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Norwegian princess speaks to media for first time since stepping down from royal duties

 May 2, 2023

Norway's Princess Martha Louise has revealed that the process of stepping aside from royal duties was filled with "turmoil."

The 51-year-old princess, who was talking to BBC, claimed she had been a clairvoyant since childhood and shared her experiences of psychic premonitions and the ensuing criticism she faced in Norway for her spiritual beliefs.

Comparisons to Prince Harry and Meghan Markle

Asked about her decision compared to Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, who has also stepped down as senior royals, she spoke of her "amazing" family, which includes King Harald and Queen Sonja, and how the dialogue between them has always remained open.

She said, "What I think has been amazing through this whole cycle has been the conversations we have had through it all,"

Fiance’s Controversial Views

Martha Louise's engagement with American businessman Durek Verrett has also contributed to the public's perception of her position in the royal family.

Verrett, who describes himself as a "shaman," faced backlash for pseudoscientific claims in his book, "Spirit Hacking," and has made controversial statements about healing and his own experiences.

The claims include that he once came back from the dead, recovering from a month-long coma by allowing his soul to "burn."

The assertions also encompass the notion that children "can get cancer from being unhappy."

The princess stated that the Norwegian people likely decided it was best for her to step down because of Verrett's views.

Psychic Abilities and Spiritual Beliefs

In the interview, Princess Martha Louise spoke about her psychic abilities, claiming she had premonitions as a child.

She said: "When I was little, I would see things in you. If you were sad or if you were happy... if you had a pain in your shoulder I would get a pain in my shoulder."

"And I understood that that's a talent and, you know, I could help other people. And that's when the whole ball started rolling."

She acknowledged that spiritual beliefs are considered "taboo" in Norway and said she had faced much criticism for her views.

Dealing with Criticism

Princess Martha Louise discussed her ex-husband, Ari Behn, who died by suicide in 2019, and how he struggled with being in the public eye.

She recalled that his mental health was impacted by media criticism but stressed the importance of handling criticism constructively.

The princess expressed her desire to "earn my own money," which could only be achieved by relinquishing her "money from the state" and paying taxes for the first time in her life.

The couple's engagement has also been met with online trolling, with Verrett attributing some of the negativity to him being a black man in a European royal family and Martha Louise being a female royal choosing a partner of color.