Identical triplets to be boys

Identical triplets to be boys

At a gender reveal party Saturday, Sunset Hills Mayor Pat Fribis, above left, reacts to the news that her daughter’s identical triplets will be boys.

Fribis’ daughter, Jessica Kennedy, and her husband, Ben, both teachers from Fenton, found out by throwing paint-filled balloons at canvases that will hang in the babies’ room. They already have a son, Cohen, 6, and daughter, Laine, 4.

The family is pictured in the photograph to the right.

Jessica is a business teacher at Ladue High School, and Ben is an industrial arts and engineering teacher at Seckman High School in the Fox School District.

Jessica laughed that Ben had convinced her to “try for just one more” instead of staying at two children, like they had originally planned.

“It’s been a good year for me,” Fribis said. “I have triplets coming, I won the mayorship, maybe I ought to buy lottery tickets or something.”

Altogether, Fribis has four children: Jon Fribis, Jennifer Fribis Botha, Jessica Kennedy, and Julie Fribis. With the triplets, she will have 10 grandchildren.

After the reveal, Jessica said she had always publicly said she didn’t care what gender the babies were, but had always secretly hoped they were boys. Even when she was a little girl, she had said she wanted to grow up and have four children like her mother, but with three boys and one girl instead of three girls and one boy.

“I always said I wanted to have three boys and one girl, and it’s funny that that’s exactly what happened,” she said.

“She always said, ‘I want at least four kids because it was so much fun growing up, there was always something to do something with and it was fun,'” Fribis said.

But even though she hoped for boys, she thought they’d be girls and up to the gender reveal, had only looked at girls’ names.

Before last week’s party, no one knew the gender of the triplets but Julie, an art teacher in the Rockwood School District. She found out the news from the triplets’ doctor and filled black balloons with blue paint.

Before the four Kennedys stepped up to throw the balloons at the canvases, they and nearly everyone at the party said they didn’t care if the triplets were girls or boys, just that they are healthy.

But as the family and the crowd saw the blue paint splatter across the canvases, they were all shocked: Most of the attendees, including Fribis, had predicted girls.

Even among triplets, which are rare by any standard, the Kennedy triplets are standing out as unique in other ways, too: Jessica was not on any fertility drugs, and female identical triplets are more common than boys.

Identical triplets are so rare that the estimated odds greatly range since they’re not common enough to gather full statistics on, but odds are estimated at anywhere from 1 in 60,000 to, more commonly, 1 in 200 million. Natural identical triplets are likely even rarer.

As for how common it is for identical triplet boys to be the grandsons of a mayor, science has not yet determined.