Culture

Everything We Learned During Meghan And Harry’s Tell-All Oprah Interview

“My regret is believing them when they said I would be protected”.

meghan harry oprah interview

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In case you missed it, Meghan Markle and Prince Harry’s tell-all interview with Oprah just aired on CBS, and it really was a tell-all event.

While snippets for the interview didn’t give much away in the lead up to the TV special, we all speculated that the Duke and Duchess’ first interview since stepping away from their royal duties would be revealing.

In fact, the royal family have been so worried about what would be revealed in Oprah with Meghan and Harry that Buckingham Palace announced that they would be launching an investigation into the perfectly-timed “bullying” allegations against Meghan Markle.

But even with the latest smear campaign against Meghan Markle, the Oprah interview was still more shocking than anything the tabloids could think up. From the couple announcing they’re having a girl, to addressing long-rumoured racism claims, to confirming that they sometimes watch The Crown, there was… a lot.

So here’s a breakdown of everything we learned during the two-hour special:

Meghan Was “Naive” Over What Being A Royal Entailed

The interview opened with Meghan revealing that she was quite naive about what being a royal meant.

While Meghan knew who the royal family were, she never even Googled them before joining the monarchy. But because of this, she also didn’t realise that formalities carried over into private life, where things like curtsying to the Queen was still required behind closed doors.

“I didn’t understand what the job was. What does it mean to be a working royal,” Meghan told Oprah. “I grew up in LA where you see celebrities all the time. The Royals, it’s not the same. It’s a totally different ballgame.”

The Duchess Never Made Kate Middleton Cry

In 2018, tabloids reported that Meghan Markle made Kate Middleton cry over bridesmaid dresses in the lead up to her wedding to Prince Harry.

But Meghan revealed that this was never the case, and, in fact, that Kate was the one who had made her cry over the dresses but chose to not share exact details as the pair had moved on from the issue.

“The reverse happened. And I don’t say that to be disparaging to anyone, because it was a really hard week of the wedding, and she was upset about something,” Meghan said. “It made me cry. It really hurt my feelings… [but] I actually don’t think it’s fair to her to get into the details of that because she apologised. And I’ve forgiven her.”

Meghan also added that she’s not a fan of people pinning the sister-in-laws against each other, especially the media who “really seem to want a narrative of a hero and a villain.”

“If you love me, you don’t have to hate her. And if you love her, you don’t have to hate me,” Meghan said.

Meghan And The Queen Actually Have A Good Relationship

Despite the narrative that tabloids spun about the Queen and Meghan having a strained relationship, the Duchess shared that “the Queen has always been wonderful to me”.

“I just really loved being in her company,” Meghan said while sharing the story of their first joint engagement together where the Queen shared her lap blanket with her while travelling between engagements.”It made me think of my grandmother, where she’s always been warm and inviting and really welcoming.”

But as time passed, Meghan explained that “The Firm” became stricter about how often she could leave the house as she was seemingly “everywhere right now”.

“I have left the house twice in four months — I am everywhere but I am nowhere right now,” she shared. “There’s very little that I was allowed to do.”

The Royal Family Pulled Archie’s Security And Were Worried About His Skin Colour

In one of the most revealing moments of the interview, Meghan shared that she was told that Archie would not get a title nor receive security, in the last few months of her pregnancy.

Adding onto the topic, Prince Harry shared that he also lost his own security as a result of a “change in status” which made him no longer an “official member of the royal family”.

Along with losing security, Meghan shared that “there were concerns and conversations about how dark [Archie’s] skin might be when he was born” and “what that would mean or look like” according to talks that Harry had had with his family.

However, Meghan chose not to share who was involved in these talks as it would be “damaging” for them.

Meghan Shared She Had Suicidal Thoughts During Her Time As A Royal

When chatting to Oprah about her time as a royal, Meghan begun to get emotional and described her experience as “almost unsurvivable”.

“I just didn’t want to be alive any more. And that was a real and clear and frightening and constant thought,” she tearfully shared.

Sadly, despite reaching out to ask for help from the firm, her feelings were brushed aside as “it wouldn’t be good for the institution”. This also happened when Meghan approached HR, where she was shut out because she was “not a paid employee of the institution” and there was no union that could protect her like in previous jobs she held.

As she handed over her keys and passport when joining the royal family, Meghan couldn’t even seek out help for herself either, only finding refuge in one of Princess Diana’s old friends.

Harry Confirmed That The Couple Did Not Blindside The Queen

Even though ‘Megxit’ was reported to be a blindside to the Queen, Prince Harry denied those claims citing that he has “too much respect for her” to ever do so.

When the couple first moved to Canada, Harry shared that he “had several conversations” with his grandmother and that they are still in contact regularly via Zoom.

“I’ve spoken more to my grandmother in the past year than I have for many many years,” Harry said. “I have a deep respect for her.”

Similarly Harry did note that Prince Charles “stopped taking” his calls before the couple publicly announced their departure from the royal family, but that they have since started talking again as one of Harry’s priorities is to “heal that relationship”.

In regards to Prince William, Harry shared that the pair may be on “different paths” but that he “loves William to bits”.

“The relationship is space at the moment, and time heals all things,” Harry said.

Prince Harry Said He Was “Trapped” In The Royal Family Until He Met Meghan

One bombshell Harry dropped once he entered the interview was that he felt “trapped” in the life he was born into, and wouldn’t have left the royal family if Meghan didn’t come along.

Oprah quickly questioned how a literal Prince living in a literal palace could feel trapped, but Harry then clarified that he meant that he was trapped within the system after being born into it.

“I was trapped but didn’t know I was trapped,” Harry said. “Trapped within the system. My father and my brother, they are trapped.”

The Couple Didn’t Want To Leave The Royal Family

A lot of blame for Harry and Meghan leaving the royal family falls on Meghan’s shoulders, but the couple shared that this is not true.

In fact, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle only ever wanted to “take a breath” from being senior royals but the request was denied. This, paired with a “lack of support and lack of understanding”, eventually led to the couple leaving the royal family.

“My biggest concern was history repeating itself,” Harry explained, referring to Princess Diana. “To receive no help at all and to be told ‘This is just how it is, we’ve all been through it’.”

Harry Was Cut Off From The Royal Family

In early 2020, the royal family cut Harry off financially so the couple had to rely on the money that Princess Diana left him.

“My family cut me off in the first half of 2020, but I got what my mum left me,” Harry said. “You asked what my mother thought of this, and I think she saw it coming.”

As a result, while Netflix and Spotify deals were not part of Meghan and Harry’s plans, Harry explained that they were necessary to be able to afford the security they lost with stepping away from their royal duties.

“This was never the intention,” Harry shared. “What I needed was enough money to keep my family safe.”

Meghan’s Only Regret Was Trusting The Royal Family’s Promises

While Prince Harry shared that he had no regrets about how it all panned out as the couple are now happy, Meghan Markle shared she did have one.

“My regret is believing them when they said I would be protected,” Meghan Markle ended the interview.

You can watch the full ‘Oprah with Meghan and Harry’ interview at 7.30pm tonight on 10.


Michelle Rennex is a senior writer at Junkee. She tweets at @michellerennex.