6 Meghan Markle & Prince Harry Interview Bombshells That Offer Lessons for Parents
Much has changed since Meghan Markle and Prince Harry wed in front of the world in 2018 and welcomed their first child in 2019. As of the beginning of March, the couple surrendered their royal patronages and military appointments. And in order to set the record straight, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex sat down last night with Oprah to paint a stunning and sad picture that explains why they will not return as working royals.
While stepping away from the monarchy might not be something most people can imagine, it turns out that the couple has been navigating various universal family and mental health challenges. Here, several bombshells that parents might find especially relatable.
1. Meghan Struggled With Her Mental Health While Pregnant
The Duchess of Sussex opened up to Oprah about the fact that while pregnant with her son Archie, she "just didn't want to be alive anymore." "That was a clear and real and frightening and constant thought," she shared.
Meghan's suicidal thoughts drove her to request help from a senior royal, and she was told she couldn't do that, as it would be bad "for the institution."
She elaborated, "I share this, because there's so many people who are afraid to voice that they need help. And I know, personally, how hard it is to not just voice it, but when you voice it, to be told no."
The situation heartbreakingly mirrored what had happened to Princess Diana while pregnant and after giving birth to Prince William in 1982, proving that the "institution" has a haunting track record of not only failing to support women who are struggling with their mental health but leaving them to suffer in silence by refusing them necessary care.
If you or someone you know is struggling with depression or has had thoughts of harming themselves or taking their own life, get help. The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (1-800-273-8255) provides 24/7, free, confidential support for people in distress, as well as best practices for professionals and resources to aid in prevention and crisis situations.
2. Prince Harry Is Still Working Through His Issues With His Father, Prince Charles
Unresolved anger and hurt seems to permeate the relationship between Prince Harry and his father Prince Charles. In the midst of stepping down from working royal duties, Harry explained that he had three conversations with his grandmother, Queen Elizabeth II, and two conversations with his father, Prince Charles, "before he stopped taking my calls." "And then he said, 'Can you put this all in writing?'" the Duke of Sussex recalled.
He later explained, "There's a lot to work through there. I feel really let down because he's been through something similar. He knows what pain is like. And Archie's his grandson."
He continued, "Of course, I will always love him, but there's a lot of hurt that's happened. And I will continue to make it one of my priorities to try and heal that relationship."
3. A Member of the Royal Family Expressed Concerns About Archie's Skin Color
Many expectant parents have heard their family members blurt out completely inappropriate, unexpected remarks and questions about what their child will look like. And in Meghan and Harry's case, those remarks and questions were blatantly racist. The Duchess opened up to Oprah about the fact that while she was expecting her son, people inside "the institution" had expressed "concerns and conversations about how dark his skin might be when he is born."
Oprah was floored, nudging Meghan to elaborate, asking, "Who is having that conversation with you?" She explained that there were "several conversations" about "what that would mean and what that would look like."
When asked to name names, Meghan replied, "I think that would be very damaging to them."
Harry confirmed that he was approached with the same question, and noted, "That conversation I'm never going to share. But at the time, it was awkward, I was a bit shocked. I'm not comfortable sharing it."
Oprah later said that Harry wanted her to share that "it was not his grandmother [Queen Elizabeth], nor his grandfather [Prince Phillip] that were a part of those conversations."
4. Prince Harry Had No Choice But to Set Boundaries
All too often, in-laws or other family members cross the line in a way that a couple has no choice but to set hard and fast rules about how life is going to look going forward. Harry, who spoke openly about going to therapy after meeting Meghan, must have unpacked his family history and present day concerns and come to the conclusion that the healthiest way forward for him and his young family was to leave the U.K. and life as a working royal.
It was after Charles stopped taking his calls that Prince Harry told Oprah he had to take matters into his own hands. "It was like, I needed to do this for my family," he noted. "This is not a surprise to anybody. It's really sad that it's got to this point, but I've got to do something for my own mental health, my wife's and for Archie's as well."
5. Prince Harry Knows His Mother Princess Diana Would Want Them to Be Happy
Harry shared that his "biggest concern" was "history repeating itself," in terms of Meghan being targeted by the press and not protected by "the institution" just as his mother had been. He described it as receiving "no help at all" and being told, "This is just how it is, we've all been through it."
Later, Oprah asked, "What would you think your mom would say about this stepping back, this decision to step back from the royal family? How would she feel about this moment?"
Harry replied, "I think she would feel very angry with how this has panned out, and very sad. But, ultimately, all she'd ever want is for us to be happy."
6. Meghan and Harry Are Welcoming a Baby Girl
And it's clear that they feel their life away from the toxicity of royal life is more than full. The couple shared with Oprah that their second child will be a baby girl. "To have any child, any one or any two would've been amazing, but to have a boy and then a girl—what more could you ask for?" Harry said. "Now we've got our family. We've got the four of us, our two dogs."