'Sister Wives:' Meri says 2015 catfishing incident was 'blown out of proportion'

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Meri Brown looks back on the catfishing incident that played a role in the dissolution of her marriage to Kody Brown in the latest installment of “Sister Wives.”

“You have to be very careful with people that you meet online,” she says in a confessional early on in Season 18, Episode 12. “I was catfished quite a few years ago with a big fat liar.”

The reality star embarked on an online relationship with someone who she thought was a man in 2015. The person later turned out to be a woman impersonating a man, she confirmed to People in a statement in 2015.

At the time she said in a statement, “Throughout this ordeal, my family has supported and stood by me. I am grateful to them for their love and strength through this difficult time.”

Reflecting on her experience in Season 18 of "Sister Wives," Meri Brown says the story was "blow out of proportion."

"That whole story was so completely blown out of proportion and so much crap was made up about it," she says. "I still have a hard time talking about it just because everybody has their opinions about it. But like, I know my truth."

The 52-year-old goes on to say her plural family also formed strong viewpoints on the matter.

"Even with our family, some of our own family has their own opinions about," she says.

Kody Brown previously said on "Sister Wives" their marriage "dissolved" after the catfishing incident.

“(It) turned out to be extremely exploitative and abusive. And from that experience, Meri and I sort of saw our marriage just dissolve,” he said.

Kody and Meri Brown's marriage was strained for many years before they announced their decision to “permanently terminate” their relationship in January 2023.

“After more than a decade of working on our relationship in our own unique ways, we have made the decision to permanently terminate our marriage relationship,” they shared on social media.

At one point, Meri Brown was one of Kody Brown's four wives. During Season 17 of "Sister Wives," she repeatedly made it clear that she wanted “to work on” their problems but noted that his approach to marriage was “disturbing.”

Kody Brown has said their marriage was “a hard relationship from the very beginning” and described their relationship as “not functional.”

Meri Brown, in the episode of "Sister Wives," says the catfishing incident changed the way she conducts herself on the internet.

“I talk to people online for business all the time, and one of my prerequisites is that I do a video chat with them. I just want to make sure that they are a legit person,” she explains.

There are people who “put themselves out there as being somebody other than they really are," she says.

This article was originally published on TODAY.com