Meghan Markle has announced that she will not join Prince Harry for King Charles’ coronation in May.
The main reason is said to be because of the couple’s children, Prince Archie and Princess Lilibet. Meghan will remain in the US to celebrate Archie’s 4th birthday on May 6, the same day as the coronation.
Of course, the rift between Harry & Meghan and the royals has given way to speculation that her missing the coronation could be down to be another reason. More specifically, rumors insist Meghan’s absence might have something to do with Kate Middleton.
Meghan Markle and Kate Middleton used to have a great relationship, even spending quality time at different sports events together. But as the Sussexes’ royal exit drew near – accompanied by the many revelations they made about the Royal Family following their departure – Kate decided she’d had enough.
It’s even been claimed that Meghan was the main reason Kate never got to see Queen Elizabeth II before she passed. Now, at least one royal expert is arguing that Kate could be the person responsible for preventing Meghan from attending the coronation.
Harry and Meghan’s relationship with the Royal Family is not what it used to be, that I think we can all agree on. After the couple’s numerous attacks on the Firm, contact has been virtually non-existent between the Sussexes and the royals. Indeed, the bitter feelings between them appear to be mutual, and that’s perhaps nowhere better evidenced than the frosty relationship between William and Harry’s respective wives, Kate and Meghan.
The two once had a good relationship, even if they didn’t get off to as good a start as many would have hoped.
Meghan had a tough time with things after becoming a member of the British Royal Family. Upon meeting Prince William and Kate Middleton for the first time, the former actress realized that she was heading into unknown territory.
Though Meghan and Kate reportedly got along pretty well initially, their relationship today has soured.
When the two met for the first time, the Duchess was reportedly taken by surprise. Harry, Meghan, William, and Kate are said to have met for a couples’ dinner, but thought it was an intimate gathering, Kate showed less outward affection than Meghan was expecting.
In the Sussexes’ Netflix documentary series, which aired in December, Meghan took a swing at Kate for being too reserved and not as welcoming as the former actress anticipated she would be.
Meghan Markle & Kate Middleton – relationship
Even behind the scenes, it would appear that formality is vital for the Royal Family’s most senior members.
“When Will and Kate came over, and I met her for the first time, they came over for dinner, I remember I was in ripped jeans, and I was barefoot,” Meghan recalled.
“I was a hugger. I’ve always been a hugger, I didn’t realize that that is jarring for a lot of Brits.”
She continued: “I guess I started to understand very quickly that the formality on the outside carried through on the inside. There is a forward-facing way of being, and then you close the door and go ‘You can relax now’, but that formality carries over on both sides. And that was surprising to me.”
Yet though Meghan and Kate weren’t best friends from the beginning, they were far from enemies.
According to Finding Freedom authors Omid Scobie and Carolyn Durand, the reason for Meghan and Kate’s strained relationship was that they didn’t know each other well enough.
“Meghan would agree with the assessment that the duchesses were not the best of friends,” they wrote. “Their relationship hadn’t progressed much since [Markle] was Harry’s girlfriend.”
Moreover, Durand and Scobie add that Kate didn’t make a significant effort to welcome Markle into the family, at least not in the way people might have expected.
Meghan had hoped that Kate would take her under her wing and guide her through all the new things that someone coming from “outside to the Firm” should know about.
Meghan wanted more support from Kate
That, the authors claim, never happened.
“Meghan was disappointed that she and Kate hadn’t bonded over the position they shared, but she wasn’t losing sleep over it,” Durand and Scobie wrote in Finding Freedom, adding that “Meghan would far rather have had Kate check in on her during the most difficult times with the press.”
Their relationship then took a turn before Harry and Meghan’s wedding, when things were said to have become heated between the two. Meghan claimed that Kate had made her cry over the flower-girl dresses on her wedding day – a notion that directly contradicted earlier claims by the tabloids.
After leaving the Royal Family, Harry and Meghan spoke candidly about their struggles via interviews, the Netflix documentary, and, more recently, in Harry’s memoir, Spare. Suffice it to say the royals were left shocked and upset with their behavior. It should also go without saying that the revelations and claims made by Harry and Meghan did little to assist the fractured relationship between Kate and Meghan.
When Prince Philip passed in 2021, Harry attended the funeral, though Meghan was nowhere to be seen. Last year, when the world mourned Queen Elizabeth II’s passing, Meghan met Kate Middleton and the rest of the Royal Family for the first time since officially stepping down from her duties as a princess.
At the time, Harry and Meghan were in Germany doing promotional work for the Invictus Games. The prince recalled the shocking moment he got word of his grandmother’s passing in his book, Spare, released in January.
“When the plane started to descend, I saw that my phone lit up. It was a message from Meg: ‘Call me when you get this,’” Harry wrote.
Kate ‘resents’ Meghan after Queen Elizabeth’s passing
“I looked at the BBC website. My grandmother had died. My father was King. I put on a black tie, and stepped off the plane into the heavy drizzle.”
Harry traveled straight to Scotland. Upon arrival, he was met by Princess Anne and went to Balmoral to see the Queen.
“I stayed in one place without moving, gazing at her for a long time, gathered strength and continued going forward,” Harry said, adding that he “whispered to her I hoped she was happy and that she was with grandpa.”
When news about the Queen’s declining health reached the public, Kate Middleton was seen driving to her children’s school to pick them up. Neither she nor Meghan traveled with the rest of the senior royals to Balmoral, and according to royal expert and author Robert Jobson, that was due to a direct order from then-Prince Charles.
In his new tell-all book Our King: Charles III: The Man and the Monarch Revealed, Jobson writes that both Harry and William were asked not to bring their wives.
“Harry was insisting Meghan travel with him to Scotland as the Queen’s life ebbed away, but the King said it was only for the children and grandchildren to be with the Queen,” Jobson wrote.
“Privately, he wanted to say Meghan was not welcome, but he couldn’t say that to Harry, so he intervened and asked Kate to stay back so that it was fairer on Meghan.”
The author added: “Kate deliberately stayed away, but she desperately wanted to be there with the Queen in her last moments. That’s eaten Kate up and has built up resentment towards Meghan.”
Meghan never got to say a final goodbye to the Queen at Balmoral. However, she attended the funeral to be by Harry’s side.
“Ill feeling between the two couples”
Shortly after Queen Elizabeth’s death, Harry, Meghan, William, and Kate joined forces during a public outing at Windsor to greet well-wishers and mourners. It was supposed to be seen as a united royal front despite their different opinions of one another. For Kate, though, the walk was tough – author Robert Jobson revealed that the Princess of Wales didn’t enjoy it one bit.
The fact that it was to be seen as a feeling of “it’s getting better between us” was, according to Jobson, just an “illusion.”
“Catherine later admitted to a senior royal that, such was the ill feeling between the two couples, the joint walkabout was one of the hardest things she’d ever had to do,” Jobson writes in his new book.
Naturally, the rumors surrounding Harry and Meghan’s potential participation in King Charles’ coronation have been ongoing for months. Some argued that they hadn’t been invited, while others claimed they didn’t want to attend in the first place. In the end, the couple was officially invited by Charles, but Harry will go it alone.
Meghan, meanwhile, will remain in the US with the couple’s children, Prince Archie and Princess Lilibet. But is she only staying behind because it’s the easiest thing for the Sussex family?
Well, according to royal expert and author Tom Bower, Kate Middleton had a say in the decision, and she didn’t “under any circumstances” want Meghan in attendance.
Bower termed the fact that Harry will attend alone an “ugly compromise.”
“I think we must all be grateful that Kate, in the end, I think, prevented Meghan coming and said she wouldn’t have her there under any circumstances,” Bower said during an appearance on GB News, as reported by Express.
“They had to make a decision that felt genuine and authentic”
“I do think that for the Royal Family, Harry’s presence is constitutionally important, after all, if God forbid something happens to the Cambridges, and all of them died, we’d have King Harry on the throne after Charles, so he’s got to be there.”
He added: “The question is, what is role will be when he gets to London? and I think that the arguments over the last few days have been very much to minimize his presence in the Abbey.”
Moreover, the expert claimed that Kate warned Meghan that if she attended, she’d have to “sit in the back.”
Meanwhile, a royal source told Page Six that Meghan decided against not attending the coronation, as she felt it would be “inauthentic.”
“They had to make a decision that felt genuine and authentic, especially after everything that has been said and all the things that have gone down,” an insider familiar with the family said.
So Meghan won’t attend the coronation, but Tom Bower argues that “in theory,” this will make it easier for Harry.
“I think in practice it would be terrible if Charles did that because I think if he let Harry come on the balcony, he’d also have to have Prince Andrew on the balcony,” the royal expert said.
“And to have two renegade princes in front of the public like that would be a very bad start to King Charles’s reign,” he continued, adding that the coronation, in the end, is “all about Charles and about “what sort of king he is going to be.”
What do you think of this? Do you think Kate should have a say in whether Meghan would be welcome at the coronation?
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