James Middleton reveals his sisters, Kate and Pippa Middleton, attended therapy with him in new essay

James has been very open about his struggles with mental health

James Middleton and Kate Middleton
(Image credit: Jens Kalaene/dpa/Alamy Live News and Ben Queenborough / Alamy Stock Photo/Future)

James Middleton has shared that his sisters, Pippa and Kate Middleton, attended therapy sessions with him to offer support following the death of his therapy dog, Ella.

In a heartbreaking new essay, Kate Middleton's brother James Middleton has revealed how "all his family" came together in grief as he buried his therapy dog, 15-year-old cocker spaniel Ella, who he called his "saving grace".

Just one week ago, James Middleton announced the death of his beloved therapy dog  on Instagram, writing that he was "just about holding it together."

Now, in a new essay for the Sunday Times, he has further opened up about Ella's passing. He wrote, "She was next to me through my darkest times, her head in my lap. Winston Churchill would complain that he was followed by the 'black dog' of depression. I had my own black dog but she was my saving grace."

According to James, Ella saved his life. He explained, "Everybody knew how much she meant to me and there was a day they feared the most: the day Ella was no longer in my life. She meant something to all of them too."

James' sisters, Pippa and Kate Middleton, both have cocker spaniels that were Ella's puppies. On the connection, he wrote, "All the family came to say their goodbyes. I can't speak for them but I believe she influenced their lives too."

After the tragic passing, James shared that he was in therapy trying to get through the challenging time. He also revealed that his sisters, Kate and Pippa, both attended sessions alongside him in support. 

"My sisters came to some of my therapy sessions. They've always been there during difficult times and they were at my side during the hardest of times as well. For that, I am forever grateful," he wrote.

Pippa and James Middleton

(Image credit: Frank Molter/Alamy Live News)

This is just one of many times that James has used his platform to draw attention to mental health. He has previously been incredibly open about his own struggles and written candidly about his experiences with depression. 

"It is not merely sadness. It is an illness, a cancer of the mind," he wrote in a 2019 essay for the Daily Mail. "It's not a feeling but an absence of feelings. You exist without purpose or direction. I couldn't feel joy, excitement, or anticipation–only heart-thudding anxiety propelled me out of bed in the morning. I didn't actually contemplate suicide—but I didn't want to live in the state of mind I was in either."

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Charlie Elizabeth Culverhouse is a news writer for Goodtoknow, specialising in family content. She began her freelance journalism career after graduating from Nottingham Trent University with an MA in Magazine Journalism, receiving an NCTJ diploma, and earning a First Class BA (Hons) in Journalism at the British and Irish Modern Music Institute. She has also worked with BBC Good Food and The Independent.