During his first week at NIMMA, he was chatting to a woman about her mixed relationship.At the end of the conversation she thanked him, saying he was the first person she had opened up to. Outside of NIMMA it’s the same story, as the furor surrounding Protestant boxer Carl Frampton’s public embrace of his Catholic fiancé Christine Dorrian attests.
They’re no longer “shameful”, as they were seen when she growing up, though she does caution that recent change is largely along class lines.
“The middle class is much more open and accepting,” she notes.
“People still don’t want the baggage associated with crossing tribal lines,” Mc Laughlin says.
“What they’re saying is: To hell with prejudice, just don’t publicise it.” It’s something Mc Laughlin has become accustomed to.
Even then, they didn’t want their face to appear on film.This was only a few months ago – and reflects a hidden truth about Northern Ireland today; more couples are bridging the Protestant-Catholic divide than ever before, but many remain unwilling to talk about it.