In an emotional and arresting disclosure, Meghan Markle described approaching Prince Harry and the royal family and seeking help with persistent suicidal thoughts during her pregnancy, after months of bullying from the press and being barred from leaving the house.
“I just didn’t want to be alive anymore,” she said. “And that was a very clear and real and frightening constant thought. And I remember — I remember how he just cradled me.”
Meghan said she later asked a senior royal about the possibility of seeking inpatient care, and was told that would not be possible because it “wouldn’t be good for the institution.”
And that was that.
Meghan had surrendered her keys, driver’s license and passport upon joining the family. “I couldn’t, you know, call an Uber to the palace,” she said.
On one occasion in 2018, Meghan said, she attended an official event at the Royal Albert Hall against Harry’s advice because she feared what she might do to herself if she were left alone. She sobbed in the royal box of the concert hall, smiling and posing for photographs when the lights were turned on.
Meghan described being scared by thoughts “in the middle of the night that are very clear,” and said: “This isn’t some abstract idea. This is methodical, and this is not who I am.”
Harry has spoken out about his own struggles with mental health issues, describing years of panic attacks in a 2017 interview with a podcast made by The Telegraph. He came “very close to total breakdown on numerous occasions, when all sorts of grief and lies and misconceptions are coming to you from every angle,” he said.
In 2019, he and Oprah announced a documentary about “mental illness and mental wellness,” which is to air on Apple TV+ later this year.
Harry later said mental health had played a key role in his decision to redefine his role in the family.
“It’s really sad that it’s gotten to this point, but I’ve got to do something for my own mental health, my wife’s, and for Archie’s, as well, because I could see where this was headed,” he said.
If you are having thoughts of suicide, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 (TALK) or go to SpeakingOfSuicide.com/resources for a list of additional resources.