RedheadZombie July 9, 2014 Share July 9, 2014 I've always felt that they treat appearing on the show as the equivalent of holding down a job. Each of the five adults is paid a salary for his/her work, and salaries are not paid based on the number of children you happen to have. The Brown family has made the choice to live in separate homes and have separate budgets. One wife cannot be held responsible for that decision. As for Meri's contribution, I agree with those who have said that driving is a big job and that Meri also seemed to have been in charge of the shopping. I also agree that the other wives likely would not have appreciated have Meri show up and start interfering with their packing. This is not a situation where anyone is dealing with lots of young children. Really, the only two wives with small children are Robyn (Solomon) and Christine (Truely). The rest of the children are certainly capable of packing a bag with a small amount of oversight. If you watch the group scenes, you frequently see Meri interacting with the children. Actually, I recall seeing her interact with the children who are not hers more than the other wives. For instance, I have never seen Janelle holding a child who was not her own. That's not a criticism of anyone. (And it may be that Meri stands out for me because I know that none of the younger children are hers. Janelle may be interacting with the other children, and I may not notice it because the younger Browns tend to blur together in my mind.) I've long felt it unfair that Meri gets a disproportionate amount of the money, meaning Mariah gets huge perks that the other kids don't. It doesn't bother me as much now, simply because the children are all having their needs met, plus some. But back in Lehi, Janelle's and Christine's kids were crammed into tiny rooms with broken down looking furniture - eating garbage while Meri eats her expensive health food. And it bothered me that while Janelle worked full time and Christine was the full time caretaker of all the kids, Meri supposedly worked part time so she could take impromptu trips with Kody. I liked Meri the first season, and I'm really lightening up on her this season. She and Mariah are much better apart (I'm speaking of on camera only) - they bring out the petulant and whiny in each other. I finally get what Meri means by her empty nest syndrome. I don't think it's because Mariah left, it's because Meri is experiencing it alone. Kody is not experiencing it with her. It may sound trivial, but I see Meri withdrawing from the rest. There's a palpable sadness about her, and she knows how many viewers feel about her. You can see her almost parsing each word she says to avoid misinterpretation or criticism. I've seen really good back and forth between Meri and Christine. On this episode, they were together explaining stuff to Christine's kids in the RV, and they were goofing around with their "Hoover Dam" thing. I think Meri has a fun side, we just haven't seen much since the first season. Meri used to (and maybe still does) sew every child in the family PJ's every Christmas, and it was a tradition for all the kids to model their new PJ's Christmas Day. I often see Meri sharing affection with the littler kids, and she was sliding down the hill with Ysabel. She also has a comfortable way of reprimanding and guiding the kids that sounds like mothering more than nagging. For instance, telling Mykelti to cover her boobs, telling Garrison to take a "potty stop", calling out the boys when they were picking on Robyn's kids. Last episode she was praising Logan and one of the other teenagers. I see real affection between Meri and all the kids. Meri is also the best at incorporating Robyn's kids into the shuffle. You're right, Janelle just doesn't show affection to the other kids - not even Christine's. She does love on Savannah, and calls her kids "honey", so I think she's just not the overtly physical type. Like Meri, Janelle also withdraws from everyone and keeps more to herself. 3 Link to comment
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