Disturbing the Peace is a podcast focused on the less-talked-about topics in Ireland. Hosted by content creator and writer Rachel O’Neill, the podcast aims to tackle those subjects that you don’t always hear or read about. It might make you laugh, it might make you cry, it might even make you squirm. The point of it is to make you think about things and see things in a new light and maybe learn something while you’re at it. Follow us on @dtp_pod to keep up with all the latest news and if you’re looking for someone annoying on Twitter to follow, @ronronzo is your gal. Happy listening!
The week Disturbing the Peace was delighted to take part in a crossover pod with our sister podcast Glow West with Caroline West. Myself and Caroline had the pleasure of interviewing dildo slinger and female entrepreneur Shawna Scott of Sex Siopa. We had a chat about her business during the pandemic, the quietest vibrators that you can get and how boiling your dildo is a great way to check if it’s safe to use or not.
When you hear the word ‘addict’ what do you think of? Is it someone injection heroin on the streets? Someone drinking cans in the middle of the day? Someone who struggles to hold down a full time job? Often our understanding of the word ‘addict’ is misinformed or downright incorrect and Brian Pennie is the perfect example of this. He joins Rachel via Skype to discuss his heroin addiction, rehab, how he turned his life around to become a neuroscience lecturer and researcher in Trinity College Dublin and writing his new book ‘Bonus Time’.
Our relationship with sex and sexuality is constantly evolving which means our relationship with intimacy must be too. Since we’ve all been in lockdown, it hasn’t been as easy to see our partners, romantic interests or hook ups. So, we’ve had to get creative and start doing a lot more sexting. But how important has sexting become to relationships as a whole? And what is the difference between good sexting and bad? Joining Rachel on the pod to discuss the ins and outs (steady) of sexting is Twitter Love Island creator and all-round good-egg Ellen Reid.
Having to constantly be your own advocate is exhausting but for many transpeople in Ireland, it is the only way they get heard. Trans healthcare in Ireland is dire. So much so that transpeople are having to crowd fund for their medical needs or doing it DIY, which can have dangerous consequences. Joining Rachel via Zoom (with apologies for the occasional poor call quality) is Rían Browne who set up his own fundraiser so he can travel to the UK for top surgery.
When you’re young, there seems so much to protest and be active in that it can be hard to focus on one thing. Youth mental health is in crisis in this country with services oversubscribed and nowhere to turn to. Men, in particular, are struggling with suicide rates nearly 4 times higher than women. So how do you be active in so many areas and look after your own mental health too? Joining Rachel in studio is journalist, writer and activist Conor Kelly.
If you ask Graham Merrigan how long he’s been in a wheelchair, he might respond ‘since 8 am this morning’. It’s one of the hundreds of things he has to put up with as a wheelchair user in Ireland which accessibility is rarely the top of any politicians agenda. He joins Rachel from his house to chat the disability rights, the League of Ireland and how he founded his own wheelchair basketball team.
The Leaving Cert is a stressful year but students sitting Leaving Cert 2020 have a whole new set of problems facing them. Nobody is sure what’s happening if the exams are going ahead or how the CAO system will work if the exam is postponed or cancelled. This is, of course, stressing out thousands of students who are doing their best to finish their courses on their own and study in stressful environments. So what do they want to happen? Joining Rachel via Zoom to share their concerns are Mohammed, Abbie and Emily.
‘You’re just PMSing’ is a common phrase thrown at those on their period when they appear tetchy or emotional. Unfortunately for a small cohort of people, the monthly symptoms that come along with their period can include severe depression, anxiety, severe fatigue and paranoia, otherwise known as premenstrual dysphoric disorder or PMDD. Joining Rachel via Skype to discuss their experience of living with PMDD is researcher and advocate, Shubhangi Karmakar.
Friend of the pod Michael Fry is back to chat to Rachel about the UK response to the coronavirus, the reaction to his ‘Loose Women’ video and what it’s like to have your flatmates walk in on you when you’re trying to film a video of yourself singing songs from Alive-Oh.
As week 2 of the general shutdown comes to a close, we decided that we’d dive into the topics that really matter at a time like this. So how are people feeling about Tinder? We were delighted to welcome back our favourite Tinder correspondent Ciara Dunne as well as stand up comedian Linda Hayden to get their view on what’s going on, how people are adapting to video call dates and the strangest interactions they’ve had so far.
Rachel, Martin, Rory, Tony and our newest member, Caroline West, got together via Zoom this evening to talk Covid-19, Air BnB, Housing, Tinder and Caroline’s new podcast, Glow West.
We discuss the need to look after our most vulnerable and how there’s always room for some social distancing laughs.
Mind yourself and yours!
We often say that young people should get involved in politics. Tate Donnelly decided to take it a step further and become the Green Party candidate in Cavan/Monaghan in #GE2020. He joins Rachel in studio to discuss why he decided to run for election, what he learned on the campaign trail, 4am abusive calls and living on adrenaline for the entire campaign.
Having completed a Masters in Sexuality Studies and currently completing his PhD that studies how masculinity was measured and conceived in Irish literature, it’s safe to say that Loïc Wright knows a lot about masculinity. He joins Rachel in studio to discuss why the term ‘toxic masculinity’ doesn’t really explain the many different masculinities that exist as well as how he addressed his own feelings around masculinity, destructive behaviour and opening up.
When Robbie Lawlor was diagnosed with HIV at the age of 21, he wasn’t sure where to go or what to do in terms of support. He wasn’t sure how people would react and what his life would look like now. 8 years on Robbie has become an advocate for HIV healthcare in Ireland as well as revealing his status on the Late Late Show. He joins Rachel in studio to discuss the current HIV crisis in Ireland, the different kinds of stigma people with HIV suffer and how he’s become the person he needed when he was 21.
It’s hard to be positive about the climate and the future of the planet at the moment. Everything you read about climate change can be very overwhelming and leave you wondering what the point of anything is. Luckily Joanna O’Malley isn’t one of these people. She’s set up a group called Preserve Ireland who want to show everyone the changes they can make to help. She joins Rachel in studio to discuss why she set up the group, what she wants to achieve with it and why you don’t need to be an expert on climate change to get involved.
In the last 10-15 years, we’ve erased much of the stigma around mental health conditions such as anxiety and depression. People now feel they can talk openly about their experiences and how they manage day-to-day. However, there are some mental health conditions that still suffer from stigma with less understanding and empathy for them. One of these conditions is bipolar disorder and to better understand what it’s like to have the condition, Rachel is joined by David Kent and Pamela McKiernan to discuss their experiences with bipolar disorder.
Nearly all of us have watched porn at some point in our lives. In fact, because of smartphones we’re accessing it at younger and younger ages, way before we’re ready to handle what we’re watching. With a sex education system that doesn’t mention porn at all, we’ve left an entire generation to discover how to handle porn and its effects. So how do you have a conversation about porn without it leading to a Helen Lovesjoy style hand-wringing? Well for starters you ask Dr Caroline West who is in the studio to discuss porn, its effects and why we need to be better communicators.
Relationships usually follow the same path. You meet, fall in love, get married and then decide to start a family. But sometimes, it isn’t as easy as you were led to believe. One in six couples in Ireland will face fertility problems and Emily Reynolds is in one of those couples. Having been told at 19 she would be unable to have kids, Emily and her partner embarked down the IVF treatment road. She joins Rachel in studio to chat about what it’s like to undergo IVF, why the Church needs to be removed from healthcare and how her partner has a whole new understanding of the term ‘light saber’.
As the general election looms, one of the topics on everyone’s lips will be housing. What’s the plan? What kind of building is happening at the moment? What is the difference between shared living and co-living? Who is going to win Love Island? Joining Rachel in the studio to answer these questions and discuss why he adores Love Island, housing and student media is Business Post reporter Killian Woods.
Around 15 years ago, the idea of sending nudes was something that scandalised many people. As a woman, if your intimate pictures were leaked (even if it was through no fault of your own) often many people would blame you for taking the photos in the first place. In 2020, many of us have taken a different view with more and more people taking agency over their own bodies and doing what they want with them. One of the best examples of this is the popularity of OnlyFans. So who better to explain what OnlyFans is than someone who’s been using it even before it hit the mainstream?
Being single can be hard. However, being single and trying to work out who you are and what you want when you’ve spent a large part of your 20s in a relationship is a hell of a lot harder. Having decided to avoid dating apps, Rachel has questions. How is your mental health impacted? How do you adjust to being alone? How do you begin to accept yourself and do more stuff on your own? Joining Rachel in the Singleton Shack to give her answer these questions as well as speak candidly about his own experience of being single for nearly 2 years is avid NFL and Munster fan and absolute sounder, Eric Fitzgerald.
The British election has come and gone and has left us with many questions. Why did Laura Kuenssberg tweet out stories that were clearly untrue such as the claim that a Tory aide had been punched in the face? Are political journalists too close to those they’re supposed to hold to account? Joining Rachel in studio to answer these questions as well as predict what might happen in our own general election in 2020 is Group Political Correspondent for Communicorp, Seán Defoe.
A Tortoise Shack crossover pod for Christmas. Some highs and lows for 2019 and we share our social, political and personal goals for 2020.
A huge thank you to all our listeners. We are so appreciative of every share, recommendation and suggestion.
Special mention to our patreon members, Echo, Reboot and DTP wouldn’t exist without your showing that you believe in it.