In a candid interview with The Daily Telegraph Prince Harry has admitted that following the death of his mother, Princess #diana in August 1997, he suffered "severe emotional problems" and needed counselling.
Praise for the prince
#mental health experts have joined together in praising the prince's decision to speak openly about his mental health issues and about seeking counselling. This comes about as research shows that while women are three times more likely to suffer mental health issues men are three times more likely to commit suicide.
Men can often feel isolated and traditionally unable to open up about emotional issues.There is a need to eradicate the belief that men have to shoulder these emotions in order to appear more 'masculine'.
Princess Diana's sad death
It was in August 1997 that Princess Diana of Wales met her untimely death with her lover Dodi Fayed. The car she was in went out of control in the Pont de l'Alma tunnel in Paris and although she survived briefly the princess died in hospital shortly afterwards. At the time #Prince Harry was 12 years old and his brother, Prince William 15. Both princes conducted themselves with impeccable dignity in the aftermath of the tragedy.
Harry's early reactions
In the interview with Daily Telegraph journalist Bryony Gordon, Harry admits that following Diana's death and into his 20's he "shut down all his emotions" and "stuck his head in the sand". He believed that even thinking about his mother wouldn't help.
During his teens and twenties, he embarked, as many royals do, on a successful military career, seeing active service in Afghanistani.
It was, however, during that time that he also attracted headlines for the wrong reasons, notably being photographed playing 'strip billiards' in Las Vegas.
The prince also took up boxing during this time as an outlet for his growing aggression as he admitted he frequently felt like "punching someone". He stated that he had suffered two years of total chaos before finally admitting that he was in need of help.
The decision to seek help
After admitting that he almost suffered breakdowns in his twenties the prince eventually sought professional counselling to cope with his unhappiness. The sessions helped him realise that he actually had been bottling up a lot of grief and praised his brother for helping him seek help after years of suffering in silence. He said that he now finds himself in "a good place".
Harry has worked alongside brother William with charities supporting mental health and is seeking to rid these issues of their stigma and to give them the same priority as other illnesses.