Prince Harry should consider what he’s really achieving by speaking out about his mental health battles, and be mindful of the impact on the Queen and Prince Charles, a royal expert has claimed.
Speaking on This Morning, royal editor Camilla Tominey was reacting to the Duke of Sussex’s recent podcast with US actor Dax Shepard, where he spoke of suffering ‘generational trauma’.
In the attention-grabbing interview, Harry, 36, who relocated his pregnant wife Meghan Markle, 39 and his son Archie, one to Los Angeles, said his royal life was like the ‘the Truman Show’ or being an animal being watched in a zoo.
Camilla said Harry was entitled to share his story, but added there was ‘a degree of exploitation’ going on, and that interviewers were only thinking of the ratings, and don’t take into account the fallout.
‘I think you can talk about your own mental health but you have to be aware of the consequences on other people’s,’ she said.
‘Like the fact the Queen has just buried her husband, the father of Prince Charles, and then the son is over across the Atlantic having a go about the way he’s been brought up.’
Royal commentator Camilla Tominey, pictured, said she left the Americans were ‘exploiting’ Prince Harry and needed to handle the ‘damaged’ royal with care
Pictured: The Duke, 36 and Duchess of Sussex, 39, during a sit down tell-all interview with US-broadcaster Oprah Winfrey where they candidly talked about their fall out with the royal family in March
Camilla said that it’s highly unlikely that US broadcasters have the best interests of Harry’s family at heart.
‘Going over to America, the other side of the coin you could say is that there is a degree of exploitation going on,’ she said.
‘The Americans are rubbing their heads together with glee, they know this man is quite damaged, disenfranchised from his family.
‘I know they have a living to earn and they are seeking financial independence in America, but let’s just handle all of this with care,’ she added.
‘They both had a difficult time, neither of them have a particularly good relationship with a large portion of their families, and then you got people hosting podcasts thinking, “Brilliant, this will get the ratings”.’
Speaking about Prince Charles in the Dax Shepard podcast, Harry said: ‘If I’ve experienced some form of pain or suffering because of the pain or suffering that perhaps my father or my parents had suffered, I’m going to make sure I break that cycle so that I don’t pass it on, basically’ (pictured together at the Our Planet global premiere on April 2019)
She added that she disagreed with the fact Harry compared his life to the Truman show, a movie where Jim Carey plays’ Truman, a character whose whole lief was turned into an entertainment programme watched by millions.
She said the couple were ‘left alone’ when they lived in Windsor, and that there were no paparazzi there, compared to California.
Camilla also said she felt Harry should have thought more about the consequences on this podcast on his family in England.
‘I thought it was ironic that a man who wants to live a quiet life keeps on making so much noise,’ she told Phil and Holly.
Camilla said Harry should have been more considerate of his family’s mental health. Meanwhile former MP Gyles Brandreth, pictured, said if Harry ‘didn’t like the heat, get out of the kitchen’
At a glance: What did Harry say in the podcast?
- Harry compared living under scrutiny as a member of the Royal Family to the film The Truman Show, starring Jim Carrey as a man oblivious to the fact that his entire life is a TV show, and to being an animal in a zoo.
- Speaking about Prince Charles, Harry said: ‘If I’ve experienced some form of pain or suffering because of the pain or suffering that perhaps my father or my parents had suffered, I’m going to make sure I break that cycle so that I don’t pass it on, basically.
- The Duke said he met up with his future wife Meghan in a supermarket in the early days of their relationship and they pretended not to know each other.
- Harry told how he quit as a senior royal with Meghan last year to put his family and mental health ‘first’.
- The 36-year-old royal put ‘wild partying’ in his youth down to ‘childhood trauma’ – and started therapy after Meghan ‘saw he was angry’
- The Duke said he was born into extraordinary privilege but hinted that he believes this has changed since he quit with Meghan
- Harry revealed Meghan told him of her experience of royal life: ‘You don’t need to be a princess, you can create the life that will be better than any princess.’
Camilla said that she doesn’t believe the royal family is beyond reproach, but thinks Harry is going about it the wrong way.
‘I think that’s legitimate, I think everyone looks at the royals and says “they’re actualy a bit of a dysfunctional family”,’ she tempered.
‘And I don’t think anyone thinks Harry has had a great childhood, at least in terms of his mother’s death. That was awful and it played in the public eye. I’m just questioning what benefits can be derived.’
Phil said he felt Harry had been ‘incredibly eloquent’ about mental health.
‘I went into that podcast thinking “oh Harry do shut up” and I went out thinking “good on you”,’ the presenter said.
He added the royal was ‘damned if he does, damned if he doesn’t’ give interviews.
Former MP Gyles Brandreth, who was on the segment with Camilla, quoted Harry Truman and said: ‘If you don’t like the heat, get out of the kitchen.’
He said Harry’s podcast were always going to garner reaction because of who he was.
Camilla also said that Harry risked putting people off by talking too much of his own mental health.
‘You’ve got to be quite selective in what you’re saying,’ she said, adding Harry could lose sympathy rather than garnering it by ‘overdoing it.’