Prince Harry says he stepped back from royal family because 'toxic' press was 'destroying' his mental health

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Armani Syed
·2 min read
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Prince Harry on an open-top bus in Los Angeles for The Late Late Show.
Prince Harry on an open-top bus in Los Angeles for The Late Late Show. The Late Late Show with James Corden/CBS
  • Prince Harry said he didn't walk away from the royal family, he stepped back for his mental health.

  • Harry told James Corden that the British press was "toxic" and "destroying" his mental health.

  • "I need to get my family out of here," Harry recalled thinking.

  • Visit Insider's homepage for more stories.

Prince Harry said the reason he stepped back from royal duties was that the "toxic" behavior of the British press was "destroying" his mental health.

In a segment for "The Late Late Show," recorded before Buckingham Palace announced the couple would not resume their working roles in the royal family, Harry shared intimate details with fellow stateside Brit James Corden on an open-top bus tour of Los Angeles.

When asked by Corden if walking away from the royal family was the right thing to do for him and his family, the Duke of Sussex responded that "it was never walking away."

"It was stepping back rather than stepping down. It was a really difficult environment, as I think a lot of people saw. We all know what the British press can be like and it was destroying my mental health. I was like, 'this is toxic,'" he said.

meghan markle prince harry
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle in January 2020. DANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/WPA Pool/Getty Images

In January 2020, the couple announced that they would step back from their roles as senior royals to become financially independent, and by March they had permanently relocated to California with their son Archie.

Harry explained to Corden that he felt he needed to "get [his] family out of there" and that this is "what any husband and what any father would do" in that environment.

Harry and Meghan Markle have previously been vocal about their mistreatment at the hands of the British tabloids. In 2019, Harry issued a statement outlining the "disturbing" ways Markle had been "vilified almost every day" by media outlets.

"I lost my mother and now I watch my wife falling victim to the same powerful forces," his statement read. After details of a private letter Markle had sent to her father were published by the Mail on Sunday, she successfully took legal action against Associated Newspapers (ANL), the parent company of the newspaper.

While the couple continues to carve their own path, Harry reassured Corden that they both remain committed to their wider duties as public figures: "I will never walk away, I will always be contributing. My life is public service so whenever I am in the world it's going to be the same thing."

The couple is also set to appear on "The Oprah Winfrey Show" on Sunday, March 7 for "intimate conversation," where they are expected to shed more light on this decision to step back from royal duties.

Read the original article on Insider