Having witnessed one too many deaths, the Duke of Cambridge Prince William has said it made him see the world as a ‘darker place’.
The duke recently revealed that when he was working as an air ambulance pilot, he saw the world as a “slightly depressed, darker, blacker place”, while watching people die. According to a report in The Independent, Prince William worked for the East Anglian Air Ambulance from 2015 until 2017. He admitted he “really worries” about those working on the frontline in the coronavirus pandemic, mainly because of the effect “such high levels of sadness, trauma, and death” will have on them.
The outlet further reports that during a video call with medics, counsellors and first responders, William said: “When you see so much death and so much bereavement it does impact how you see the world. It stays with you, at home it stays with you for weeks on end, doesn’t it, and you see the world in a much more, slightly depressed, darker, blacker place.
In 2018, he had revealed that one particular incident involving a child “took him over the edge”, when he was with the air ambulance.
William, who has three kids — George, Charlotte, and Louis — said at the inaugural This Can Happen conference in London: “I worked several times on very traumatic jobs involving children, and after I had my own children, I think the relation between the job and the personal life was what really took me over the edge. I started feeling things that I have never felt before, and I got very sad and very down about this particular family.”
In this recent video call, he was also joined by wife Kate, the Duchess of Cambridge, and they discussed their concerns over mental health of frontline staff.
William and Kate stressed on the importance of frontline personnel reaching out for support, while also expressing that the stigma surrounding seeking help for mental health issues must end.