Prince William wants his children to have an open dialogue with him as they grow up. The Duke of Cambridge opened up about his family while raising awareness of his campaign Heads Together, which fights to dispel the stigmas surrounding mental health.
“There may be a time and a place for the stiff upper lip, but not at the expense of your health,” he said in a new interview with CALMzine. (The British phrase “stiff upper lip” describes an ability to keep emotions under control in certain circumstances.)
“Catherine and I are clear that we want both George and Charlotte to grow up feeling able to talk about their emotions and feelings,” he continued. “Over the past year we have visited a number of schools together where we have been amazed listening to children talk about some quite difficult subjects in a really clear and emotionally articulate way — something most adults would struggle with.”
Witnessing firsthand what others go through has given Prince William “hope” that things could be better for the next generation. “Emotional intelligence is key for us all to deal with the complexities of life and relationships,” he added.
William, 34, and Kate, 35, are the parents of Prince George, 3, and Princess Charlotte, 23 months.
The royal couple spearhead the campaign with William’s brother, Prince Harry, who recently revealed that he shut down his emotions for nearly two decades after the death of their mother, Princess Diana, in 1997, and entered therapy to cope. Prince William supported him in the years that followed and encouraged him to seek help.
William says that he confides to his friends and colleagues about his own feelings. “In my work with the East Anglia Air Ambulance you never know what you will be called out to and we see things each day,” he told CALMzine. “We’re encouraged to talk it through with each other and to let someone know if we are feeling overwhelmed or unable to cope. It really is as simple as that — if you are feeling overwhelmed, having a conversation with someone can really help.”
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