It looks as if we're in for yet another round of TV shows trawling over and sifting through the life of Princess Diana.

I can't understand the continued worldwide fascination in anything Diana. While alive of course there was intense interest.

The beautiful, divorced people's princess living life out loud and on her own terms. Jetting off to super luxury locations to be wined, dined and romanced by the world's most desirable playboys. She kept the paparazzi on their toes.

Now 20 years after her death interest in this extraordinary, and I often thought somewhat disturbed woman, appears to be as high as ever. And not just in the United Kingdom.


Around the world people remain captivated by the life she led. They still can't seem to get enough of her; want to see, read and hear more.

This week Channel 4 started screening the TV documentary tapes Diana - In Her Own Words.

TVNZ will screen the tapes here too in the coming weeks. Interestingly the tapes have already aired in the United States but this is the first time in the United Kingdom.

The tapes, recorded in 1992 and 1993 by her voice coach Peter Settelenin, reveal Diana talking openly about her marriage. She shares intimate thoughts and feelings about her life with Prince Charles.

Perhaps she appreciated having someone non-judgemental being available to listen to her inner most thoughts and feelings. Someone she could offload on to.

I doubt she ever intended for anyone else to hear what she was saying. Least of all her sons Princes William and Harry. They weren't happy for the tapes to be screened and took no part in the programme.

Related articles:

Since the screening there have been objections raised on morality grounds and accusations of invasion of privacy. For most of us when we share and have private conversations about our personal lives we presume they will remain private.

If we thought they could be leaked or made public we would probably be more cautious, reign in our thoughts.

On the surface it does appear a gross breach of privacy and hugely insensitive to her family to have Diana's inner most thoughts made public. But Channel 4 insists they are of historical knowledge.

That's got me stumped. Diana being sexually neglected by her husband throughout her marriage was probably no different to what other queens and princesses, over the centuries, would have endured no matter from what country.

Neglect in the bedroom isn't just a modern day happening. Although it is said, and this must be your historical knowledge, that Queen Victoria's marriage was anything but dull in the bedroom. I hope that's true. But some details are best left private and behind closed doors.

Too much information and someone is bound to feel aggrieved and get hurt. What purpose, other than playing the voyeurism game, has been served?

I think Diana became rather a sad figure as the years passed. Early in her marriage she got the message that her husband was not hers alone. She admits the marriage involved three people: her, Charles and Camilla Parker-Bowles.

There was no winning that one. Young and inexperienced up against a worldly wise married woman. No contest. She remained beautiful but in her loneliness she took risks. Sharing with her voice coach has proved that.

I don't think there was any need to make the tapes public. Especially if you know the content will cause embarrassment.

Today we seem to want to know all the details, right down to the nitty gritty. The dirtier the better. We have got past caring if we cause offence. If we hurt someone's feelings, so what. As long as it's not us being exposed.

Princess Diana probably thought she was marrying for love and for life. Her dream was shattered very early in her marriage. But in her sons she found true love. Given freely and unconditionally on both sides.

That's historical knowledge that will live on down through the ages. Not the breakdown in sexual relations that the tapes are sharing with the masses.

Merepeka Raukawa-Tait is a Rotorua Lakes Council councillor, Lakes District Health Board member and chairs the North Island Whanau Ora Commissioning Agency. She writes, speaks and broadcasts to thwart the spread of political correctness.