Although glimpses into the marriage of Diana, Princess of Wales, and Prince Charles have been revealed over the years, few feel as deeply personal and painful as the revelation from Diana’s candid conversation with royal biographer Andrew Morton exposed in the re-release of Diana: Her True Story — In Her Own Words.
According to Diana, her marriage to Prince Charles simply couldn’t survive the strain of having a second child. Or, more specifically, a second child who wasn’t a daughter.
“Charles and I were very, very close to each other six weeks before Harry was born, the closest we’ve ever, ever been and ever will be,” she recounted. “Then, suddenly, as Harry was born, it just went bang, our marriage. The whole thing went down the drain.”
Apparently, Prince Charles had long desired a daughter, so Diana decided not to tell him when she found out in an earlier ultrasound that that their bundle of joy would be a boy.
“He wanted two children, and he wanted a girl,” Diana said, adding that Prince Charles’ initial reaction upon seeing Prince Harry was, “Oh God, it’s a boy… and he’s even got red hair.”
Yowch. That’s bound to do damage to poor Harry’s psyche. However, subsequent moments in Diana’s conversation alluded to what was likely the real culprit in her marriage’s demise: Charles’ extramarital affair.
Noting that “something inside me closed off” after Harry’s birth, Diana admitted, “I knew Charles had gone back to his lady” — alluding, of course, to Charles’ now-wife Camilla Parker Bowles.
While Diana expressed her frustration with her flailing marriage at the time in relation to her second child and tension stemming from the birth, she later blamed her husband’s rogue relationship for many of the royal couple’s problems.
After all, remember her rather famous response during a 1995 BBC interview. “There were three of us in this marriage, so it was a bit crowded.” And she definitely wasn’t talking about baby Harry.