The teens on last night's Sister Wives got a bit of a reality check. Maddie, Logan, and Aspyn are volunteering for an organization that helps families who want to leave the polygamist lifestyle. They are traveling back to Utah to paint a house for a family to move into after leaving the LDS community. Kody Brown and his hair hope that Aspyn will remember that plural marriage is a good thing. Christine isn't on board with this trip because she wonders if there are times when people are are "helped" when they really don't want to necessarily leave.
Kody and the wives are optimistic that the teens will remember how different their family is from the families they are about to see. Maddie can't fathom the abuse that some people in plural marriages suffer, and Aspyn is worried that she won't be able to relate to the victims. Right away they meet a polygamist escapee Kollene who readily admits she wants to take out some of her anger on the Browns. Kody is upset that Warren Jeffs has painted his lifestyle in such a bad light.
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The organization for which the teens are volunteering is called Holding Out Help. They meet some teens who are FLDS who have been raped and abused, as well as a guy who was kicked out of his family. One girl left after her father forced her into marriage at the age of sixteen. Kollene has left her family twice, once at fifteen and again at seventeen. She remembers her father beating her at a very early age. Maddie reveals that while she doesn't want to live a polygamous lifestyle, she is supportive of her family and believes her parents are good people. She is very upset by the stories she's hearing, and she wants them to know that there is a good side of polygamy.
Kollene shares her story about how she only saw her father on certain days and was revered as a king. Maddie wants Kollene to meet her family to see that there are decent polygamist families. She and Logan assure Kollene that they aren't trying to convert her, they just want her to see that every polygamist family isn't like the one in which she was raised. Aspyn admits that she does want to have sister wives, and Kollene questions whether Aspyn thinks she'll be able to find a family like her own and not one like Kollene's. Kollene thinks that Aspyn has been totally brainwashed.
Logan is weirded out to learn that in school the students had Warren Jeffs stickers on their desks. Maddie is horrified that one of the escapee wives has "be sweet" carved in her headboard as a reminder to be totally submissive. These stories are so tragic. The teens invite the escapees to come to Vegas for a visit even though they are concerned about Kollene's attitude towards their father…and his lion's mane.
Kody is having a hard time listening to the stories, and Christine is happy to learn that the organization doesn't just help people escape polygamy. Robin and Janelle are in tears hearing about how these kids were affected by Warren Jeffs.
The group tours the homes, and Meri relates the escapees lifestyles to being plural monogamy because the kids didn't have any relationships with their other mothers. The wives readily admit to being jealous at times of sharing Kody which seems to make them more relatable to the visitors.
The family and their guests head out for a picnic, and Kollene tells Kody that she doesn't agree with any of his lifestyle. They have a good dialog, and Maddie and Aspyn arrive dressed in full FLDS garb. Janelle's reaction is that of shock. She can't believe how oppressed the girls look. Robin shares her own story of being in an abusive relationship.
Over dinner, everyone seems to get along well. The guests have enjoyed seeing a different side of polygamy, although none of them has changed their opinion of living a polygamous lifestyle. Christine shares with the group's organizer that she was worried that she was going to try to break apart their family. She has been horrified to hear the stories of abuse. However, I think that everyone from both backgrounds has learned a lot. Kollene even admits to respecting Kody as a father. Progress!
Next week, the houses are being designed, and the budget is questioned. Christine feels that the family is failing.
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[Photo Credit: TLC]