Royal wedding: Cressida Bonas arrives at St George's Chapel
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Cressida is a model and actor, most recently playing Sheila Caffell in ITV’s White House Farm. She was first introduced to Harry by Princess Eugenie nine years ago. They dated for around two years, before separating amicably.
She was a guest at Harry’s wedding to Meghan Markle and last year married property investor Harry Wentworth-Stanley.
It is believed that Cressida did not want a life of media intrusion and extricated herself from the relationship for the same reasons Harry’s previous girlfriend Chelsy Davy did.
However, according to the book ‘Battle of Brothers’, there might be a little more to it.
Cressida reportedly later told friends Harry had a “neurosis” about the media and complained about paparazzi even when there weren’t any.
Author Robert Lacey argued his behaviour may have started to take its toll.
He wrote: “Even so, Cressida Bonas, his last serious girlfriend before Meghan Markle, came to feel he was a damaged and self-obsessed young man.
“‘No matter how educated, talented, rich or cool you believe you are,’ she posted enigmatically on her Instagram page, ‘how you treat people ultimately tells it all.’
“She complained to friends that Harry has a neurosis about the media.
“He’d rant and complain about paparazzi lurking where clearly there were none, she said.”
Prince Harry has been speaking up recently about how he struggled with his mental health during his time as a working royal.
He said in his new Apple TV+ series with Oprah Winfrey entitled ‘The Me You Can’t See’, that he experienced anxiety and panic attacks.
He has also said he wanted to leave that life as early as his twenties.
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The Duke of Sussex has been in therapy for around four years now and has variably credited his brother Prince William and his wife Meghan Markle for getting him into it.
Harry has always been wary of the media and blamed the paparazzi for the death of his mother, Princess Diana.
He said in an interview with ITV’s Tom Bradby in 2019: “I will not be bullied into playing a game that killed my mum.”
However, his attacks on the press have been moved up a notch since stepping down as a senior royal last year.
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He has brought it up, not only in his Apple TV+ series, but also in his interview with Oprah Winfrey and on the Armchair Expert podcast.
The Duke has described how he used to experience anxiety and panic attacks when carrying out royal duties.
He told Oprah: “Before I even left the house I was sweating, I was in fight or flight mode.
“Panic attacks, severe anxiety ‒ 28 to 32 was a nightmare time for me.
“I was freaking out every single time I got in a car and every single time I saw a camera.”
The timeline of aged 28 to 32 line up with when he was dating Cressida, which may go some way to explain his alleged “neurosis” about the media.
‘The Me You Can’t See’ is available to stream on Apple TV+.
Battle of Brothers was written by Robert Lacey and published by William Collins in 2020. It is available here.
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