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In March 2015, Sister Wives star, Meri Brown, was embroiled in a humiliating catfishing scandal that was made public. While it’s been over six years since the incident, Meri brought up the situation in the current season of Sister Wives. While the incident is confusing, here’s everything we know so far.

Meri Brown and Kody Brown looking sad during confessional on ‘Sister Wives’
Meri Brown and Kody Brown, ‘Sister Wives’ | TLC

Meri began an online romance with a man named ‘Sam Cooper’

In 2014, Meri and Kody divorced for him to marry Robyn legally. While they’re still married “spiritually,” this is when all of the problems begin with Kody and Meri. As their marital problems began to grow, in March 2015, Meri found solace in an online relationship with a man named “Sam Cooper.” After flirting publicly on Twitter, they began exchanging direct messages to one and other.

Sam appeared to be a successful businessman in his 40’s. He and Meri got close, even to the point of engaging in sexting. In one leaked video from their sexting conversation, Meri is posing seductively with a banana. The catfisher also released letters Meri wrote to Sam, professing her love for him.

In an old clip (via People), Meri said, “When I started talking to this ‘guy,’ you know, we’re becoming friends and we’re laughing, and he was saying all the right things to make me trust him and make me think that he was this real person that really cared.”

Meri was catfished by a woman posing as ‘Sam’

In August 2015, after six months of Meri flirting with Sam, the romantic relationship fell apart when she found out the truth. Meri was devastated when she found out she wasn’t talking to Sam, but to a woman named Jackie Overton. The Sister Wives star ended the relationship with Sam, AKA Jackie, immediately.

In retaliation, Jackie released private photos, videos, and voice messages from Meri. On Sister Wives Season 7, airing in 2016, Meri revealed how the catfishing affected her personal life.

Meri said in an older episode (via InTouch), “This catfish was just planting things in my head and telling me how horrible my family was. And specifically how horrible Kody was.” Meri confessed, “That was one of the reasons why I didn’t want him around. I was just angry. I’m just angry at him. I just pushed Kody away. I did. He’s not the one I should’ve pushed away.”

How Meri has moved on from her catfishing scandal

Meri’s catfishing scandal was discussed throughout prior Sister Wives seasons, especially during her and Kody’s marriage counseling sessions. However, the catfishing scandal drove a bigger wedge between her and Kody. He said that Meri’s online relationship “turned out to be extremely exploitative and abusive. And from that experience, Meri and I sort of saw our marriage just dissolve.” Since the catfishing experience, Kody and Meri’s marriage has been nothing more than friendly.


‘Sister Wives’: Why Fans Think Meri Brown Is Trolling Everyone

On the Nov 28 episode of Sister Wives, Meri spoke about the catfishing ordeal. She said, “When I was in my super, super dark time, I got in a situation where I was talking to somebody who was not who they were saying they were. And it got to be a very, very manipulative and controlling situation.” Meri revealed, “I really, really appreciated Robyn being there and being a support and helping me fight through all of the crap.”

On the Dec 12 episode of Sister Wives, Meri made a banana bread recipe for a live social media event for her bed and breakfast. In the live, she was holding up a banana in a suggestive way, which fans took as her poking fun at the leaked video of her with the banana.

It’s been over six years since Meri’s catfishing situation, and while it appears that Meri can joke about it now, it was a dark time in her life. She’s still dealing with the emotional fallout in her marriage because of the situation. Hopefully, more information will be shared on season 16 of Sister Wives.