By: Francesca Chernous
Trigger Warning: discussions about suicide
On March 7, 2021, Oprah Winfrey interviewed Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, which provided some insight into The Royal Family in Britain. The couple officially left their royal duties last March. They now live in Canada with their son, Archie.
One of the most crucial things that Markle mentioned in the interview was that she had become suicidal because of her life as a member of The Royal family. “I was ashamed to have to admit it to Harry. I knew that if I didn’t say it, I would do it. I just didn’t want to be alive anymore,” She said. Markle also remarked that she had wanted to get help from The Royal Family, but was told not to by a senior member. She and the Prince were not supported in their times of need by the rest of The Royal family.
Another thing she talked about were the several conversations The Royals had about the future of her child. “In those months when I was pregnant, all around this same time, so we have in tandem the conversation of he won’t be given security, he’s not going to be given a title, and also concerns and conversations about how dark his skin might be when he was born.” The Royal Family decided that Prince Harry and Markle’s son would not be provided with security or be called a prince, which she believes could have been influenced by his mixed-race heritage.
When Markle and Prince Harry first moved away from The Royal Family to the United States, Prince Harry said that they completely stopped receiving money for security, “My family literally cut me off financially.” Even before they were married, their future finances were threatened, when every other family member was usually never cut off from receiving finances, Prince Harry said, “because there wasn’t enough money to pay for her … There were some real obvious signs before we even got married that this was going to be really hard.”
The British Royal Family did not disprove the rumors surrounding Markle. Markle was painted as a rude and pretentious person by the media who was disrespectful to the staff of the family. These rumors were untrue, and as Harry mentioned, “No-one from my family ever said anything over those three years. That hurts.” This shows the lack of care the rest of the family had for Markle as well as Prince Harry, she says they were “willing to lie to protect other members of the family, but they weren’t willing to tell the truth to protect me and my husband.”
This interview revealed the potential racism in The Royal Family, mainly due to the discrimination towards Meghan Markle. This was the driving factor as to why Prince Harry and Markle left their duties. Both of them say that they felt stranded in the family at some points, but hopefully, they are finding happiness in their new home.
If anyone is dealing with mental health issues or crisis it is important to reach out for support from school counsellors or other professionals. No one should face these issues alone.
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Mental Health Resources provided by FHCI:
Jancelewicz, Chris. “’Oprah With Meghan and Harry’ Interview: 6 Stand-out Moments of the Jaw-Dropping Tell-All.” Global News, 9 Mar. 2021, https://globalnews.ca/news/7674764/oprah-interview-meghan-markle-prince-harry-moments-video/ . Accessed 18 March 2021.
Lyall, Sarah, and Tariro Mzezewa. “What We Learned From Meghan and Harry’s Interview.” The New York Times, 8 Mar. 2021, http://www.nytimes.com/2021/03/08/world/europe/recap-of-harry-meghan-oprah-interview.html. Accessed 18 March 2021.
“Meghan and Harry Interview: Urgent Palace Talks over Claims.” BBC News, 9 Mar. 2021, www.bbc.com/news/uk-56329887#:~:text=%22No%2Done%20from%20my%20family,members%20of%0the%20Royal%20Family. Accessed 18 March 2021.