Triplets in Popular Culture

Considering the chance of conceiving spontaneous triplets is as high as 1 in 8,000 (1 in 500,000 for identical triplets), there’s no question that multiples are somewhat of a rarity. While modern medicine has certainly made multiple births more prominent, the occurrence of triplets still seems to be few and far between. But I’ve done my research, and I thought you might be interested in some of the famous triplet actors, characters, and pop culture references I found:

I have two shows that I watch consistently — Grey’s Anatomy and Friends. Of course, Friends has been off the air for awhile, but Greg and I love watching the re-runs on TBS. At one point in the series, Phoebe agrees to be a surrogate for her brother and his wife who can’t conceive. She ends up carrying fraternal triplets, and this scene is what results a few years after their birth. When we first found out we were having triplets, we couldn’t help but think of Phoebe and some of the hilarious lines she says during the season where she’s pregnant.

These identical triplet girls are probably the most famous triplets out there right now — they come up in most Google searches about triplets. But I’m not really a big fan of them or this show. It seems they really use their triplet-dom for fame and are a little too “showy” for my taste. Take this video for instance! They all decided to get pregnant at the same time. Kind of cute — but also kind of weird.

I also discovered, upon searching for “famous trios,” that Scrooge McDuck’s three nephews, Huey, Dewey, and Louie, are identical triplets!! These three were the stars of one of my favorite cartoons as a kid — Ducktales! (“wooo-ooooo!”)

Here are just a few other little “triplet tidbits” I found:

  • The psychiatrist who invented the Five Stages of Grief, Elisabeth Kübler-Ross, was an identical triplet.
  • MLB baseball players Dennis Cook, Luis Gonzalez, Dave Righetti, and Phil Hiatt are all fathers of triplets.
  • Richard Thomas, a.k.a. “John-Boy Walton,” has triplets.
  • The Binghamton Triplets were a 1940s minor league baseball affiliate of the Yankees.
  • Former Indianapolis Colts back-up quarterback, Dan Orlovsky, is the father of triplet boys. I actually had a chance to meet Dan last year when he sat at my table at a Colts luncheon. I was pregnant with Hannah at the time and his wife was pregnant with the triplets. During the time his triplets were born last winter, he was actively playing as Colts QB, so right after they were born, he had to fly out to meet up with the team. The article I read said his wife was fine with it and had plenty of help, but I would’ve killed him for leaving!

It’s clear that good things come in threes! Here are a few other non-triplet trios throughout history:

  • The Holy Trinity
  • The Three Stooges
  • The Three Wise Men
  • The Three Little Pigs
  • Three Blind Mice
  • The Three Amigos
  • The Three Musketeers

In my research, I also found quite a bit of other multiple trivia — apparently, the woman who holds the record for giving birth to the most children had 69 kids!!!! This included 16 pairs of twins, 7 sets of triplets, and 4 sets of quadruplets between 1725 and 1765 in a total of 27 births. 67 of the 69 children survived infancy. Talk about being made for child bearing!

I also stumbled across this video, which I thought was extremely fascinating. So bizarre!!

Lastly, I’ll leave you with a quick update on the pregnancy. I had an appointment Friday and it went really well. Everything looks great, and I’ve gained another three pounds. We had a quick ultrasound to check heartbeats and fluid. In multiple pregnancies where babies share a placenta, one of the biggest risks is something called twin to twin (or in this case, triplet to triplet) transfusion syndrome. This means that one baby begins taking too many resources, leaving the other baby (or babies) with less. A common indicator of this is excess fluid around one baby and virtually none around another. That’s one of the reasons why we’ve had an ultrasound at every visit during this pregnancy. Luckily, our fluid levels look phenomenal! The ultrasound technician even commented that she wished some of her singleton moms’ fluid levels looked this good! Woo hoo!!!

The girls are kicking away, and I’ve been feeling great. Can’t do much bending over these days (I feel like a child when I have to ask Greg to tie my shoes for me), but still in great physical condition.

Weeks: 24 1/2 (over half-way through the risky period)

Weight gained: 28 lbs.

Belly measuring: 30 weeks


2 responses

  1. Thank you for posting this. We just found out that we are having identical triplets. We also have a daughter that will be around 18 months when the trips are born. Heaven help us.

    • I’m so glad you found my blog. I can truthfully say I understand how scared and overwhelmed you must be right now. (I cried for a good two months when I found out!) Now, my triplets are 4 1/2 and they have made our lives exponentially better than we ever thought they could be. You can do this! Best of luck and God bless. Email me at if you have any questions.

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