Prince William shared his own heartbreak on Wednesday, January 23, at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, to highlight his belief that the world’s major employers have a vital role to play in promoting healthy communities and workplaces.
During the panel, he revealed, he still finds it hard to speak about things he saw during his work as a pilot with the National Air Ambulance. William has always said he was incredibly “proud to serve” with the East Anglia Air Ambulance, and it is a role away from royal life that he has really cherished.
But there were many aspects of the job that he didn’t speak of, as is the case of many workers who deal with traumatic situations as part of their daily work.
“I still find it very difficult to talk about it,” the father of three said as it related to how his work affected his mental health, as reported by People Magazine.
“I get very emotional about it because it relates very closely to my children and so it is very hard to talk about it.”
He then went on to state that he is proud to be part of a world where mental health is valued more than ever, particularly as employers note their help in maintaining the overall health of their workers.
“I think now, there’s a generation finally realizing that this is not normal, we should talk about it, we should get over [the stigma],” he said.
He added, “We’ve got to start tackling it now so that our children and grandchildren don’t have to go through this process, and they can be a lot more open about it.”
"I still find it very difficult to talk about it." — The Duke of Cambridge on the importance of talking #MentalHealth, and his own experience working as an Air Ambulance Pilot #WEF19 pic.twitter.com/2nimIAqwiQ
— Kensington Palace (@KensingtonRoyal) January 23, 2019
Prince William then explained the most important thing he could have done was advocate for himself and realize he had an issue that needed to be addressed.
“I think if I hadn’t been doing what I was doing, I might have gone into my shell a bit and gone, ‘I can deal with this myself.’ Then potentially, down the line, it manifests itself in a much worse situation,” he shared.
— Heads Together (@heads_together) January 24, 2019
The prince added, that if he didn’t take action for himself he would have gone down a “slippery slope” and would have been dealing with mental illness “on a different level.”
He also spoke of his trauma at the first This Can Happen conference in November, where he explained to the attendees that dealing with job trauma is a slow process. William said that workers who deal with trauma take “bits of the job and keep them in your body” until it can completely overtake you, noted People Magazine.
William also revealed that the only people you can share your feelings with are others who have also been involved in similar situations and that you don’t want to take these feelings home to your family to share with your loved ones.
Prince William is married to Kate Middleton and the couple shares three children: 5-year-old Prince George, 3-year-old Princess Charlotte, and 9-month-old Prince Louis.