Prince Harry has helped footballer Emmanuel Eboue cope with his depression.
The 33-year-old royal has long been campaigning to end the stigma surrounding mental health through his charity Heads Together – which he spearheads with his brother Prince William and sister-in-law Duchess Catherine – and now Emmanuel has claimed seeing the prince speak so openly about the subject has helped him face his own demons.
Emmanuel is fighting depression after being overwhelmed by a string of personal crises, and says seeing Harry speak about his own experience with the illness after the loss of his mother Princess Diana – who died in a car crash in Paris, France, in 1997 – gave him the courage to speak up too.
The former Arsenal defender is quoted by The Mirror newspaper as saying: “I saw that he had a problem after he lost his mother, it helped me. I said to myself, if the Prince has this problem and he has the courage to talk, why not me? People in Africa were saying that I was crazy, mental. But I watched a recording of the Ginger Prince. Since saw it, it has helped me a lot.”
It comes after Prince Harry – who is engaged to American actress Meghan Markle, whom he will marry in May next year – spoke candidly in April about his struggle in the wake of his mother’s passing.
Harry, who was just 12 years old when Diana passed away, admitted he he almost suffered a “complete breakdown” as he grew up determined not to think about the loss.
He said: “I can safely say that losing my mum at the age of 12, and therefore shutting down all of my emotions for the last 20 years, has had a quite serious effect on not only my personal life but my work as well.
“I have probably been very close to a complete breakdown on numerous occasions when all sorts of grief and sort of lies and misconceptions and everything are coming to you from every angle.”
Prince Harry also revealed he had been in therapy “more than a couple of times” in order to help him deal with his grief, and later turned to boxing as a way to vent his frustrations.
He added: “During those years I took up boxing, because everyone was saying boxing is good for you and it’s a really good way of letting out aggression. And that really saved me because I was on the verge of punching someone, so being able to punch someone who had pads was certainly easier.”
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Author: BANG Showbiz