The Royal Family is no stranger to controversy. Some of these controversies are out in the open, such as royals wearing wildly inappropriate outfits. Other times, though, the controversy gets downright personal.
That’s certainly the case with Prince Charles and the late Princess Diana. The entire world mourned her untimely death. However, what the world didn’t know was how deeply Charles broke her heart before she passed away! Here is the unknown truth about the way Charles broke Diana’s heart.
So much for the honeymoon
It’s not uncommon for couples to grow apart over time. In the beginning, though, married couples are usually emotionally close to one another. That’s why these early days of a married relationship are referred to as “the honeymoon period.”
For Charles and Diana, though, the honeymoon period didn’t last that long. Why? Because he was a bit of a cad on their actual honeymoon!
The two had quite the adventure ahead of them: a 14-day cruise aboard a royal yacht (The Brittania). Diana was “so in love” that she couldn’t take her eyes off Charles, she revealed in the biography Diana: Her True Story in Her Own Words. But he was seemingly hung up on an old flame. Charles was rocking cufflinks given to him by his old girlfriend, Camilla Parker Bowles.
The cufflinks in question featured intertwined C’s to honor the union of Charles and Camilla. It was thoughtless of him to bring these cufflinks to his honeymoon with Diana. In retrospect, this may have been a warning sign about the rest of their marriage.
A growing family
Despite that extreme honeymoon faux pas, Diana thought she was “the luckiest girl in the world.” She gave birth to their first son, Prince William, in 1982. In a perfect world, this would be the beginning of a dynasty that would inspire the entire world. Instead, it turned out to be the beginning of the end.
Charles and Diana wasted no time trying to conceive again. However, their second pregnancy resulted in a miscarriage in 1983. Rather than letting this discourage them, they kept trying, and Prince Harry was born in 1984.
The arrival of another child should have been the happiest occasion in the world for this royal couple. But it would lead to a schism that eventually tore their family apart.
When Charles broke Diana’s heart
It’s a bit of a stereotype that men want sons rather than daughters. In the case of Prince Charles, he wanted a matched set. Since he already had a son, he was really hoping their next child would be a girl.
Diana knew about his preferences, and she also knew the truth: she was going to give birth to a boy. Instead of telling Charles the truth, she hid this from him for as long as possible. After an agonizing nine-hour labor with no painkillers, Diana gave birth to Prince Harry.
Prince Charles took one look at his son and said, “Oh God, it’s a boy.” He then added, “And he’s even got red hair.”
This comment wounded Diana deeply and seems to signify the wedge between the couple that drove them fully apart.
The cruelty continues
Why was this comment so painful? In addition to the general horror of a man rejecting his own child, the crack about the red hair was basically an insult to Diana’s family. Her older sisters and younger brother all had red hair, meaning that Harry’s red hair was due to her family genetics.
In other words, Charles’ insult was a slap in the face to her entire family. And he kept piling insults on, reportedly telling Diana’s mother at Harry’s christening, “ We were so disappointed — we thought it would be a girl.”
This basically confirmed that Charles’ reaction was not just a spur of the moment thing. Instead, it was a deep resentment that didn’t go away. And if the resentment wouldn’t leave, Diana would!
The end of a marriage
Diana was very clear-eyed about the sequence of events. According to her, “Suddenly, as Harry was born, it just went bang, our marriage. The whole thing went down the drain.”
She tried to stick it out as long as she could, which turned out to be about eight years. In 1992, they announced a separation. In 1994, on the day a documentary aired that revealed Charles had been unfaithful, Diana attended a Vanity Fair party in what was dubbed her stunning “revenge dress.” Their divorce was finalized in 1996.
At this point, Diana seemed to have her entire life ahead of her.
Farewell, Princess Diana
Tragically, Diana, her boyfriend, and her driver all died in a car crash on August 31, 1997. Her driver was under the influence of both alcohol and antidepressants, though many people — including Prince Harry — feel that he would not have crashed if not for the paparazzi chasing them.
Diana’s entourage was trying to avoid relentless paparazzi when they drove into a tunnel and hit a pillar at high speed. And this is one of the primary reasons that Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have decided to live a much more private life than Charles and Diana.
“My deepest fear is history repeating itself,” Harry wrote in a statement in 2019.