Japan's Princess Mako Diagnosed with PTSD Ahead of Wedding, Palace Blames the Media

Princess Mako is set to marry Kei Komuro, a commoner and aspiring lawyer, on October 26 despite pushback from the public and local media

The Asahi Shimbun/Getty Images. Photo: Kei Komuro and Princess Mako

Japan's Princess Mako has been diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder in wake of local media coverage surrounding her complex romance with a commoner, the palace announced Friday.

The Imperial Household Agency says Mako, 29, is set to marry aspiring lawyer Kei Komuro on October 26, according to NBC News. No special events will take place that day to commemorate the occasion "because their marriage is not celebrated by many people," the agency explained.

Mako has faced intense scrutiny over her planned union to Komuro, also 29. Her father, Crown Prince Akishino, does not believe the marriage would be embraced by Japanese people, according to The Wall Street Journal.

The Asahi Shimbun/Getty Images

Isao Tokoro, an expert on the imperial family that teaches at Kyoto Sangyo University, described the union as "a kind of declaration of severing ties," noting it would be seen "as practically equivalent to eloping."

The former classmates at Tokyo's International Christian University announced their plans to wed in September 2017, but the event was ultimately pushed off following a dispute over finances, WSJ reports.

The dispute centers around whether money given to his mother by his former fiancé was a loan or a gift, per WSJ. The funds were reportedly spent on Komuro's education in Japan.

Princess Mako
Princess Mako in 2019. AFP/ KAZUHIRO NOGI / POOL/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

Komuro graduated from Fordham Law in New York this year and currently works for law firm Lowenstein Sandler LLP. He recently completed the state bar exam for New York and is awaiting his results.

Once married, Mako will lose her royal status. According to NBC News, the princess is expected to decline a gift of 150 million yen ($1.35 million) meant to help her adjust to non-royal life.

Though Mako will earn rights afforded to regular Japanese citizens, including the right to vote, she and Komuro plan to move to New York upon marrying, reports NBC News.

"She has chosen a harsh path of thorns," Tokoro said.

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