Donna was outed by the News of the World. Her mother informed her and she then came out to her family ahead of what she later described as “a very difficult few months really”. She was considered perhaps the most high profile Irish woman to be a public lesbian. Donna had previously been engaged for four years. She is with her partner of four years, Lauren White, a 23-year-old singer, songwriter, musician and actor from Dublin.
Barry Egan in the Sunday Independent said, “Donna’s success on Fáilte Towers perhaps shows just how un-homophobic Ireland is: that an openly gay woman went so far in a show where the Irish public’s votes decided who stayed and who was booted out says possibly more about the reality of Ireland 2008 than anything on the so-called reality TV show”.
Donna has said that young people approach her in public to thank her for coming out as it has helped them to deal with their own homosexuality. She once gave her phone number to a 13-year-old boy who approached her on this matter.