Prince Charles Said the Meanest Thing When Prince Harry Was Born

Prince Harry and Prince Charles have a decent relationship now, especially considering everything they’ve been through. While it would have been perfectly reasonable for Prince Harry to blame his father for his parents’ divorce and hate him forever, that’s not exactly what happened. It appears these two men get along just fine.

Prince Harry and Prince Charles
Prince Charles and Prince Harry | Luke MacGregor/WPA Pool/Getty Images

And perhaps they even laugh now about the cruel thing Prince Charles said right after Prince Harry was born. It’s the sort of thing that could cause hard feelings and resentment. But thankfully, it hasn’t affected this father/son dynamic at all.

Prince Harry is the second son of Prince Charles and Princess Diana

You’ve probably heard Prince Harry referred to by his cruel nickname at least once or twice. Certain royal followers call him “the spare heir” since his older brother Prince William is the one poised to inherit the throne. With each child that the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have, the further Prince Harry gets pushed down the line of succession.

And it turns out his father Prince Charles wishes Prince Harry had been born a Princess Harriet (or some other female name). What’s worse? He wasn’t afraid to say as much out loud.

Prince Harry and Prince Charles
Prince Harry and Prince Charles | Tim Graham Photo Library via Getty Images

Princess Diana hid her son’s gender from Prince Charles

Apparently Princess Diana knew her ex-husband well. According to her, when she found out Prince Harry was a boy she concealed that fact from Prince Charles until the baby was born. In Andrew Morton’s book Diana: Her True Story, the royal biographer revealed that Diana hid the truth to avoid “disappointing” Prince Charles.

“I knew Harry was going to be a boy because I saw on the scan,” Diana said. “Charles always wanted a girl. He wanted two children, and he wanted a girl. I knew Harry was a boy, and I didn’t tell him.”

Prince Harry
Prince Harry | John Shelley Collection/Avalon/Getty Images

Prince Charles had the worst reaction to Prince Harry’s birth

Diana was right to be concerned. She reported that upon seeing his newborn child, Prince Charles remarked, “Oh God, it’s a boy.” Later he apparently told Princess Diana’s mother “We were so disappointed — we thought it would be a girl.”

The other thing Prince Charles said was equally rude. Noticing his son’s one unusual trait, Prince Charles said, “And he’s even got red hair!” No doubt this was offensive to Princess Diana, who supplied the genes that made Prince Harry a ginger.

The royal family
Princess Diana, Prince Charles, Prince Harry and Prince William | Jayne Fincher/Princess Diana Archive/Getty Images

Charles and Diana’s marriage started falling apart soon after

Though it wasn’t his fault in the least, shortly after Prince Harry’s birth was the beginning of dark times in Prince Charles and Princess Diana’s marriage. In the biography, she recalled: “Charles and I were very, very close to each other the six weeks before Harry was born, the closest we’ve ever, ever been and ever will be. Then, suddenly, as Harry was born, it just went bang, our marriage. The whole thing went down the drain.” 

The two stayed married for many years after these hard times. But after Prince Charles heartless comment about his younger son Prince Harry, nothing was ever the same again.