Back To The Rafters star Erik Thomson’s real-life marriage is a dream match-up

As convincing as he is as Dave Rafter, the actor isn’t actually married to Rebecca Gibney…
Loading the player...

For the better part of the past few decades, affable actor Erik Thomson has been lighting up Aussie TV screens, notably as the other half of the characters played by the formidable Rebecca Gibney and Georgie Parker in Packed To The Rafters and All Saints respectively.

With such experience holding his own against strong women, it’s fitting then that his real-life wife Caitlin McDougall is every bit his equal.

WATCH: Erik Thomson shares his family holiday plans

The couple, who starred together on 2004 Aussie film The Alice and accompanying Channel Nine TV series, first met at pub on AFL grand final day in 1997.

“Neither of us were into football so we sat together and chatted for hours and that was it really. That was 24 years ago,” the actor told SA Life of that fateful first meeting.

Two years later they tied the knot at South Australian winery Penny’s Hill and have been going strong ever since.

Erik Thomson wife
Rafters star Erik Thomson (left) met his wife Caitlin McDougall in 1997 and they tied the knot two years later. (Credit: INstagram)

That’s not to say the 800 Words actor and Always Greener actress’ relationship has always been smooth sailing.

In 2018, Erik – who shares two kids, daughter Eilish, 12, and son Magnus, nine, with Caitlin – spoke to  New Idea about how hard it was to balance family life and his career.

“We had a bit of a hard year last year,” he admitted at the time. “I was away for big chunks of time and my kids are only young. I would ring up and there would be tears, it made things a bit more difficult.”

However, as many families can relate to, both parents and kids were forced to make the best of a less than ideal situation.

“We just dealt with it on a daily basis. We kept in touch and we would get together when we could,” he said.

WATCH BELOW: Erik Thomson wins Best Actor Logie for his role on 800 Words. Story continues after video

Loading the player...
Erik Thomson Caitlin McDougall
Both actors, Erik and Caitlin starred together in The Alice. (Credit: Getty)

Now that Erik and Caitlin have notched up more than 20 years of marriage, the Aftertaste star has revealed the secret to their unwavering bond.

“Forgiveness; more from her to me than the other way around,” he told the New Zealand Herald.

“Acknowledging each other’s humanness and the fact no-one’s perfect. You’re just trying to do the best you can. Underneath there’s love and respect and hopefully trust.”

“When we first met, we both felt like we’d known each other before, as crazy as that sounds. There was a familiarity and an ease that has carried on. She’s spent the last 11 years throwing her energy into being a mum. Now that our son’s in school her sense of self is coming back a bit more.”

RELATED: The secret behind Rebecca Gibney’s happy 20-year marriage

Caitlin McDougall Erik Thomson
“It’s about getting through stuff together,” Erik said of the key to their marriage success. (Credit: Getty)

Adding to this sentiment in an interview with New Zealand’s Woman’s Day in 2018, Erik further elaborated on how they kept their marriage strong.

“It’s about getting through stuff together,” Erik said.

“Sometimes things can be difficult, but that’s normal in a marriage. And the alternative isn’t particularly good – bringing up kids in different houses and all that. It’s better to make what you have work. No marriage is perfect and as soon as you accept that, and ride out the tough times, things go well again.”

Want your own fairytale romance? Sign up for eHarmony today!

Related stories