Richard Branson's Famous Guest List
(Georges De Keerle/Getty Images)
Richard Branson's Famous Guest List
(Georges De Keerle/Getty Images)

Prince Harry is opening up for the first time about the mental health struggles he underwent following the tragic car accident that killed his mother Diana in 1997.

“My way of dealing with it was sticking my head in the sand, refusing to ever think about my mum, because why would that help? [I thought] it’s only going to make you sad, it’s not going to bring her back,” Prince Harry said as the first guest on The Telegraph’s Mad World podcast.

Harry, who was just 12 at the time of the abrupt loss, said that despite support and encouragement from his brother, Prince William, he didn’t seek counseling until he was 28.

“It’s all about timing. And for me personally, my brother, you know, bless him, he was a huge support to me. He kept saying this is not right, this is not normal, you need to talk to [someone] about stuff, it’s OK,” Prince Harry told Bryony Gordon.

“The timing wasn’t right. You need to feel it in yourself, you need to find the right person to talk to as well,” he added.

The royal also revealed that he felt close to a breakdown on a number of occasions in public, noting that losing his mother “had a quite serious effect on not only my personal life but my work as well.”

“I have probably been very close to a complete breakdown on numerous occasions when all sorts of grief and lies and misconceptions and everything are coming to you from every angle,” Prince Harry said.

He also acknowledged that he felt a “little nervous” about opening up about his struggles, but that he did so in order “to encourage people to have that conversation, because you will be surprised how much support you get and how many people literally are longing for you to come out.”

Prince Harry appeared on the podcast as part of the Heads Together initiative that he, Kate and William have started. The organization works to open up the conversation about mental health by bringing together a number of charities.

Read more about his in-depth interview on The Telegraph.