Tenille Dashwood, the pro wrestler who used to perform as Emma for WWE, on Friday shared the reason she withdrew from the U.K.’s upcoming Ring of Honor tour — an apparently brutal bout of the chronic skin condition psoriasis.
“Today, with social media always highlighting the glamorous side of life, I feel it’s important to share a dose of reality,” she wrote in a long statement on her Twitter account.
Dashwood, who said she has been battling psoriasis since she was 14, noted that the current “flare-up” of the condition — marked by often itchy scales and red patches on the skin surface — “has now covered my entire body.”
“It’s been extremely itchy and painful at this stage, it feels like burns and tearing skin all over my body. Almost unbearable,” she wrote. “I’ve tried to hide it (when it’s calm I can and have for years) and continue on stubbornly with my commitments for a while now since back when I was on tour in Australia and [New Zealand].”
Earlier this week, ROH Wrestling announced that Kay Lee Ray would replace Dashwood in her upcoming matches.
In her tweeted statement, Dashwood offered more details about her long battle with psoriasis. “Of all the creams, therapies and medicines I tried over the years, including chemotherapy medication, incredibly the only thing I found to help was diet and routine,” she wrote. “I am back in the fight and I am determined to get this to calm down again.”
Dashwood also sought to encourage others who might be experiencing similar issues.
“For years growing up I was ashamed, embarrassed and depressed over my appearance,” she wrote. “My greatest fear was that I would never achieve my dream of becoming a Professional Wrestler and working with the WWE.”
She concluded, “I stand here as a strong, confident and successful woman that has achieved those impossible dreams and knows that appearance does not change who we are and what we can become.”
It’s not easy for me to share something so personal publicly. But, hopefully it’ll help someone else going through a hard time and if so then it’s worth it! pic.twitter.com/kCME0bT3gM
— TENILLE DASHWOOD (@TenilleDashwood) August 17, 2018