Prince tells incident for mental health kindnes Heads Together that he opened up about Dianas death only three years ago

Prince Harryhas outlined on its own experience of losing his mother to spotlight mental health issues, uncovering that he regrets not talking sooner about how her death affected him.

The 31 -year-old spoke to footballer Rio Ferdinand, a father-god of three whose bride, Rebecca Ellison, died from cancer last year, about dealing with the death of a parent.

Harry, who firstly spoke publicly three years ago about potential impacts of the deaths among Diana, Princess of Wales in a automobile accident in 1997, when he was 12, told the former England and Manchester United footballer: You know, I certainly repent not ever talking about it.

The exchange took place at a Kensington Palace barbecue attended by a number of plays whizs hosted by Heads Together, was established by Harry with the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge to bring together eight mental health issues kindness and organisations with the aim of tackling the stigma around sadnes and other mental health problems.

Ferdinand, the athletes Dame Kelly Holmes and Iwan Thomas, and the cyclist Victoria Pendleton were among the guests.

The prince told the BBC: The key message here today is that everyone can suffer from mental health issues. Whether you are a member of the royal family, whether you are a soldier, whether you are a boasts hotshot, whether you are a team play, individual boast, whether you are a white-hot van move, whether youre a father, father, small children, it doesnt really matter.

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Jonathan Trott, Rio Ferdinand, Prince Harry and Iwan Thomas at the Heads Together barbecue at Kensington Palace in London. Photograph: Leader Together/ PA

Ferdinand later told the broadcaster: Hes[ Harry] gone through different stages in their own lives that my kids are going to be going towards. So, to get some of its own experience is very rewarding for me and very educational in many ways.

Harry said afterwards: It is very easy to look at person like Rio Ferdinand and say, You get paid all the money in the world, you are a successful footballer, you have fast vehicles. But at the end of the day his wife was grasped from him at an early stage of their own lives with her. So, of course “hes going to” suffer, it doesnt trouble if he has an amazing job.

The prince said the event was an opportunity to show that even unflappable sporting personalities could know mental health problems. He told BBC Breakfast: It is OK to suffer, but as long as “youre talking about” it. It is not a weakness. Weakness is having a problem and not recognising it and not solving it.

He too spoke to Holmes, who acquired a golden award at the 2004 Olympics in the 800 metres and 1,500 metres, and who uncovered her experience of depression in her autobiography. She said: I had feeling going through my athletics career , no one knew at all what I was going through. She said it had recently been in the last few years that she had been more open.

Thomas admonished anyone knowledge mental health issues: Dont feel humiliated, dont feel disgraceful about it if you see it as a weakness, as I did.

I felt mentally I was weak, because I had gone from someone who was mentally tough, mentally very strong, someone physically strong, to the ones who felt vulnerable and weak. And “youre not” feeble. You are just going through a tough time in their own lives, where, if you can talk to someone, hopefully, they will help you through the other side.

The prince has been a visible champ of taboo topics. Earlier this month he won kudo from the Terrence Higgins Trust for taking an HIV exam live their lives Facebook, with the charity describing it as a groundbreaking moment in the fight against HIV.

His persona in attempting to destigmatise HIV/ Aids has been compared to that of his late baby, who is now photographed convene Aids patients in the 1980 s in an effort to change public opinion over how the virus was transmitted.

Since leaving the army, Harry has also campaigned to break the stigma of mental health issues that often harass war veterans as they prepare transition periods back into civilian life.

He founded the Invictus Games for wounded, injured and sick servicemen and women. Describing what inspired video games, he told Good Morning America host Robin Roberts in March it was after he was withdrawn from the frontline in Afghanistan when bulletin of his secret first deployment revealed.

Again, attracting on his personal experience, he said he felt separated at having to leave his humanities behind. And then I find myself on a plane and while I am sitting there I look through the drapery to the front and there are three of our lads wrapped up in plastic, missing legs, he said. One of the people[ is] clutching a bit test tube of shrapnel that had been removed from his head, and he was in a coma clutching this.

And I abruptly thought to myself, parties dont get to see this. In the whole of those 10 weeks, I never appreciated the injury side, I exclusively heard about it. Thats how everything there is started for me. Its like these people are role models and they need to be celebrated more among society, he said.

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