The aftermath of his mother's death left Prince Harry distraught -- so much so that in his late 20s, he decided to go to therapy.
His mother, Princess Diana, died in a car crash Aug. 31, 1997, when he was only 12 years old.
"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," the 32-year-old told The Telegraph's Byrony Gordon on her podcast "Mad World: Why it's totally normal to feel weird." He spoke to the publication about his mental health struggles in hopes that his story could help others push past the associated stigma.
He told Gordon, of his mother, that he tried "not to think about her" in his teenage years and 20s.
"My way of dealing with it was sticking my head in the sand, refusing to ever think about my mum, because why would that help?" he said.
The prince eventually sought counseling to work through his issues, which his brother Prince William had suggested. Harry also disclosed that he's likely been near a "complete breakdown," and has had difficulty with aggression. In an effort to appease his aggression, he "took up boxing."
"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," he said.
Harry explained that his grief didn't have to do with his time in Afghanistan, despite rumors.
What's clear is that working through his problems has helped him move forward in his life, both personally and professionally.
"Because of the process I have been through over the past two-and-a-half years, I've now been able to take my work seriously, been able to take my private life seriously as well, and been able to put blood, sweat and tears into the things that really make a difference and things that I think will make a difference to everybody else," he said.
Harry and his brother and sister-in-law, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, teamed up to create a charity, "Heads Together," advocating for mental well-being.