There are few public figures as universally adored as the late Princess Diana. Though she's never far from public consciousness, it seems that people have been thinking about her more frequently as the birth of her fourth grandchild is imminent. She was a rule-breaker, like her daughter-in-law Meghan Markle, and was unabashedly outspoken about the realities of the life she married into. And Princess Diana's quotes about being a royal prove that it's not always as easy as it appears on the surface.
Sure, there are certain luxuries afforded to you as a royal that are inconceivable to most working individuals. Never having to worry about a mortgage, a salary, or even cooking and cleaning again would be incredible enough to most, add onto that access to the entire monarchy: the fashion, the jewels, and of course, the platform to do good. It's the lattermost point that Princess Diana took most interest in, as Harper's Bazaar noted, having no issue sharing just how suffocating and rigorous life in the public eye can be, particularly within her (then-dissolving) marriage, and under the scrupulous jurisdiction of the Queen.
It was bold that Diana was so outspoken about the realities of royalty, and it's a refreshing reminder as the world turns yet again to celebrate the addition of yet another royal baby.
"My Personality Was Taken Away From Me"
Though it may have been one of the most celebrated and anticipated weddings of a generation (some consider it the biggest wedding of the century, though Prince William and Kate Middleton's or Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's could easily rival) yet for Princess Diana, all was not as glimmering as it seemed.
"The day I walked down the aisle at St. Paul's Cathedral, I felt that my personality was taken away from me, and I was taken over by the royal machine," Diana once said in an interview, reflecting on her wedding day, according to E! News.
"Anywhere I See Suffering, That Is Where I Want To Be, Doing What I Can."
Though she may have received more public attention for her clothing and her marriage than she did her philanthropic efforts, Diana's heart was always in the right place: she wanted to genuinely help others.
"Anywhere I see suffering, that is where I want to be, doing what I can," she once said about her deep desire to leave a profound impact on the world, as Grazia reported.
"I Seemed To Be On The Front Of A Newspaper Every Single Day, Which Is An Isolating Experience"
Regarding her transition to royal life and how she grew to handle media attention, Diana told PBS' Frontline in 1995 that it was "daunting," and that being hounded by the press isolated her in a sense. At the time, she told Frontline:
The most daunting aspect was the media attention, because my husband and I, we were told when we got engaged that the media would go quietly, and it didn't; and then when we were married they said it would go quietly and it didn't; and then it started to focus very much on me, and I seemed to be on the front of a newspaper every single day, which is an isolating experience. The higher the media put you, place you, is the bigger the drop.
"Every Strong Woman In History Has Had To Walk Down A Similar Path"
In newly released footage via an Amazon exclusive documentary, Diana: The Woman Inside, she shared that she felt a distinct lack of support from those in Buckingham Palace, and that she attributed it to her not being willing to remain complacent.
"I think every strong woman in history has had to walk down a similar path," she once said, as Inquisitr reported. "I think it’s the strength that causes the confusion and the fear."
"William Had To Be Induced Because I Couldn’t Handle The Press Pressure Any Longer."
With a new royal baby due any day, everyone is quite familiar with how intense the press speculation can be in the weeks leading up to delivery. It's not exactly what anyone who is or isn't full-term in their pregnancy needs, and People recently reported that, in an interview, Diana once revealed she was actually induced because she couldn't handle it anymore.
"William had to be induced because I couldn’t handle the press pressure any longer, it was becoming unbearable. It was as if everyone was monitoring every day for me," she said, according to People.
"I Felt Compelled To Perform."
In one of her final and most famous interviews with the BBC in 1995, Diana gave a tell-all about life in the palace, Prince Charles, her former marriage, and her own serious issues, such as self-injury and an eating disorder.
However, despite the graveness of the interview, she was asked whether or not she was honest about how much she was struggling. The answer was, no. At the time, she told the BBC:
I felt compelled to perform. Well, when I say perform, I was compelled to go out and do my engagements and not let people down and support them and love them. And in a way by being out in public they supported me, although they weren't aware just how much healing they were giving me, and it carried me through.
As Diana's past quotes show, being in the royal eye and having celebrity status perhaps isn't all that it's chalked up to be and it undeniably comes with an immense amount of pressure. At the end of the and beyond glitz and glamour, royals are people with their own unique joys and struggles.