Royal Source Reveals How A Young Prince William Supported Princess Diana In A Surprising Way

It's no secret that Prince William adores his late mother, Princess Diana. In recent years, he has opened up about how devastating her death was, calling it (per Today) "a pain like no other pain."

So it comes as no surprise to learn that William has always been fiercely loyal to his mother. After Diana's divorce from Prince Charles, she was forced to give up her title of Her Royal Highness, which meant that people no longer had to bow to her, and she had to curtsy in front of other members of the royal family. 

This reportedly devastated Diana, and a 14-year-old William made a heartfelt promise to her, saying (via Express), "Don't worry Mummy, I will give it back to you one day when I am king."

Diana was also hounded by the British press, which reportedly led William to give his mother some heartbreaking advice before her death. He said at the time that it might be a good idea for Diana to move out of the U.K. so she could live her life in peace. 

Additionally, when his father, Charles, married Camilla Parker Bowles (with whom Charles had an affair while married to Diana), William wasn't exactly welcoming to his new stepmother. "William didn't have the best relationship with his father back then," a source told the Daily Mail. "But he sees that Camilla had made his father happy and it is something he has come to terms with."

Apparently, though, Camilla wasn't the only romantic rival of Diana's that William disliked.

Prince William reportedly threw darts at a photo of Princess Diana's rival

Prince William always had Princess Diana's back. In the mid-1990s, reports surfaced that Diana was romantically involved with Will Carling, an English rugby player married to Julia Carling, a broadcaster. The Carlings divorced in 1996, and Julia publicly blamed Diana for the split. 

"This has happened [to Diana] before ... you hope she won't do these things again, but obviously she does," Julia told a reporter at the time (per Newsweek).

Apparently, William didn't appreciate anyone speaking ill of his mother. The future King of England joined Diana and Piers Morgan for lunch one day following the Carlings' divorce and reportedly told Morgan, "I keep a photo of Julia Carling on my dartboard at Eton."

The Duke of Cambridge now has the same protectiveness for his wife, Kate Middleton. After watching his mother get routinely chased by the British media, William invoked an EU law to shield his wife from the paparazzi (via Express). 

"[William] had seen firsthand how his mother had been harassed by the paparazzi and was determined that Kate not be subjected to the same treatment," wrote Katie Nicholl in "Kate: The Future Queen" (via Marie Claire).

Prince William is making sure his mother is a part of his children's lives

Prince William is still finding ways to honor Princess Diana. Although she isn't around, the prince has made sure that "Granny Diana" is still a big part of his children's lives. In the 2017 documentary, "Diana, Our Mother: Her Life and Legacy," William explained how he keeps her memory alive so that George, Charlotte, and Louis feel close to her.

"We've got more photos up around the house now of her and we talk about her a bit," said William (per Today). "I do, regularly putting George and Charlotte to bed, talk about her and just try and remind them that there are two grandmothers, there were two grandmothers, in their lives. So it's important that they know who she was and that she existed."

William and Kate have also taken a page from his mother's parenting book when it comes to raising their children. It was important to Diana to always send thank you notes after attending a dinner party or receiving a gift, and she taught the same etiquette rule to William and his brother, Harry. 

Now, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are passing down those same lessons to their brood. "[William and Kate] have developed this brilliant knack of letting as much as they can seem spontaneous and that's how the children see it," a source told MyLondon. "Table manners, thank you letters, little courtesies are being drilled into the children so they become automatic."

The Duke of Cambridge wants to be known as 'the people's king'

Prince William is also keeping his mother in mind as he plans to one day become king. While Princess Diana was known as "the people's princess," her son has aspirations of becoming "the people's king," working to maintain "the perfect balance of being relatable to the public at the same as being a respected role model and decision-maker," a source told US Weekly.

Like Diana, William advocates for a variety of charities and is the patron for many of the organizations the princess once served, including the homeless prevention charity The Passage. The Duke of Cambridge spoke about how his mother introduced him to the charity during its 40th-anniversary awards ceremony. 

"Over the many years that I have visited The Passage, first with my mother when I was just a small boy, I have developed a great affection for everyone who is here," William said, according to Express. "Every time I come here, I am touched by your warmth and friendliness, and the dignity and respect you show to every single person who comes through your door."

There is no doubt that Diana would be proud of the man her son has become — and her memory will surely guide him when he becomes the head of the British royal family.