The Duke of Cambridge has opened up about the death of his mother, Diana, Princess of Wales, in a candid interview ahead of the 20th anniversary of her death.
Prince William said speaking publicly about his mother’s death has not been easy, but he wants the nation to be more open about grief and mental health.
“I am in a better place about it than I have been for a long time, where I can talk about her more openly, talk about her more honestly, and I can remember her better and publicly talk about her better,” he told GQ.
“It has taken me almost 20 years to get to that stage. I still find it difficult now because at the time it was so raw. And also it is not like most people’s grief, because everyone else knows about it, everyone knows the story, everyone knows her.”
Prince William added that he would have loved for his mother “to have met Catherine”, adding that he feels sad Prince George and Princess Charlotte will never know her.
He said that the main aim of the royal’s mental health charity Heads Together is to end stigma, adding “for goodness sake, this is the 21st century”.
“I’ve been really shocked how many people live in fear and in silence because of their mental illness. I just don’t understand it. I know I come across as quite reserved and shy, I don’t always have my emotions brewing, but behind closed doors I think about the issues, I get very passionate about things,” he said.
He added that he relies on the people around him and is a “great believer” in communication surrounding mental health.
Prince William’s comments follow an interview Prince Harry gave last month, where he said he came “very close to a complete breakdown on numerous occasions” after losing his mother.
The younger prince revealed he sought counselling to help him process his mother’s death and deal with his emotions.
The full interview with Prince William is available in the July issue of GQ.