Domestic Abuse

As discussed on the RTE TODAY show with Maura Derrane and Daithí Ó Sé.

There are still issues in Irish society that are taboo – that we do not like to talk about, that we’d prefer to not admit are happening. Domestic violence is one such issue. It takes many forms; physical, emotional, mental, sexual, financial, elder, social, child, online. It’s predominantly perpetrated by men against women, but is also experienced against men. It is not gender specific and is not confined to heterosexual relationships. People of every age experience domestic abuse – from children to the elderly.

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Returning to the workplace after a lengthy absence

As discussed on the RTE TODAY  show with Maura Derrane and Daithí Ó Sé.

Though returning to work is generally hugely positive, we can experience:

    • Fear – can be huge – fear of the unknown, fear of change.
    • Anxiety – we’re always going to experience anxiety at our growing edge – when we push ourselves to do something new. In the pit of our stomach – this can be debilitating.

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Loneliness and isolation – coping strategies

Loneliness & Isolation – as discussed on the RTE TODAY show with Maura Derrane and Daithí Ó Sé.

We can be lonely in a crowded room. We can be lonely in our homes, even in a relationship – if we’re not fully able to be ourselves with somebody. A deeper more shattering loneliness is having nobody to talk to or nobody to meet. Isolation hits all ages and is not gender specific. Can be come about after bereavement, a job loss, after relationship breakdown, family moving on, arriving at older years, moving location etc. Loneliness can impact our mental and physical health.

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Irish Suicides – Saturday night and Monday morning peaks

In Ireland, men are four times more likely to take their own lives than Irish women. Irish men are most likely to die by suicide on Saturday night or Monday morning. Alcohol is involved in around 50% of Irish suicides. Midleton based counsellor, Tom Evans writes about suicide patterns and the part alcohol plays in many of these tragedies.

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Isolation can lead to raised stress level and deadly farm tragedies

(This article first appeared in Irish Examiner farming section 20/May/2016)

A Co Cork psychotherapist warns that stress is an important factor in the accident fatality rate in agriculture, which is far higher than for any other economic sector.

garda car farm

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The Importance of Children’s Anger

There’s an expression that I hear occasionally that sets off alarm bells for me. It’s the statement: “that child is the best in the world and never gets angry”. Frankly I’m skeptical when I hear that.

Inside out - anger

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Big Decisions – in your life..

Sometimes we shy away from making big changes in life, even-though we know deep down that things are not right – that we are just not happy. Now might be a good time to take another look at the big decisions facing you – as our willingness and openness to change can be high at certain times of year.

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The Reality Behind The Headlines

Have you seen this headline on social media or the tabloids?
“Red alert to parents as convicted child predator arrives in Dublin…with a suitcase full of toys”.

I find this kind of headline a bit grating. It’s sensationalist, scaremongering and it propagates the notion that the “predator” is the stranger, an unknown and probably “not from around here”. I’m not suggesting that anybody ignore the risk posed by this individual, but sadly, the truth is that children are at much greater risk from those they know and those who they are entrusted to, than the unknown stranger.

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Unforeseen Consequences of Marriage Equality Referendum

Something has changed in the Therapy room since the Referendum on marriage equality in Ireland. The outcome of that vote has had unforeseen consequences.

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The Birth Journey

When it comes to helping your partner giving birth, you will need to be the carrier of everything, from bags and birth balls to the weight of expectations.

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Pregnancy for Expectant dads

Oh the excitement before we had our first baby. The thrill when we realised we were bringing a little one into our world – a monumental step.

10 Tips for new dads – when mum & baby arrive home

Get organised, timetable your schedules in advance. Get cooking, freeze some meals. Setup online grocery shopping & home delivery. Most of the providers save “your favourites” so it gets easier and faster each time you shop. Cost is negligible.

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Tales from the Dads side..

It’s father’s day in Ireland, so here’s my timely take on the impact us dads can have on our kids.
Us dads, we are models.. Yeah we might not realise it but we model lots of stuff for our kids all of the time. And it’s not modelling in the fashion sense of the word but

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Two Sides to Every Story

History is on my mind today. As I went to my local polling station, I glanced across Cork harbour at the beauty of Cobh and I thought of my grandparents, 3 of whom emigrated via Cobh (formerly Queenstown) to the USA over 100 years ago. Shipping and transatlantic traffic had advanced to a new level back then. As they left in the early 1900s, they were amongst the first wave of emigrants for whom returning to Ireland again was a possibility – albeit a very remote one. This crossed my mind this morning because I had seen some earlier twitter traffic showing the huge numbers of Irish emigrants journeying back to Ireland – just for today – to vote in our historic marriage equality referendum – extending marriage to same-sex couples.

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Live and Let Live eh?

I’m honoured that Amnesty International choose to use this post on their “Lets Make History” site during the 2015 Irish referendum campaign on marriage equality.
It is interesting looking at the Irish nation through the lens of the upcoming marriage equality referendum. It is a snapshot of the big ‘Us’. Exactly where we are at in terms of our vision and aspirations for ourselves, for our country and our place in the world.

A community in shock

A young man of 19 was killed tragically in a car crash in our community over the weekend. He died in an instant at the scene. His injured friend survived the accident thankfully. We know his family, from meeting at child-minders, at the school gates and in the neighbourhood.

Robbie lived a full life, achieving success in each of his endeavours. He worked part-time in our local pub, while attending college. He always had a smile, always pleasant. His sporting interests ranged from angling to GAA, boxing to Rugby. He achieved academically, in his personal life, his world travelling experience, in his workplace. 

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A Dot of Grief in Time

My little five and a half year old boy had his first brush with the grim reaper today. His favourite hen, Dotty, popped her clogs. He asked about her health problem and how she had seemingly recovered over the past few days, even laying eggs again. But she nose-dived yesterday evening and, by morning, had become a “past-tense-hen”, as the late Gerry Ryan might say.


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