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Donna Rose: Wales prop living and playing with borderline personality disorder | #daitngscams | #lovescams | #datingscams | #love | #relationships | #scams | #pof | #match.com | #dating


  • By Ceri Coleman-Phillips
  • BBC Sport Wales in Dunedin

Image source, Huw Evans picture agency

Image caption,

Donna Rose was diagnosed with borderline personality disorder when she was 20

Warning: This article contains references to mental health issues and suicide

The pressure that goes with being one of Wales women’s first professional rugby players cannot be underestimated.

They are history makers, role models and tasked with inspiring the next generation.

But imagine having to wake up every morning doubting whether you are good enough to pull on the red jersey, whether you are worthy to walk down the tunnel with your team-mates, or whether you deserve to sing your national anthem.

That is something Wales and Saracens prop Donna Rose has to deal with on a daily basis having been diagnosed with borderline personality disorder (BPD) 12 years ago.

“Every day I doubt my ability, I question am I good enough? Why me?” she says.

BPD causes unstable moods, behaviour and relationships. Rose explains one minute she could be joking around playing pranks on her team-mates and the next she could be sitting silent in the corner.

“I like to be bubbly and I like to see people happy,” Rose told BBC Sport Wales.

“But sometimes I don’t want to be bubbly and the girls let me have a few seconds in the corner, they know that I’m good at coping with it. They know [to] give it five minutes and I’ll be running around again.”

Rose credits her team-mates, coaches and behavioural therapies in helping her to cope with her changing emotions.

“I manage it pretty well now… but obviously every day is a struggle,” she said.

“It’s just knowing the triggers and what I can do to help those triggers.

“If I’m on the field I don’t really let anything bother me. Obviously I can’t run away from it permanently, I just have that different mindset where I use the anger and everything as a superpower and let it express itself.”

Rose has won 17 caps for Wales and will start against world champions New Zealand in the new WXV tournament on Saturday.

She was one of the first 12 Wales players to be awarded professional contracts at the start of 2022.

While Rose says she is honoured to be in that privileged position, she also sees her professionalism as an opportunity to raise awareness of BPD.

“I love being a professional rugby player, that’s a big part of my life, but I’m over the moon that I can now use that as a platform to get mental health out there,” she said.

“I really struggled in the past. If you read all the articles and stuff, I have tried taking my own life.

“Now I can use this platform to help people, because I am a person that wants everyone to be happy. I hate to see someone sad.”

Rose says the response since talking openly about her mental health has been hugely positive.

“I have received a few messages of ‘thank you for stepping up for borderline personality disorder’,” she said.

“There is not enough information out there, there’s lots about bi-polar and depression, but borderline personality disorder kind of gets pushed to the side and it is one of the highest rates of suicide.

“We need more information about it to help people out there suffering.”

If you have been affected by any of the issues in this article, you can find details of organisations that can help via the BBC Action Line.

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Posted in South Africa

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