He might have been publicly told off by the Queen for tending to his son on Buckingham Palace balcony, yet, Prince William, at 33, can already be seen as a role model for any father.
Marking his third Father’s Day as a Dad to Prince George, two, and Princess Charlotte, one, the Duke of Cambridge has written a heartfelt message to fellow fathers to urge them to open up about mental health challenges that their children and families face.
Writing in the Sunday Express on the occasion, Prince William stressed that addressing children’s mental health is just as important as their physical well-being, urging parents not to keep childhood hurdles unresolved.
The prince wrote, ‘’It is often said that fathers can often find it hard to talk about their own feelings so there’s no wonder they struggle to speak to their son or daughter about the topic.
‘’I really believe that a child’s mental health is just as important as his or her physical health.’’
The second in line has teamed up with the Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry to launch ‘’Heads Together’’, a campaign that seeks to eradicate stigma and change conversation on mental health.
William, who celebrates his own birthday on Tuesday, cited recent surveys to remind parents that the emotional needs of children is a fundamental priority for any couple, urging them at the same time to bring up the topic with their sons and daughters.
‘’A fifth of children will have a mental health issue by their 11th birthday,’’ he said. ‘’And left unresolved, those mental health issues can alter the course of a child’s life for ever.
‘’So on this Father’s Day, I encourage all fathers to take a moment to ask their children how they are doing.’’
The Duke’s message comes as data from the charity Young Minds show that one in 10 children in the UK suffer from a mental health problem between the age of 5-16, while nearly 80,000 children have severe depression.