This is the dream I always wanted when we lived in Wyoming. So the idea of giving this up is making me sort of — my gut reaction is anger. And I don't know how to reconcile that and keep everybody happy. I don't feel any calling to go back to Utah."
Added Meri, 50, "I think that once we basically were kicked out of Utah, I've just kind of had a feeling of, 'Well, I'm not going to grace you with my presence, then.'"
In a confessional, she continued, "I feel like there's a big difference between me owning a business and providing a home for my mother and me living in Utah. I don't live in Utah and I'm not going to. You wanted to kick us out? Fine, I'll stay out. I don't need you."
tlc Kody Brown
As for Kody, he felt he was in a place that all of his kids "love."
"This is the most likely place for any of our kids to move back, our adult kids. For the price, we would never be able to replace this in Utah," he said to Christine.
Hearing Kody say that, Christine was "surprised, because I thought Kody was more in favor of this," she told audiences. "But he's acting like we've never even talked about this and that he wasn't in favor of it last time we talked."
Christine Brown/Instagram Kody Brown and Christine Brown
Christine proceeded to become emotional, breaking down over the apparent reality that "we're not moving, are we?" She was also confused by her sister wives' prior comments about missing Utah when they visited the state together.
"So when we went, I mean, it did feel like that, but it's just, it's home but it's not friendly, is how I feel. I mean, there's a part of it that will always be home to me, always," Robyn said. "But it's not friendly to us and I don't know. I just don't know how to feel comfortable doing that to my kids."
Seeing her sister wife was struggling, Meri asked Christine to join her on a walk. After the pair left the group, Christine voiced her exasperation. "Meri, I can't do marriage with Kody anymore," she confessed to Meri, who told a tearful Christine to "look at the mountain."
"I don't want to do it anymore," Christine again admitted.
"Don't talk about that," said Meri. "Just look at the mountain, that's what you saw that day."
"I can't go there today," said Christine. "It's not enough."
Trying to encourage Christine, Meri went on to say, "You don't get to give up like that. 'Cause you're not a quitter."
"Why is it quitting?" Christine pressed.
Meri proceeded to ask Christine to look at her. "You know where I am. You know where I have been," she said.
"Yeah, but I don't want it," Christine told her, confirming that she was "hurting."
Their heart-to-heart continued. "You didn't put 30 years into this — 25, 28, wherever you are, to walk away. I didn't put 30 years in to walk away," Meri said before they shared an embrace and looked at the mountain.
Christine Brown and Meri Brown
Though Christine appreciated everything Meri was saying — "She's lived through a lot," she said — she didn't want her own marriage to mirror Meri and Kody's.
"Her relationship with Kody certainly isn't one that I would want. And the relationship that I have with Kody isn't what I would want either," she said in a confessional. "What I have here is not what I want right now."
Speaking to cameras, Christine admitted that it had "been a struggle" ever since she moved to Flagstaff — and that she didn't feel supported by Kody.
"I don't want to look at the mountains and remember the angels, how they were singing and I felt this pull. I agreed to move to Flagstaff and I followed Kody here, but it's been a struggle the whole time," she said. "I'm tired of feeling like I don't matter. I'm tired of not having his support when I really need it. I'm just tired. I need a partnership. I need something different than this."