Prince Harry's Most Revealing Quotes from His Docuseries The Me You Can't See
The royal reveals how he takes after his late mother Princess Diana, the way his requests for help were met with silence and more in his new Apple TV+ series, The Me You Can't See, which he co-created with Oprah Winfrey
On Taking After His Mother
"Family members have said just play the game and your life will be easier. But I have a hell of a lot of my mum in me. I feel as though I am outside of the system but I'm still stuck there. The only way to free yourself and break out is to tell the truth," Prince Harry said during the premiere of his Apple TV+ docuseries, The Me You Can't See, on Thursday night.
"If your parents don't want to talk about it and your friends can't remind you about it, there's no reason why you shouldn't say, 'Hang on a second, I may be the product of my upbringing.' "
On Supressing His Feelings About His Mother
"I don't want to think about her, because if I think about her then it's going to bring up the fact that I can't bring her back and it's just going to make me sad. What's the point in thinking about something sad, what's the point of thinking about someone that you've lost and you're never going to get back again. And I just decided not to talk about it. No one was talking about it."
On London Being a Trigger for Him
"I was like, 'Why do I feel so uncomfortable?' And of course, for me, London is a trigger, unfortunately, because of what happened to my mom and because of what I experienced and what I saw."
On His Mother and Her Experience with the U.K. Tabloid Media
"I always wanted to be normal, as opposed to being Prince Harry, just being Harry. It was a puzzling life and, unfortunately, when I think about my mom the first thing that comes to mind is always the same one, over and over again: Strapped in the car, seatbelt across. My brother [Prince William] in the car as well, and my mother driving and being chased by three, four, five mopeds with paparazzi on."'
"She was almost unable to drive because of the tears, there was no protection. One of the feelings that come up is helplessness. Being too young, being a guy too young to be able to help a woman, in this case, your mother. And that happened every single day until the day she died."
On Making His Mom Proud
"Yeah, I have no doubt that my mom would be incredibly proud of me. I'm living the life that she wanted to live for herself, living the life that she wanted us to be able to live."
"So not only do I know that she's incredibly proud of me, but that she's helped me get here. And I've never felt her presence more as I have done over the last year."
On Struggling in the Public Eye
"Every single time I jump in the car and every single time I see a camera. I would just start sweating. I would feel as though my body temperature was two or three degrees warmer than everybody else in the room. I would convince myself that my face was bright red and that everybody could see how I was feeling, but no one would know why. So it was embarrassing. You get in your head about it."
On Being Unable to Escape the Tabloid Media
"We get followed. Photographed, chased, harassed. The clicking of cameras and the flashes of the cameras makes my blood boil. It makes me angry and takes me back to what happened to my mom and what I experienced as a kid. Not just traditional media, but also social media platforms as well. I felt completely helpless."
On Starting Therapy
"There was a lot of learning right at the beginning of our relationship [with Meghan Markle]. She was shocked to be coming backstage of the institution of the British royal family. When she said, 'I think you need to see someone,' that was in reaction to an argument we had. And in that argument, not knowing about it, I reverted back to 12-year-old Harry."
"The moment I started therapy and probably within my second session, my therapist turned around to me, and said, 'That sounds like you are reverting to 12-year-old Harry.' I felt somewhat ashamed and defensive, but, 'How dare you, you're calling me a child.' She was, 'I'm not calling you a child. I'm expressing sympathy and empathy for you for what happened to you when you were a child. You never processed it. You were never allowed to talk about it. And all of a sudden now, it's coming up in different ways as projection.' That was the start of a learning journey for me. I became aware that I'd been living in a bubble, within this family, within this institution, I was, sort of, almost trapped in a thought process or a mindset."
On Taking the Lid Off His Emotions
"It was like someone had taken a lid off all of the emotions that I've suppressed for so many years suddenly came to the forefront. And I saw GPs [general practitioners], I saw doctors, I saw therapists, I saw alternative therapists. I saw all sorts of people. But it was meeting and being with Meghan, I knew that if I didn't do therapy and fix myself, that I was going to lose this woman who I could see spending the rest of my life with."
On 'Squashing' His Feelings Before Therapy
"I am one of the first people to recognize that firstly, I had a fear of — when I first went to therapy — a fear of losing. Four years of therapy for an individual that never thought that they would ever need or do therapy is ... that's a long time. I wasn't in an environment where it was encouraged to talk about it either. That was sort of, like, squashed."
On Experiencing Burnout
"Now in hindsight, looking back, it's all about timing. Towards my late 20s, everything became really hectic for me. To the point of exhaustion, I was traveling all over the place because from my family's perspective, I guess I was the person who was, like, 'We need somebody to go there. Nepal, Harry. You go.' I was always the yes man. I was always one who didn't say yes, but then yes, yes, of course. Yes. Yes, yes, led to burnout."
On Using Drinking and Drugs to Cope
"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. But I slowly became aware that, okay, 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."
On Feeling Ashamed to Go to His Family
"I'm also really angry with myself that we're stuck in this situation. I was ashamed that it had got this bad. I was ashamed to go to my family because — to be honest with you, like a lot of other people my age could probably relate to — I know that I'm not going to get from my family what I need."
On Being Met with Silence By His Family
"I thought my family would help, but every single ask, request, warning, whatever, it is just got met with total silence, total neglect. We spent four years trying to make it work. We did everything that we possibly could to stay there and carry on doing the role and doing the job. But Meghan was struggling,"
On Revisiting Uncomfortable Situations to Move Forward
"One of the biggest lessons I've ever learned in life is you've sometimes got to go back and to deal with really uncomfortable situations and to be able to process it in order to be able to heal. For me, therapy has equipped me to be able to take on anything."
"That's why I'm here now. That's why my wife is here now. That feeling of being trapped within the family is ... There was no option to leave. Eventually, when I made that decision for my family, I was still told you can't do this."
On Meghan's Reaction to Bullying Claims Before Their Oprah Interview
"I was woken up in the middle of the night to her crying in her pillow because she doesn't want to wake me up, because I'm already carrying too much. That's heartbreaking. I held her, we talked, she cried, and she cried, and she cried."
On How Being a Dad Changed His Perspective
"I then had a son, who I would far rather be solely focused on, rather than every time I look in his eyes wondering whether my wife is going to end up like my mother and I'm going to have to look after him myself. That was one of the biggest reasons to leave, feeling trapped, and feeling controlled through fear. Both by the media and by the system itself, which never encouraged the talking about this kind of trauma. Certainly, now I will never be bullied into silence."
On Being Better for His Children
"My father used to say to me, when I was younger, he used to say to both William and I, 'Well, it was like that for me. So it's going to be like that for you.' That doesn't make sense — just because you suffered it doesn't mean that your kids have to suffer."
"In fact, quite the opposite. If you suffered, do everything you can to make sure that whatever negative experiences that you had, that you can make it right for your kids. We chose to put our mental health first. That's what we're doing. And that's what we will continue to do. Isn't this all about breaking the cycle? Isn't it all about making sure that history doesn't repeat itself? That whatever pain and suffering has happened to you, that you don't pass on."
On His Regrets
"Do I have any regrets? Yeah. My biggest regret is not making more of a stance earlier on in my relationship with my wife and calling out the racism when I did. History was repeating itself. My mother was chased to her death while she was in a relationship with someone that wasn't white and now look what's happened. You want to talk about history repeating itself, they're not going to stop until [Meghan] dies."