Janelle Brown tells PEOPLE it was "heartbreaking" when Christine ended her relationship with Kody in November 2021
“It was heartbreaking for me when Christine left because all of a sudden the family was this whole different identity, and Christine had always been a big part of what I perceived was the family identity,” she explained.
“My children gravitate towards her. They always say to me, ‘Mom, wherever Christine is, we want to be for the holidays.’ Or whatever,” she added. “So that was taking away a big part — or a big heart — of the family for us.”
Janelle told PEOPLE she stayed in the marriage for more than a year following Christine’s split because of her devotion to the family: “I still felt like I should be loyal to the family that was remaining just out of obligation.”
Addressing Christine, 51, directly in the joint interview, the TLC star admitted, “I think maybe if you hadn't have left, I might've stuck it out ... because you are the heart. You were a lot of the heart of the family for my kids.”
“Well, I still am, for you,” Christine replied.
“I know," Janelle agreed, "Isn't that the great thing though? Now we have it all.”
Janelle shared that she might have stayed “for the sake of my kids and having that connection with Christine,” adding, “I think about so much, the holiday traditions, and all the things that we've done, and all the fun things we've done. Christine is front and center in all of my children's memories.”
“I love it. They're so important to me, they're so amazing,” Christine responded.
"For me, I don't want to break my covenant without knowing God's completely cool with it. I don't know. Don't know how that happens. But I'm waiting 'till I know," she shared in a confessional. She later noted that polygamist husbands are "supposed to grow beyond themselves" and that while Kody initially "really tried," he eventually "found [his fourth wife Robyn] who thought like him [and] was more like him ... [and] it was easy to be with her."
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