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'Football Was A Saviour' For Nicole Owens Amid Battle With Mental-Illness

'Football Was A Saviour' For Nicole Owens Amid Battle With Mental-Illness
Arthur James O'Dea
By Arthur James O'Dea
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Nicole Owens was in action this afternoon as Dublin strengthened their hold on Ladies Gaelic football this afternoon.

Facing up against Mayo in the Ladies NFL Division 1 final this afternoon in Parnell Park, the game took on a similar scoreline as their All-Ireland final last September.

In September last year, Dublin ran out 12-point winners; this afternoon it was 11 points that separated the sides and gave Dublin their first league title.


Last night, however, speaking on RTE's Ray D'Arcy show, Owens opened up about how football had provided her with an invaluable outlet when she hit a "very, very, low point" in her life:

I would have struggled with depression probably since I was in my late teens. I didn't really know what was going on, but last year I suppose, around the summer, it was a very, very tough time for me.

A few kind of 'life events' sort of combined, and I reached a very, very low point again. So, I communicated that with the team, and Mick [Bohan] who is the manager was incredibly supportive.

I took a little bit of time off football, but football has always sort of been my escape, the place I go and release all of those feelings. Football was almost my saviour throughout the year.

Having suffered with depression from a young age, Owens spoke openly about initially failing to "identify it for what it was."

In trying to retrospectively locate the source of her depression, Owens believes the root of her issues was linked to her own concerns regarding her sexuality:

I would think that is the way it works. I know there have been a lot of studies done on it.

Having initially balked at the thought of confronting these fears and speaking openly to her family and friends, Owens' journey has been a difficult, but, ultimately, rewarding one.

You can watch the whole of Owens' insightful interview here.

See Also: Watch: Ladies Division 2 Final Ends With Mad Drama After Controversial Decision




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