Princess Diana Made This Major Decision Because She Was ‘Terrified’ the Royal Family Would Take Her Boys Away From Her

Prince Charles and Princess Diana were married in a lavish wedding in 1981. A little less than a year later, they welcomed their first child followed by another son in 1984.

But the prince and princess’s marriage didn’t turn out the way fairy tales do. They separated in 1992 and three years later Diana made a decision that the royals didn’t see coming because she was reportedly “terrified” that Charles’ family was going to take her boys, Prince William and Prince Harry, away from her.

Princess Diana sitting in between her sons Prince William and Prince Harry during a Remembrance service in 1995
Princess Diana sitting in between her sons Prince William and Prince Harry during a Remembrance service in 1995 | Anwar Hussein/Getty Images

Princess Diana’s interview sent shockwaves through the monarchy

In 1995, the Princess of Wales gave an explosive interview to journalist MartinBashir. In it, she revealed that she and her husband had been unfaithful to one another. When asked if she thought Charles’ mistress Camilla Paker Bowles was a factor in her marriage breaking down she said: “Well there were three of us in this marriage, so it was a bit crowded.”

Diana also questioned if Charles was fit it be the next monarch telling Bashir: “Being Prince of Wales produces more freedom now, and being king would be a little bit more suffocating. And because I know the character I would think that the top job, as I call it, would bring enormous limitations to him, and I don’t know whether he could adapt to that.”

What the princess revealed rocked the monarchy and led Queen Elizabeth II to demand that Diana and Charles divorce, which they did the following year.

Princess Diana being interviewed by Martin Bashir in 1995
Princess Diana being interviewed by Martin Bashir in 1995 | © Pool Photograph/Corbis/Corbis via Getty Images

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Diana was scared the royals would take William and Harry from her

Royal biographer Ingrid Seward spoke to Diana 18 months after that Panorama interview and said that the princess explained to her exactly why she did it.

Seward told The Telegraph that the reasons were because Diana determined to “win back her reputation” and was “terrified the royal family would take her boys away.”

Did the princess regret doing the interview?

There have been conflicting reports over the years about how the princess really felt after giving such a candid interview.

Headshot of Princess Diana holding her hand to her face during 'Panorama' interview
Headshot of Princess Diana holding her hand to her face during ‘Panorama’ interview | Mathieu Polak/Sygma/ Sygma via Getty Images

According to Seward, “She did not regret the interview as a whole… She wanted the world to see who she really was: someone who could help others.” Seward added that what Diana did regret was talking about was her riding-instructor-turned-lover James Hewitt because of how her sons would feel finding out that she had an affair with someone they knew.

Following the interview, Prince William was particularly upset with his mother about not only that admission but the entire interview. However, years after her death he said that he finally understood why she did it.

“I can understand — having sometimes been in those situations, you feel incredibly desperate and it is very unfair that things are being said that are untrue,” the Duke of Cambridge explained (per The Express). “The easiest thing to do is just to say or go to the media yourself. Open that door. [But] once you’ve opened it you can never close it again.”