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Saturday, July 24, 2021

Reflections On Meghan Markle And Prince Harry Interview

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Divya Dhadd
Divya Dhadd
Journalist

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry’s recent interview with Oprah Winfrey, has caused an explosion of varied reactions, unneccesarily critical ones from broadcaster Piers Morgan or Indian actress Simi Garewal to benevolent reactions of popular stars like Beyonce, Serena Williams, Janina Gavankar or Priyanka Chopra.

But mostly, the world has been tender-hearted towards the royal couple for being vocal about issues like racism and mental health, appreciating their courage.

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Courage, something that Cinderella’s mother taught her, but in retrospect those fairytales make so much sense when we grow up.

WHAT WAS THE INTERVIEW ABOUT?

In the interview with Oprah Winfrey, Markle opened up about topics from race to mental health. The Duchess accused the British Royal Family of stressing about how dark her son’s skin would be.

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Markle, who is the “first mixed-race member of the modern Royal Family,” said that her husband Prince Harry revealed his family’s concerns over Archie’s skin tone, and the security he would be entitled to, ahead of his birth on May 6, 2019.

Meghan also accused the royal family of denying help during a mental health crisis, speaking frankly of her suicidal thoughts while pregnant with Archie. Meghan recalled her darkest moments as a royal in the interview.

WHAT WE NEED TO REFLECT ON?

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In hindsight, the interview and reactions to it have thrown light on how mental health is perceived. Just when we thought that there was beginning to be more acceptance of mental health concerns, setbacks such these when somebody talks about the issue on a personal note to receive backlash and be called a ‘lair,’ and that somebody here, being the Duchess of Sussex.

We need to understand that be it any person when one talks about their mental health or having suicidal thoughts, it is real, so their problems shouldn’t be doubted because that was the exact reason they were being hesitant to talk about it the whole time, out of the fear of being judged.

HUMANITARIAN DIANA AND HER SON HARRY

“I can’t begin to imagine what it must have been like for her (Princess Diana) going through this process by herself all those years ago. Because it’s been unbelievably tough for the two of us, but at least we have each other,” said Harry in the interview while talking about struggles behind the royal family rift.

As a child, Harry’s mother insisted that he and his brother, William see the world beyond royal privilege, hence took them on public transportations and humanitarian missions.

Even after Princess Diana’s death, Harry continued the humanitarian work; worked at a cattle station in Australia, helped orphaned children in Lesotho, served the military in Afghanistan, and has been fighting to break the stigma around mental health.

When things only seemed to worsen with the royal family for him, he chose to step back from royal duties to protect his own small family.

Questioning the integrity of such a man and his family, wouldn’t really fit in!

“You were enjoying that life,” said Oprah in the interview, to which the prince said, “Enjoying that life because there were photographs of me smiling while I was shaking hands and meeting people? That’s a part of the job. That’s a part of the role, that’s what’s expected,” said the Duke of Sussex.

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