By Mariah Haas
Published April 19, 2019
“Seeking Sister Wife” star Vanessa Cobbs shocked fans Sunday when she revealed on social media that she’s leaving the Snowden family.
In an Instagram post, Cobbs explained to her followers that “after some deep soul searching,” she has “decided to part ways” with Dimitri and Ashley Snowden, who she appeared alongside with on the TLC reality series.
“I love Ashley, Dimitri, and the children so much, and will continue to do so always. However, my love and commitment to them overshadowed my love and commitment to myself,” Cobbs wrote. “I was not being truly honest with myself until recently. I was ignoring my inner guidance which was telling me that I do not belong with them in the capacity that they need me to.”
She continued: “I now know that just because you love someone (or a family), does not necessarily mean that you are meant to be with them. Sometimes their long-established dynamic is not aligned with your own personal growth and path forward.”
Cobbs went on to thank all of the fans who have supported them on their journey.
“Our love and life together was very real. I still believe that polygamy can be, and is, a beautiful thing. Love who you want and love out loud and proud. I wish Ashley, Dimitri, and the children nothing but love and happiness, and I know they wish me the same,” she concluded.
The TLC personality starred with the Snowdens on the second season of “Seeking Sister Wife,” which follows the lives of four families in different phases of incorporating a new wife into their homes.
Before the three parted ways, Fox News caught up with the Snowdens and Cobbs to talk about their decision to lead a plural lifestyle.
FOX NEWS: What compelled you all to participate in a show like “Seeking Sister Wife?”
Dimitri: I think one of the many reasons why we decided to do this show was because it provides another dimension on how you can have a plural lifestyle.
Ashley: Yeah. It gave us a chance to kind of talk about something that's often not discussed. You know people want to know so much or have many assumptions about polygamy but rarely do you actually get to talk about it with the public. So I felt like this was our chance.
Vanessa: I'm a very open minded person and I'm all for people living their lives out loud and shouldn't be ashamed as long as you're not hurting anybody so hopefully people will get inspiration from seeing us you know kind of doing our thing.
FOX NEWS: Dimitri, you made it clear from the beginning of your relationship with Ashley that you wanted more than one wife. Why?
Dimitri: One of the reasons that I wanted to kind of live this way was because I believe in feminine centricity, right? I believe that women are the catalysts for human evolution. If women are whole and happy like anything they birth or produce whether it's children or projects or businesses or services or whatever it's going to be epic. So I burden you know the effort of labor so they can express their creative freedom and that's always been very intriguing to me and I thought why not you know again kind of live that life myself.
FOX NEWS: Ashley, why did you want your husband to take on a second wife?
Ashley: Yeah for me I studied anthropology so I thought it was just a beautiful representation of family. I never experienced that in my 33 years on the planet. So the fact that women get to work together and raise a family together and just built this nation up and we have a supportive husband at the head of that always seemed to beautiful to me.
FOX NEWS: Did your faith play a role at all?
Ashley: No. Not by any means.
FOX NEWS: What was it about Vanessa that made you both feel she would be a great addition to the family?
Ashley: Vanessa, just shows up. She's just such a fun loving easy go with the flow type of person. She's also very loving and supportive. Just a great human.
Dimitri: Yeah it definitely requires -- I mean this type of lifestyle requires you to show up you literally like you have to have a high emotional intelligence. And Vanessa has always shown up no matter how hard it's been like she shows up to have these conversations to redefine, refresh and kind of relook at things that may have influenced your behavior like she always comes from that. So it's rare.
Ashley: And we're not easy people by any means.
Vanessa: But neither am I.
Ashley: So it takes a special person to be able to handle us.
FOX NEWS: Vanessa, how did you feel about the idea of becoming another wife in this family?
Vanessa: Well before seeing them I had never given it a thought. You know did not ever consider polygamy or thought it would be for me. But then when I saw them I saw how amazing they were and how can you not love them. And I was like OK I would get the best worlds here I get an awesome husband potentially and a great best friend to share motherhood and you know watch movies with all the time I wouldn't have to like you know choose.
FOX NEWS: What are some common misconceptions you hope to address?
Vanessa: Well Ashley and I are not intimate because everyone thinks that's happening. Nothing wrong with that for people who choose that, that's just not the way our dynamic is set up.
Dimitri: I think another one is that a lot of people think this is just about sex. I mean sex is the easy part, right? And you don't have to commit yourselves to anyone to have sex. So though that's part of it and a big part of it, it's not the reason why.
Vanessa: There's so much more to it than you know. Everyone thinks that he's getting everything, but you know I think Ashley and I actually have the better end of the deal than Dimitri.
Dimitri: I don't even have a room. What do you think, [Ashley]?
Ashley: I mean what you guys said. I also think you know a lot of people think that polygamy is something that is outdated or not really necessary in today's society and I just feel like there's so many people women in particular out there either doing this alone or families that you know are divorced because of the nature of man if you will. And then also that women can't get along, you know? And I think those things are all you know it's not true that women can't get along like we absolutely can if we want to and we do…
Vanessa: Work together, yeah.
FOX NEWS: It was reported that Vanessa needed to "detox" before getting intimate with Dimitri. What did you mean by this?
Ashley: So detox simply means when you're removing toxins from your body. So because we consume a different way than she originally consumed -- eating habits -- naturally she would be the one to detox. If it were the other way around and she had a very specific diet, and we ate stuff that she doesn't consume then we'd have to detox. So because it was her coming into a family that didn't eat certain things she'd have to remove these things from her body in order for our pHs to match. So either you have an acidic pH or a neutral pH or an alkaline pH. Everyone should be neutral but it's better to be alkaline because then disease can't live in your body. So if you have a more acidic pH it's because you're eating more acidic foods and that can disrupt you know your pH.
FOX NEWS: Vanessa, how did you feel about the idea of going on a diet just to get intimate with someone?
Vanessa: So I mean I loved meat and pizza and all of that stuff, but I had always wanted to eat more plant-based, vegetarian, pescatarian, so it was perfect when I met them. You know obviously it was a struggle to withhold and not be able to sleep with him until I was done with that because it had been a little while, but I was really excited to detox my body. I've done lots of detoxes in the past. I think everybody should be doing them you know on a semi-regular basis.
Ashley: I think for this union, in particular, it matters because we are sharing Dimitri whereas if it were just single people out there living in the world you do what you do, but we have one person that's the you know the similar vein here.
Vanessa: I think it's great that it's being brought up because so often women's health you know is not really talked about. It's kind of hush-hush and we should be able to talk about yeast infections and not wanting to get them and how to prevent them. It should be an open discussion.
FOX NEWS: On the subject of intimacy, how does it work without the other wife getting their feelings hurt?
Ashley: Yeah I mean I think you have to have, I think you have to have feelings about it to have them hurt. And so because I don't see it as something that's being taken away from me or I'm lacking or anything like that then it doesn't affect me. But if I feel like you know it's, it's mine and it's something that you know I'm very possessive of then I can understand why you would you know your feelings would be hurt but I don't really see it that way.
Vanessa: Well yeah I agree with her. And for me you know I'm someone who enjoys sleeping alone when I can. I love you know sex and everything but I don't need to have Dimitri my bed every night when that time comes.
Dimitri: She sends me away.
Vanessa: I'll stay up late, watch TV. Yeah. Bye.
FOX NEWS: Do you think it’s truly possible to have multiple spouses for a happy marriage?
Ashley: Absolutely. I don't think it's for everybody, but I think if you desire to live this way and everyone is on board, consenting and desiring of this type of family it's absolutely viable.
Dimitri: It just requires a certain level of awareness and emotional intelligence, and if you could subscribe to that and do the work for that then you can do this. But again for some people, it's better not like it's like you -- it takes a certain level of communication. It takes a certain level of introspection and you know current or constant rather revision. And if you're not up for that like it's, this won't work because whatever, whatever deficiencies you have it'll be exasperated in you know in a plural setting. It'll just blow up times however many people are in that party. So it's just better to, if you're not ready to work on that then just stay single. I would recommend stay single quite frankly, aside from monogamy but monogamy does afford you other agency, right? To kind of flex whatever those inefficiencies are.
Vanessa: Yeah. Communication is key no matter what your family dynamic may look like if you're a woman who has three husbands or a man who wants three husbands you know you've got to have the communication no matter what. So that's the most important part.
FOX NEWS: How does your family feel about this lifestyle?
Ashley: Yeah. Well you know my mom has kind of been a constant on the show. Season one, you know she was not with it. The show is now I think it was a fourth episode, episode four, for my birthday, whatever the episode number was and Dimitri surprised momma Donna…
Vanessa: With me. Thinking it would be a good surprise.
Ashley: With Vanessa, and she wasn’t really happy about it. But I think meeting Vanessa and having a chance to talk to her and listen to her kind of helped calm some of her concerns a bit. So you know she's been trying. She's been showing up as much as she possibly can.
FOX NEWS: Have you and your mom worked things out?
Ashley: Yeah I mean she always supports me no matter what. It's just a matter of how much you know she's wanting to be a part of our lives that she's kind of had to face. And I think she's sorting that out. She's doing really well with it.
Vanessa: All of our families are very protective over us. And so they just don't want us to get hurt by each other. So that's their main concern: ‘Oh you're gonna hurt her. You're gonna hurt her.’
Dimitri: Yeah. My family's again less, as Vanessa said, is less concerned about the relational construct and more concerned with who the hell Ashley and Vanessa are. I mean it's always been there, specifically my mother, that's been her issue, but that aside she doesn't care what or who or why. It's just the who.
FOX NEWS: How do you plan on one day explaining a possible new mom to your kids?
Dimitri: You know it's a good question. I'm not sure you have to explain it. I mean you don't typically explain monogamy right. I don't have to explain being a melanated man or black man. I just am. There are some nuances that are surround being who you are and you'll kind of cross that bridge and have that conversation when it contextually makes sense. But I don't have to walk around and have this pre-big conversation about: 'Hey you have two mommies.' They only know that our children are very young still. So they will have only known this. They only know the difference when they get teased about or someone else brings it to their attention right from outside. Otherwise, it's really kind of a non-factor at this point.
Vanessa: They introduced me as you know Vanessa and it just kind of slowly brought into their life. So they just love me and just know me as kind of being there.
Ashley: They see her as the fun, the fun other mom, the other mom. They might not call her mom yet, but they definitely understand that she, she is like a mom in their eyes so they treat her like a mom. I think as the children get older too they may have more questions and curiosities and may make more observations and we just have those conversations kind of as they arise.
FOX NEWS: Are you concerned about having those conversations with them at all?
Ashley: No. Not at all. I think it would maybe make things a little bit easier for them especially when they go out and other people are asking because we have those conversations they're able to kind of advocate for themselves and just be able to explain what's normal for them.
FOX NEWS: What has the response been since the show aired?
Dimitri: It's been…
Vanessa: It’s been a mixed bag.
Dimitri: It's been a mixed bag. I think on social media. It’s been full of disdain.
Vanessa: Well Twitter because Instagram people are really nice.
Dimitri: Instagram, people are nice.
Ashley: There’s a culture on every platform.
Dimitri: I mean specifically for me, I mean it might be different for you guys, but for me as the guy, right? There is a lot of disdain. People are very not happy with what they think I'm doing or who they think I am, which I find interesting to derive who I am off of X minutes of television right between commercial breaks. I'm intrigued by that almost annoyed with it honestly. So it's been rough at times you know because people are so committed to the inaccuracy right or what they think they are or they are so committed to their biases that they can't even understand what you're actually doing and so it's like are you here to ask or are you here to just tell me what you think you know? And in that case what are we talking about? This is mine, so go ahead and move about your life. So I find that that has been challenging. But in the same regard, we've also had people that are like wow this is awesome. It's really not about the relational construct it's the fact that you guys were highlighting functional aspects of a relationship that are pertinent across any type of relationship parent-child teacher-student you know a woman-woman man-man whatever. Like you just have these fundamental one-on-one aspects of a relationship. And I think that's what we try to highlight the most and we secondarily oh, by the way, happen to be plural.
Ashley: You know I think the response at least for me and my perspective is more positive than negative. Unfortunately, the negative always seems to be the loudest. But you know I have a lot of support even from people who state that they can never live this way. You know they still value and appreciate the other dimension you know of being in this relationship which is the communication, which is the healthy lifestyle, which is the like you know, a different way of viewing the world. I think they tend to gravitate toward that more than they do the actual relationship construct.
Vanessa: Yeah. Like I said it's been mixed. I've been getting a lot of beautiful messages…
Dimitri: They’re trying to take you!
Vanessa: Yeah, I do get people who are like, ‘No here come live with us.’ People think that I just want to join any family. I was like that wasn't it. It was like specific to them and you know, I'm not interested in women. I don't want to break any women's heart out. I'm flattered. But yeah people have been really supportive and people have been asking what dating site did you meet them on? And like again, I wasn't on a polygamist dating site looking for it, but I think that's great that people are interested in it and you know I hope there will be sites out there that people can find the family dynamic they're looking for.
FOX NEWS: Ashley, you said in a previous interview you were aware Dimitri had slept with another woman, but you didn't consider it cheating. How so?
Ashley: Yeah. So for polygamy, it's very different and for each family that practices polygamy it's very different. Everyone has a different set of rules and guidelines that they go by for Dimitri and I. Because we are aware that sex is gonna happen and we've talked about it and we know that we're dating in furtherance of finding this woman that it can and will come up. So it wasn't so much that I wasn't aware that you know they could potentially have sex it was more so that we hadn't talked about it in that particular timeline of events. So you know most people would see that as like: 'Oh well he cheated and you know he lied.' Well, he actually came to me and told me and it was way sooner than we had discussed. And so that's the issue for us is him moving ahead of the timeline.
FOX NEWS: Anything else you'd like to add?
Vanessa: Keep watching there's a lot of good stuff.
Dimitri: Yeah. This season is definitely action-packed. There's a lot of good stuff coming up later on in the season. And I would just, I would encourage people just to keep an open mind in that everything is not for everyone. But you don't have to hate what's not for you. Just relax. It's ok.
Ashley: And watch from an objective perspective because a lot of people insert their selves into our situation and it's our lives. Our family. It's not personal. So you know just because you respond a certain way to things doesn't mean that you know the way that we're responding is somehow wrong or fake or any of those things. It's like no we're our own person. We're our own people.