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'Sister Wives': Janelle Brown says Kody and their sons are 'very estranged'

Also in the episode, Gabriel Brown explains why he no longer speaks to his dad.
Gabriel and Janelle Brown.
Gabriel and Janelle Brown.TLC

Janelle Brown sheds some light on Kody's strained relationship with two of their sons in the latest episode of "Sister Wives."

Throughout this season, several of Kody's children have said that they're not particularly close to the father of 18. During Sunday night's episode, Janelle shares new details about the tensions in their branch of the large family.

The topic of their children come up when Janelle and Kody go out on a date and started talking about holiday plans.

“This year there’s such a big divide between Kody and my boys that I don’t know what we wanna do for Thanksgiving,” the mother of six says in a confessional.

Janelle tells Kody that their daughter Maddie and her husband Caleb are thinking about coming to visit this year for Thanksgiving, but he has some concerns.

“Here’s the problem. If they’re coming, then we have a lot of people together. There’s a lot of things to work out before that,” Kody tells Janelle.

Kody elaborates on the family drama and says he didn't want anyone to come to his house if they had animosity towards him or Robyn.

“There’s a lot of stuff that has gone under the bridge here that I’m not just going to ignore when we get together as a family. Cause I’m not going to just sit and have everybody over and act like everything’s peachy and fine without working those things out,” he says.

Kody specifically mentions one of his sons at this point, saying, "Maybe Garrison should try to reach out to me and sort of make amends."

Janelle has a different opinion, however, which she shares in a confessional.

“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 ... and apologize and grovel.’ You know, my boys are just not gonna do that,” she says.

In his own confessional, Kody shares his perspective on the feud.

"I'm not asking for an apology or a mea culpa from Gabe and Garrison. I'm simply wanting to clear the air," he says.

Kody claims that Gabe and Garrison have attacked Robyn and says there’s been “a lot of sh-- talking about certain people in the family.”

In her own confessional, Robyn says that Gabe and Garrison had previously texted and called her “basically blaming me for what was going on with the family.”

In his confessional, Kody suggests that his sons are “just jealous” of the attention he’s given Robyn since she entered the plural family.

Later in the episode, Gabe shares his side of the story in a confessional and reveals why he's estranged from his father.

"In January, I got COVID. I didn’t even have a fever, I just lost my smell. October rolls around — specifically Oct. 11, my birthday — and dad calls me and we have a small discussion about how bad my COVID was," he says.

"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," he continues.

Gabe, who was visibly emotional during his confessional, says it was "just a phone call" for Kody, but it was "a lot worse" for him.

"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," he says.  

Earlier this season, Kody spoke about his strained relationships with several of his children with Christine, like Truely and Ysabel, and said that he's not fully responsible for the situation.

“If my relationship is bad with my younger children, it’s not always my fault. It’s that I haven’t had a mother who has been willing to actually help that,” he said at the time. “And Christine here needing excuses to be able to leave has been setting things up, I feel like, for a very long time to justify this to her children.”

In response, Christine said she and Truely barely saw Kody. That was one of the reasons she cited for wanting to move to Utah: There, they would have a stronger support system.

“We’ve been alone here and we would be more alone and she would be lonely here. But in Utah we’ll be right in between Aspyn and Mykelti (two of her daughters) where they live. We’re gonna see them all the time," she said at the time.