The Identical Triplets: Nicole, Erica, and Jaclyn Dahm

Nicole, Erica, and Jaclyn Dahm are incredibly special people. First off, these girls are identical triplets, which is a genetic miracle that happens rarely- once in every hundreds of thousands of births. The triplets were born in a small Minnesota town, which made their chances of living an extraordinary life close to impossible. The celebrity trio defeated the odds and is easily recognized around the country. It’s not surprising; their striking blue eyes and beautiful blonde hair make them noticeable in any crowd.

The triplets / Erica with her children, husband, and his parents, Dr. Phil and his wife
Source: Instagram / @edahm0021 (left and right)

While they were attending college, the young beauties were offered a rare opportunity. During one of their nationally televised interviews, the girls revealed a huge secret about their genetics. It made the girls question everything they have ever known. The secret was so shocking that it even left the doctors stunned.

So what was this genetic secret? Keep reading to find out.

Telling Them Apart

Telling identical twins apart is hard enough, especially when they are young. But imagine how much more difficult it must be to tell identical triplets apart. So, after they were born, their parents came up with an idea. They marked the girls’ toes with little tattoos so that they wouldn’t accidentally mix up their daughters.

The Dahm triplets as babies
Source: Instagram / @edahm0021

Nicole is the eldest and got one dot; Erica, the second-born, got two dots; and Jacklyn, the youngest, didn’t get any dots. The tattoos proved to be a genius idea. Not only did the girls look exactly the same, but they were also inseparable. Thankfully, their parents could tell them apart by the dots until they got used to their kids’ faces.

Getting All the Attention

The three beauties grew up in Jordan, a cute little town right outside of Minnesota’s twin cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul. When their small town of 6,000 people found out that identical triplets were born, the news caused quite a stir. Beautiful rare miracles didn’t happen much around there.

The triplets as young girls with their mother
Source: Instagram / @edahm0021

However, the excitement didn’t wear off after a few months. In fact, people were more intrigued by the triplets as they grew up. When the triplets were teenagers and attended the local high school, they naturally captured everyone’s attention. The girls quickly got used to all the staring, and, by the time they reached college, it felt normal to them.

Sharing Is Caring

Not only did the Dahm girls look alike, but they also acted alike. It was almost like three of the same person. They shared everything: toys, friends, and even clothes. However, it was their relationship with one another that meant the most to them. They stuck by each other’s side in happy moments as well as painful moments.

The girls at a young age, Nicole Dahm, Erica Dahm, Jaclyn Dahm
Source: Instagram / @jacklyndahnmdolan

As someone who doesn’t have a twin or triplet, it’s difficult to understand such a special bond. That type of connection is almost supernatural. Years later, during an interview with Playboy, Nicole explained: “We rarely held our own identity. We were always known as ‘You Three’ or ‘The Triplets.’” But they didn’t have much of a problem with that.

Model Behavior

It didn’t take long for the triplets to attract attention outside of their small town. When they were only 16, the girls entered a “Great Model Search” competition in Teen Magazine. The girls were shocked when they won first place, and their picture was featured on the magazine cover. This was their modeling debut.

The girls on the cover of ‘Teen magazine October 1994
Source: Twitter

The girls entered the world of modeling by chance when they won the contest. However, it wasn’t the only time these stunners had modeling opportunities. As the girls grew up, they were offered more and more modeling contracts. Slowly but surely, they made it on some of the biggest magazine covers.

A New Opportunity

Even though they had a glamorous modeling career, it wasn’t their only dream. The girls had big dreams of becoming nurses one day. They worked incredibly hard to keep their grades up, and once they graduated high school, they were off to the University of Minnesota. One day, while they were still attending college, the girls came across an interesting ad.

The Dahm triplet playmates, Nicole Dahm, Erica Dahm, Jaclyn Dahm
Photo by Dave Allocca / Starpix / Shutterstock

The ad was for Playboy. They were looking for new models to appear in the “Girls of the Big Ten Special Edition” of the magazine. They were looking to feature women from the Big Ten universities. The triplets thought this would be a really cool opportunity for them.

Daddy’s Blessing

However, considering it was Playboy, the girls wanted to ask their father first. He was supportive and believed it would help their careers long-term. With their father’s approval, they decided to give it a shot. They weren’t really sure if it would lead to anything, but worst-case scenario, it would be a one in a lifetime experience.

The triplets with their parents, Nicole Dahm, Erica Dahm, Jaclyn Dahm
Source: Instagram / @jacklyndahnmdolan

Luckily, the casting agent offered them a test shoot. As things were getting real, they had to make a big decision: Were they really willing to participate in a photoshoot for Playboy? It was a huge choice that the triplets wanted to make together. After some deliberation, they decided to do it and became the first triplets in the magazine’s monthly centerfold.

Playboy Magazine

Getting a photoshoot with Playboy wasn’t all fun. They were well aware that there were some risks involved, especially since they were students and being full-time professional models wasn’t their original plan. They had other career ambitions of becoming nurses. Nicole admitted that they “would have never done this as individuals” in a 1998 interview for Playboy Magazine.

The triplets, Nicole Dahm, Erica Dahm, Jaclyn Dahm, posting to the camera
Source: Instagram / @edahm0021

But they didn’t have to do it alone. They had each other, as always. They quickly learned that this one opportunity would open many doors for them. Being featured in Playboy magazine is a really big deal. Eventually, the photoshoot led the triplets to take a DNA test, which had surprising results.

New Career Path

During an interview with Playboy, Erica explained that she truly felt that they had gotten a jump-start in their career thanks to the magazine. She called it an “amazing experience” that, given a chance, they would do it all over again. The new opportunities proved to be more tempting, and the girls ultimately chose to leave nursing school and embark on a career in the entertainment industry instead.

The Dahm triplets on the TV show Boy Meets World
Source: YouTube

The girls packed up and made the move to Los Angeles. As soon as they got there, more opportunities came knocking. Even in Hollywood, triplets are a rare commodity, let alone identical triplets. The girls landed roles on popular shows, including Boy Meets World and Family Feud.

Hollywood’s Triplets

They made multiple TV appearances, but more was in store for the triplets. They were about to land a role that would change their lives forever. The girls were cast in many shows, including House Wars – a reality competition show where they had to renovate a house. They won easily, and their prize? They got to keep the house!

Two photographs of Jay McGraw and Erica Dahm
Source: Instagram / @edahm0021

Fox even hired them as renovation experts for the show Renovate My Family. That’s when things changed in their personal lives as well. The host of the show, Jay McGraw, asked Erica, the middle triplet, out. She described their relationship as “love at first sight.” McGraw also happens to be the son of the renowned therapist talk-show host, Dr. Phil.

The Doctors

Erica and Jay’s relationship was what ultimately led the girls to take the shocking DNA test. McGraw’s father, Dr. Phil, was working as an executive producer on The Doctors, a TV program where a panel of doctors speaks about medical conditions in front of a live audience.

The Dahm triplets on The Doctors
Source: Instagram / @thedoctorstv

The medial experts answer health-related questions, and, sometimes, there is a segment when a celebrity guest goes on stage and discusses their own medical issues. The revelation about the triplets stunning genetic makeup would be revealed on one of these panels.

McGraw’s Idea

Ever since he met the triplets back in 2006, McGraw wanted them on The Doctors. As we know, triplets are a medical rarity, and they fascinate many people. They could easily captivate the show’s audience, plus, they already had plenty of experience on TV.

The triplets sitting on the couch on the set of The Doctors
Source: YouTube

When they were invited to go on the show, the audience fell in love with them- as suspected. In fact, they were so popular among audiences that they started coming onto the show regularly, to speak about their medical similarities as triplets. The Dahm sisters weren’t just pretty; they were smart too. They gave producers a great idea, something that has never been done on TV before.

Pregnant Together

The show was so happy to feature triplets, and if that wasn’t enough, the girls helped boost the show’s ratings. The three beauties actually had a surprise that they were eager to share with the world. Somehow, the triplets got pregnant at the same time. Naturally, fans went wild and made sure to tune in.

The triplets pregnant, Nicole Dahm, Erica Dahm, Jaclyn Dahm
Source: YouTube

Audiences were stunned that all Nicole, Erica, and Jaclyn were all pregnant at the same time. Their close friends and family were used to seeing them do things together, but getting pregnant at the same time was a whole new level. The Doctors’ producers wanted to seize the opportunity, and even do a fun crazy experiment with the girls.

Three Baby Girls

In 2010, the triplets gave birth to three beautiful babies, born just weeks apart. What’s even more incredible, they all had baby girls. Even the triplets couldn’t believe the coincidence. Jaclyn thought that “it must be that triplet bond.” After their babies were born, the girls started to wonder about their own heritage.

The triplets with their baby girls
Source: Instagram / @edahm0021

They were curious about where their family came from and what was in their DNA and what they may or may not have passed on to their daughters. All these questions are natural, and they would soon finally get their answer. The producers of The Doctors approached the triplets with an interesting offer in March 2017.

The Experiment

At first, what the producers asked seemed strange. They asked Nicole, Erica, and Jaclyn to meet with Lisa Guerrero, a journalist who was researching the new industry of DNA testing, to see how accurate and reliable the tests are. The triplets were the perfect “control group” since their DNA is identical.

The triplets holding their babies, Nicole Dahm, Erica Dahm, Jaclyn Dahm
Source: YouTube

At-home DNA kits have been very popular in the past few years. People have a natural inclination to know where they came from and are willing to pay money to find out. DNA testing has subsequently become extremely common and affordable. The most popular DNA testing kits are 23andMe and Ancestry.com. They analyze their clients’ data and tell them about their family history.

The DNA Test

But how exactly do these DNA kits work? Well, it’s actually a pretty simple process. The customer gets a kit and swabs saliva from his or her mouth; this sample has the DNA required for analysis. The sample is then sent to DNA sequencing companies, and once the testing is complete, the customer gets the results.

The triplets taking the DNA test
Source: YouTube

The tests have been known to reveal shocking family secrets when the truth about their genetics come out. Sometimes, people are just stunned that they have an ethnic background in cultures they know nothing about. When the sisters took the test, they didn’t think anything too shocking would be found. But they were in for a surprise.

The Anticipation

It took a few weeks, but the results finally arrived. The sisters were excited to learn about their ancestry, but they were sure about one thing, they would have identical results. Since the triplets had matching DNA, they were essentially each other’s clones. Still, Lisa Guerrero had her doubts.

The triplets holding the kits, Nicole Dahm, Erica Dahm, Jaclyn Dahm
Source: YouTube

Well, she wasn’t questioning the DNA of the identical triplets. She was just not quite sure how reliable these DNA kits really were. When they were still in nursing school, Nicole, Erica, and Jaclyn never dreamed that they would be in this situation. They were just three small-town girls, taking a DNA test on national TV. Everyone was patiently awaiting the big reveal.

Know All About Genetics

Genetics and biology are terms thrown around a lot, especially if you are a twin and even more so when you’re a triplet. After all, the fact that you even exist is a genetic rarity in itself. Naturally, triplets are probably interested in their own creation and hear and learn a lot about genetics as they grow up.

The triplets, Nicole Dahm, Erica Dahm, Jaclyn Dahm, taking a selfie
Source: Instagram / @thedoctorstv

The subject sparked the girls’ interest in nursing. They were already fascinated by science and had a unique interest in biology and genetics. They were always grateful to take tests to help advance the field and research on the complex topic. What they didn’t expect were the results. The shocking reveal aired on a special episode of The Doctors in March 2017.

Unsurprising Results

The initial results surprised absolutely no one: the girls were genetically identical. These girls are so identical that they are basically three carbon copies of the same person. Erica even opened Nicole’s safe with her fingerprint. As we know, fingerprints are unique to each individual, even with identical siblings. However, they were clearly close enough.

The Dahm Triplets, Nicole Dahm, Erica Dahm, Jaclyn Dahm, in a FOX event
Photo by Picture Perfect / Shutterstock

The three sisters were developed from the same fertilized egg and carried the same genetic code. The first test revealed what the triplets knew since they were born: They are identical. If these results were common knowledge and 100% expected, what was it that shocked the experts?

More Detailed Results

After they finished the initial test, it was time to take a more advanced one. This next DNA test was more detailed and comprehensive than the first time around. In addition to comparing their own DNA sequences, it traced their ancestry. Basically, it was going to tell the sisters their heritage.

The triplets, Nicole Dahm, Erica Dahm, Jaclyn Dahm
Source: Instagram

The purpose of this test was to let the girls know their background and what kind of ethnicity they might unknowingly have. Since the girls have matching DNA (and the same ethnicity), you would assume that they would have the same results. However, the results showed something totally different.

Confusing Conclusions

At first, everything seemed pretty much normal. Genetically, the triplets were all 99% European. But then, the results were broken down even more, and that’s when some differences started coming to light. According to the DNA test, Erica is 16% Irish and British, and Nicole is 18% Irish and British, 2% more than her sister. This wasn’t the only thing that confused the triplets as well as the viewers.

The girls on The Doctors with different results on the screen behind them
Source: YouTube

As the results continued to come in, more and more differences emerged. They were French and German, but in differing degrees: Erica was 22.3%, Jaclyn was 18%, and Nicole was 11%. But how is that possible? The data made absolutely no sense. It was clear that their DNA was identical. I mean, the tests proved it. So, how could their ancestry be different?

Something’s Wrong

Each discrepancy between the tests was shocking, but the most astonishing was the Scandinavian ethnicity percentage of the sisters. Erica and Jaclyn had the same results: 7.4% Scandinavian. However, Nicole’s results showed that she was 11.4% Scandinavian. That’s 4% more than her identical sisters.

The triplets, Nicole Dahm, Erica Dahm, Jaclyn Dahm at a young age
Source: Instagram / @jaclyndahmdolan

As you can imagine, the doctors on the panels were stunned. They were experts in the field, but even they couldn’t explain the strange results. How could the genetically identical triplets have different DNA results? Something wasn’t adding up. Could it be that journalist Lisa Guerrero was right? Maybe these tests aren’t all that accurate. None of this made any sense.

Solving the Mystery

The girls were baffled. If there was one thing they were sure of is that they are identical, so they expected identical results. The DNA test already proved that. Biology is a scientific field that contains many mysteries. But one thing experts agree on is that identical twins and identical triplets share the same ancestry.

The triplets wearing all black in their kitchen
Source: Instagram / @jaclynahmdolan

The host of the show, Dr. Travis Stork, was the first to offer a possible solution to the mystery. His conclusion was simple. He said that these at-home tests shouldn’t be taken too seriously. They should look at it more as a form of entertainment and not any kind of scientific experiment. Maybe they just aren’t as accurate as we thought.

The Triplets’ Reaction

Since the results were revealed on live TV, the girls couldn’t hide their surprise from the camera. While all the girls looked puzzled, Nicole was the first to speak, saying, “I’m surprised because we came from the same egg and have the same DNA.” That’s when Dr. Travis Stork expressed his opinion and told the audience to view it more as “entertainment.”

The triplets, Nicole Dahm, Erica Dahm, Jaclyn Dahm, taking a selfie
Source: Instagram / @jaclyndahmdolan

Dr. Stork further explained that despite the advancement of science and biology, these at-home kits aren’t advanced enough to give you 100% accurate results. They can give an approximation of a person’s heritage, but the more specific they get, the more flaws and inaccuracies emerge. He said: “You can’t just spit in a cup and have every single answer that you are looking for.”

Getting Curious

Guerrero didn’t expect the test to produce accurate results, but she did admit that she was curious and wanted to try them out. She had Latino genes from her mother’s side and English genes from her father’s side. She wondered if the test would get that right. “It’s piqued my curiosity,” she said.

The triplets, Nicole Dahm, Erica Dahm, Jaclyn Dahm, dressed the same
Source: Instagram / @jaclyndahmdolan

Guerrero explained that if she was going to have her genes tested, she would rather do it in a lab with a doctor than send over a do-it-yourself kit. Getting your DNA tested at a lab is much more expensive, but also much more reliable. The experts do understand the craze over these kits, though. Who doesn’t want to know their family history?

Moving Forward

The triplets were shocked by the results and still are. However, they were happy to get the opportunity to raise awareness of the DNA tests. Their lives have drastically changed since their appearance on The Doctors. These small-town girls turned part-time models have become full-fledged celebrities.

The triplets with their father
Source: Instagram / @edahm0021

The girls’ incredible journey took them to unexpected places. They switched career paths and embarked on a crazy journey. But with all these changes, one thing remained consistent, their beauty. The identical blonde-haired, blue-eyed triplets are just as gorgeous now as they were in high school. Their daughters are growing up happy, healthy, and beautiful- just like their mamas.

The Fairy Tale Wedding

As we know, being in the spotlight has its downside. Everyone is so interested in your personal life, but it comes with the territory of being a celebrity. Erica and Jay McGraw are no strangers to the tabloids and have heard their fair share of false, new stories. But there was one rumor that seems to persist. There are always speculations going around about the couple breaking up.

Erica and Jay McGraw on their wedding day
Source: Instagram / @edahm0021

Erica and Jay tied the knot in a beautiful wedding ceremony in August 2006. The ceremony took place in Beverly Hills at the home of his parents, Dr. Phil and Robin McGraw. Four hundred guests attended the wedding and watched the stunning couple exchange vows. Robin said it was one of the most beautiful weddings she has ever been to.

The Big Proposal

But before the wedding, there was the proposal. The couple was in Dallas, Texas, when Jay got down on one knee and popped the question. He asked Erica to marry him, and details of the proposal were revealed in a special episode of Dr. Phil. It was as classy and romantic as you’d expect- and so was the ring: a five-carat platinum ring studded with diamonds and two green emeralds.

Erica and Jay McGraw
Source: Instagram / @edahm0021

It sounds like every girl’s dream ring. I certainly wouldn’t mind walking around with it on my finger. Erica was so excited to tell her sisters the great news. As soon as she told Nicole and Jaclyn about the engagement, she, of course, asked them to be her bridesmaids.

Wedding Celebration

The girls have been close their whole lives. A bond between identical siblings is almost unbreakable, much stronger than the bond between regular siblings. Since they were so used to doing everything together, it was clear that Nicole and Jaclyn would be there for Erica on the most special day of her life.

Erica in her wedding dress with her sisters to her left and bridesmaids to her right
Source: Instagram

Bradley Bayou designed their stunning bridesmaid dresses, and Erica wore a custom-made Chado Ralph wedding gown, which obviously looked incredible on the blonde beauty. Having two bridesmaids looking just like the bride is a little strange, but also special and surreal. The girls were used to it, but this was a wedding the guests would never forget.

The Next Generation

In addition to their daughters, each sister has one son. The girls were all born a month apart, and the boys were born one year apart. Erica and Jay chose to name their children Avery Elizabeth and London Philip. As expected, the kids are stunning and photogenic. The inherited their mom’s golden locks and beautiful smile. The family loves to share their happy life through social media.

The triplets with their parents, husbands, and children
Source: Instagram / @donitadahm

When Erica married Jay, she officially became part of the McGraw clan, but the parents were rooting for these two from the very beginning. Jay’s father, Dr. Phil, was particularly involved. He even agreed to be Jay’s best man. Jay once expressed that his parents love Erica “almost as much as I do.”

More Soulmate

Erica is not the only sister who found the man of her dreams. Jaclyn also married her soul mate, Billy Dolan, and they also have a wonderful family together. They can’t help but share their happy moments on social media. The couple loves spending time with Erica and Jay, and sometimes they even take vacations together. The girls often take pictures at restaurants or concerts together.

Jaclyn and Billy Dolan / Nicole and Michael Kelly
Source: Instagram, @jaclyndahmdolan / Instagram, @nicole_dahm_kelly

Nicole also walked down the aisle with Michael Kelly and is also leading a happy life. It’s crazy that the sister’s relationship wasn’t affected, despite moving on, getting married, and starting their own lives. Their husbands get along great, and they have created their own little tribe.

Grateful Girls

The three small-town Minnesota sisters are well-aware of how lucky they are. They said, “It’s something you never experience when you’re from a small town of 2,000 people, and all of a sudden, you’re in a magazine all around the world.” The most amazing part is that they got to do it together.

The Dham triplets, Nicole Dahm, Erica Dahm, Jaclyn Dahm
Photo by Picture Perfect / Shutterstock

But how about returning to where it all got started? Now that they are wives and mothers, would they be willing to appear in Playboy again if they got the chance? The answer is yes! The Dahm sisters have stated that they would love to be featured in the magazine. After all, that’s where it all started.

Celebrity Status

Ever since the girls debuted on the cover of Teen Magazine when they were just high schoolers, they have been adored by readers. The gorgeous girls remained popular when they transitioned into acting. They aren’t done yet and are often invited to guest star on various shows. Their latest appearance was on the Canadian thriller TV show, Relic Hunter.

The Dham triplets, Nicole Dahm, Erica Dahm, Jaclyn Dahm with the back turned to the camera
Source: Twitter

The Dahm triplets are an absolute powerhouse and are not slowing down. They still have so much talent to share with the world. In addition to their TV appearances, modeling career, and raising a family, the girls recently launched their own cooking channel on YouTube. Is there anything these girls can’t do? You can check out their channel at TripletsGourmet.

Breakup Rumors Debunked

As we mentioned, Jay and Erica met back in 2004, when the girls appeared on the Fox renovation show that was hosted by Jay, Renovate My Family. The pair were smitten with one another as soon as they met. They felt an immediate connection, so Jay decided to ask her out. Two years later, the couple exchanged vows.

Erica, Jay, and their children
Source: Instagram / @edahm0021

There have been rumors about a breakup and marital issues, but that couldn’t be farther from the truth. No matter what the tabloids are spreading, Erica and Jay are extremely happy together. They have been together for more than 13 years now. Even after being together for over a decade, they are as in love as could be.

Three Little Girls

The identical triplets were already fascinating individuals. But when they got pregnant within a month of each other, audiences all around the world were amazed. Not only that, but they were also all having girls. Nicole was the first to give birth on January 14, 2010, when Charlize Elizabeth Kelly was brought into the world.

The girls who were born around the same time to Erica, Nicole, and Jaclyn posing by the pool
Source: Instagram / @edahm0021

Jaclyn had her daughter on February 3, 2010, and she named her Chanel Elizabeth Dolan. And finally, on March 18, 2010, Erica and Jay’s baby was born, Avery Elizabeth McGraw. Besides being born so close to each other, the cousins had matching middle names. I think they might have planned that, though. Not everything is a coincidence.

Getting Ready For the Babies

When the triplets were getting ready for their daughters to enter the world, they did everything together, as always. That included planning their nurseries. Erica, Nicole, and Jaclyn already had experience as home renovators, so they put their skills to good use while designing their babies’ nurseries.

The triplets with their sister, Lisa
Source: Instagram / @jaclyndahmdolan

Every little detail was thought of and meticulously planned, and the results were nothing short of incredible. The unborn babies each had a beautiful, cozy, relaxing bedroom ready for them when they arrived. Planning one nursery is hard enough; I can’t imagine trying to plan three. But maybe that’s because I’m not good at making decisions. Do you know how many options are out there?