Prince William opens up on grieving in new book and makes subtle reference to Prince Harry

Prince Harry and Prince William

Prince William sheds light on his and Prince Harry's struggle after Princess Diana's death

Dorothy Reddin

By Dorothy Reddin

Published: 22/09/2023

- 09:23

Updated: 22/09/2023

- 09:23

The Prince of Wales has discussed the process of grieving in a new book

Prince William, 41, openly discussed bereavement in a new book published by London’s Air Ambulance Charity.

The father of three alluded to his younger brother Prince Harry's differing experiences with grief.

The Prince of Wales, in his foreword for a booklet about grief, said: “No two experiences of bereavement are ever the same.

“The sudden and often unexpected loss of a loved one can be profoundly difficult to process, even with the passing of time.”

William comments on grief could be referencing the death of his mother Diana, Princess of Wales, who died in a car crash in August 1997 in Paris.

WATCH: Expert breaks down Prince William and Harry's strained relationship

The prince is patron of London’s Air Ambulance Charity and even worked as a first responder for the East Anglian Air Ambulance between March 2015 and July 2017.

William has said that this experience inspired him to advocate for more mental health charities.

Prince Harry has been very open about his negative experiences growing up after losing his mother at the age of 12. In his memoir Spare, Harry disclosed how he learnt about the death of his mother.

The Duke of Sussex wrote how his father, King Charles, told him: “They tried, darling boy. I’m afraid she didn’t make it.”

Prince Philip, Prince William, Charles Spencer, Prince Harry, King Charles

Prince Harry and Prince William at their mother's funeral


Prince William

Prince William gave a speech about grief in Manchester


He added: "Pa didn’t hug me. He wasn’t great at showing emotions under normal circumstances. But his hand did fall once more on my knee and he said, ‘It’s going to be OK.’ But after that, nothing was OK for a long time.”

In the successful Netflix docuseries Harry & Meghan, the prince explained how being a member of the Royal Family complicated the grief process.

He commented: "When my mum died, we had two hats to wear. One was two grieving sons wanting to cry, grieve and process that grief because of losing our mum.

"And two was the royal hat – show no emotion, get out there and meet the people, shake their hands.”

Prince Harry and Prince William

Prince Harry and Prince William have differing experiences of grief


Prince Harry and Prince William

Prince Harry and Prince William were 12 and 15 when their mother died


Prince Harry

​Prince Harry said his father didn't hug him after his mother died


Prince William visited Manchester Cathedral last year to commemorate the victims of the Manchester bombing attack that took place in 2017.

The royal shared his very different response to dealing with grief in a speech: "As someone who lives with his own grief, I also know that what often matters most to the bereaved is that those we have lost are not forgotten.

"There is comfort in remembering. In acknowledging that, while taken horribly soon, they lived. They changed our lives. They were loved, and they are loved."

The bereavement booklet which William contributed to, focuses on the experiences of 12 families who sadly lost a loved one. Anyone who wants to read the booklet will be offered it without charge by London’s Air Ambulance Charity.

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