It’s been no secret that Meghan Markle and Prince Harry’s time as senior royals was tough, but some points that were so low for her that they resulted in suicidal thoughts, she revealed tonight. That dark story heard on Sunday’s Oprah Winfrey interview harkens back to a similar tale with Princess Diana. It’s scary to think that the two women had similar paths decades apart and the palace learned nothing from it the first time around.
“I was ashamed to say it at the time and ashamed to have to admit it to Harry. But I knew that if I didn’t say it — then I would do it,” Meghan revealed in the interview. “I just didn’t want to be alive anymore. That was clear and real and frightening and constant thought.”
When Meghan asked within the palace for help, she was turned away. “I went to one of the most senior people to get help,” she said. “I was told I couldn’t because it wouldn’t be good for the institution.”
It’s astonishing to hear that story in 2021 given how the royal family treated Princess Diana in her years in the monarchy. Harry’s mother had gone to Queen Elizabeth to ask for help and was also turned down. It’s heartbreaking to read Diana’s words decades later from a series of tapes she recorded with speech coach Peter Settelen.
Meghan Markle admits that it was Kate Middleton who made her cry over flower girl dresses. 😲But the tabloids, obviously, reported the opposite. https://t.co/CmQ61gxMWc
— SheKnows (@SheKnows) March 8, 2021
“So I went to the top lady, sobbing, and I said ‘What do I do? I’m coming to you, what do I do?’ And she said, ‘I don’t know what you should do. Charles is hopeless.’ And that was it, and that was help,” she says. “So I didn’t go back to her again for help, because I don’t go back again if I don’t get it the first time.”
Prince Harry and Meghan shared that even in the modern era the Firm doesn’t believe in therapy because it might bring shame upon the monarchy. Yet if a family member dies by suicide, wouldn’t that draw even more attention to the monarchy’s lack of support? The stateside couple saw that history was repeating itself — what happened to Princess Diana, was happening again to Meghan — and they didn’t want a tragic end to their story.
“I was ashamed to have to admit it to Harry,” Meghan said of her suicidal ideation to Oprah. “I knew that if I didn’t say it, I would do it. I just didn’t want to be alive anymore.”
It’s why their exit makes so much sense now that they have the freedom to share their story in a safe setting. The move made a positive impact on their mental health, but also on the future of their family.
If you or someone you know is in crisis, you should call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255, The Trevor Project at 1-866-488-7386, or reach Crisis Text Line by texting “START” to 741741. You can also head to your nearest emergency room or call 911.
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Before you go, click here to see the craziest conspiracy theories Meghan Markle has faced since becoming a royal.
Watch: A Timeline of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s Relationship