Here’s What Kate Middleton and Prince William Think of Suicide and Mental Illness
The royal couple is tackling the taboo topic of suicide.
Kate Middleton and Prince William visited the St. Thomas’ Hospital in London on Thursday (Mar. 10, 2016) to chat with a suicide survivor. The parents-of-two met up with Jonny Benjamin, who wanted to kill himself by jumping into the River Thames, and the man who eventually talked Benjamin down from the ledge, Neil Laybourn.
“Someone told me five people a day try to kill themselves. I was just blown away by the statistics,” William said during the meeting [via People]. Referring to his wife, the Duke of Cambridge continued, “For both of us, the mental health piece has got lots of aspects. It’s such a big issue that we need to do something about it.”
He explained, “We feel it’s been raised higher up the ladder. It’s suddenly bubbling just under the surface. Now we need to get up to the next level, to the surface.”
Middleton, who wore a Erdem coat with a Jonathan Saunders dress, also agreed with her husband, added, “We see through the work that we do with addiction, homelessness and knife crime that a lot of it stems back to childhood.”
Previously, the Duchess of Cambridge penned a touching essay about the importance of addressing mental health at an early age, urging parents and guardians not to be afraid to ask for help when their children is in need of counseling.
“It became clear to me that many children — even those younger than five — have to deal with complex problems without the emotional resilience, language or confidence to ask for help,” she wrote as a special guest editor for The Huffington Post UK. “And it was also clear that with mental health problems still being such a taboo, many adults are often too afraid to ask for help for the children in their care.”
“For too long we have been embarrassed to admit when our children need emotional or psychiatric help, worried that the stigma associated with these problems would be detrimental to their futures,” she said. “Parenting is hard enough without letting prejudices stop us from asking for the help we need for ourselves and our children.”
“Together, we have the chance to make a real difference for an entire generation of young children.”