Diona Doherty: TV star on motherhood, IVF and why nothing is out of bounds – Belfast Telegraph

Juggling motherhood with a career is no laughing matter for most mums unless youre Diona Doherty.

he comedian has never been busier, with a TV series, stage shows and a podcast on the go, on top of being a mum to 15-month-old Winter and a stepmum of three.

Derry-born Diona (33) and fellow comic Sean Hegarty live in Craigavon with kids James (18), Charlie (14), Tom (12) and their toddler.

Her experiences inspired her BBC dark comedy short Sorta Stepmum, which is available on the iPlayer.

Something else she is passionate about speaking about is her IVF journey with her husband.

Diona told Sunday Life: We had IVF to have Winter, and I would talk about that in my stand-up and in Sorta Stepmum.

Its about a stepmum whos undergoing IVF and has that juxtaposed feeling of filling the mother role but still yearning to have her own children.

That is drawn from my experience of years and years of being a stepmum but not actually being able to have my own child. It took us six years to get Winter.

Im very open about that I talk about it in my podcasts and I talk about it in stand-up.

Diona, who travelled to the Czech Republic for her IVF, found that other couples started reaching out to her after she began speaking about her ordeal.

She said: Multiple times a week I am contacted by women and men who have been going through the same process.

Their family members or friends dont know about it, theyre embarrassed to talk about it and theyre clinging to anyone whos had success in having a baby and is open to talking about it.

Im glad I talk about it in a comedic way because I feel like us, as Irish people, we work through our trauma and our hardships through laughter.

I think mostly its with men because of this sort of toxic masculinity and this idea of bravado.

Most men are really embarrassed when its male infertility. Most men are like, No, my sperms f***ing great. What are you talking about?

They feel like less of a man. Thats the worlds problem thats not a mans issue. Weve obviously led men to believe that if theyre incapable of impregnating their partner, thats a real emasculating thing.

But also the world is focused on women being baby machines, like thats what theyre supposed to do. Its perfectly fine to have a womb and not use it.

With women who do want to have a baby, they feel like their biology has failed them because biologically thats what their body is ready to do and theirs wont do it for them, so theres a lot of embarrassment and guilt around it.

Even if you are lucky enough to become pregnant, you then also feel guilt about those others who havent been able to.

Ive actually written a one-woman show called Sunny Side Up, which is a dark comedy about IVF. Its possibly going to be in theatres next year or the year after.

The Derry Girls star joked that little Winter was a wild child (who) loves running around the place now that she is walking and talking.

Diona and her daughter, along with Charlie and Tom, paid a trip to Portadowns Meadows Shopping Centre yesterday for the official opening of Sweetez, Northern Irelands biggest supplier of American confectionery.

Its not the only part of her life thats busy though, with Diona and Sean having never been more in-demand.

She will be joined on stage in October by Coronation Streets Kerri Quinn and Sweeney Todd star Jayne Wisener for Bridesmaids of Northern Ireland, which she wrote.

Diona said: Ive always been a big fan of the movie Bridesmaids and Ive just taken inspiration in the sense that the story is centred around a bride and two of her bridesmaids in the lead-up to her wedding.

Its completely rooted in Northern Irish characters, Northern Irish humour and all the things we love and know so well. Its a really fun night out.

Theres a lot going on.Im literally on my way down now to record a radio series with The Hole In The Wall Gang. Im so busy work-wise at the minute and Im really grateful for that.

Also, my husband and I have started a production company called Cheesy Grin Productions.

We are producing our first show this Christmas. Its currently on sale in the Opera House. Its called Home Malone. Its a really fun script and its a proper adult comedy night out over Christmas.

After Bridesmaids finishes Ill be on The Blame Game right up to Christmas, and Seans got gigs coming out of his ears.

Ive now started my own podcast as well because thats what the world needs. Its called Remember When with Diona Doherty. It seems to be doing very well.

Bridesmaids of Northern Ireland runs at the Grand Opera House in Belfast from October 17 to 22 and Millennium Forum in Londonderry from October 28 to 29

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Diona Doherty: TV star on motherhood, IVF and why nothing is out of bounds - Belfast Telegraph

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