Prince Harry is speaking out about the moment his wife Meghan Markle shared that she was struggling with suicidal ideation.
In the second episode of the Duke of Sussex and Oprah Winfrey's Apple TV+ series about mental health, The Me You Can't See, Harry spoke about the challenges the couple faced in dealing with invasive paparazzi and negative social media comments, especially given his late mother Princess Diana's history with the press. When he turned to his family for help, he said it fell on deaf ears.
"We would get followed, photographed, chased, harassed," the royal shared. "The clicking of cameras and flashes of cameras makes my blood boil. It makes me angry, it takes me back to what happened to my mum and what I experienced as a kid. But it went to a whole new depth, with not just traditional media but also social media platforms as well. I felt completely helpless. I thought my family would help. But every single ask, request, warning, whatever it is, just got met with total silence or total neglect."
Prince Harry said that while the couple spent "four years trying to make it work," it was impossible to stay in their roles because "Meghan was struggling."
"I think people have seen the photographer of us, you know, squeezing each other's hands as we walked into the Royal Albert Hall in London for a charity event," he continued. "She was six months pregnant at the time. What perhaps people don't understand is, earlier that evening, Meghan decided to share with me the suicidal thoughts and the practicalities of how she was going to end her life. The scariest thing for her was her clarity of thought. She hadn't ‘lost it.' She wasn't crazy. She wasn't self-medicating, be it through pills or through alcohol. She was absolutely sober. She was completely sane. Yet in the quiet of night, these thoughts woke her up."
Prince Harry continued, "The thing that stopped her from seeing it through was how unfair it would be on me after everything that had happened to my mum and to now be put in a position of losing another woman in my life, with a baby inside of her, our baby."
Meghan previously spoke about her mental health issues with Oprah during her and Harry's bombshell tell-all interview in March. At the time, she shared that the royal family did not want her to receive treatment.
"I was ashamed to say it at the time and ashamed to have to admit it to Harry, especially because I know how much loss he's suffered," Meghan said. "But I knew that if I didn't say it, then I would do it. I just didn't want to be alive anymore. That was clear and real and frightening and constant thought."
In the first episode of The Me You Can't See, Prince Harry spoke about his own battle with anxiety in the wake of his mother's death by car accident, and how he turned to drugs and alcohol to manage.
"I was willing to drink. I was willing to take drugs. I was willing to try and do the things that made me feel less like I was feeling," he said. "But I slowly became aware that, OK, I wasn't drinking Monday to Friday, but I would probably drink a week's worth in one day on a Friday or a Saturday night. And I would find myself drinking not because I was enjoying it, but because I was trying to mask something."