Unmarried And Separated Parents of Ireland
A support group for parents in relationship difficulties
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Member's Comments


Eamonn Quinn

I am the mainstay of the Group and I have been in this position for a long 10 Yrs now.
There were no help groups around for Couples going through Separations or Relationship breakdowns of which I am still wearing the T-Shirt and the Emotional Scars.
Everything that I do today is Thanks to a great person by the name of Jim Fox who was a total stranger that helped me where so called Friends and Family failed Me. I thanked Him and he said

"Maybe someday you will help someone"

Little did I know that I would go on to help Thousands over the last 10 Yrs. Our group is very strong at present due to some good people coming on board
Namely: Eugene, Ronan, Willie, Paul, Shirley, Don, Dave, and
also the staff at St. Aengus Community Center.
The generosity of Vincent Smyth at Smyth's Pub for the provision of the Meeting Room, and many others that give an input weekly.
By helping both Men and Women at the meetings it has brought about a better understanding of what needs to be done but more men and women need to become involved.


Taking the first step is always the most difficult. When I contacted the group I was near suicidal from the trauma of marraige break up. Fortunately I took that first step and in the following weeks and months I became a strong, informed and capable person again. The group talk honestly about their situations and the support is genuine and heartfelt. I can\'t thank the group, Eamonn, Eugene, Don and all the members for the support at what was a terrible time in my life. Take the first step....


I obtained my Judicial Separation in Jan 05 after almost a year of dealing with a solicitor, many meetings and tons of correspondence with the final show down in the Law Library in Dec 04. The final cost to me of obtaining my separation and having the deeds of the family home put in my name was € 10,000.

I obtained my Divorce on 3rd July '08. I was in the beginning obviously going to retain the services of my previous solicitor until a friend told me about USPI.
To be honest, I was a bit unsure because I thought this was a group for men only, but I took the bull by the horns and discovered I couldn't be more wrong.
I met Eamonn; he was there every step of the way with guidance and support. I can't tell you how many times I rang him at night and at weekends and no matter what time it was, he listened to my concerns and put my mind at rest.

Getting my Divorce in a matter of months since I first approached Eamonn was totally unexpected because I was used to Solicitors time delaying (excuses to up their costs).
Getting my Divorce without paying out thousands to the legal profession has been a total eye opener.

I cannot say enough about this group which helped me so much and will continue to help both Men and Women in difficult marital, separation, access situations etc. I hope my comments will encourage other women to approach USPI for help because any separation/divorce is traumatic and we need all the support we can get & your group certainly provides that without the worry of massive expense which most people cannot afford. Good Luck and thanks for everything.


I became a member of the Unmarried and Separated Parents of Ireland after my separation in 2004. At that time I felt really deflated and useless. The support I received from this group gave me the determination to carry on and gain my rights of Guardianship, Custody and Access to my children as an un-married and separated father.


I first started coming to the group in 2007, I needed help, I needed someone to listen to me, I needed some advice.
I had been using a Legal Aid solicitor and felt that he didn't care what happened with my case. I felt like no-one wanted to help me protect my child.
That was until I started going to the group... I was so scared, I thought this was going to be another 'men’s' group and I was going to be slated when I went in. But it was nothing like that. I was welcomed, listened to and given some great advice. I was so angry and felt that my life revolved around courts, gardai and arguments. This all changed after a couple of months of going to the group. The way I would describe it is like sitting around with your family and having a good chat about every little thing that is on your mind. Plus you get great advice. Everyone is in the same situation and we all help one another. I would recommend anyone in a similar situation to come to the group. I would also like to sincerely thank Eamonn, Eugene and Everyone in the Monday night group.

Charles O' Toole:

I would like to say thank you to our group U.S.P.I., for all the help in my family law case. It has been a traumatic four years for me, my family, my extended family and friends. I can now move on and look ahead to starting a new life. I hope now to be of some help to other men and women who will unfortunately find themselves in a similar situation.


Three or four years ago I was put in touch with the group. At that stage I didn't know where to turn for advice and support. Even though at that stage the group was mainly for men, they made me welcome and offered their help which has proved invaluable. Myself and my daughter have been supported by the group and we have made some great friends along the way.


There are times in some people's lives when a crisis occurs. For me it was the breakdown of my relationship. As a woman in this situation I cannot recall how I ended up attending a U.S.P.I. meeting but now know it was meant to be. Listening to the effects of relationship breakdown on both parties has been a learning experience, and in turn has helped me to communicate at a healthier level of understanding and compassion in regards to the breakdown of my relationship. Thank you for your support and kindness, because at times like this support is the key to recovery.


I’ve only been to two meetings so far, a friend recommended this group to me, I came as I needed help. Straight away I was made feel at home, advice was given freely and when I left I had a clear head. I was also able to give some input to the meetings, which I feel is great.


I Joined the group in 2006 after the breakdown of my marriage, and with the help and support of each of the members, I was able to regain my dignity and pride. I also learned with the help of the group how to defend myself in court and get a fair and balanced legal separation.


When its all gone bad and you need some help and support, then this is the place to come. Legal questions answered in plain English, it wont happen overnight but you will get the help and direction you need. Ten months on and I now get lots of access to my daughter, I still come to the meetings to offer my support to others. Thats what it's all about.


I've been attending the group for the past five weeks, so I'm still relatively new compared to other members. Emotionally and physically I felt shattered in my first week or two, I can honestly say I was bordering on suicide, but with group leaders offering encouragement to come and participate every week I feel my spirits have been lifted. There's a friendly non-judgemental attitude from and to all members, male and female. The sharing of advice within the entire group can also give a person a real sense of worth. Thank you, to U.S.P.I. for all their help now and also in the future.

M.K. Grandmother

Ever since I first started going to the USPI meetings it has helped me look at my difficulties with a different perspective. Everyone is so supportive and it showed me that I wasn’t the only one feeling this pain. There were many people of all ages going through the same or even worse difficulties when it comes to a loved one, such as a daughter, a son and even a grandchild as in my case.
The group meetings saved me from having to deal with even more pain, by giving me the confidence I needed to go to court and succeed in attaining access to my grandchild.
Even though I now have access to see my grandchild, I still go to the meetings every second week because the members always give me something new to think about.


Hi, I just wanted to say that going to the USPI meetings was the smartest thing I’ve ever done. The members were so friendly and because they listened to my troubles it helped me to build confidence in myself.
Eamonn is an inspiration to me as he helped me an awful lot, I feel I owe my life to him for helping me to build emotional strength and self-assurance.
Now no matter what happens to me emotionally concerning my daughter, I will always have the strength to battle through it. “the sky is the limit”. Thank you very much USPI.

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