Prince William says his grief over Princess Diana's death resurfaced when he had kids

The Duke of Cambridge talked about losing his mom and becoming a dad for a new BBC One documentary, "Football, Prince William and Our Mental Health."
/ Source: TODAY

Prince William is opening up about the struggles and joys of being a parent after losing his own mother when he was 15 years old.

In the BBC One documentary "Football, Prince William and Our Mental Health," set to air Thursday, the Duke of Cambridge, 37, sat down with former soccer player Marvin Sordell for a frank conversation about the difficulties of raising children when missing a parental figure yourself. Sordell, 29, grew up without a father.

"Having children is the biggest life-changing moment. It really is," William said. "When you've been through something traumatic in life, that is, your dad not being around, my mother dying when I was younger, your emotions come back in leaps and bounds because it's a very different phase of life, and there's no one there to kind of help you."

William and his wife, Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, are parents to Prince George, 6, Princess Charlotte, 5 and Prince Louis, 2. His mother, Princess Diana, died in a car crash in Paris in 1997.

Diana, Princess of Wales, with her sons, Prince William and Prince Harry, at the piano in Kensington Palace.Tim Graham / Getty Images

He also explained that not having his mom has made parenting feel "at times, overwhelming ... Me and Catherine, we support each other, and we go through those moments together, and we evolve and learn together."

Princess Diana helping Prince William with a jigsaw puzzle in his playroom at home in Kensington Palace.Tim Graham / Getty Images

William went on to point out how grief can resurface, even when you think you've processed it.

"Emotionally, things come out of the blue that you don't ever expect or that maybe you think you've dealt with," the father of three explained. "Children coming along ... is one of the most amazing moments of life, but it's also one of the scariest."

When Sordell told him that the late Princess of Wales would be proud of her oldest son, William responded, "I appreciate that."

Prince William and the Princess of Wales in August 1987.AP

William has made it his mission to address men's mental health through his Heads Up campaign, launched by the Football Association and Heads Together, which uses soccer to remove the stigma of men asking for help with issues like depression.

Earlier this week, Prince William spoke about the importance of emergency responders being able to seek help without stigma.

"Mental health is absolutely at the core of what you do," he said of paramedics, police officers, fire fighters and other first responders.

William's has made a point of connecting with seniors throughout the pandemic, as well. Earlier this week, he and the former Kate Middleton took turns as guest bingo callers for the residents of Shire Hall Care Home in Cardiff, Wales, via video chat.

And on May 14, the future king chatted virtually with a variety of caregivers from across England.

"If there's hopefully some positivity that comes out of this horrendous time, it's that there's a light shone on all of the wonderful things you all do and on the social care sector," he said. "It allows people to acknowledge, respect and appreciate everything that you are doing."