It’s been a few days since Prince Harry and Meghan Markle announced that they will be stepping down from their roles as senior members of the royal family, and while not everyone is on board with the couple’s choice, it seems as though Prince Harry’s mother, Princess Diana, may have played a pivotal role in the making of this bombshell decision.
During an appearance on the UK show The One Show, the Duke of Sussex’s friend, JJ Chalmers, opened up about the unexpected news. Speaking about Harry directly, Chalmers revealed, “I think the decision that he has made, at the forefront of that is to protect his family, because that’s the number one rule is to be a father and to be a husband. Any husband wants to protect their wife and any father wants to protect their children.”
— BBC The One Show (@BBCTheOneShow) January 10, 2020
“He is a very principled individual and so when he looks as how the media reacts and how social media talks about someone, he has to answer to his son one day when he begins to understand this and be able to look him in the face and say, ‘I made the right decision and I did right by you,’” he continued.
The friend also touched on Princess Diana’s untimely death in 1997, after she got into a car crash while trying to escape paparazzi — and alluded to the fact that Harry will do everything in his power to ensure that Meghan and son Archie are protected from a similar incident. “Ultimately he grew up in the limelight and knows how it will end if this isn’t handled correctly,” he added.
View this post on Instagram
“After many months of reflection and internal discussions, we have chosen to make a transition this year in starting to carve out a progressive new role within this institution. We intend to step back as ‘senior’ members of the Royal Family and work to become financially independent, while continuing to fully support Her Majesty The Queen. It is with your encouragement, particularly over the last few years, that we feel prepared to make this adjustment. We now plan to balance our time between the United Kingdom and North America, continuing to honour our duty to The Queen, the Commonwealth, and our patronages. This geographic balance will enable us to raise our son with an appreciation for the royal tradition into which he was born, while also providing our family with the space to focus on the next chapter, including the launch of our new charitable entity. We look forward to sharing the full details of this exciting next step in due course, as we continue to collaborate with Her Majesty The Queen, The Prince of Wales, The Duke of Cambridge and all relevant parties. Until then, please accept our deepest thanks for your continued support.” – The Duke and Duchess of Sussex For more information, please visit sussexroyal.com (link in bio) Image © PA
Still, while Prince Harry’s decision isn’t one that royal fans saw coming, we can’t blame him for making the choice that’s best for his family. After all, Harry and Meghan have already been marching to the beat of their own drum anyway, and have had no problem breaking royal rules. Just this past Christmas, instead of participating in traditional holiday celebrations with the royal family, they opted to spend the holiday season with Meghan’s mother in Canada.
“Having spent the last two Christmases at Sandringham, Their Royal Highnesses will spend the holiday this year, as a new family, with the Duchess’ mother Doria Ragland,” a statement read. “This decision is in line with precedent set previously by other members of the Royal Family, and has the support of Her Majesty The Queen.”