The Duke of Cambridge has urged employers to do more to look after the mental health of workers as he revealed he was “taken over the edge” while an air ambulance pilot.
Prince William described how he sought help after one particular accident he had to deal with left him feeling “very sad and very down”.
But he said he had been helped by the good mental health working practices of the RAF and East Anglian Air Ambulance, and the opportunity to talk through his experience.
"Talking was really important, but even that wasn't quite enough for one particular incident for me,” he said.
"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, and I started feeling things that I have never felt before, and I got very sad and very down about this particular family.
“You start to take away bits of the job, you take them home and you keep them in your body.
“You don’t want to share them with your loved ones because you don’t want to bring that sort of stuff home so the only place to talk about it is at work and if you don’t necessarily have the right tools or the right environment at work then you can see why things snowball.”
He added: “I was lucky enough that I identified something was going on and spoke to people about it.”
'The wall needs to be smashed down'
The Duke of Cambridge was speaking at a conference in London which aimed to address mental health issues in the workplace.
And he encouraged employees to look after their workers’ mental health.
“We spend a vast amount of our time at work,” he said. “There should be a much more open, supportive and compassionate working environment to deal with those sorts of problems.
"There's still a stigma about mental health. We are chipping away at it, but that wall needs to be smashed down."
If you want to seek advice or help about mental health issues at work you can find a BACP counsellor or psychotherapist via the BACP’s Therapist Directory.
Photo credit: This Can Happen