Before second-in-line to the British throne, Prince William, took a more active role in royal duties he was a search and rescue pilot with the Royal Air Force and following that, a pilot with the East Anglian Air Ambulance, in both roles the Prince was exposed to high pressure life-and-death situations. Which the Duke of Cambridge has candidly said put a strain on his mental health.
E News reports at an event to launch the latest initiative for his mental health charity, Heads Together – which he founded in 2017 along with his wife, the Duchess of Cambridge, and his brother, the Duke of Sussex – Prince William said when he was working as a pilot he struggled mentally, “I took a lot home without realizing it. You see [so] many sad things every day that you think life is like that.”
The 36-year-old royal said during his tenure as a pilot with the East Anglian Air Ambulance in particular, he found it difficult not to bring his work stress home with him, “You’re always dealing with despair and sadness and injury,” Prince William revealed. “The attrition builds up and you never really have the opportunity to offload anything if you’re not careful.”
This “suffering in silence” is one of the key aspects Prince William is hoping to address with his new mental health initiative, a website to improve mental health in workplaces.
E News reports aside from his own mental health struggles related to work, Prince William was “stunned” to learn that “only two per cent of employees in Britain feel able to talk to their HR departments about their mental health.”
“It just takes one person to change the way a company thinks about mental health,” Prince William reportedly said at the event, and it sounds like the second-in-line to the throne has taken it upon himself to be the ‘one person’ making that incredibly important change.