Derry business woman and celebrity hairdresser, Brenda Shankey, has spoken publicly about the criticism she has received for dating a man 17 years younger than her.
Brenda (45) made the headlines in July when she revealed that she separated from her husband of 18 years, celebrity hairdresser, Jason Shankey.
Read More - Brenda Shankey reveals split from husband Jason
Speaking on The Ryan Tubridy Show on RTE Radio One, Brenda opened up about her marriage breakdown and talked about the new man in her life, 28 year-old Derry man and model, Emmette Dillon.
Brenda explained how she and Emmette became close over social media but grew closer when Brenda’s younger sister died recently.
“I’ve been separated for eight months but I just felt comfortable with him [Emmette]
“Emmette seemed like the right, natural fit.”
Brenda and Emmette announced their relationship to the world on Facebook earlier this week but the reaction has been “horrendous”.
“It’s fun. He has a law degree, he’s a nurse, he’s a model but none of that matters to me because he’s a beautiful soul,” said Brenda about Emmette.
“I don’t know why people judge other people - I don’t understand why people have this free ability to speak online about what they think of someone else when they’re not in their shoes.
“My friends are horrified that people would slate me so much for being happy, that’s the irony.”
She added: “I don’t understand people who think they have the right to judge someone else. I just don’t get it,” she said.
“Since I left my husband I put on a little weight, I partied, I drank a lot of champagne - I don’t think I look 45 but I would actually consider getting some work done right now.
“I’m living in the moment. I’m enjoying the moment,” she said.