What’s the tragic truth of Prince Harry? Whether you’re a big fan of the royal family or simply a casual observer, you’ve undoubtedly come across plenty of headlines about the royal “bad boy” over the years. Prince Harry is the second son of Prince Charles and Princess Diana; his older brother, Prince William, is second-in-line to the throne.
As a member of the royal family, Prince Harry has, unsurprisingly, grown up in the public eye. That means we’ve seen him living the life many of us could only dream about, as this is how much Prince Harry is actually worth. However, while he’s always lived in the lap of luxury, bouncing between various British palaces, attending the best private schools, and partying it up at some of the world’s priciest clubs and bars in his younger days, Prince Harry has actually experienced his fair share of darkness as well. Curious to learn the tragic details about Prince Harry? Here’s everything we know about the royal’s saddest experiences.
Tragically, Prince Harry has put up with an overly inquisitive press his whole life
While life as a royal comes with unthinkable wealth and privilege, it also requires dealing with the almost daily barrage of the press. Ever since Prince Harry was a child, he’s had to put up with overly inquisitive reporters and undeniably intrusive photographers.
In fact, the paparazzi have been a thorn in the side of the royal family for decades, and are often a part of what makes their lives pretty tragic. As Town and Country reported in 2020, a television program entitled Lucy Worsley’s Royal Photo Album delved into the troublesome nature of the British press for the royal family. Spoiler alert: it’s a lot.
When it comes to Prince Harry, the press have been known to use drones and helicopters to intrude upon his and his family’s life. This was especially the case when Prince Harry and Meghan Markle started dating, though he reportedly did everything in his power to hide from their intrusive lenses (via Vanity Fair). Eventually, Prince Harry filed several lawsuits against the hounding press! It’s pretty tragic that the royal has never been allowed any privacy.
The tragic death of Prince Harry's mother's couldn't have been more public
Growing up in the ’80s and ’90s, it was practically impossible to avoid hearing about the utterly tragic death of Princess Diana. According to CNN, the young princess was killed in a car accident in 1997, when Prince Harry was just 12 years old. Here are the things we learned about Princess Diana after her death.
For Princess Diana’s two sons, Prince William and Prince Harry, her death was a traumatic, life-changing event that would take years for them to process. In a documentary entitled Our Mother Diana: Her Life and Legacy, Prince Harry opened up about Princess Diana’s death (via ABC News). “There’s not a day that William and I don’t wish that she was still around,” he revealed. “We wonder what kind of a mother she would be now…and what a difference she would be making.”
Prince Harry also confessed that he still thinks about his last phone call with his mother, and wishes he could have expressed more in that last talk. Truly, everything about her death was deeply tragic on a personal level for the royal.
Prince Harry eventually got therapy to help deal with his mother's tragic death
In 2017, Prince Harry opened up about his personal struggles with mental health. As he told The Telegraph, it wasn’t until he was in his late 20s that Prince Harry accepted that he needed help dealing with his grief. The royal recalled how he often felt a “fight or flight” sensation while at public engagements. He even described experiencing irrational angry episodes that he couldn’t explain. “I just didn’t know what was wrong with me,” he shared.
As it turns out, Prince Harry’s bottled up grief about his mother’s death had led to what could almost be described as a mental breakdown. That’s why the royal decided to get the help he’d needed for so long.
In 2020, Prince Harry went into more detail about his mental health journey. Apparently, he explained at an event that he’d been in therapy for three years to process his trauma (via Page Six). We have to say — it’s pretty tragic that Prince Harry felt that he couldn’t get professional counseling until more than 20 years after his mother’s death!
When Prince Harry and Chelsy Davy broke up, many thought he'd tragically let true love get away
What really happened between Prince Harry and Chelsy Davy? The pair dated from around 2004 until 2009, as noted by Harry: Life, Loss, and Love. So it’s no surprise that many fans were convinced that Chelsy Davy was destined to join the royal family. However, like many of us, it seems that Prince Harry let his first true love get away.
Even though Prince Harry is now married to Meghan Markle, it’s still pretty tragic that he lost his first love. As one royal fan pointed out in InStyle, Davy seemed like the perfect fit for the royal family. She even helped him write his best man speech for his brother’s wedding.
However, for as happy as the couple often looked, it would seem that the pressures of a royal life were too much for Davy. As she told The Times, life with Prince Harry was “crazy and scary and uncomfortable” — so much so that she decided to part ways with the royal and find refuge back home in Zimbabwe.
Tragically, Prince Harry's school days were anything but normal
Most people would agree that the teenage years are pretty important for a person’s development. Whether you enjoy high school or not, the people you meet and the things you learn during these years can change you for life.
However, for Prince Harry, having a normal school life was impossible. The royal went to the prodigious boarding school Eton starting at age 13; on his very first day, Prince Harry was followed around by the press as he met his teachers and toured the school, according to the BBC. Additionally, while Prince Harry had his own room, unlike the other students, he also had a full-time bodyguard who slept in the room next door.
In 2018, The Cut spoke to some of Prince Harry’s fellow students at Eton. One recalled that while Prince William was integrated with the other students, Prince Harry tragically “had it harder finding his way.” Another student explained that while everyone tried to make life as normal as possible for the young prince, it was often impossible, thanks to his bodyguards and the occasional visits from the Queen.
Prince Harry loved being in the army, but tragically had to give up his titles after Megxit
After leaving school, Prince Harry entered the Army, like many of his royal predecessors. According to the royal family’s website, Prince Harry was a member of the Army until 2015, but he maintained many of his titles afterward. As ITV reported, these titles were: Captain General of the Royal Marines, Honorary Air Force Commandant of the Royal Air Force Base Honington, and Honorary Commodore-in-Chief of the Royal Naval Commands’ Small Ships and Diving — quite a mouthful!
However, when Prince Harry and Meghan Markle stepped back from the royal family, Prince Harry had to give up these titles — even though he’d had originally planned to maintain them for life. As he said in 2015, “I will continue to wear the uniform and mix with fellow servicemen and women for the rest of my life.”
After losing the titles he’d worked so hard for, Prince Harry was reportedly “devastated,” as an insider told The Sun. Tragically he had to make a seriously difficult decision — and in the process, give up something that was incredibly important to him.
Prince Harry was subject to a strict set of rules from a young age, tragically labeling him as a "rebel"
For Prince Harry, growing up as a direct descendant of the Queen of England meant he had to obey a series of strict rules the royal family has to follow. For any young man, this would be a difficult way to grow up. And while most of us know that Prince Harry became a “bad boy” in his early adulthood, it turns out, he was actually showing signs of rebellion as early as 8 years old.
According to a series of letters written by Princess Diana, young Prince Harry always had trouble abiding by the royal rules. The notes, published in The Telegraph, explained that Harry was “constantly in trouble” at boarding school. While it’s unclear exactly what mischief Harry was getting up to at that time, it’s clear that he didn’t care much for the royal code!
Eventually, Prince Harry was labeled a rebel, thanks to his penchant for partying. And in 2019, Prince Harry’s tragic decision to step back from the royal family was arguably the ultimate rebel move.
As the younger sibling, Prince Harry is tragically "the royal spare"
If you are the second or third sibling in your family, you may sometimes feel like the first child gets all the attention. Well, for members of the royal family, this problem is about 1000 times worse! According to People, being a younger sibling as a royal tragically makes you the “spare” — which means Prince Harry is exactly that to his older brother, Prince William.
Queen Elizabeth’s sister Princess Margaret — who has her own tragic, real life story — also struggled to find her place in the family. As Robert Lacey, who wrote the books Majesty and Monarch, said, “The system has not found a way of giving them the recognition that they need.”
The problem comes down to the fact that the younger sibling of a royal heir is another potential heir — that is, until the older sibling has children. This puts the “spare” in a pretty confusing position. While they aren’t as important as their older sibling, they are kept in reserve as another alternate heir. This odd mixture of pressure and uselessness would definitely make it hard for Prince Harry to feel normal.
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle tragically dealt with hurtful press coverage
Finding real romance as a prince couldn’t have been easy for Prince Harry. Fortunately, the royal finally fell in love with a woman willing to make the necessary sacrifices that come with marrying into the royal family: Meghan Markle.
However, things weren’t always easy for the royal couple. One major reason? The British press hounded Prince Harry and his wife relentlessly, often publishing some pretty problematic stories. In fact, some of the press coverage of the royal couple was downright racist. No wonder Meghan Markle was so upset before leaving the royal family!
Eventually, the tabloids acknowledged their problematic coverage of the couple. However, for Markle and Prince Harry, the damage had been done. According to ABC News, the couple released a public statement to leaders of the major British tabloids, saying that they wouldn’t cooperate with them after how they were treated. It’s tragic that Prince Harry had to see his wife being treated so poorly by his own country’s press!
Prince Harry is incredibly anxious about the tragic climate crisis
It’s no secret that the modern world can be a stressful place to live for a variety of reasons; one of the most unsettling among them being the ongoing climate crisis. As it turns out, the situation really is a great leveler — even Prince Harry has sleepless nights worrying about the tragic future of our planet.
As Prince Harry reportedly told Peter Oki, a student he met while traveling through Africa, he sometimes feels overwhelmed by the threat posed by climate change (via The Telegraph). But rather than do nothing, Oki added that Prince Harry and his wife want to “use their platform to enable grass-roots change and to try and create a better society.” Prince Harry has also spoken out about the need to acknowledge that the coronavirus outbreak may also be linked to “our exploitation of nature,” as noted by The Telegraph.
There’s no doubt that someone in Prince Harry’s position is highly informed about the world’s biggest issues, so it’s no wonder he gets depressed. But at least he’s determined to make a positive impact!
Prince Harry was sad to give up his royal life, but tragically he had no other choice
In one of the most shocking moments in the history of the royal family, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle announced their decision to “step back” from their royal roles in 2019 (via the BBC). In the announcement, Prince Harry expressed “great sadness” at the decision. Let’s face it: the couple’s departure from royal life was undoubtedly deeply sad for everyone involved, including fans of the royal family.
According to an episode of the Royally Obsessed podcast, the couple’s last royal engagement was incredibly difficult for Prince Harry. “He looked very emotional at the Mountbatten Festival of Music,” the hosts explained. “When they received a standing ovation, people thought Harry looked a little teary-eyed.”
While Prince Harry was clearly upset to leave the royal family, he also felt that he had no choice, as noted by People magazine. This is definitely one of the most tragic moments in the royal’s life.
In 2020, Prince Harry tragically lost someone to coronavirus
Almost everyone was affected by the coronavirus pandemic that began in 2019 in some way. After all, there have been countless cases of and deaths from the disease around the world, according to CNN.
Like many other people, Prince Harry was personally impacted by a tragic death caused by COVID-19. According to Metro, Prince Harry and his brother Prince William served with a fellow soldier who caught the virus and passed away; Ryan Cartwright served in the Royals cavalry regiment alongside the princes. Cartwright was just 36 years old when he tragically succumbed to the illness.
In addition to taking the life of a fellow soldier, COVID-19 also forced Prince Harry to miss out on a trip to the UK to visit family (via Mirror). And, if that wasn’t enough, his own father, Prince Charles, contracted the virus in March of 2020. Here’s what we know about Prince Charles’ coronavirus diagnosis.
Experts believe that Prince Harry and Meghan Markle will tragically never get privacy
It’s no secret that Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have had their issues with negative press, thanks overly inquisitive public attention. In fact, the couple’s surprising departure from royal life shows their unwillingness to live under the scrutiny of the tabloids. And while Prince Harry and Markle’s move to America initially seemed to offer respite from the public’s prying eyes, some experts believe that the couple will never be able to lead a normal life.
On the US Weekly podcast, Royally Us, royal expert Simon Morgan said that the couple will probably never get the privacy they seek. “Once you withdraw from something, people naturally want to know what you’re doing,” he explained. He added that moving to the United States could potentially compromise their privacy more, due to the attitudes people have on this side of the pond.
Tragically, it’s all too probable that Prince Harry and his wife will always be plagued by the paparazzi, even though they moved to another country — and their security team can only do so much.
Prince Harry reportedly had a tragic feud with Prince William for two years
For most of their lives, Prince Harry and his brother Prince William were incredibly close, according to Express. After all, they’ve been through a lot together, and can support each other because of that. However, according to The Sun, the two brothers had a pretty serious feud that lasted for two years, beginning in 2018. Apparently, it all began when Prince William tried to interfere with Prince Harry’s relationship with Meghan Markle. “I was told by a number of sources that [Prince Harry] went ballistic,” a reporter shared.
Then in October of 2019, Prince Harry confessed that his relationship with Prince William had indeed changed. “Stuff happens,” he explained in a documentary (via Town and Country). “But look we’re brothers. We’ll always be brothers.” The royal then added that the press had exaggerated the rift, which isn’t exactly surprising.
Fortunately, Prince Harry and Prince William’s relationship has reportedly turned a corner. But nevertheless, it’s pretty tragic Prince that Harry and Prince William’s relationship suffered like that!
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