Thursday 18 January 2018


Tanya Sweeney

"I was in fourth class in primary school when a classmate spilled the beans. The weird thing is the film 'Back To The Future' was very popular then and my friend kept going off the subject of what men and woman did in private to what happened to Michael J Fox in the film. 'Back To The Future' is still a great movie. I'm not so sure about sex."

'Naked Camera' comedian

PJ Gallagher

"Little girls hear all this stuff from other girls. Of course, most of what you heard back then was complete rubbish. I suppose that's down to Chinese whispers where everything gets exaggerated. For this reason, for most young girls, I'm sure it takes a while to work out fact from fiction. It's all part of growing up and learning about adult things which are a long way off in the distance."

Model Pippa O'Connor

"Ballybrack, south Dublin, a laneway in the late 1970s near where I grew up. There were two fellas sitting on top of the wall and I started talking to them, then they just came out with it, just like that, very matter of fact. 'This is what happens when a man and woman go to bed.' Decades later people ring up my radio show with some shocking stories but nothing can match my shock back then."

Radio host Adrian Kennedy

"It was a process of elimination for me. Storks don't deliver anything. Cabbage patches aren't all that clean. I was 12 and still in primary school in St Malachy's in Edenmore. I remember a year or so later, my mam and dad handing me a book on sex education and asking if I had any questions. I told them that it was okay, I knew this stuff already. They were horrified. But they persisted, saying the book would teach me a bit more. I don't honestly think it did."

Weatherman Martin King

"I first learned about the facts of life when I was called into a room by a Christian Brother at school. There was just the two of us in there, when he got out a book and started showing me the most graphic images.

'Ireland AM' presenter Alan Hughes of TV3

"I found out the facts of life when I was in school and it wasn't from the teachers. It was from the school yard. I suppose coming from a family of nine it was news that certainly knocked me back. I have three kids of my own now [laughs] so it's obviously something I've come to terms with."

Former Lord Mayor of Dublin Royston Brady

"When I was six my mate in school told me that his dad magically made a baby by putting himself between his wife's legs. As a kid I thought, how could any magic happen with all the clothes and aprons in the way? The business of people taking their clothes off and having sexual organs not occurring to me. Then I started to notice how full the world is of people and realised they must somehow find a way."

Comedian Brendan Burke

"My curiousity had already been spiked by various song lyrics over the years ('Cecilia' by Simon & Garfunkel to name just one). I also used to love reading and would call into Easons on the way home from school. I found a book there that covered everything, so I'd stop in and read it till I knew the basics (the lyrics I'd been listening to made a lot more sense after that). I couldn't possibly divulge when or where practical trials took place."

Singer Eleanor McEvoy

Irish Independent

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