Princely support

by Rob Cope-Williams

As a great advocate of talking about mental health I am thrilled that the two princes have come out and told the world that they have suffered after the death of their mother.

I will be one of the thousands who watched the two youngsters follow the hearse that carried their mother, seemingly without any emotion. 

Total British stiff upper lip, a command far beyond the reach of boys of that age, but they delivered anyway.

My heart went out to them then as it still does today.

As a man in my mid-60s I was emotional at my mother’s service and she was 98 when she passed away, not in her prime and due to an accident that was front page all over the world.

At last, and 20 years on, the two children have decided to face their reality and admit, for the good of others, their personal battles of emotion and loss.

As world leaders and figureheads of society and royalty, the two have said it is very OK for a man to cry, to mourn and to admit mental health issues.

Perhaps for me the greatest example they deliver to the people who are suffering from stress and depression is that it is better to talk about it that to suffer quietly and go deeper into oneself.

In my personal case I can assure you that once I admitted to myself that I needed help, I grew as a person.

I started to tell people I was in the dark hole and it is bloody awful down there. Interestingly no one laughed, poured scorn or treated me as a leper.

A percentage told me I was very brave opening up to everyone and risking being seen as a failure, but the majority of folk simply admitted they have suffered, or were suffering as well.

It is a strange thing, but when one is in that black hole, one feels very alone and the rest of the world seems to be trouble free and enjoying life.

The chances are that they aren’t and in fact may even be worse off than you, but like you they won’t show it.

Put it this way; if it is OK for the British royalty to soften their stiff upper lips and show they are human, it is very alright for we subjects to follow their lead and admit we are suffering.

If anyone tells you to take a cement pill and harden up, punch them very firmly on the nose from me.