Prince William ‘understands’ that Prince Harry ‘had a harder upbringing' after missing out on the ‘extra three years’ he got to spend with their mother Princess Diana

"He recognises that his brother was in a place of pain"

Prince William and Prince Harry
(Image credit: Tim Graham Photo Library via Getty Images/Future)

A royal expert has shared their belief that Prince William ‘recognises’ that Prince Harry ‘had a harder upbringing' than he did as his younger brother missed out the ‘extra three years’ he got to spend with their mother, the late Princess Diana.

Princess Diana's death clearly affected Prince Harry and Prince William in very different ways. Despite them both experiencing the same tragic event, William carries on her legacy by continuing a sweet tradition she started with his own children, Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis, while Prince Harry seems scarred and his fear of the past means he and Meghan Markle 'can't agree' on how best to protect their children from the limelight.

While Diana's legacy may have helped Prince Harry bond with Meghan, it's impossible to ignore the fact that her death contributed in some way to Harry's decision to step down as a senior royal and move to LA. The choice is one that has experts warning the father that his children could feel ‘trapped’ and his brother William worrying over the future of his own children's relationships with one another. 

But one royal expert believes that, should Prince Harry bring Prince Archie to this big family celebration as King Charles III reportedly wishes him to, Prince William may be ready to 'be generous' and forgive his brother as he now 'understands' that Harry's hurtful actions have been caused by the 'harder upbringing' he endured after Diana's death. 

Prince William and Prince Harry stood back to back

(Image credit: Getty)

Speaking to OK! Magazine, royal expert and historian Dr Tessa Dunlop revealed that while William is upset about his brother's recent actions, he does likely 'recognise' that they come from 'a place of pain' caused by the 'harder' upbringing he faced following the death of their mother, Princess Diana. 

She revealed, "Obviously William feels really hurt and it'll take him a while to come back into the room, as it were. In the end, they are trained as well to put on a brave face and I think that's what William needs to do.

"He recognises that his brother was in a place of pain. Harry didn't benefit from those extra three years with Princess Diana being alive. There have been privileges in William's life that weren't available for Harry which made his journey harder to navigate - that's the truth.

"To leave your parents at 11 rather than 14 or 15 years, it's a very different loss."

Princess Diana, Prince William and Prince Harry going to school

(Image credit: Getty)

The expert also believes that William now realises the pain that Harry's title of 'spare' caused him and understands how their differing life journeys have impacted his younger brother.

The expert added, "Harry's not in the number one gig. William was lucky to meet Kate early on, she can be a really steadying influence and really believes in the institution that William was going to head up."

As for the pair's relationship going forward, Dr Dunlop feels that William can be 'generous' in cutting Harry some slack despite the 'upset' he has caused. 

She explained, "If he can see that he is in advantage of position, that will help enable him to be generous. And I'm not saying Harry hasn't overstepped the line - I'm sure if Harry was my little brother I'd feel pretty upset.

"But it's about the bigger picture and I hope Kate would help with that."

News writer

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.