Agony aunt Frankie Byrne and playwright John B Keane discuss Irish men and how to find the perfect partner for marriage.

Agony aunt Frankie Byrne and playwright John B Keane debate the statement,

Irish men are boorish, unmannerly, uncivilised, and generally not trained to be able to meet a woman in a civilised fashion as people but only as sex objects.

John B Keane believes Irish men find it very difficult to converse with women and often speak inappropriately to them. He thinks this problem stems from religious taboos fostered in the 1940s. During this period dating women and close dancing was actively discouraged and,

A relationship between a man and a woman became somewhat suspect.

Frankie Byrne believes, fundamentally, men are afraid of women. However, she does not think women demand enough of men and accept poor behaviour far too easily. She also thinks women should retain their femininity and not try to become one of the lads.

Frankie Byrne and John B Keane discuss where people should go to find a partner, with Frankie Byrne noting,

If I knew the real, pat answer to that I would be a millionaire.

In her experience, Frankie Byrne says most people tend to meet by chance rather than at dances or in pubs and hotels. Such venues are not the places to find a long-term partner. Instead, people looking for a relationship with the view to marriage should take night classes or join amateur dramatics societies. In such environments, there is a mutual common interest, and an opportunity for potential relationships to develop over time.

John B Keane owns a pub in Listowel, County Kerry, is a greyhound fancier and a household name for his plays such as 'Sive’ and ‘Big Maggie’. His play 'The Chastitute' opened in June 1980 at the Cork Opera House. It features a bachelor farmer who is celibate by force of circumstance. The play tells of his efforts to find a mate.

'Tell Me' is a weekly series of interviews, all conducted by John O'Donoghue. The idea behind the series is to bring different pairs of people together to let them converse. This episode was filmed on 18 July 1980.

This edition of ‘Tell Me’ was broadcast on 1 August 1980. The presenter is John O'Donoghue.