Steve and Brenda Foley of Seeking Sister Wife are looking to add another wife to their marriage. On the show they’re courting 21-year-old April, who seems more interested in Steve as a husband than Brenda as a sister wife. The cameras are catching their growing discomfort as they move forward with this awkward relationship. Why did the Foleys choose this lifestyle?
Why did Steve choose polygamy? Was it for religious reasons?
Before being with his current wife Branda, Steve had married his high school sweetheart and had two kids with her. His first wife was LDS, or Mormon, and he had grown up in southern Nevada where fundamentalist Mormons practiced polygamy for religious reasons. Mainstream Mormons, however, do not accept the practice of multiple wives even though their prophet, Joseph Smith, had multiple wives and preached that having more than one wife was a divine commandment.
Because LDS banned polygamy, Steve said that he never imagined he would ever live this lifestyle. This all changed when Steve and his ex-wife met Brenda.
The Foleys never outright state whether or not their practice of polygamy is tied to religious beliefs, but it doesn’t appear to be tied to religion other than the fact that Steve witnessed religious polygamy in his area when he was a kid. They don’t refer to the women as “sister wives,” further distancing themselves from the religious iteration of this type of polyamory.
In essence, they describe their relationship as a friendship that grew into something more. Eventually, Steve’s first wife left the marriage, and now lives in Texas with their kids while Steve and Brenda live in Florida.
“Polygamy in a nutshell is a man who had more than one wife and we just are one big happy family,” Brenda says.
“Some people think of polygamy as glorified cheating, and to me, that just shows their ignorance,” Steve says. “It’s just another way to build a strong family with a strong foundation.”
Why Steve thinks polygamy is a better lifestyle
Steve says when people asked him why one wife isn’t enough, he makes a dessert analogy. “Everbody’s had strawberry shortcake, right?” Steve posits. “If you have the shortcake, and you have strawberries, and that’s all and you’re eating it, this the best dessert ever, I love it. And then someone comes up to you and says ‘Hey why don’t you try some whipped cream on top of that,’ and you’re like ‘I did not know that this even existed and this is great.'” He goes on to say that even though you were happy with the cake and the strawberries, now that you’ve experienced it with the whipped cream you realize that this is always what you wanted.
How did Steve and his first wife meet Brenda?
Steve first saw Brenda eight years ago. She was wearing a football jersey from the local team in Houston. Steve saw that as an in to talk to her, and Steve, Brenda, and his wife all started chatting with her.
Brenda saw Steve’s wedding ring and wife and assumed they were just a friendly couple. After the chat, they asked if Brenda wanted to meet again. Brenda says she never thought that this was a potential romantic relationship for her.
The three of them hung out more and more until, as Steve says they all developed feelings that were more than friendship. One day, while they were hanging out Steve, says “one of them” asked the group if they were all dating. Brenda confirms that it was Steve who asked this life-changing question. It was after this that they decided that they were, in fact, dating.
Brenda was unfamiliar with the concept of plural marriage and was scared of coming into an established relationship with a couple. Brenda says she made a point to have equal treatment of both Steve and his wife, which may be why she’s feeling so rejected now with April, who doesn’t place her as high of importance as she places Steve.
Brenda didn’t have a romantic connection to Steve’s first wife, however. She says she thought of her as a best friend.
Why did Steve’s first wife leave?
According to Steve, his first wife changed her mind based on outside negative influences from family and friends. However, Steve’s son tells the cameras in the latest episode that he witnessed him mom before more and more unhappy with the situation.
Steve says that his first wife leaving was hard for him because he felt like everything collapsed overnight. He didn’t understand why she had left because he thought they were all happy.
They’re trying for a second wife again with a young woman
After his first wife left, Steve says he and Brenda wanted to experience the same dynamic again. They met 21-year-old April, who is half Steve’s age, through a social media app. At the time of the season’s filming, they have been dating April for about 6 months.
April sees Brenda as a friend and is giddily smitten with Steve. Brenda initially says that April is easy to get along with, but as the season progresses it’s obvious that they’re not very close and Brenda is very unhappy about this.
Steve says that he was really happy that April never asks questions about how their relationship might work because he gets tired of explaining and “answering the same things all of the time.” This seems like a red flag, though, because it hinders communication within their dynamic so that everyone can be on the same page. If all three don’t know what to expect from the relationship and what their boundaries are, then this may cause trouble in the future.