TOPLINE Speaking to Oprah Winfrey on their new Apple TV+ program about mental health, Prince Harry said the royal family met “every single ask, request, warning” for help with harassment he and wife Meghan faced in the press and on social media with “silence or total neglect,” building on revelations from a bombshell interview with Winfrey earlier this year where Meghan revealed she suffered from suicidal thoughts and was refused help from the royal establishment.
Prince Harry said he “felt completely helpless” with the attention he and Meghan were getting in the press and on social media, spending four years “trying to make it work” as members of the royal family,
The revelations, reported on by multiple outlets, were made on his newly released mental health documentary series with Winfrey titled, “The Me You Can’t See.”
The Prince, sixth in line to the throne, said his family did not discuss his mother’s death (he was 12 at the time) and expected he and his brother to just deal with the resulting distress and press attention.
He said his father, Prince Charles, told him that because he suffered when he was younger, that is how it would be for him and brother William.
Prince Harry, who revealed he turned to drink and drugs as an adult in order to cope with the trauma of his mother’s death, said he was told to “play the game” to make his life easier and that he felt “bullied into silence.”
Harry said therapy, which he began four years ago, has been helping him “take on anything.”
Prince Harry said the deterioration of he and his wife’s mental health was one of “the biggest reasons” they stepped away from the royal family and that he felt ashamed he could not go to his family when Meghan was feeling suicidal. He said they were “feeling trapped and feeling controlled through fear, both by the media and by the system itself which never encouraged the talking about this kind of trauma.”
WHAT TO WATCH FOR
Apple TV’s The Me You Can’t See, made up of five episodes, is airing on Friday 21 May. Oprah and Prince Harry are set to appear on Good Morning America Friday to discuss the series.
Both Prince William and Prince Harry issued statements excoriating the press’ treatment of their late mother, Princess Diana, Thursday after an independent investigation outlined a multitude of moral and professional failings over BBC reporter Martin Bashir’s famous 1995 interview with the royal. Prince Harry said the “ripple effect” from the British media’s “culture of exploitation” led to his mother’s death and, worryingly, has not changed since. “Our mother lost her life because of this, and nothing has changed,” he said, who stepped away from royal life in part due to the way the British media treated his wife, Meghan, the Duchess of Sussex.