The patriarch of a new reality show based on the life of his five wives and 24 children says the social and legal acceptance of gay marriage has helped open the door to alternative marriage arrangements such as theirs.
The Associated Press (AP) is reporting on a new reality show to be aired on The Learning Channel (TLC) called My Five Wives based on the life of Brady Williams and his five wives who live just outside Salt Lake City, Utah.
The Williams call themselves a “progressive and independent” polygamous family because they have all withdrawn from the fundamentalist Mormon church where most of them were raised. They are now resorting to a variety of religions, such as BuddhIsm, to raise their 24 children into good future citizens.
“Since we have left the religion, it’s now about love and it’s about commitment, and it’s about happiness as a family,” said Brady Williams, 43, a project manager in his brother’s construction business. “It’s not about the fear of hell or the promise of heaven.”
A one-hour special aired on the family recently and could turn into a full series depending on the ratings.
“The family lives in two large multi-plexes built by Brady Williams that sit across a valley from a breathtaking mountain range,” the AP reports. “One is a two-story building that resembles a motel with three green doors on the bottom level, each the house of one of the wives. The other two wives live in the ground floor of an adjacent four-plex. Two of the wives work outside the home and one in the construction business. The other two are taking college courses. Two of the wives are cousins, and all have been married to Brady Williams for at least 14 years.”
The wives take turns fixing dinners for 30 every night.
“It’s like having Thanksgiving dinner five nights a week,” Brady Williams said.
Williams sleeps with a different wife every night, but this doesn’t necessarily keep all of the women happy. They admit to being jealous of one another at times, and lonely on those nights when they are sleeping alone.
One of the wives, named Robyn, told the Huffington Post that she came up with a solution that works for everyone.
She explained, “One year for Christmas I made each of my sister wives a body pillow that was of Brady, and it has this little thought cloud with their name in it, so it’s like he’s dreaming of them, and it was something they could hold while it’s not his night to be with them.”
My Five Wives is just one of several shows that have aired in the past five years that attempted to put a normal face on polygamy – a practice that is against the law in the United States. TLC has been airing the hit show Sister Wives for the last few years, which is based on the story of Kody Brown and his four wives. Big Love, a fictional show based on polygamy, aired for five years on HBO.
Many Americans voiced their opposition to the acceptance of homosexuality not only because it was an immoral lifestyle, but because they feared that it would open the door to other alternative arrangements such as polygamy.
This fear is now being realized. In fact, Williams himself admitted that he isn’t as afraid to “come out” now as he might have been several years ago before homosexuality became legal. Now that same-sex unions are accepted, however, he feels the general public will eventually open up to “plural marriage” as well.
Using almost the same mantra as those who campaigned in favor of same-sex marriage, Williams says: “There is nothing wrong with consenting adults living and loving how they choose.”
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