“That’s the last time I ever talked to my dad,” he says, sobbing, after Janelle details why Kody and her boys are “very estranged.”
The wedge between Gabriel Brown and his father, Kody Brown, hit a breaking point on last night’s episode of “Sister Wives” — with the 21-year-old breaking down in tears as he spoke about the divide in the family.
Tensions between Kody and his sons with Janelle, his second wife, have been bubbling up all season, as Gabe and Garrison felt they were being iced out in favor of fourth wife Robyn and their children together throughout the pandemic.
After Kody and Robyn finally came down with COVID, Kody explained that he reached out to Gabriel — who had it previously — to “gather information,” but Gabe told a very different version of events.
“In January, I got Covid. I didn’t even have a fever, I just lost my smell. October rolls around, specifically October 11, my birthday, and Dad calls me. And we have a small discussion about how bad my Covid was,” he said in a confessional.
“I shouldn’t have done this but I did anyway — I didn’t remind him that it was my birthday because I wanted to see if he remembered. And he didn’t. And so to him it was just a phone call, just asking me about Covid,” he continued, before starting to get choked up and pausing to collect himself while dabbing tears from his eyes.
“It was a lot worse than just a phone call for me,” he went on, beginning to sob. “But, yeah, a couple hours after that, he tried to call me back, tell me Happy Birthday and make up for it and that’s the last time I ever talked to my dad.”
Earlier in the episode, Kody sat down with Janelle, as they talked about some of the family drama going on between them.
“There’s still the issue of my kids, my boys. Our Thanksgiving last year was separate. This year, there’s such a big divide between Kody and my boys, I don’t know what we’re doing for Thanksgiving,” explained Janelle, as she and Kody attempted to come to some sort of agreement about how to celebrate the holidays.
“There’s a lot of stuff that has gone under the bridge here that I’m not going to ignore when we get together as a family,” Kody told her. “I’m not going to sit and have everyone over and act like everything’s peachy and fine without working those things out. I’m not gonna have them come to my house for Thanksgiving if they have animosity toward me or someone connected to me.”
He added that her son Garrison would have to reach out to him and “make amends” before they broke any bread together, something Janelle was pretty certain would never happen.
“Kody and my boys are very estranged. He doesn’t even want to see their point of view. He’s like, ‘You’ve offended me. You’ve offended those that are close to me, AKA Robyn, you guys have to come mea culpa and apologize and grovel,'” she said in a confessional. “My boys are just not gonna do that.”
Speaking to the camera, Kody said he wasn’t looking for an apology, but simply wanted to “clear the air.” He went on so say there was “a lot of s— talking about certain people in the family,” before Robyn claimed in her own confessional that the boys had been “blaming me for what was going on with the family,” referring to tension among them all. Kody added that he believed everyone who had an issue with Robyn was “just jealous” she started to also get some of his time and attention.
“There’s unwillingness for some of the family to accept other members of the family or to communicate with other members of the family or to make amends with other members of the family,” he said to Janelle.
She, however, didn’t see things his way at all. In her own confessional, she said she believed the “subtext” of Kody’s comments were that Robyn was “so perfect” and “such a saint” and was “treated so wrong” by the rest of them and they all “better apologize for being mean to her.” Though she said Kody feels Robyn has been “victimized,” Janelle believed Robyn has “always kept herself separate” from the rest of them.
At the end of the episode, Kody wondered whether the COVID protocols he put in place for the entire family were really worth it in the end, because of the “division with my family” now.
“I’ve got a divorce that happened, which, no doubt in my mind, COVID was a catalyst for that,” he said, adding, “It just seems like the family is going in different directions. And it’s actually very sad.”