Prince Harry opens Invictus Games in Toronto

Prince Harry opens Invictus Games in Toronto

Last night, September 23, Prince Harry opened the third Invictus Games in Toronto after meeting with foreign dignitaries and visiting various organizations. This post is just about Harry, I have covered Meghan Markle’s appearance at the opening ceremony on the other blog.

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At the ceremony, Harry gave a speech, saying:

    “Hello Toronto, bonsoir le Canada. Merci beaucoup pour votre hospitalité. Trevor and his family are what Invictus is all about. Invictus is about the dedication of the men and women who served their countries, confronted hardship, and refused to be defined by their injuries. Invictus is about the families and friends who faced the shock of learning that their loved ones had been injured or fallen ill – and then rallied to support them on their journey of recovery. And above all, Invictus is about the example to the world that all service men and women – injured or not – provide about the importance of service and duty.
    “The true scale of this example was brought home to me when I left Afghanistan after my first deployment there in 2008. As I was waiting to board the plane, the coffin of a Danish soldier was loaded on by his friends. Once on the flight, I was confronted with three British soldiers, all in induced comas, with missing limbs, and wrapped in plastic. The way I viewed service and sacrifice changed forever. And the direction of my life changed with it. I knew that it was my responsibility to use the great platform that I have to help the world understand and be inspired by the spirit of those who wear the uniform. In a world where so many have reasons to feel cynical and apathetic, I wanted to find a way for veterans to be a beacon of light, and show us all that we have a role to play; that we all win when we respect our friends, neighbours, and communities. That’s why we created Invictus. Not only to help veterans recover from their physical and mental wounds; but also to inspire people to follow their example of resilience, optimism, and service in their own lives.
    “We made a great start in London in 2014. We took it to the next level in Orlando last year. And over the next week – in this year as we celebrate Canada’s 150th anniversary – Toronto is going to put on a games that draws the attention of the world. More competitors, more sports, more nations, more friends, more families and more people watching at home than ever before. With the people in this arena tonight – and those watching across Canada and around the world – we have the biggest crowd Invictus has ever enjoyed.
    “In the days ahead, I know many of you will be experiencing Invictus for the first time. I hope you’re ready. I hope you’re ready for some fierce competition. I hope you’re ready to see the meaning of teamwork that proves anything is possible when we work together. I hope you’re ready to see courage and determination that will inspire you to power through the challenges in your own life. I hope you’re ready to see role models in action that any parent will want their children to look up to. And I hope you’re ready to see lives change in front of your eyes.
    “Before I close I want to speak directly to the competitors. For the next week, we entrust you with the Invictus spirit. You have all come such a long way. Some of you have cheated death and come back stronger than before. Some of you have overcome emotional challenges that until very recent years would have seen you written off and ignored. And now you are here. On the world stage. Flags on your chests. Representing your countries again. Supporting your teammates. And looking up into the stands, and into the eyes of your friends and families. You are all winners. Please don’t forget to love every second of it. Don’t forget about our friends who didn’t come home from the battlefield. Don’t forget those at home who still need our support. And don’t forget that you are proving to the world that anything is possible. You are Invictus. Let’s get started.”

[Daily Mail]

I really do love Harry’s Invictus opening ceremony speeches – they’re so inspiring.

Harry was seated in a special section next to US First Lady Melania Trump and Canadian Governor General David Johnston and his wife Sharon. In the row ahead of them were Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko and his wife Maryna, and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his wife Sophie.

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Earlier in the day, Harry had a short meeting with Melania Trump…

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… As well as a meeting with Justin Trudeau.

Prince Harry Justin Trudeau Sept 2017 s
[Kensington Palace @KensingtonRoyal]

Harry also did some promotional stuff ahead of the opening ceremony, including getting driven around a track by Daimy Gommers in a mini Land Rover. This wins best photo of the week.

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Also on Saturday, ahead of the opening ceremony, Harry visited The Centre for Addiction and Mental Health, which is Canada’s largest mental health and addiction teaching hospital, as well as one of the world’s leading research centers in its field. Princess Diana visited this center back in 1991.

Harry spent nearly two hours at the center meeting with many of CAMH’s leading researchers. From the Daily Mail:

    “After being told one of the center’s main approaches is prevention, the prince told doctors: ‘It seems we suffer from a culture where a pill will fix everything. There has to be a better way than just giving out anti-depressants. There were 65million given out in one year in the UK alone. That’s why I look to you guys in this room. Everyone is uniquely wired is what I keep saying. There is no one silver bullet, no one cure for everyone.’ …
    “The young royal was also praised for his work in raising the issue of mental health and helping to reduce the stigma. He modestly said: ‘It’s a massive team effort and everyone is doing their bit just trying to normalize it so people can seek help without judgement. If everyone can do that, it’s better for everyone.'”

I’m curious what everyone’s take is on this. I think the idea of what he is saying is correct – that there is no one size fits all way to treat mental illness – but I worry about the language of “we suffer from a culture where a pill will fix everything” because that makes it seem like medication is somehow bad (I’ve heard the exact same sentiment from people who say “just get over it” to people with depression). I agree with Harry that there is no one size fits all way to treat mental illness, and not everyone responds to medication (I didn’t). But some people really do need medication, and some people take years and multiple trial and errors with different medications to find the right one that works for them (I’ve known multiple people for whom this is true), and it’s important to recognize that and not increase the stigma around taking medication.

I do think that all three younger royals are stifled in the “mental health” arena by the fact that they cannot discuss politics. Like, they can’t sit there and say that mental illness and treatment should get better, lower cost health care coverage because that’s getting too political for them, and that’s a hindrance to their mental health campaign.

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Here are some more photos from the Invictus Opening Ceremony.

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93 thoughts on “Prince Harry opens Invictus Games in Toronto

  1. I agree with you KMR. I suffer from anxiety, depression, and chronic pain; it does put me off when people say a pill can’t fix it (it can very well help us lead full lives). Well, unfortunately, I have tried with therapy to not take medication—and I couldn’t function. Unfortunately, this statement belongs in the box of those “who don’t get it.” That’s that. Had I not been medication, I couldn’t raise my daughter, be a wife, and work. Sometimes, we need medications. I have struggled with this, trust me. I didn’t want to take them until my living a full life depended on it.

    As for the speech, I love it! You can see the love of the games through his words. Harry is really coming to his own when it comes to speech writing, but I will say that his speech for the Invictus Games has his greatest handprint..

    1. And yes, I do all of it–therapy and medication, just as an FYI. I think chronic pain is the biggest problem. I don’t think there is anything wrong with my taking medications for migraines. I can’t function without them. Sorry.

      1. Chronic pain is a beast and no one can understand it unless they also live it. I have an autoimmune disorder and pain is part of my life as much as breathing. (((Hugs)))

        1. Chronic pain is a beast. I live with it every day. This year the serious pain is winning and I am barely making it from minute to minute.

          My best to all the KMR chronic pain sufferers.

    2. Kathleen, thank you. I have anxiety with severe panic attacks and diagnosed with clinical depression and yes medications are needed in specific like cases such as chemical imbalance etc. This needs to be addressed by those who indicate too many on medications. …..of course there are those who abuse medications which is why there is a problem. Therapy sessions is a much needed assistance. These are my humble opinions.

    3. Thank you everyone. I appreciate the support. It’s hard. Hugs to all that suffer. Chronic pain is horrible; I can’t describe how difficult life can be sometimes.

  2. ‘I do think that all three younger royals are stifled in the “mental health” arena by the fact that they cannot discuss politics. Like, they can’t sit there and say that mental illness and treatment should get better, lower cost health care coverage because that’s getting too political for them, and that’s a hindrance to their mental health campaign.’ – Yup. I said this in a comment elsewhere today, I mean, on a different post here, is that they can’t say much about, say, NHS funding of mental health providers and so on which is a struggle as far as I know? I do understand what he’s saying–I mean, for me, talk therapy was far better than pills which doctors just shoved at me and gave me stuff that was dangerous for teens then I was given a Class D medication while pregnant!!!–but lots of people need medication, so don’t feed off that stigma, Harry.

    Anyway, Harry, points to you keeping this wonderful thing going. What a good speech. And I like how it is never about him, but about everyone else, and not just hat, but the families remaining and supporting them and remembering their friends who didn’t come home.

  3. I do somehow get his statement but yet the “‘It seems we suffer from a culture where a pill will fix everything. There has to be a better way than just giving out anti-depressants.” left me bit confused and wondering.
    I think I would be important to add that to take medication is nothing to feel ashamed about, it should be okay and normal. It’s even an important part of therapy. We wouldn’t have this discussion with every other illness… people wouldn’t say “get over it” to somehow with a broken leg or cancer.

    But on the other side he has also a point saying that not every pill fits every person and that treatment needs to be more than handing out aome pills. Every person is different and so therapy needs to be different too.
    I think he could have chosen his words bit better here and add something.

    To his speech, I really liked it. One can see that it is something he really cares about and that he’s into the topic. Hope the Games will be a success for all and that everyone is having a good time.
    And I know military and veterans are Harrys topics and that he is also involved with it outside Invictus Games, yet I somehow wished he would be more public about it. To be more seen, to support other organisations in public, to bring Invictus further outside the games. I don’t really have a masterplan here, but I definitely think he could work more.

    1. We didn’t hear the whole conversation. He might as well have added something, but there’s no video proof so we only have to go with what is written. I feel the statement is taken out of context from the discussion they were having.

      1. CAMH offers treatment and medication so I don’t think it was the whole conversation either. In any case he was in Canada where the mental health situation is different. The provinces run health care separately and there is no talk of making cuts to mental health in Ontario at least not similar to what is happening with the NHS.

        Often the method of treatment here depends on how the GP wants to approach things and the GP is the first point of contact in Ontario when it comes to mental health. Not all GPs are as informed on mental health issues as they should be and often will prescribe meds before checking all solutions. Clinics like CAMH are more specialized and therefore provide a more holistic approach. And just taking a pill doesn’t usually solve the problem on its own.

        Anyway if Harry visiting CAMH helps them get more donations and funding, then it will be worth it.

  4. I hate that he said that! There are very many people who hold of that view and look down at people who have chosen to take medicine, as if they are cheating or taking a shortcut it’s simply ignorance

    1. +1
      Agreed. Sometimes people need these medicament. I knew of one woman that if she didn’t take her meds, she wouldn’t have been able to be in society at all and was a danger to herself and the others. I saw her one day on a day off and it wasn’t looking good.

      It is not cheating. It is necessary to some.

      1. Him talking about mental heal th is pointless they won’t be political when that’s what is needed they should stop talking perhaps someone should educate him there is no therapy available in Britain just pills and waiting lists

    2. Thank you! Agreed. It’s also dangerous because some folks at the games may be taking medications for all three: anxiety, depression, and pain..And then, Harry makes this stigmatizing statement.

    3. I know what I wish he’d said, that it is a shame that in many instances medication is prescribed in a vacuum. That, unlike with diseases like diabetes and heart disease, doctors often treat anti-depressants or anti-anxiety medication as sufficient. Because of the stigma still associated with mental health illnesses, and the lack of funding, at least in California, doctors often prescribe serious medications for a year and leave their patients to struggle alone, instead of offering additional behavioral and alternative treatments as augmentation to the medication. I know, for myself, exercise and talk therapy are necessary, in addition to my anti-depressants, for the best results. But then, my father, who has diabetes, also was referred to a nutritionist and my mother was told to consult with a physical therapist to help with her osteoporosis. What a shame that I had to seek out (and pay out of pocket) for my additional therapy when they didn’t.

  5. I think that taking pills should ideally only be temporary treatment that combined with different therapies will cure/help the patient. The side effects (especially in long term use) are often underrated. Of course there are always cases where a long term use is the only option and that is absolutely what should happen then. But a lot of health insurances rather just pay for pills than for time and money consuming therapies, not only in the mental health area. I take it more as an call to the insurances and the health system to make the other options better available so everyone can get a comprehensive diagnostics and treatment.
    Suffering from health problems is bad enough, no need to drag it out because it is cheaper.
    On the other hand I find it highly repulsive to ask mental health patients if they haven’t tried therapy. No one swallows those kind of pills for fun. I would assume that they are of course either in a combined treatment or the patient and doctors have decided that is the way to go. And in the end it is not my business.

    1. Certainly for certain mental illnesses and disorders therapy is much more valuable than the consumption of medication. OCD comes to mind as one disorder where I’ve read that therapy is usually more effective. However, after becoming well acquainted with individuals that have mental illness I learned that not only is medication essential but so is therapy. Some people may go to therapy as much as once or twice a week, but without medication they cannot properly function and are a risk to themselves and others. If someone has bipolar disorder or schizophrenia, medication is essential. After personally witnessing and knowing others who have dealt with these individuals without medication, it literally scares me to think about encountering someone that refuses to take medication for a serious mental health issue. From what I know of the process medication and therapy are combined and the therapist and psychiatrist usually communicate in some way and there are constant check ins. Therapy I will say is absolutely essential for mental health as well, as much as medication.

    2. I think you always should try therapy first.Most people with mental problems live in an unfriendly and unhappy family who aren’t helpful to these poor souls.
      But of course, the case is, that those people often tried therapy before taking pills.
      The cause for their illness will not be stopped with medication, but they can endure their situation better, I guess.
      I’m sorry for all thoses masses of people who have to take pills to feel well. I wish people could be happy and live a nice life without such illnesses. 🙁

      1. Not every mental illness can solely be treated with therapy. I know people with bipolar disorder and schizophrenia and I have witnessed and been told of dangerous situations they have caused while on medication and in therapy…It really is dangerous to suggest otherwise.

        1. I think therapy for those suffering from despression and anxiety works well with meds. Or, sometimes alone. However, the problem with mental health in this country (USA) is, that it’s often hard to find a decent therapist. Especially one who takes a person’s insurance. Mental health is ignored so much as being as important as seeing other medical professionals. It’s sometimes seen as an after thought. Oh, we are required to offer coverage for mental health, but we don’t really want to do so., It seems that way to me. I have a cousin who saw five therapists before she found one she could actually work with. It was frustrating to her. A waste of time and money, too. When one is opening up to a therapist about highly sensitive issues, one needs to feel you can trust that person. Some therapists just don’t offer the comfort that patients need. And, you can’t rely upon recommendations since everyone responds differently to the same therapist. A perfect match is needed. Or, close to perfect and for many, it’s hard to find that. Hard, but not impossible.

          1. That’s so true unfortunately. I’ve been down that road before with someone close to me. It’s hard to reassure them or to know if staying with their therapist is the right thing. It’s amazing the lengths some poor therapists will go to in order to keep a client. I’ve heard stories of therapists that literally say nothing during a session or who take the time to talk about themselves while psychiatrists are nearly impossible to reach. It really is hard to find help and the appropriate help at that.

            Depression and anxiety tend to have success with therapy, even without meds sometimes. A lot of people that need therapy and/or medication just don’t seek treatment because of the stigma there is in the US (and in the world) and the way it is perceived, as something of secondary importance.

      2. “Most people with mental problems live in an unfriendly and unhappy family who aren’t helpful to these poor souls.”
        I’m sorry but this statement isn’t true. One could argue situational depression issues could be affected by this and we could get into the discussion about socioeconomic issues facing those who get help vs those who don’t here in the states but MH issues come in all types of families and all types of backgrounds.

        1. I agree. Mental health can affect an individual from any walk of life. It is different for everyone but there has to be a goal to provide support.

      3. First, Sarah, thank you for speaking so well, second, I can only speak for myself, but I’ve needed pills to get to an equilibrium so that I could start addressing issues in my life. Without them, I was too anxious to focus. Also, I’ve been lucky to have a wonderful and privileged life with incredibly supportive family and friends, something is just wrong with my brain chemistry, and when not properly addressed I fall into depressive episodes.

        Lovely Blossom, your statement that people should try therapy before relying on pills is the equivalent of stating that people with Type 2 diabetes get it because they are obese, and should try exercise and diet before they try insulin. It just doesn’t necessarily work that way.

    3. The problem with telling everyone they try therapy is that people can’t get acesss to it you have people with chronic mental illness who don’t even get to see a psychiatrist regualy the problem I have with there campaign is they are telling people to come forward to a system that can’t help them if you have low level anxiety or depression you are not going to get therapy on the nhs in most cases if you are lucky you get 6 sessions of cbt this idea that pills should be temporary is harmful people with bipolar or schizophrenia will be on medication long term if not for life therapy isn’t going to stop phycosis auto and visual hallucinations or dullisions this heads together campaign is less about mental illness more about mental health issues which are completely different they seem to be focusing on normal emotions mental illness are not normal emotions they are an illness

  6. Harry did a great job at the opening ceremony! I thought his words inspiring.

    “I do think that all three younger royals are stifled in the “mental health” arena by the fact that they cannot discuss politics. Like, they can’t sit there and say that mental illness and treatment should get better, lower cost health care coverage because that’s getting too political for them, and that’s a hindrance to their mental health campaign.”

    KMR +1 Absolutely agree.

    1. The problem witb them not being political means they can’t take this campaign any further what we need is for someone to stand up to the government while charity raise money and awareness the government are allowed to continue to fail people telling people to come forward to talk and ask for help when resources are not there is about as useful as telling woman to check themselves for breast cancer than not having treatment available I live in Norfolk in the uk are suicide rate is higher than average yet we are having more cuts are inpatient beds are down by a hundred and twenty the royals don’t seem to understand the state of our services

      1. Danielle,

        You stated “The problem witb them not being political means they can’t take this campaign any further what we need is for someone to stand up to the government ”

        I have an issue with this belief that the royal family is apolitical. Lets examine this myth. First the Queen has a private audience with the Prime Minister and other leading politicians. I doubt highly they discuss the weather but what is currently occurring. The Queen opens Parliament, has an annual speech that outlines what the government plan to accomplish (albeit written by the government but I would be surprised if she did not make some input into it.) She signs all bills into law and they cannot assent unless she does sign. Though she has not used her power does not mean that she does not have it. The Queen has taken the lead from previous family members who have not used the power as a means of self preservation during the turn of the century as they saw the downfall of their cousins who used and abused their political power. It is not that they acquiesced out of protecting “democracy” but to stay in their position.

        Charles is known to continually write to politicians on subjects that he is passionate about. A number of newspapers spent years trying to uncover the true amount of his intercessions with the government. The level is astounding.

        The Queen, Charles and Prince William with key staff hold a number of annual meets to discuss issues and policies. No doubt that a number of the topics are political.

        Just because they do not necessarily give their opinion in public does not make them any less political. I actually find it more disturbing because how do we know they are truly representing the public or just their own self interest.

    1. Maybe, he was nervous before his speech and hoped it went well. He has lost weight, though it might be that he is so in love he can’t eat. Butterflies will do that too you! Only, the good kind 🙂

      1. I believe this is Harry’s heart, Invictus. He has an emotional attachment to the men and women who were hurt in combat and admires their strength and courage. He seems to be so moved by their efforts and cannot keep his emotions in check. Why should he, I may add.

  7. I agree that these statements are in danger of increasing stigma regarding medication because it can really help some people. For example, I know some women who responded well to medication when they sufeed from post partum depression. The problem they had was they felt a tremendous amount of guilt because there is so much pressure to breast feed and they had to stop breast feeding to take medication they needed. If you add on top of that a stigma against medication that would make their situation much worse. I am of the opinon that if a mom is really suffering with ppd then there is no shame in getting help or meds if needed. I think Harry needs to choose his words wisely here.

    1. It completely depends on the medication. I took anti-anxiety meds andxwas cleared by both my doctor and my daughters’ pediatrician.

  8. He was very emotional and during the ceremony his eyes did look a bit watery! Interesting that he didn’t sit next to Meghan. I didn’t interpret his comments about pill taking as negative, just that there is no easy solution. Good job on Invictus. Great stuff.

    1. I agree, Bea. I took his comments to mean that we should explore different solutions for different people and illnesses. Certainly, a lot of GPs are not familiar with mental health care.

      It could also have been worded better, but having the context as to what was said before and after would have helped to make the situation clearer.

  9. Just to add to the CAMH appearance I should note that he was originally scheduled to arrive at 10 am and leave at 11:30 am but ended up there longer until about noon.

    My parents wanted to see Harry and since it was a few blocks from where I live they went over to see him. Apparently there were at least a hundred people there waiting for him and when he went from one building to the next he stopped and greeted some of the people outside. My parents were speaking with someone from Harry’s entourage while they were waiting (he had a British accent) and apparently this person was very nice.
    And when Harry came out within moments he gets surrounded by security, so if you weren’t very close, it was hard to get a picture.

    Looking at all the events he had packed in one day, it was impressive and he certainly has people in Toronto impressed.

    As for his speech at Invictus, I think he has improved from last year. And he was coming after a very emotional moment with Trevor Greene, who if you didn’t see at the ceremony, you should read about. This man is inspiring.

    I should also note that the ticket pricing for some of these events are very reasonable. There are some events that are free and others cost $25. The opening and closing ceremonies were $60. (Canadian)
    Even the Pan Am Games weren’t this reasonable. Anyone in the GTA who has time should try to attend one of these events.

      1. They tried but my mother was waving to Harry as my dad was snapping so there is only a picture of her hand blocking the shot.
        My mother is a fellow redhead so while she normally doesn’t care about royalty she wanted to see him in person since he was close by.

        1. Ha that can be the pic they show when telling the story! I saw a lynx and her cub once when hiking and when I got to take the pic all you see is blank trail. I say this where they were! =)
          Your dad can say your mom’s hand is blocking Harry! And laugh

  10. Thank you for the well written posts that there are those who must take medications and therapy. There are no other alternatives.

    Unfortunately those who abuse medications to the extreme have spoiled the cause and to mention those physicians who are greedy and not following the Hippocratic Oath. IMHO.

  11. First who ever wrote this speech should be writing all of his speeches. Well done. Love the pic of Harry and the little girl in the car. This is the Harry I like.
    Now for what I find problematic. The throw pills at them line. I’m a nurse and I’ve seen the I didn’t want to take medication route and it doesn’t always work. I get that people don’t necessarily want to take a medication that has side effects they don’t like so everyone has to weigh their personal pro/cons list. But medication does work for a vast majority of people. Sometimes it’s medication and therapy combined and for some people just therapy works. BUT MH isn’t just dealing with depression! So just therapy approach doesn’t work for most other ailments under the umbrella of MH related issues. So for Harry to be so cavalier about this is when things start to get problematic for me.
    When I was in school I worked in a dr’s office and he never just prescribed antidepressants. He had psychologists/psychiatrists that he referred patients to as part of their care and if the situation didn’t improve and they needed more. That’s what good primary care physicians do. So I also feel like his statement is a slap in the face to healthcare providers.

      1. Nic919 +1

        I thought the same as you.
        Harry’s speech was well written and his presentation, polished.
        In fact I felt his presentation came from the heart.
        His emotion made me feel quite emotional.
        As I watched him I thought he had put in a fair bit of rehearsal – to his credit.

        As for Trevor Greene.
        What a courageous and inspirational man is he!

    1. It seems to me WK&H’s focus isn’t on the spectrum of mental illnesses currently recognized. They seem to ignore schizophrenia, bipolar, autism, tourette’s, & schizoaffective disorder to name a few. Instead they seem to focus on “negative feelings” like everyday anxiety (not necessarily clinical levels or anxiety disorders) sadness (not necessarily clinical levels or mood disorders), loneliness, and social isolation. While premorbid situational factors may play a role, they seem to believe those kinds of feelings, if unexpressed, are the only culprit if an actual disorder develops. Avoiding politics doesn’t mean they have to ignore the causal roles biology (genes, biochemistry) and a lack of available clinical care may play. In addition, sometimes social withdrawal can be a part of a  disorder rather than the cause of it. So saying “just talk to someone” isn’t helpful and may be akin to saying “get over it.” (And isn’t helpful if UK wait times for therapy are months/years.) After claiming for so long mental health is so important to them, it seems they’d display a better grasp of current research. I think Harry’s denunciation of pills was stigmatizing. Medication can be over-used. But some disorders like schizophrenia can’t be “cured” and medication isn’t a choice. In other cases medication is necessary for a person to function. Finally if the choice for treating severe depression is between pills now and a 3-6 month wait for therapy, choosing pills will save lives. I also think statements Will has made implying working parents don’t care enough about their children and Kate’s repeated talk of her wonderful upbringing were not helpful in the mental health arena. 

      1. I actually wish they would stop saying they’re tackling MH issues. No, they are addressing depression &/or anxiety issues-which happen to be MH issues. I think William might have brought up suicide once or twice.
        Initially I wanted them to address things like schizophrenia but then I realized their lack of reading and coming prepared and saying their same ol sound bite statement could actually do more harm than good. Like Harry and his medication statement

      2. I agree the just talking about it line isn’t helpful I suffer from depression I talk about but it doesn’t just get rid of your mental illness I live with it day in day out its not a cure

  12. Ok, so call me a mush, but I cried reading Harry’s words at Invictus. Really, how touching. How moving. It gets to me everytime! I think he deserves kudos for his commitment to the Games. I think the athletes deserve our praise for their sacrifices on the field and their dedication in the sports arena. They have not given up on life. Their loved ones deserve recognition, too.

    For weeks, I have said on this board that Harry looks too thin. I think it’s more than love. I hope he is not ill. Maybe, he thinks he needs to change his diet because Meghan eats differently. But, he looks too thin!

    As for the comment on a pill not being the be all and end all. I wish he had worded this differently. So much research needs to go into treating anxiety, depression and other mental illness. Some people have no success and suffer greatly trying one medication after another. So, I can see his truth in part of that statement. I wish he had said, meds help so many, but others, not so much. You know in those lines, but obviously worded better.

    I have suffered from anxiety for most of my life and rely on low doses of medication. There are days when they do nothing and then, I force myself to exercise, lose myself in music, or just get busy taking care of the house and kids, cooking, or working on one of my articles for the pubs I write for. Once, engaged, that helps, but it’s getting engaged that is hard. Not with the kids. That’s necessary, but other things — well, I find it hard to motivate myself when I am so anxious and the anxiety will soon spin into depression.

    I hate when people tell someone who is depressed or anxious to “buck up.” But, I also hate that most docs won’t talk to you or listen to any feedback you give about meds that have not worked, or your interest in not trying others. I think the mental health field needs to become more open to other options for treatment, but I agree that if meds help some people that is fortunate and necessary. But, for others… well, you get my drift. P.S. I love that photo of Harry and the little girl in the mini Land Rover, too! Lucky girl. She’ll have that memory all throughout her life!

    1. “As for the comment on a pill not being the be all and end all. I wish he had worded this differently. So much research needs to go into treating anxiety, depression and other mental illness. Some people have no success and suffer greatly trying one medication after another. So, I can see his truth in part of that statement. I wish he had said, meds help so many, but others, not so much. You know in those lines, but obviously worded better.”

      jenny +1

      I agree with what you write.
      I think Harry’s intent was well meant but in those unscripted, on the hop moments, his intent is marred by not being able to clearly articulate his thoughts.

  13. Is it deliberate that the official picture of Prince Harry and Melania Trump was not used on this blog? Because he makes a very deliberate hand gesture and stands like that for the whole time of the official photo op. I actually find it quite funny that he did it, but I find even more amusing how everybody tries to use other pics now.

    1. I chose a photo of Harry sitting with Mrs. Trump because I chose a photo of Harry sitting with Trudeau first and I wanted the two photos of Harry with dignitaries to have the same composition.

    2. I am not quibbling about KMR’s choice of pics.
      However, I noticed the way Harry had his hand inserted inside his jacket while standing with Melania and thought it odd/unusual.

      1. I actually think that is just one of his nervous fidgets. I’ve seen pics/video of him doing it before. William and kate crotch clutch and he does this

      2. No, it means he hates Melania Trump and is signaling she’s evil, or something. Eyeroll. Because Harry must hate people they hate, or whatever. He’s a representative of HM and the British government. He isn’t some tool.

        He fidgets a lot with his jacket. Other pictures of them they’re having a nice time talking, so does video, he seems fine with her and she with him.

        1. Just watch the video. It was very deliberate and it was not a nervous fidget. I find it hilarious that he dared to do it and how the press tries to sweep it under the rug. I bet he had a blast, that way and it shows that he has Princess Diana’s independent spirit. It’s his way of expression. He had to meet her in his role and he expressed his views this way, unlike his father who blasted the Chinese leader quite openly and stayed away from the official dinner.

        1. Sarah, thank you very much for your detailed links. I tend to think that deliberately positioning the hand in that very, very unusual way and continue standing that way for a full 20 seconds is different to finding pics of someone walking around trying to close a jacket. But whatever….

          1. I find it nearly impossible to think that a Prince — a man who has met leaders from around the world — and their families — would deliberately make a secret sign and show amazing rudeness when meeting the First Lady of the united States. Sorry, but I do.

          2. Jenny, I think that is precisely the point. It is hard to believe that he didn’t know what he was doing. Just for fun, try to get your hand into that position while casually trying to close your jacket. I looked at the video and I really think he did quite deliberately. He was not representing the Queen in an official manner but was rather promoting his Invictus Games. I doubt he would have done it when standing in for the Queen. We can agree to disagree on this subject. 😉

          3. Jenny, it’s just easier to believe he hates someone he doesn’t even know because her husband is a crappy POTUS ad crappy person (and I’m a Republican :P). Melania is a nice lady. They seemed to have a great time. Harry is not some secret sign ‘I hate you’ or ‘ward off evil’ or whatever like people conspiracy theorize, he’s not a complete idiot. He does poses like this with his jacket a lot.I’ve seen it before. End of.

            Yes, Chanelchen, when he meets foreign heads of state and their spouses he is representing HM and Britain. Harry knows this.

          4. You believe what you want, Chanelchen, and I will stand by my words. I posted something about all this political hatred on MMR and don’t want to repeat it here. All I do want to say is when KMR asks us not to be political, let’s not be political.

            And, as Ellie said, I do believe he thinks when he acts – especially when attending his beloved Invic Games. He would assuredly be more diplomatic and yes, I think his actions do reflect his Royal Family, so he’s careful! Well, I have said more than I planned to say.

          5. Again where is the political hatred here? There is ample evidence in photos that Melania gets treated poorly in public by her husband, and walks off ignoring her.

            And most of the debate is about whether or not Harry would be making a secret signal or not and why he would be doing that.

            If KMR is fine with the comments, it is not your place to tell others what to say. She has the power to moderate them.

  14. I don’t think Harry is very informed here, and this is why having uninformed people preaching about health (or science) is dangerous. I have a relative with schizophrenia. I’ve read extensively about her illness. Prevention is a great model for mental illness treatment. One aspect of prevention is through early intervention. Studies have shown that early intervention (prevention) can lessen the severity of schizophrenia in people, and for a few, prevent it entirely. And this doesn’t involve taking pills! It involves lots of testing and cognitive therapy. The other option, which we mostly practice in the US, is to wait for the person to fully develop the illness and have a psychotic break before addressing it, which happened to my relative. Financially, prevention is cheaper too.

    I wish W&K&H would just stop talking about mental illness now. I think they are doing more harm than good. And what is wrong with pills? They are enormously helpful to many people! Anti-psychotics enable my relative to have a semblance of a life. Without them she’d be in an institution or under a bridge instead of in her home. I know he was talking about anti-depressants, but again, he seems to think mental illness is anxiety or depression. And I know several people who have benefited greatly from anti-depressants. I’m really mad that Harry said something this stupid.

  15. I find it interesting this year’s IG isn’t covered as heavily as ’14 or ’16. It make me sad for the athletes who deserve all the praise. I’m not finding a lot of info about what was going on today.

    1. I agree. Finding info that isn’t about MM is hard but I found a solution. Type “Invictus Games” -markle (and the minus is important) and you should find MM free IG information.

      I know this isn’t really the place but I wanted to thank all of you at KMR (writer and reader) for the ride during the past months. I’ve learned quite a lot from you.
      Today is my first day back at uni after one year off and I’m quite stressed as I’m not used anymore to having a schedule anymore. I’ll be commenting less, as school starts again for me.

      Have fun commenting and KMR keep up the good work.

        1. Oh, Ellana, good luck with school! What is your major? You are so bright and articulate on this blog, I am sure you will do will with your studies. All the best and take a wee bit of time now and then to be with us!

          1. Thank you all for the wishes ! Today was a looooooong day (who knew that the administration took so long to work things out *sarcasm*) I’m gonna study business management. I’ll try to come !

          2. Best of luck. And, you need a break from studies, you know!
            Be sure to check in with us. ANd, all best wishes with your studies which will no doubt lead to a wonderful career.

  16. I have to have Princess Sparkles’s leather jacket. ?

    You know I wasn’t sold on Sparkles at first but she’s going to be great.

  17. If someone takes of an issue that effects peoples health but can’t or arnt willing to discuss why the pro blem exists in this case money than them speaking is pointless the needs to be investment and a complete overall of mental health services this campaign has just turned in a pr exercise that can’t progress any further its the same with kate and William talking about addiction only 1 in ten receive drug rehabilitation and addiction help and its not because of stigma and not coming forward it’s lack of resources the prime minister isnt having to do anything about other sproat the line that its stigma that stops people asking fir help while she refuses more miney and discriminates against the disabled by taking there benifits

  18. I am not a Harry fan, but I love his speech to open the games. I think he does good work in this arena, so for that, I will give him props.

    I do think K&W&H’s focus on “talking about” mental health struggles is dangerous and/or misguided. Kate giving a speech about how she was able to talk freely at home? Fine if you are giving a speech on family dynamics, but when you are giving a speech on mental health, addressing how you dealt with it (when you have no known mental health issues) is comparing apples to oranges. It also shifts the focus to more “accepted” mental health struggles such as anxiety and depression. A schizophrenic is not going to be cured by having someone at home they can talk to.

  19. Back to the IG…
    Have to admit that it is nice to know that IG events are happening very close to my time zone. So news, tweets and videos aren’t ‘old’ by the time I get to look into events. And, it’s good to see Toronto receive recognition for its part in the IG games and be highlighted as a destination to explore in Canada. I have found Toronto a fascinating multi-cultural city and it’s good to see that it is getting attention in Canada’s 150th year. (I’m not Canadian.) Thanks Canada for hosting IG this year. Reminds me to make a return visit soon.

  20. Everyone:

    Please let’s refrain from making political comments. I know sometimes the royals interact with politicians and/or politician’s wives, but this is not the place to talk politics. This is supposed to be a fun place to talk about royals. Let’s leave the politics aside here.

  21. My husband has multiple addictions, largely stemming from depression and anxiety, and has been to CAMH. I didn’t take from Harry’s comments to be that pills are a not good or don’t have their place in treatment, just that there is a tendency to want to give a pill to ‘cure’ things rather than deal with the root cause. CAMH has a very thorough and cross-sectional approach to dealing with depression/anxiety/addiction. My husband got pills through CAMH, but not just pills, there’s a ton of other work as well. My $0.02, but knowing quite a lot about CAMH, Harry’s comments didn’t raise my eyebrow at all.

    1. I had loads of pills thrown at me growing up, some very dangerous to children and teenagers, so I understand this completely and why Harry said what he did. I wonder if his full comment was as so often is taken out of context. It is easier to throw a pill at someone than look at a problem they may have. To talk about it, with your patient, to figure out he best way to combat your illness–whether it be talk therapy, medication and WHAT KIND of medication rather than just throwng it at you…

  22. I appreciate the admonition against politicizing this blog, but it is ultimately not possible to talk about social issues like mental health without talking about an adequate allocation of resources from the public purse to deal with the problems they’re talking about.

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