Prince Harry Opens Up About Losing His Mom, Princess Diana
It’s crazy to think it’s been 20 years since the passing of the People’s Princess: Princess Diana.
In a new interview with The Telegraph’s “Mad World” podcast, 32-year old Prince Harry is sharing his experience on coping with the loss of his mother so publicly in an effort to de-stigmatize the importance of taking care of one’s mental health.
Harry said that following Diana’s death in a car accident in Paris, the then 12-year old’s life descended into “total chaos.”
He grew up distancing himself emotionally from family and friends and began “sticking my head in the sand, refusing to ever think about my mum, because why would that help? It’s only going to make you sad, it’s not going to bring her back. So from an emotional side, I was like, ‘Right, don’t ever let your emotions be part of anything.'”
Dealing with her death publicly only made it harder:
“I can safely say that losing my mum at the age of 12, and therefore shutting down all of my emotions for the last 20 years, has had a quite serious effect on not only my personal life but my work as well,” he said. “I have probably been very close to a complete breakdown on numerous occasions when all sorts of grief and sort of lies and misconceptions and everything are coming to you from every angle.”
When it nearly came to a point of no return (around his late-twenties), his brother Prince William encouraged him to seek professional help.
“My brother, you know, bless him, he was a huge support to me. He kept saying, ‘This is not right, this is not normal. You need to talk to [someone] about stuff. It’s okay.'” Harry said he’d also taken up boxing as a way to release tension and anxiety.
“Because of the process I have been through over the past two and a half to three years, I’ve now been able to take my work seriously, been able to take my private life seriously as well, and been able to put blood, sweat and tears into the things that really make a difference and things that I think will make a difference to everybody else,” he shared. “I know there is huge merit in talking about your issues and the only thing about keeping it quiet is that it’s only ever going to make it worse.”
Listen to the podcast below: