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  #161  
Old 05-14-2012, 10:03 PM
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Originally Posted by US Royal Watcher View Post
I also agree that Princess Diana shed a lot of light on eating disorders. Unfortunately, many of her followers still do not understand her illness. Not only do they blame Prince Charles, but some of the comments to Penny Junor's articles indicate they believe saying she was mentally ill was an "insult." It is another reason that I wish she had truly come to understand her illness, she may have been able to help others understand it better.
Well said. Too many still adulate her for the wrong reasons and live her delusions as reality. The worst of this is the blame heaped upon Charles and the BRF.
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  #162  
Old 05-14-2012, 10:54 PM
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It's really very interesting to read the perspectives of others. I think it may be likely that some are unable, for whatever reason, to grasp ones perspective and there's little more I'd have to add as a result. My experience with the illness is substantial and having been someone who fought the illness and was further educated by it through my time spent at the Royal Melbourne Hospital Eating Disorder Clinic (not as a patient but as an in and out patient access volunteer) which happens to be a world leading recovery clinic. The process is long and not easy and an accumulation of issues come to a head. And no where would I suggest that manipulation is not apparent and in the case of Diana, we saw how she manipulated the media at times so it's evident that to some degree, there were manipulative tendencies.

My aim at posting is not to discourage opinions contrary to my own, not at all. It was to provide balance to what was becoming a seemingly prejudiced discussion. This woman really was not well for a very long time and so before people make up their minds that she was an attention seeking b**ch who's aim it was to "bring down" the institution of monarchy, perhaps gain some perspective and or insight by educating ourselves with the various psychological/emotional issues Diana faced. It's so easy to point the finger and label the person as being this or that when you know little of a disease or it's related tendencies.
Well said Madame Royal! Your comments are well thought out and balanced.
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I also agree that Princess Diana shed a lot of light on eating disorders. Unfortunately, many of her followers still do not understand her illness. Not only do they blame Prince Charles, but some of the comments to Penny Junor's articles indicate they believe saying she was mentally ill was an "insult." It is another reason that I wish she had truly come to understand her illness, she may have been able to help others understand it better.
I agree a lot of people don't want to believe there were times she was mentally ill. It didn't make her less of a person. One of my closest friends suffers from Anorexia and by the grace of God she's doing so well. With the help of psychiatrist, family, and friends, and the stories of how other ordinary people, and famous individuals like Diana, Portia De Rossi, and Karen Carpenter dealt with their diseases inspired her to deal with her illness in a healthy way.
It is not a weakness to be mentally ill. It does sadden me when individuals use Diana's illness as way to bash her, make fun, and use it to re-affirm their dislike of her. That is truly sad.

Now, as a person it irritates me beyond belief when people such as Junor who have no degrees in mental health state Diana suffered from Borderline Personality Disorder as a fact.
When one use's another person's mental illness as a means to put that person down is just mean-spirited and ignorant.
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  #163  
Old 05-14-2012, 11:13 PM
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I've heard Borderline Personality Disorder used before when Diana's name came up. Is it only Junor who has used it or have others agreed with her? I have never got a good grasp on what that particular disease means.
I think what can be agreed upon is that Diana occasionally suffered from depression. I believe Charles did as well, makes me wonder how William and Harry can appear to be so healthy when both parents had possible mental illnesses.
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  #164  
Old 05-15-2012, 08:34 AM
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Diana and 'Borderline personality disorder'


Sally Bedell Smith's book "Diana in Search of Herself: Portrait of a Troubled Princess" (1999) raises the issue of borderline personality disorder and was discussed in the Panorama Interview thread. I've now moved the relevant posts to this thread, beginning at post #87.

From Sally Bedell Smith's website:

"For the first time, a thorough analysis of Diana's character and temperament, leading to the conclusion that she may have suffered from one of the most elusive mental illnesses--the borderline personality disorder, which is characterized by a confused identity; sharp mood swings; extreme fear of rejection and abandonment; an inability to sustain relationships; persistent feelings of loneliness, boredom and emptiness; depression; and impulsive behavior such as binge eating and self-mutilation--all of which Diana experienced in her adult life severely and chronically, as indicated by her behavior, her own revelations, and insights offered by friends and family.

For the first time, an analysis of her relationships with Charles and her lovers as part of an overall pattern showing Diana's need for constant approval--a level of support that no one could maintain. The book offers new information and insights about each of these relationships--from her security guard Barry Mannakee through her riding instructor James Hewitt, art dealer Oliver Hoare, Pakistani surgeon Hasnat Khan, and playboy Dodi Fayed.
"
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  #165  
Old 05-15-2012, 09:28 AM
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Originally Posted by XeniaCasaraghi View Post
I've heard Borderline Personality Disorder used before when Diana's name came up. Is it only Junor who has used it or have others agreed with her? I have never got a good grasp on what that particular disease means.

I think what can be agreed upon is that Diana occasionally suffered from depression. I believe Charles did as well, makes me wonder how William and Harry can appear to be so healthy when both parents had possible mental illnesses.
Junor was not the first to use it - if she has used it. Nor was Bedell-Smith the first to use it. There have been people who have recognized that Diana exhibited unusual behavior patterns. Certainly I recognized it dealing as I do with young girls in an image-conscious and celebrity culture to the max. Diana's dilemma was very obvious to people in the industry who have to deal with it with their 'charges'.

Bedell-Smith's book is a very harrowing read - very hard to get through. I don't think one can say that Diana 'occasionally suffered from depression' - her issues were far more pervasive and sustained than occasionally suffering from anything. You make it sound very benign - when it wasn't.

That William and Harry are as 'normal' as they are can be attributed to Charles and the ballast he and BRF gave them in their upbringing, I do believe. Charles gave them privacy and the freedom of privacy. They were safe with Charles - never subjected to the glare of the press for PR purposes.

Charles may have been the one who 'occasionally suffered from depression', meaning depressed about how things were going, but it was rooted in circumstance (not innate tendencies from all we know) - a failing marriage, etc. In no way have we any evidence that Charles has been 'mentally ill' while we have an inordinate amount of evidence for Diana. I challenge anyone to live with the behavior Diana was exhibiting and not have a pretty intense reaction. As I've said - demanding that a spouse who finds themselves wedded to someone engaged in destructive behavior be the model of understanding and compassion is nice but unrealistic.

However, I guess that will be the way of it - a tit for a tat: if one is going to suggest Diana was mentally distressed then lets say it of Charles.

The assumption, too, that dislike of Diana drives the discussion veers the conversation from a very serious issue to something banal and petty, making of it less than what it is.
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  #166  
Old 05-15-2012, 11:05 AM
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Originally Posted by Tyger View Post
Not quite, I was going on this -





In fact Penny Junor talks of this - the first time I have heard it spoken - of how much Charles blamed himself for everything. I know well that feeling - blaming oneself - it wouldn't be this way if only I had done things right, etc. He/She does what he/she does because I am not what I should be - all too familiar territory for untold people dealing with dysfunctional relationships with dysfunctional partners.

Agree that it is a discussion - which I am enjoying. Hope you are, too. :-)

Tyger, THAT feeling is the one experienced by those who have had responsibility for others' welfare forced on them from a very early age, thus in adult life having no clear idea of where their own responsibility ends and the other persons begins. It is said that each of us knows the steps of a psychological dance unique to us and at the very moment we meet we can recognize and be recognized by that one person who knows the same steps, thus we are assured of getting the "right" person.

I am, indeed, enjoying this discussion. Thankyou for your input.
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  #167  
Old 05-15-2012, 12:14 PM
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...that dislike of Diana drives the discussion veers the conversation from a very serious issue to something banal and petty, making of it less than what it is.
Which often seems to be the case throughout various discussions I've long noticed. Not just in the British royal threads, but various other threads also.

Especially those who share likeminded and exceedingly critical opinions of someone. It is often they who assimilate together in conversation and who post hand in hand, supporting one anothers views with at times a notable tendancy to employ a certain toxicity to the conversation. A sort of 'pack mentality' if you will. It doesn't prove anything really, just that some people apparently find it easy to articulate such unempathic views via the anonymity of the internet.
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  #168  
Old 05-15-2012, 01:46 PM
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IIRC Junor originally planned to use the term in "Prince Charles: Villain or Victim" but didn't, perhaps for legal reasons or maybe because Prince Charles himself didn't want it used. It seems clear to me that Penny Junor (and this is my opinion only) has close contacts within the Prince's circle and possibly has indirect contact with HRH.

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I've heard Borderline Personality Disorder used before when Diana's name came up. Is it only Junor who has used it or have others agreed with her?
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  #169  
Old 05-15-2012, 01:52 PM
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I said Diana "occasionally suffered from depression" because I am not up to date on her moods and was not comfortable saying outright she was a person who was going to struggle with depression for the rest of her life. Her "suicide attempts", self harm and eating disorder point to a mental illness, I just did not want to put a definitive label on it.
And my comments about William and Harry being normal isn't about their privacy or lack there of; I just no mental illness can be genetic and despite their genes as well as their childhood experiences they don't seem to be suffering from any mental disturbances.
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  #170  
Old 05-15-2012, 02:20 PM
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Originally Posted by XeniaCasaraghi View Post
I said Diana "occasionally suffered from depression" because I am not up to date on her moods and was not comfortable saying outright she was a person who was going to struggle with depression for the rest of her life. Her "suicide attempts", self harm and eating disorder point to a mental illness, I just did not want to put a definitive label on it.
And my comments about William and Harry being normal isn't about their privacy or lack there of; I just no mental illness can be genetic and despite their genes as well as their childhood experiences they don't seem to be suffering from any mental disturbances.
I agree that mental illness can be genetic but I'm not certain that the same is true of psychological disturbances. Bi-polar is thought to be inherited and it is now believed that where schizophrenia is concerned, there will always be another family member who has had it, but because the nature of the disease leads to nomadic behaviour, this isn't easy to prove. Some interesting work has been done with children who have been adopted OUT of families with scizophrenia to find out if the right environment has a beneficial effect. Psychological disturbances are generally believed to start out as coping mechanisms under circumstances unique to the individual and are sometimes impossible to correct.
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  #171  
Old 05-15-2012, 08:31 PM
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From what I have read, a high number of people who suffer from eating disorders also diagnosed as suffering from borderline personality disorder. No one knows why that is and it could be that they are separate illnesses but share many of the same symptoms. At any rate, it is very possible that Princess Diana suffered (and suffered is the correct term) from both an eating disorder and a personality disorder. It is not an insult, both illnesses are not choices, they are medical conditions.

Regarding William and Harry, for many years the media promoted Diana's allegations that Prince Charles was a cold, uncaring father. I remember, though, that in the days following Princess Diana's TV interview, the media proclaimed Diana the "winner" in the public relations war with Prince Charles and the royal family. Then came a startling announcement: both William and Harry had chosen to spend the Christmas holidays with their father. Even Princess Diana's biggest media supporters had to admit that she had not "won" when it came to her sons.

Over the next year, it was widely conceded that both boys were choosing to spend more time with their father--although some of her supporters tried to argue that they simply loved hunting and fishing. I think that most children who have mentally ill parents love and are very protective of their ill parent, but they crave normality and will prefer the "well" parent (if they have one). Then they feel guilty for not being there for the sick parent. It's a sad situation all around.

I don't dislike Princess Diana, in fact I find her fascinating. But she should not have publicly criticized her children's father.

Yes, Charles also cooperated with a book and did a TV interview, but he didn't criticize Diana publicly. He admitted that he had an affair (but only after the marriage broke down) and that he had not been "in love" with Diana. He didn't disclose her affairs or claim that she had never been in love with him. In fact, I don't think she had ever been in love with Charles, although she obviously had a crush on the Princes of Wales. As others have said on this forum, she convinced herself she was in love because thought that it would solve all of her problems if she married a member of the royal family.
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  #172  
Old 05-15-2012, 11:34 PM
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for many years the media promoted Diana's allegations that Prince Charles was a cold, uncaring father
I must have missed something (which wouldn't surprise me ) but can the allegations be provided because I confess I've not seen them myself.

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Even Princess Diana's biggest media supporters had to admit that she had not "won" when it came to her sons.
I dont think it was ever about winning over the children and the fact that the children spent Christmas with Charles and his family proved nothing of their relationship with Diana. Its all just suggestive assumption.

The media were having a field day and so also made the situation a popularity contest amongst parents.

And it was Christmas afterall, a time that the royal family often spend together. As his children, Charles had every right to spend Christmas with them.

And from what I've read and heard over the past 15 years, both parents, no matter their personal (and yet not so personal) unhappiness, were not known to trash talk the other to the children. Diana may have looked to William for comfort (which in itself is not necessarily helpful or fair for a young child) but by all accounts it is believed she spoke with a mindful restraint in recognition of the fact that he was their father.

I'd de surprised if the question of who was a suitable parent to have ever really been an issue amongst those concerned. Charles knew what a devoted, attentative and loving mother she was and by all accounts Diana knew how much Charles cared for his boys. Surely no one is in a position to suggest anything to the contrary, unless it can be unequivocally substantiated with the exacting statements, and in which case I'd very much like to be better informed.
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  #173  
Old 05-16-2012, 12:07 AM
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It wasn't an inward popularity contest it was an outward contest promoted by Diana and the media.
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  #174  
Old 05-16-2012, 12:14 AM
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Between her, her husband, his family (not including the children) and the public?

But any suggestion Diana sought to create a further divide in public perception of Charles as a father, as opposed to a lousy husband, seems all but speculative and based on indavidual and thus collective perceptions of the situation. Given the nature of how people group together when they share an opinion its little wonder that there are those who would suggest that that is exactly what she sought to do. And being aware of her irrational deameanour all but provided/provides people with the ammunition to further pronounce that she sought to undermine every aspect of Charles' entire being. In part using her mental state (perhaps not consciously for some) as a means to further vilify her.

She was a complicated woman who's mental health issues caused her and others further distress, but not all behaviours can be excused which is why I am only too happy to bare witness to the insightful content which would support any such allegation.
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  #175  
Old 05-16-2012, 02:30 AM
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I don't feel like going through all the incidences. But there were times when Diana called the press so she could be photographed with the kids doing something fun and so it would be printed in the papers and portray her as the good and loving mother as opposed to Charles. I believe one instance of this was the video and pictures of her and the kids on a water amusement park ride.
I don't know if anyone else has more info on this particular subject. I recall reading about it and hearing about it in my Diana days.
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  #176  
Old 05-16-2012, 02:38 AM
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And from what I've read and heard over the past 15 years, both parents, no matter their personal (and yet not so personal) unhappiness, were not known to trash talk the other to the children.

She didn't need to trash talk Charles to their sons directly. She publicly tried to destroyhim.

What she might have said to them in private was massively undermined with what she told the world.
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  #177  
Old 05-16-2012, 03:08 AM
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Thanks for the response, Xenia.

I must confess that I dont find such an example to be a clear indication of trying to portray Charles as a bad father. She took opportunity to disclose the strong relationship she had with her children and many millions of people either wanted or were happy to see that, obviously.

If anything it identified that although princes of the blood, her boys were enjoying an upbringing that could be fun and happy and in a sense, not unlike many other children the world over.

In later years, did Charles not give his approval to have journalists and photographers attend a photo shoot at Verbier to record the comradery and togetherness he shared/shares with his sons? There is an interest, he udnerstood that, and he was happy to oblige.

If people are eager to look into the reasons as to why Diana personally invited or allowed such coverage to take place, then shouldn't the same questions be asked of Charles? Or is it a case of no one being sceptical of a father's motivations? Even though this particular father is known to have been zealously interested in his own popularity and public image (with or without cause).

Personally I see nothing wrong with either of the mentioned occasions.

Diana's association with the media, if we can look beyond the sometimes contrived nature of the said relationship for a moment, is now considered commonplace throughout many of the continents royal public relation ventures. Allowing access to a variety of public outings, not just official engagements, is all but an accepted part of their lives. In other words, Diana was doing nothing which is not now considered a 'normal' part of royal life, be it with perhaps a more direct involvement on her behalf at that time.

If it is only examples such as this, then I affirm my belief until categorically proven otherwise, that it all comes down to what people wish to believe was insighted on Diana's behalf. As it stands, it would appear to be conjecture, above all else.

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She publicly tried to destroyhim.
It is here that I believe Diana was predominately manipulative. And although you think she wanted to destroy him, I think she wanted him to be answerable and applied the only sway she could to the situation in the hope of achieving this. Her public image.

In that there is a difference and although I do not agree with the employed tactics, this woman being in an emotionally vulnerable and desperate situation engaged an irrational way of dealing with both personal and joint issues. Unfortunate, unhelpful and a sad state of affairs but I would not go as far as to state that she wanted to destroy him. I think she wanted to portray herself as being in control which we all know was not the case and sure, to discredit him to some extent. I'd imagine it would have been rather embarrassing to have people know that your husband is having an extra marital affair (before Diana herself sought company elsewhere), especially when you hold such a distinguished position with the added expectation of propriety. A wife only in name. Not an easy pill to swallow, no matter how much or how little she contributed to the initial breakdown of her marriage.

Unlike Charles, Diana's positive public image was one thing that found it's feet quite quickly. It flourished. Charles' image could be considered as having long been purculiar and I would suggest that she knowingly used that to her advantage in this instance. Again, an example of the aforementioned tendancy for strategising at a time of great personal despondency. A trait that can often be found with someone who lives with chronic mental health.

With a magnitude of insecurities no doubt weighing heavily, I'd endeavour to suggest that the one constant in her life apart from her children, was the wider affection of the community at large which was a source of great strength for her and provided the validation she clearly felt she needed.

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What she might have said to them in private was massively undermined with what she told the world.
It does seem as being really quite inconsistent, and for the most part it was. But again, it was not Charles as a father which caused their marital unhappiness. Subjecting them to information about the breakdown of their marriage, be it on a global stage, does not suggest that she spoke with her boys about their father, in his capacity as a father. That was my point.
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Old 05-16-2012, 07:48 AM
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Perhaps some of the posters here are not old enough to remember the "war of the Windsors" that took place between 1992 and 1996, but I am. Andrew Morton, a proven confidant of Princess Diana, often tried to denigrate Prince Charles as a father. I feel confident that Morton was acting with Diana's blessing.

XeniaCasaraghi is correct that Diana would contact the media when she took the children out in public so they could be photographed having fun with her. Prince William hated it. Prince Charles tried to keep them from the public eye. My understanding is that Prince Charles would agree to photo ops on the first day of a vacation on the condition the photographers would leave them alone the rest of the time--Diana and other royals would also try and make those arrangements.

Penny Junor refers to the time when Prince William was hit in the head with a gulf club and Prince Charles did not stay with him at the hospital. This was repeated frequently--especially by Andrew Morton and known confidants of Princess Diana. Morton also repeatedly told the story in which Prince Charles supposedly was disappointed that Prince Harry was a boy with red hair.

Obviously Prince Harry heard the story and it was probably very hurtful. Princess Diana didn't intend to hurt her children--she wanted to hurt her husband--but she did.

Regarding Madame Royale's point that Charles had every right to spend Christmas with his children. I agree, but so did their mother. The children were apparently given a choice and chose their father. That speaks volumes. It was widely reported at the time--and recently repeated by Penny Junor--that Prince William was especially upset by her interview. One of Diana's friends has confirmed that Diana regretted the interview because it upset the boys so much. That really should not have been a surprise to her. Diana should have thought about it earlier.
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Old 05-16-2012, 08:23 AM
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The children were apparently given a choice and chose their father. That speaks volumes.
How does it? He is their father and as such they spent Christmas with their father and their paternal family. It speaks volumes if you want it too.

The fact they had a choice means nothing of the state of their relationship with their mother. Parents and children don't always see eye to eye, and the children, as they were, still highly depended on their mother's love, encouragement, support and companionship. Thus, I think people can look into the situation with an aim to perceive what it is they wish to perceive.

Furthermore, the Panorama interview took place in late November. By then the boys attendance at Sandringham would have been anticipated, surely? (royal christmas's are known to be orgnaised in advance afterall).

Had have the Panorama interview never taken place and had have the divorce not been announced when it was, then it's entirely likely that the boys would have spent Christmas at Sandringham as was the norm.

There was considerably more to this post, but for some unknown reason it continued to keep vanishing. No doubt much to the relief of others
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Old 05-16-2012, 09:13 AM
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The topic of this thread is Diana's eating disorders and health issues, we are not going to go off topic with Diana or Charles: Who was the better parent unless it relates to the topic at hand.

Any and all additional posts will be deleted without notice.
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