First Dates star on overcoming homelessness to become an accountant

A participant on the Irish version of First Dates has spoken about her jouney through homelessness, and how she became an accountant, writes Denise O'Donoghue.

This morning Deborah Somorin joined Ryan Tubridy in studio to share her story of growing up in care, falling pregnant at the age of 14 and how she got through it all.

Deborah's parents split up when she was just 10.

Having lived in Westminster with her Nigerian parents, her world was turned upside down when her mum moved her and her brother to Naas, Co. Kildare.

What they didn't know at the time was that her mum was pregnant with her third child.

At the age of 13 Deborah spoke of having to move to a hostel, she told Ryan that she had to be locked in her hostel room to be safe.

Having to spend the day away from the hostel, Deborah credits Focus Ireland as a place that kept her safe, allowing her to do her homework in their offices.

At 14, Deborah became pregnant and with the thoughts of having to move to a mother and baby home, her house manager Alan looked into getting the home converted into a mother and baby home, just for her.

"That is 100% why I am where I am today because that was the best place for me to be," she said.

Deborah went on to do her Junior Cert shortly after the birth of her son, Liam.

"I've been through a lot, it's only recently I learned what the word resilience actually means.


It's one thing to know what something means, but it's another thing to recognise that that's what you've went through."

When Deborah was 17 her mum died by suicide. Ryan asked if they been in touch and if her mother met her grandson, Liam.

"She did meet him. She would love him so much, especially the person he has become today."

Deborah Somorin on First Dates

Having been through so much so early in life, Deborah went on to do her Leaving Cert and through the Access Programme in DCU she studied accounting.

"My friends just think I'm such a nerd." she said.

Deborah is now working in PwC.

A hopeless romantic, Deborah wanted to meet her prince on First Dates. She told Ryan how she always chooses the wrong guy so thought she'd let someone else to the matchmaking for her.

"I'm a hopeless romantic," she said.

"I was really hopeful that I was going to meet the love of my life on First Dates."

Listen to Deborah's interview in full here:


By Denise O’Donoghue

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